Round Top, Texas is well known to antiquers, shoppers, and folks looking for a little retail therapy. It’s a blink-and-you’ll-miss-it kind of town. That said, during the spring, fall and winter, it’s full of people bustling around the Round Top Antiques Show, looking for great deals and rare finds. Round Top is fun to visit year ‘round though and you’ll certainly be able to experience its charms at a more reasonable pace if you’re not vying for space with a shopper.
Naturally the first thing to consider is what you’ll buy in Round Top. If you end up there during one of the shows, you’ll need a strategy or you’ll have to let go of all expectations and just meander. If you’re daytripping during some other time, stop by Round Top Mercantile Company first. It’s kind of an “everything” store and you’ll want to browse around the apparel and gifts and pick up snacks, beer, wine, and fresh ice cream. Junk Gypsy is a little like Thelma and Louise got in their car and instead decided to open a really cool shop. Books, boots, hats, crowns, drinkware, home goods, perfume, Texas-shaped thingamabobs and even a Miranda Lambert exclusive collection. The Round Top Vintage Market is open all year round from Friday - Sunday and it’s—in a word—impressive. 13,000 square feet of space, 50+ antique dealers, and just about anything you could want under that roof. While Old World Antieks has two seasonal locations in Round Top, their nearby showroom is open year round with 55,000 intense square feet of imported antiques including furniture, accessories, lighting, art, statues and home decor, from 13 different countries. Henkel Square has shopping, dining, bars, and galleries interspersed between historic 1800s architecture. Walk around the pathways, careful gardens with antique roses, giant century oaks, and make a wish in the fountain. It’s also home to the Humble Donkey Studio, a gallery owned by Texas artist John Lowery selling original art and merchandise. Humble Donkey also has Lower40 Found Objects, a shop offering a collection of antiques, decor, and other fanciful, fabulous items. Pop-A-Top Bottle Shop, a “booztique” with a great selection of wine, spirits, and beer that you can share at one of their outdoor patio tables.
Round Top Restaurants
Fuel up for your shopping adventures at Round Top Coffee Shop, a quaint spot with wide wooden tables, local art, books, strong coffee, and a breakfast buffet on Saturday and Sunday. Royer’s Round Top Cafe has been feeding hungry visitors for over 30 years with their gourmet comfort food and super famous pies. Try a grilled shrimp BLT, a glorified grilled pimento cheese, whole grilled quail, and some fresh battered snapper before turning your attention to the real reason you’re there—the pies! Original Buttermilk, Texas Trash, the Sweet N Salty, the Junk Berry Pie… it’s impossible to choose, so don’t! Get the pie flight instead. In a total power move, Royer’s Pie Haven (related - obviously) also serves up pies… but they’ve got savory options in addition to the sweet. Chicken pot pie, Veggie Pie, Shepherds Pie, and something called the “HeeHaw Pie” are all delicious. Lulu’s is a fantastic italian restaurant that isn’t the same old pasta with red sauce. Duck pate, mussels and andouille sausage, lamb, beautiful charcuterie plates, and an endless array of droolworthy options and the wine list to pair them with. Popi Burger is a classic burger diner—the kind where you struggle to get your hands and mouth around the whole pile. Rich, thick milkshakes, thin, crispy fries, giant patties, and a Beyond burger for your veggie friends. If there’s a place that epitomizes the “round top” style, it’s The Garden Co. The design is perfection and sitting outside under massive trees whilst eating brunch and drinking champagne isn’t too shabby either.
Round Top Bars & Nightlife
The Stone Cellar dubs themselves a “true Texas-themed pub and rustic wine venue.” Does it get any better? 25 craft beers on tap, house-made sangria, live music every weekend, and the distinction of being named among the Top 10 dance halls in the state of Texas. They also offer shared plates, snacks, and cleverly named pizzas like the Cowgirl Junky. Prost on Block 29 is housed in one of Round Top’s most historic buildings. There’s a lovely little spot to sit outside and the wine bar has everything from the approachable to the awe-inspiring. To offset your Cabernet, dig into one of their bread plates or charcuterie boards. The Ellis Motel isn’t actually a motel… instead, it’s a “lounge and emporium” with all the atmosphere that the descriptor evokes. Overstuffed sofas, taxidermy, antiques, random gifts, motorcycles, lighting, imports, art, a bar to belly up to, and more. It’s indescribable so go see for yourself. Definitely take the 15 minutes and drive to nearby Blissful Folly Farm for drinks, food, and live music. They make wines, meads, hard ciders, and fruit wines onsite and have a spacious patio and plenty of room to run around in. Plus a pack of Nubian dairy goats. Their Blissful Bites food truck serves artisanal pizza and on a pretty day, you too will feel blissful.
Contributed by Kelly Stocker. Photo of Blissful Folly Farm, credit Wendy Rohan.