- Rachel Nipper
With friendly service and fresh, innovative and delicious food, it is virtually impossible to resist dining at Megg’s Cafe in Temple. A blackboard on the wall details where in Central Texas Megg’s gathers its meat and produce. You can also visit Megg’s website for a complete list of the Bell County ‘backyard farmers’ who provide Megg’s ingredients. This makes you feel as if you are dining in a farmhouse kitchen, but with a modern twist. For breakfast, one can enjoy incredible whole-wheat or buttermilk blueberry pancakes, a BLT eggs Benedict or brioche French toast. At lunch or dinner, the deviled farm eggs with bacon marmalade, crispy shallots and chives are a must. Megg’s also serves such delights as caprese or meatloaf pressed sandwiches, Texas wagyu flat iron steak, a grilled steak, Caesar-style salad with pickled red onions and olive croutons or homemade salt, and pepper potato chips.
Megg’s Cafe, 1749 Everton Dr., Temple, TX, USA, +1 254 771 3800
So Natural Organic Restaurant & Market
So Natural Organic Restaurant & Market in Harker Heights, Texas, is a venue that specializes in preparing healthy food for specific diets, including GMO-free, gluten-free, vegetarian and vegan. With a farm-to-table concept, So Natural places importance on gathering its ingredients from local sources, supporting farmers and gardeners. The menu offers sandwiches, like the veggie burger, daily specials or other options, such as vegan chili, gluten-free pizzas and hummus. In addition, one may enjoy a veggie plate and choose from sides such as gluten-free macaroni and cheese, baked sweet potato fries or gluten-free buttermilk cornbread muffins. After your meal, try one of So Natural’s many juices inc flavors such as apple ginger, carrot beet or green juice. Alternatively, try one of their smoothies in mango pineapple, pina colada or frozen coffee flavors. You can also pick of one their desserts, such as their scrumptious sweet potato pie.
Nami: Historic Temple Location
Nami provides a wonderful dining experience for anyone seeking genuine Japanese gastronomy. From gyoza to harumaki and sashimi, Nami’s menu offers a delicious variety of Japanese cuisine. At lunch and dinner, you can choose to dine at a table and enjoy bento boxes with teriyaki chicken, beef, salmon, shrimp or vegetables, katsu pork or chicken or yaki niku beef. Or, you may choose to dine at the hibachi tables and watch the chef cook his chicken, steak, shrimp, scallops, filet mignon, sukiyaki steak, vegetables and rice. Nami is also one of the best places in Bell County for fresh, authentic Japanese sushi and rolls. Nami serves special rolls, such as the Texas Roll with shrimp tempura, jalapenos and avocado or the Princess Roll with spicy crab, shrimp tempura, cream cheese, salmon and assorted Asian vegetables wrapped in cucumber.
Nami: Historic Temple Location, 19 South 2nd St., Temple, TX, USA, +1 254 778 0404
Cheeve’s Bros. Steak House
Cheeve’s Bros. Steak House provides an upscale restaurant experience in downtown historic Temple, Texas. The building in which the Cheeve’s Bros. Steak House operates was originally the Cheeves Bros Department Store and still retains a sense of the past with its classy, old-style decor and ambience. Serving both lunch and dinner, Cheeve’s menu proffers U.S.D.A. prime steaks and a remarkable wine cellar that won the Wine Spectator award for 11 consecutive years. For lunch, you may enjoy dishes such as the Tenderloin Diane, tenderloin medallions topped with a creamy cognac mushroom sauce. There’s also tenderloin sliders, served with wild mushroom pesto on a roll, along with delicious sides like the truffle mashed potatoes. Another good pick is the widely loved grape salad (chilled grapes in a sweet cream sauce with chopped pecans). At dinnertime, choose a fresh oyster appetizer and dine on one of many prime steaks or seafood dishes.
Cheeve’s Bros. Steak House, 14 East Avenue A, Temple, TX, USA, +1 254 742 2300
Red Onion Indian Bistro
The Red Onion Indian Bistro in Killeen, Texas, offers a vast menu of authentic Indian cuisine. Options include combo platters for one, two or four or an impressive Indian lunch buffet. At the Red Onion, you may choose from traditional Indian meals or look for something a little different. The Red Onion serves vegetarian specialties, like the Dal Fry with yellow lentils or the vegetable makhani with mixed vegetables in a tomato cream sauce. One can also seek seafood curries, such as shrimp curry, shrimp sagwala, shrimp vindallo or fish masala. In addition, the Red Onion serves chicken curries, like the chicken makhani special, with naan or plain pullao rice. The Red Onion’s menu also offers delicious Indian desserts. Try the pistachio kulfi (traditional Indian ice cream flavored with cardamom and pistachio) or the gulab jammun (dry milk dumplings dipped in a sugar syrup). Another good option is kheer, a rice pudding.
Green’s Sausage House
Take a step back into the past at Green’s Sausage House. A slight drive into the countryside outside Temple, Texas, Green’s Sausage House is the perfect place to fill up on delicious Texas-style Czech-influenced home-cooking. On Green’s vast menu are items such as the steak finger basket with fries, Texas toast and gravy, a fried catfish platter with hushpuppies and potato salad or coleslaw, chicken fried steak or a kraut sausage burger (a sausage burger topped with sauerkraut). Green’s also offers southern sides to adorn your meal. These include beer onion rings, fried okra or spicy fries. On Fridays and Saturdays, Green’s lunch special is the much-loved smoked sausage plate, complete with sauerkraut, green beans, mashed potatoes and homemade bread. A trip to Green’s is not complete without a visit to the adjoining market. Here, you can peruse their large selection of meats, cheeses and the kolaches.
Green’s Sausage House, State Highway 53, Temple, TX, USA, +1 254 985 2331
La Riv Italian Cuisine
A fairly new restaurant in Temple, La Riv is a classy Italian restaurant in a side-street business center. It has become a fast favorite for Bell County diners. From wood-fired pizza to pasta and salads, La Riv offers a good range of options. You may begin your dining experience with starters like the arancini, a risotto fritto with pecorino Romano, goat’s cheese and sun-dried tomato pesto. At lunch, La Riv provides an array of wood-fired pizzas, salads, focaccia open-faced sandwiches with sun-dried tomato pesto, mozzarella and frisee, pastas and puccia-stuffed wood-fired sandwiches. They come with a choice of soup or salad. Dinner offers a larger array of salads and pastas, like the Ravioli di Conghiale. This is a house-made ravioli with wild boar and mushroom stuffing, gremolata and marinara sauce. For a delicious dessert, try the Pan Dolce, a house-made bread pudding with poached pear and caramel sauce. Another good choice is La Riv’s tiramisu.
The Range at the Barton House
The Range in Salado, Texas, is housed in a beautifully renovated historic home and serves beautifully crafted cuisine to its many visitors. The Barton House in which the restaurant operates was built in 1866 by a Confederate physician who moved to Texas during the Reconstruction. Owners of the restaurant turned the quaint home into The Range in 1997. Begin your meal with a starter, like a smoked chicken quesadilla or the Chef’s Whim, or a pinot noir poached Bose pear salad. The Range’s menu offers entrees such as pan-seared culotte steak with smoked gouda grits, smoked chili-rubbed ribeye steak with jalapeño mashed potatoes and a grilled pork tenderloin with corn pudding. Adorn your meal with one of The Range’s offered cocktails, like the jalapeño margarita. Or, finish the night with an after-dinner drink such as Hunter’s Coffee, a blend of French press coffee, Tia Maria and Cointreau.
The Range, 101 North Main St., Salado, TX, USA, +1 254 947 3828
Alexander’s Distillery at Inn on the Creek
Alexander’s Distillery is a fine-dining restaurant and bar located at the beautifully enchanting and intimate Inn on the Creek in Salado, Texas. With views of Salado’s natural creek among looming cypress trees and the Inn’s grounds, Alexander’s Distillery possesses the perfect ambience for an enjoyable night. The menu at Alexander’s Distillery changes monthly and arrives in four courses. First courses have previously offered items such as steak-stuffed mushrooms drizzled with a goat’s cheese sauce and pan-seared scallops with a mango salsa. Second courses include items such as the chef’s fall soup or a spinach salad with a plum vinaigrette. For a main entree, you can enjoy scampi or a prime tenderloin fillet. For dessert, red velvet souffle or chocolate-covered cheesecake bites can be ordered. Menus can be viewed and reservations must be made in advance.
Las Brazas Pollos Asados
For authentic Tex-Mex, Las Brazas Pollos Asados (pollos asados meaning ‘roasted chickens’) is one of the highest-rated Mexican restaurants in the Bell County area. It offers a menu typical of traditional Tex-Mex restaurants and for a very good price. For breakfast, Las Brazas’ menu offers traditional breakfast tacos and burritos with typical filling choices. Also served are omelets with bacon or chorizo, pico de gallo and mixed cheese and either rice and beans or pancakes. At Las Brazas, you can dine on Mexican favorites such as pork tamales, shrimp ahogados (shrimp with cabbage, broccoli, jalapeños and potatoes in a spicy sauce) chiles rellenos or chips and salsa. You can also choose a ‘smothered’ burrito, which is stuffed with grilled steak and covered in a Texas meat sauce with melted Monterrey cheese. And, for an authentic Mexican feel, one can order with his meal a house-made horchata or a drink imported from Mexico.
Las Brazas Pollos Asados, 304 East Rancier Ave., Killeen, TX, USA, +1 254 526 2326