By Alecia Ormsby
While visiting the Highland Lakes, take the opportunity to shop and enjoy the local food and drink offerings found on Burnet’s historic courthouse square. From antiques to jewelry, coffee to wine, chicken wings to burgers, everything is within walking distance. As you go from shop to shop, you can observe architecture from the late 1800s (former county jail) or take in the more “modern” look of the Burnet County Courthouse built in 1937.
Start your day with a fabulous cup of coffee and a breakfast treat at the edge of the square.
134 S. Main St.
Open 7 a.m.-3 p.m. Monday-Friday; 9 a.m.-2 p.m. Saturday.
Offers lattes, mochas, and other coffee drinks plus smoothies, Italian cream sodas, breakfast and lunch paninis, and baked goods. Fueled with caffeine and food, dive into shopping. You’ll find antiques that can take you back in time, up-to-date toys, souvenirs, home goods and clothing.
206 S. Main St.
Open 11 a.m.-5 p.m. Monday; 10 a.m.-5 p.m. Tuesday-Saturday; noon-5 p.m. Sunday.
Rare and beautiful items from mid-century to antique are scattered throughout this store featuring wares from a multitude of vendors.
139 E Jackson St.
Open 10 a.m.-5 p.m. Monday-Tuesday; 10 a.m.-5 p.m.Thursday-Saturday; 1-5 p.m. Sunday.
From shabby chic to memorable collectibles, find a large selection of antiques on this corner store on the square. Includes an array of new items, too, such as toys, jewelry, and clothing. After all that shopping you should have worked up an appetite for lunch. A local favorite awaits just across from the courthouse. After lunch, rest on one of the courthouse square benches, taking in the sights and sounds, including a memorial to American soldiers on the grounds of the Burnet County Courthouse.
216 S. Main St.
Open 11 a.m.-8 p.m. Monday-Friday; 11 a.m.-9 p.m. Saturday.
Start your meal with Wild West Wings and then dive into a field of greens, a burger or a sandwich, chicken-fried steak, meatloaf, or steak. It’s homestyle food at its finest.
After lunch, it’s time for more shopping. A range of stores offer new goods great for gifts for birthdays, holidays, or no reason at all.
212 S. Main St.
Open 11 a.m.-5 p.m. Wednesday; 11 a.m.-4 p.m. Thursday-Saturday.
The perfect place to pick up home accents, candles, trendy T-shirts, and plus-size clothing for yourself or as a gift.
230 S Main St.
Open 9 a.m.-5 p.m.Monday-Friday; 9:30 a.m.-2 p.m. Saturday.
You’ll find watches, sterling silver, and some costume jewelry in a store that’s been here since 1980. Many items are designed and made right in the shop. If you want to include a few more steps in your day, about a block off of the square are a couple of other delightful places to shop. (You can also jump back in your air-conditioned car and zip over. Both have parking lots.)
105 W. Washington St.
Open 10 a.m.-5:30 p.m. Tuesday-Friday; 10 a.m.-2 p.m. Saturday.
This women’s clothing store has you stylishly covered with shirts, pants, dresses, jackets, hats, and accessories.
Back on the square, whether walking or driving, take time to treat yourself to a glass of delicious Texas wine or a sweet treat of homemade ice cream.
229 Pierce St.
Open 11 a.m.-6 p.m. Monday-Saturday; 11 a.m.-5 p.m. Sunday.
Sip rich blends of 100-percent Texas wines from vintage years 2014 to 2020, indoors or on the lovely outdoor patio.
You’ll find a bronze statue of Wallace Riddell, Burnet County sheriff for nearly four decades, and a library named after one of former President Lyndon Baines Johnson’s close advisors and business partners. Even the winery, which was once home to the city’s only phone company, offers a taste of the past. All that history and more can be found online at 101HighlandLakes.com/history.
This is by no means a comprehensive list. So, locals, let visitors know your favorite places to shop, dine, and drink in the comments section below.