We've been meaning to try this place out, since reading rave reviews about the chef and service, about a year ago.
For whatever reason, The Badu reopened just a few months later, with the same chef! Don and I made reservations for Sunday Brunch on a surprisingly pleasant, July day.
We parked, then learned quickly that the front door was not the entrance. The patio, with its garden gate, was the way to go.
Before climbing the stairs to the deck and entrance, we explored outside.
There was a stage for live music, outdoor fireplaces and lots of seating. The Corn Hole and Jenga games weren't getting much use in the warm sunshine, but I'm sure at night things look a lot more lively.
There were a number of people dining in the casual bar area. I took a photo of the sweet buffalo, but I should have aimed lower. Evidently the bar is made from the largest piece of granite in the world. I didn't exactly check on that fact.
The hostess took us past the double doors to the dining rooms. The doors were made as exact replicas of the originals. Not sure what happened to them.
Our hostess took us past a wide set of stairs and through the middle dining room. There was a rope at the top of the stairs, discouraging people like me, who use a trip to the Ladies Room as an excuse to explore. I do know that there was a B&B housed at Badu, some years back.
We passed through the middle dining room, with cowhide chairs and an impressive display of western themed paintings. It was hard to believe we were in a restaurant, in a Texas town of just over 3,000.
We were seated at a table near a bookcase and fireplace. We made a toast with our champagne cocktails, to our nearby longhorn friend.
Cowboy Books and Marble Floors
There were lots of interesting folks surrounding us, but the space was too intimate, to intrude with my camera. Instead, I snapped a photo of the original marble floor and the bookcase, with lots of cowboy books.
Don and I wondered about the nearby dining guests. There were 2 men with handlebar mustaches and some ladies with some mighty big rings. Underneath chairs, I spotted cowboy boots and hats. Upscale ranchers, I guess.
Love the Ladies Room
Before our meal arrived, I took an exploring trip to the restroom. The frosted glass window, brass knob and white tile, all looked retro chic. The horse art was modern classy. Two thumbs up, for the bathroom.
Don ordered the Badu Burger with bacon jam, pepper jack, basil aioli and tomato, served on a perfect, moon-shaped bun.
I sampled both his burger and fries and they were quite tasty. They deserved a better plate, than a tray with butcher paper... which sounds like something my Grandmother Meyer would have said.
I ordered the Badu Eggs Benedict. It's hard to tell from my photo, but they were served on cornbread, instead of English muffin. Yum! The tomato, queso and avocado gave it a southwestern zing. The salad with prickly pear vinaigrette was refreshing, but I would have rather had less healthy potatoes! The combo was perfect for me, but the nearby cowboys might have complained about the portions.
Unlike most of our small town dining adventures, this did not have to be a one time shot! Llano is 4 hours from our home in Sugar Land and 90 minutes from Austin. I'm excited to know we can return, maybe on a cool, fall evening. Next time, I'll wear my cowboy boots and enjoy that granite bar and patio!
The Dining Blog
This is a blog about Dining Adventures. Sometimes, I talk about food. Below, you can read how this started.
On July 4th 2011, I set a goal to try 50 culturally diverse restaurants in one year! (I knew that was possible, living in the Houston area) I spent the year pulling in friends and family to join me, on some unusual dining adventures. I met some curious people, tried some scary foods and explored places and cultures I never would have otherwise. Even though I met my goal, I learned too much to end my adventures in dining. I have continued blogging about memorable dining adventures of all kinds, near and far... and all the discoveries and funny things I've learned along the way!
Locations and types of dining adventures, are listed further down.