No longer just a pit stop on the way to wine country, Johnson City is now a destination. The charming downtown is walkable and offers small-town charm in spades. Storefronts feature art galleries, shopping destinations, and plenty of food and drink options.
Amy Crowson grew up in Dripping Springs. She met her husband Henry, a winemaker, while they both worked at Camp Lucy. They moved to Johnson City in 2006.
“I’m still close to Dripping Springs, which will always be home,” says Amy. “It’s cool to see the growth of Dripping and experience the growth of J.C.”
Amy owns and runs Picnic’d, a relaxed restaurant with grab-and-go items perfect for a day of exploring. Standout choices include Mom’s Turkey Sandwich and an excellent meat and cheese board featuring constantly rotating local selections.
Just a one-minute walk away from Picnic’d, Nice N Easy is a stylish bar in one of downtown’s oldest buildings. “It’s just so cool,” laughs Amy. “You walk in and say ‘wow, I can’t believe this is here.’”
Nice N Easy is the home of Yokefellow Beer, brewed by co-owner Garrett Crowell, formerly head brewer at Jester King. The menu features a host of local pours, a few food items, and a full bar featuring the best cocktails in town.
The bar recently celebrated its first anniversary with a blowout party featuring local vendors. On another recent Saturday afternoon visit the vibe was laid back, the music was low, and the drinks were delicious.
Johnson City’s most unique place may be the Science Mill, a family destination offering a fun, interactive learning environment for all ages. The museum features STEM-focused exhibits, plus welcoming picnic tables to enjoy lunch with the family. “You’d think it’s a museum in New York or Los Angeles,” Amy says. “And, it’s not just for kids. It’s so intelligent and insightful.”
Just a short car ride from home, Johnson City is the perfect easy day-trip destination.
“It’s always exciting for me whenever we get people from Dripping,” says Amy. “Dripping Springs is a special place and so is Johnson City.”
The space where Amy's restaurant Picnic'd sits previously operated as the production room for her husband's wine company, Crowson Wines. "We saw an opportunity to better use the space to serve our community," she says.