Growing Culinary Delights in Dripping Springs

A familiar family stomping grounds, Hill Country Ranch Pizzeria, opened in February 2011 just steps away from H-E-B. Aiming to be the type of restaurant families go to on a regular basis, the goal was to offer exceptional food at a fair price in a "come as you are" environment.

Within months of opening, Hill Country Ranch Pizzeria was invited to participate in a blind taste test competition on-air hosted by KVET radio. They were delighted to sweep the competition, winning against some very well-known Austin favorites. 

At the time, Dripping Springs was much smaller with fewer food options. Aiming to provide more than the commonly seen Italian cuisine, the award-winning pizzeria broadened its selection. Burgers now accompanied pizza on the menu. "Burgers at a pizza place" was the inquisitive comment often heard.

“Luckily our background was strongly rooted in burgers, and we saw rapid business growth over the next year,” says Founder and Managing Partner Mark Sewell.

As its popularity continued to grow, Hill Country Ranch Pizzeria needed to grow. They began operating a food truck in 2015 that served burgers and pizza balls. They now run five food trucks, used mostly for catering, along with a shaved ice trailer. 

In 2017, The Driftwood Bistro was born on the property of Driftwood Estate Winery.

An outdoor, tableside service restaurant, overlooking the "million-dollar views" of the winery’s vineyard below, the menu is an eclectic mix of global cuisine, from ribeye quesadillas to crabcakes and much more. The property is 21 and over and very casual. You can linger over a bottle of wine and a charcuterie board in flip-flops and shorts for hours. The Bistro operates Friday, Saturday and Sunday from 11 a.m. to 6 p.m.

Continuing to expand its delicious flavors throughout Dripping Springs, the Hill Country Ranch Sweet Shop opened in July 2022. The Sweet Shop offers a wide range of baked goods, desserts, candy, chocolates and more. A nod to Mark’s mom, now 76, who was a baker growing up, the goal was to have a location that people could visit often, not just for special occasions. Located in front of Dripping Springs Middle School, it’s a privilege for them to provide breakfast and lunch to many teachers.

“A large part of our success has been tied to supporting Dripping Springs whenever we can. We emphasize giving back to churches, schools and youth,” says Mark. “Each year we challenge ourselves to give back more than the year prior. Where we can we support local needs with cash donations, gift cards or deep discounts."

hillcountryranchpizzeria.com | thedriftwoodbistro.com | hcrsweetshop.com

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