It took five years and many Houston-Austin round trips via Texas State Highway 71 before I “discovered” the Hit the Spot Café in Garfield. What took me so long to find out about a place that’s garnered positive reviews on Yelp and Foursquare? The café hides inplain sight inside the Garfield Community Library.
How many times did I marvel at the packed parking lot of the Garfield Library? I’d glance over from my spot behind the wheel or in the passenger seat and chalk up the library’s popularity to story time or ESL classes. A librarian would have shushed my speculations and insisted I research the place.
As it happens, the East Travis Gateway Library District, to which Garfield belongs, offers story times, ESL classes, and karate classes in its Learning Center. The draw in Garfield is different.
The charming library features portraits of the presidents, a bead board-covered counter, and welcoming vibe. It offers food for thought, and thinking frequently leads to hunger. That’s where Hit the Spot comes in. The restaurant offers breakfast all day, daily specials (beef tips on Wednesday; fried catfish on Friday), plus friendly, efficient service.
Hit the Spot fills a dining void in the 71 corridor north of Bastrop and south of Austin Bergstrom International Airport. The cafe is open for breakfast and lunch seven days a week and for dinner Friday nights.
What’s more, the restaurant/library combination teaches lessons in peaceful co-existence. At lunchtime, the wait for a café table can range from five minutes to twenty, and would-be diners are welcome to browse library books or work on a communal jigsaw puzzle. There’s a display of books by a spotlighted author and a table of freebie books.
If you like books, biscuits, and chicken-fried steak, the Garfield Community Library has you covered.