There is a show carried by some Texas PBS stations called The Daytripper. Chet Garner, the affable host of the show, travels around the state with his crew and visits various locales for a single day. Usually in a 30 minute segment, he makes 3 to 5 stops at each locale he is visiting, and he always includes at least one visit to an eating establishment.
On a recent episode, The Daytripper crew visited LaGrange. One of the stops on this day trip was in a nearby town called Ellinger, where Garner visited Hrushka's, a combination convenience store/bakery/restaurant with a Czech heritage. The stop spotlighted the homemade hamburgers and kolaches. Since Donna and I were passing through Ellinger, we knew we had to stop.
We’re glad we did.
The store is right on Highway 71, so it is a convenient stop. We watched as regulars and travelers alike steadily streamed through this popular place, purchasing kolaches, jerky, and other goodies.
Donna and I ordered cheeseburgers all the way. They were great. Regular hamburgers cost $4.50 while our cheeseburgers cost $5.00 each. Patties are hand formed with fresh meat, and are topped with iceberg lettuce, tomatoes, onions, and pickles. The home made buns are toasted on the grill. They were delicious and as good as I’ve had in a restaurant in a long time. We were craving another round for days after our visit.
Next, we had desert of cream cheese cherry kolaches, each costing $.95. Again, we hit a home run. These were great. Hrushkas serves more than 15 types of kolaches, including traditional favorites like prune.
If you happen to be traveling on Highway 71 between Austin and Houston, keep an eye out for Hrushkas in tiny Ellinger. You’ll be glad you did.