But step inside and behind that Spanish colonial facade lies Our Lady Bar & Grill, run single-handedly by Jennifer Sullinger.
Sticking with the theme, the interior is adorned with Catholic iconography, 20th century pop music photos, art and a vintage guitar. A working juke box and shuffleboard are available for patrons to use as well.
“I asked the architect for a Spanish colonial mission. And that’s where he delivered in my little houses representing the cloisters where the sisters live,” Sullinger said. “I guess this would be my homage to the culture of this part of the world. We have a lot of Catholic influences. I’m Catholic, and I wanted to celebrate our lady.”
Located on Gruene Road just off the exit from Loop 337, the local spot offers a small rotating dinner menu and full bar. Sullinger operates as a one-woman crew, tending bar and heading back into the kitchen to prepare each meal to order.
Calling it a true “chalkboard menu,” Sullinger said keeping a minimal, rotating menu is both out of necessity and also allows her creative flexibility.
“With all the sourcing issues it just seems to make sense to use what’s available and go from there first,” Sullinger said.
Sullinger worked in a variety of high-end restaurants, including Japanese restaurants in the Dallas area for more than a decade, she said, and brings her background to the fore when coming up with her weekly menus.
Currently, Sullinger is making broiled flounder on a bed of rice ($17.50), Chef’s Salad with a miso vinaigrette ($15.50), Mexican Meatballs ($15.50), Jalapeno Cheesesteak and a margherita pizza.
Indoor seating is limited to the bar and a few tables, but the back area provides for several picnic tables sprawled out across a graveled area, and on occasion special events are reserved for the whole establishment.
Being a one woman-show, Sullinger keeps her hours limited to Wednesday through Sunday from 3-10 p.m.
While Our Lady Bar & Grill is a full-service restaurant, Sullinger maintains an over 21 years old policy.
She said there are plenty of places in New Braunfels that cater to families, and she wanted to create a place that allots for “quiet drinks and conversation. Even when we’re packed you can hear the person sitting next to you.”
Our Lady Bar & Grill
1720 Gruene Road, New Braunfels • 830-385-7475 • Facebook: Our Lady Bar & Grill
Hours: Wed.-Sun. 3-10 p.m., closed Mon.-Tue.