With its live music, country-western aesthetics and Southern comfort food, Puffabelly’s Old Depot Restaurant is a staple in Old Town Spring.
After more than 20 years of operation, the children of Puffabelly’s regulars now bring their own children to the restaurant, owner Seth Sanders said.
“The kids of the people we used to serve that were 2 or 3 or 4 years old are now working for me,” Sanders said. “I’ve got four of them that I remember coming in to eat years ago.”
Puffabelly’s, which is named after a term for a steam locomotive, has an identity that is built around Old Town Spring’s historical ties with the railroad industry, Sanders said. His restaurant is active in serving craft beer and wine.
Puffabelly’s hosts local musician Davin James for a songwriter showcase. James brings a musician with him each week, such as Gary P. Nunn, Shake Russell or Ray Wylie Hubbard.
“We as Texans are real proud of what we have, and we’ve got the Texas music scene,” Sanders said. “Texas wine and craft beer is especially coming up now, and we hit on a lot of those here at Puffabelly’s.”
The menu is anchored by a selection of homemade food items, such as fried pickles, hamburgers and catfish.
Puffabelly’s has a coin-operated train in a glass aquarium that was built by Sander’s manager, Joe Mirilez.
“The train is very special to Puffabelly’s,” Sanders said. “The train really lends a lot of character to Puffabelly’s and to the train town. That’s what it is—a train town.”
The Sanders family opened Puffabelly’s in 1995, and the restaurant has grown to include extended members.
“My staff has been here forever,” Sanders said. “My manager has been here for 15 years and now we’re family.”
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Chicken-fried steak: This dish features a cut of beef that is fried and topped with creamy gravy ($12.99).
Grilled lemon pepper catfish and shrimp: The seafood entree is seasoned with lemon pepper before being grilled ($13.99).
Steam Engine Cheeseburger: This burger is topped with shredded cheese and jalapenos ($10.50).
Puffabelly’s Old Depot Restaurant hosts different live entertainment options on a continual basis.
Each Wednesday local musician Davin James hosts a songwriter showcase and invites a country western musician to perform at Puffabelly’s.
Spring-based murder mystery and melodrama performers Old West Melodrama hold productions at Puffabelly’s.
Open mic night
Customers are given the option to step on the stage themselves each Thursday during Puffabelly’s weekly open mic night.