Buc-ee's Luling Reviews
A Convenience Store That's a Tourist Attraction Apr 11, 2011
If you are on a major Texas highway, if there is a Buc-ee's within 100 miles, billboards for miles and miles will let drivers know how far it is to Buc-ee's. If you have ever driven across South Dakota to visit Wall Drug, you will know what I'm talking about.
Buc-ee's is a "top of the line" convenience store and gas station, which is unique to Texas since 1982. There are roughly 30 stores across the state, but the prime stores to visit are either in Luling (between Houston and San Antonio), Madisonville (between Dallas and Houston) or Wharton (southwest of Houston).
I have been told by friends for years that I had to stop at a Buc-ee's. This chain has a cult following, with lots of YouTube videos, Facebook fans and a feature on a national news program. Personally, I was skeptical as to what was so interesting about a convenience store but I have to admit that the chain lives up to the hype.
I visited the Luling store where visitors are greeted by wind chimes. The store is filled with food, some of it unique to Texas. There are shelves stocked with fresh sandwiches, display cases filled with elk, venison, beef or buffalo jerky (including free samples!), a bakery including trays of fresh fudge, entire pies for sale, bags of Beaver Nuggets (which is Buc-ee's caramel corn recipe), fresh baked kolaches, cases of sausage and barbeque. The quality of food is far better than what you would find in a typical convenience store and frankly is very good.
If you have an urge for jalapeno mayonnaise, banana pudding or large jars of brisket rubs, these are available as well. Some foods are ordered off self-serve computer screens and the service is quick. My order was ready in less than five minutes.
For soft drink fans, there is an enormous variety, with choices of cherry, vanilla, lemon or lime syrup to add to your soda. I felt like a kid again having a cherry coke.
Buc-ee's is known for being spotless, with immaculate restrooms. The store practically glistens. I had to laugh that people stop to use the restrooms but end up spending a lot of money on all the food and merchandise.
I never quite figured out some of the items for sale, as some of the products are kind of kitschy like camouflage ice chests and camouflage clothing with the Buc-ee's beaver mascot, which makes for a weird mix.
All sorts of souveniers (t-shirts, hats, beach towels, pajamas) are also available and the shop will be packed with tourists buying their Buc-ee's t-shirts.
If you are driving on a Texas highway and a Buc-ee's is nearby, I recommend a stop. The food is tasty and the kitschy items available for sale are hilarious (if not a little strange). As one Buc-ee's billboard says: "Buc-ee's: It's a Texas thang".
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