What Would Texas Be Without Buc-ee’s?

The Look

What Would Texas Be Without Buc-ee’s?

A convenience store chain is the through-line of America’s second-most sprawling state.Photographs by Eli DurstText by Charley LockeProduced by Eve Lyons
ImageBuc-ee’s, a convenience store founded in Texas, has become a point of state pride. Now the chain plans to expand to other parts of the United States, including Alabama and Florida.CreditEli Durst for The New York Times
AUSTIN, Tex. — Ask any Texan and they’ll tell you: Buc-ee’s is no ordinary convenience store. Sure, it sells the usual gas, gum and candy. But most of its goods can’t be found in your average side-of-the-highway shop.There are fresh barbecue sandwiches prepared by employees in cowboy hats at the Texas State Roundup counter; refrigerated sausage wraps and turkey bites; shrink-wrapped pork tenderloin and crawfish fettuccine. You can buy jars of peach cobbler, pickled quail eggs and candied jalapeños. Beyond the foodstuffs, you can find camo-print neck pillows, sleeping bags, throw blankets, dove-hunting stools and aprons emblazoned with the mantra “Hunting is life.” There are accessories that show allegiance to the state’s college athletic teams, Texan home goods (cowhide rugs) and a hot-pink flask that says “Don’t mess with Texas women.”

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