Best Big Bend Restaurants: Top Terlingua Restaurant

Big Bend Restaurants, Terlingua Restaurants

Whether you seek the best of Big Bend restaurants or the top Terlingua restaurant, topping the list for both is the Bad Rabbit Cafe located at the Terlingua Ranch Lodge resort.

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It started out as a design for a boys’ school crest, but the Terlingua Rabbit was just too wild to stay at home. When artist Bill Neale’s creation joined forces with the likes of Carroll Shelby and friends, and adopted the name Crazy Rabbit, it was the beginning of fast living and fast cars.

Per Neale, he had designed the “heraldic rabbit” for Dallas attorney David Witts when Witts had plans to develop his 200,000 acre Chiricahua Ranch into a combination hunting park and boys’ school. “The boys school didn’t materialize for a lot of reasons,” says Neale, “but we didn’t waste the crest.”

During a hunting/partying expedition in the early 60’s, the idea of the Terlingua Racing Team was born and so was Crazy Rabbit’s new career. In an early Racing Team press release, Neale explained the meaning of the crest’s elements: “The rabbit thrives in the Big Bend and being fast of foot was picked to dominate the design. He’s holding his right front foot up to say ‘Hold the chili peppers in the chili.’ The sun is there bcause it always is in the Big Bend country. The feathers represent the three Indian tribes: Comanches, Apaches and Kiowa, that lived in the area and were responsible for the Terlingua name.

Although the three feathers appear to have been dropped when Crazy Rabbit was incorporated into the Terlingua Ranch logo, the original design still graces the ’67 Shelby Mustangs owned and run by many racing enthusiasts.

It is unclear how or why Rabbit’s first name changed from Crazy to Bad – maybe 30 years of being settled at Terlingua Ranch has slowed him down a bit. Or perhaps he’s adjusting to the changing times.

“Food and service were very good… Screened seating to get the nice weather without the direct sunlight… A fairly big menu for being a little off the beaten path.”–Richard P.

“They have a little on-site cafe called the Bad Rabbit which is a fun place to eat with live entertainment most evenings and a good solid breakfast in the morning.”–Corrie L.

“[The] front desk took excellent care of us. Great accommodations. It is out by itself which means quiet and great star gazing. Great food at the Bad Rabbit Cafe.”–Raymond M.

“The Bad Rabbit Cafe is a true gem… I didn’t meet the cook but wanted to tell him his food is truly delicious. We were surprised at how many items were on their menu. “–Texas Gal

“We had chicken fried steaks, mashed potatoes, fried okra… Inexpensive, good portions and good food. We loved the music! Staff friendly… Mostly locals out for a good time!”–Boot L.