Last weekend was my first trip to the state of Texas for the Paramount Break-a-Leg 5K. It's no surprise I landed at their (food) capital, Austin.
Before I even arrived, a friend of mine had given me a list of 15 restaurants to try. She told me she'd given up on eating full meals at one restaurant, since there were literally five (non-chain of course) on every block. She called it "progressive dining", like friends would do, hopping from one house to the next for a drink, an appetizer, a main course, and finally dessert.
Unfortunately, I only had two and a half days (including a 7:30am race on Sunday), so time was of the essence.
Here's a list of my top dishes I tried from the following 5 restaurants:
- the best of all the meats, tender, juicy 'n fatty in all the right ways, Natural Black Angus Brisket with Brown Sugar & Coffee Rub and House Pickled Escabeche $16
Bite Advice: Don't even think about coming here without ordering their excellent, refined 'n fresh, Fried Green Tomatoes topped with Jumbo Lump Crab Salad, Spicy Greens, and Green Goddess Dressing too $15
- so bad for you but so good, pillowey, sweet 'n salty, Niman Ranch Pork Belly Steamed Buns with Cucumber, Scallion & Hoison Sauce $8
Bite Advice: Take advantage of this French Vietnamese fusion cafe by taking a Cinnamon Curry Macaron ($2) to go.
- out of this world handmade pasta, creamy smokey carbonara-like sauce, soft 'n tender Rabbit Fettuccine with Lamb's Quarter, Asparagus, Broccoli & Smoked San Marzano Cream $31
Bite Advice: Make a reservation ahead of time, so you can experience some of the best service I've seen in years. Truly superb with great attention to detail. Each plate was served with its own set of silverware, an empty plate was never left on our table for more than 30 seconds, and our friendly waiter even hailed a cab for us on the street while we waited comfortably inside. Oh, and did I mention their food comes from their garden out back?
4.) Daily Juice
- brilliant, why didn't I think of this before, refreshing, sweet 'n soul satisfying, Depth Charge Green Juice with Cucumber, Celery, Kale, Spinach, Parsley & Coconut Water $7 (16oz)
Bite Advice: The perfect treat to enjoy after a 5K or marathon. They also serve smoothies, Kombucha on tap, and Kale & Quinoa Salads to go.
- perfectly tender & delicately balanced, fluffy not heavy with a flakey crunch, Oven Roasted Gulf Oysters with Bechamel, Spinach, Bacon & Sourdough Bread Crumbs $14
Bite Advice: Go for Brunch and sip on the fizzy Pomegranate Blanco Mule $8 while sitting on the sunny patio. If you're trying to decide on the Shrimp Toast $16, it's plump but the Bread is too thick. And the Lobster & Farm Eggs En Cocotte $24 is so rich, it's only for the brave of heart.
Y'all, I really enjoyed myself in Austin. From the five food spots on every corner (not to mention their huge food truck scene), to the awesome music and friendly folks, I'm definitely on board to Keep Austin Weird.