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First Look: Modern Southwestern at Chavez in Austin

Shawn Crikiel, the chef and owner of Austin's Parkside, Backspace, and Olive & June, launched his latest venture, Chavez, earlier this month. In an unusual turn of events, the restaurant is in the former TGI Friday's space in the downtown Radisson hotel, causing Austinites who've long disregarded the location to take note of the revamped poolside digs once again. Here's a look at Crikiel's menu and space. More

First Look: Neapolitan-Style Pies at Bufalina Pizza in Austin, TX

When asked about transitioning from the finance world to the restaurant industry, Steven Dilley humbly explained, "I'm passionate about what I'm doing, so I feel I can make at least something passable." Lifelong food lover casts aside desk job to open a restaurant? The story may be increasingly commonplace these days, but it rarely fails to inspire. No less so in the case of the half Italian, half Taiwanese chef, who returned to Austin after a decade in NYC to embrace his passion for cooking. Three years later, and his dream has finally been realized, in the form of Bufalina, a Neapolitan-style pizzeria. More

First Look: Farmside Dining at Eden East in Austin, Texas

Austin Chef Sonya Coté (Hillside Farmacy, The Homegrown Revival) is no stranger to the farm-to-table movement. But last month, she brought the table to the farm, unveiling her latest venture, Eden East, located on Springdale Farm in the heart of East Austin. The outdoor restaurant, which is reservation-only and only open on weekends, changes its menu every week according to what's fresh on the farm. Here's a look at what you might find. More

First Look: Cocktails at Qui in Austin, Texas

When diners arrive at Paul Qui's long awaited formal restaurant, simply named qui, they are first escorted to the bar, where bar manager Michael Simon and his team shake up pre-dinner beverages that can also be sipped on the restaurant's spacious patio. "There are lots of savory elements to the drinks," said Simon. "They're boozy but balanced; salty, sweet, and sour, so they can pair well with food." More

The Best Margaritas in Austin, Texas

It's rare to find a bar menu in Austin that doesn't have at least one margarita on it, and it's no wonder that this simple concoction is so well loved under the Texas sun. The combination of lime, tequila, and orange liqueur has the ability to quench thirst and make even the worst heat more bearable. We drank our way around Austin to find the best examples possible. More

Ring in the New Year with 5 Punch Recipes from Austin, Texas

Mixing punch is a fun and festive way to serve up cocktails without the fuss, especially for New Year's Eve. Punches are intended to encourage socializing—break out the big bowl and the ladle, hand everyone a glass, and the party has officially started. We polled a few of our favorite Austin-area bartenders for punch recipes, and the results are festive, bright, and easy-drinking. More

First Look: Sway in Austin

A Thai restaurant was not what Austinites expected when La Condesa's Rene Ortiz and Jesse Herman announced their latest project. After all, La Condesa is known for its modern Mexican fare and cocktails. Check out what they're cooking up at Sway, which just opened last week. More

Where Bartenders Drink in Austin, Texas

They shake them, strain them, and pour them, but where do they drink 'em? Austin is home to many great bartenders who can make a mean drink. They also listen to guests ramble on about their problems, break up bar fights, and clean up spilled beers. After a long shift, it's their turn to unwind. We asked 8 bartenders about their favorite watering holes, whether they're looking for craft beer, calm outdoor space, or classy cocktails. More

First Look: Modern Southwestern at Chavez in Austin

@happyfoodie He sure does. It was an unintentional typo on my part.

First Look: Modern Southwestern at Chavez in Austin

@livingawesomely You're not being a jerk. It's my mistake. Thanks for bringing it to my attention.

Open Thread: What Words Should Never Be Used to Describe Food?

"To die for". No food is worth giving life up for.

The Serious Eats Guide to Ramen Styles

Well done, sir! Looking forward to the rest of the series.

10 Lesser-Known Cocktails You Should Be Drinking

Fabulous post. You've included some of my favourites. Much appreciation for including the Vancouver (represent indeed!). Some current favourites are Satan's Whiskers and The Coffee Cocktail (brandy, whole egg, ruby port, sugar).

The Best Happy Hours in Austin

@nichole I was surprised by the generous portions. Re infusions: not for everybody, I get it. Nice that they have wine and beer specials too :)

The Best Happy Hours in Austin

@FoodPorncess I couldn't include all of my photos but it's easy to stuff oneself silly during sake hour. Let me know what you think of O&J!

The Best Happy Hours in Austin

@terrymtz Glad there are some new spots for you to check out. Last time I checked, I believe Swift's called it their happiest hour (5-6). I do enjoy their small bites/ bar snacks but the time is a little limiting for me personally. I can't seem to find the info on their website.

The Best Happy Hours in Austin

Thanks for the tip @mikeyg83!

Sugar Rush: Olive Gelato at Uchiko, Austin

Meat-Infused Spirits and More at CU29 in Austin

@Damaenon I'm a huge eggs-in-my-cocktail kind of girl too. I'd order the Ramos Gin Fizz more if I didn't feel so guilty making them shake for so long.

CU29 definitely pays homage to the classics and serves up some solid interpretations. I'd say chat with the bartender and see what they whip up for you.

p.s. I infuse my own ghost chili vodka at home. Love it in Moscow Mules and watermelon margaritas.

Sugar Rush: Olive Gelato at Uchiko, Austin

@carriebwc huh, that's such a shame. I haven't been to Uchi in Houston yet and wonder what you had. Nevertheless, did you by chance bring it up with your server? Just curious. Like you, there's often little room left for dessert but I'll squeeze it in somehow :)

First Look: Neapolitan-Style Pies at Bufalina Pizza in Austin, TX

@imwalkin I've absolutely noticed. There's something to be said about their passion and determination, but also their acute sense of what works and what doesn't when translated into the restaurant industry. Something I've gathered from them is their ability to see a need for change and to jump on it quickly, unlike some old school restaurateurs that are more resistant to adapt. I'm rooting for each one of them.

6 Pies We Love in Austin

That blueberry pie at Pieous is so bomb. I love their chocolate pecan too.

The Best Happy Hours in Austin

@terrymtz great picks, my friend. Thanks for contributing! Salty Sow's jarred items are truly fantastic. Salt & Time has a serious board indeed: http://ow.ly/nIIbe. Even better to know it's $10 during happy hour.

The Best Happy Hours in Austin

@noahphex - Please do share some of your favorite spots with quality food and drinks for under $5 a pop.

First Look: Abstract Plating and French Technique on the Dessert Menu at Mettle, Austin

@historienne Thanks so much for the heads up. I've made the edit. Mettle has a lunch menu now too - I'm pretty excited about that. The funny thing is it's in the same complex as my gym so I always feel a bit at odds stuffing my face there.

First Look: Cocktails at Qui in Austin, Texas

@thebarkingdog - Hey friend, I wrote "Quite a few of the drink names are inspired by television shows". Since fans (like you) can already spot the references, there's no need for me to sound like a broken record.

First Look: Sway in Austin

@renaissanceman I understand your sentiment. It's not always easy to ignore the fact that those cooking a certain cuisine in the kitchen is not of the same descent. This reminds me of the episode of No Reservations when Bourdain was in NYC and spent time with all the immigrants that worked in classic French kitchens. Grant Achatz also wrote about the same subject in his book. Can passion, talent, knowledge, research, and experience surpass a person's ethnicity? I believe America has always been a testament that it can. Having said that, you'll have to kill me before I eat Mexican food in Asia ;) I hope you get to try Sway some time and let me know what you think.
p.s. They openly acknowledge that they do fuse many cultures into their food. Having lived in Thailand, I'm sure you understand how neighboring cultures always influence a region's cuisine.

First Look: Pieous, Austin

@Rosewood I totally understand. It is, in fact, quite a haul for us too from East Austin but we've consistently been going there every time our friends say they want pizza. Backspace is a good alternative for Neapolitan style pizza in town. Let me know if you get around to trying it and tell them I sent you :)

Whitfield Takes Manhattan

@ceebee That's great to hear. Thanks for trying it out and for the feedback. Cheers!

The Best Margaritas in Austin, Texas

@FoodPorncess - Isn't it fascinating how certain drinks can take us back to such precise life moments? Also, is your brother banned from the Cedar Door now? Wow :)

First Look: Sway in Austin

@mp1118 - I'm very aware of the places that you've mentioned and very much enjoy some of them. However, I still maintain my "few to be found" stance. In terms of traditional Asian restaurants in Austin, there are several outstanding ones, a plethora of mediocre ones, and numerous embarrassing ones. Perhaps lumping them all under the "Asian" category was too sweeping. Nevertheless, compared to where I've lived and what I've experienced on my travels, I find Austin's Asian food scene to be lacking. It's on the up and up, though, and that's exciting to see.

The Best Margaritas in Austin, Texas

@bbqcoma - good eye, my friend. Thank you for pointing it out!

First Look: Sway in Austin

I guess there's such a wide range when it comes to spice tolerance. I found that the food was spicier my first time there than it was recently. I didn't try the drinking vinegar but I'll be sure to next time!

5 Whiskey Cocktail Recipes from Haddingtons in Austin, Texas

The menu showcases a pretty wide range of classic and modern cocktails, but their collection of creative whiskey libations is particularly impressive. On chillier evenings (by Texas standards), you'll want to unwind with a Duck Fat Sazerac (and an order of the velvety truffle egg custard on crusty bread.) Not in Texas? You can still enjoy Brandon Burkart's drinks, since he was kind enough to share the recipes with us. More