Updated: Dec 16, 2020
Ya'll - I have lived in A LOT of places. When I say a lot, I have moved essentially every year since I graduated from college. However, my reigning favorite among the vast list will always be Austin, Texas. There is something about Texas that makes me feel right at home, and this could simply be in my blood as I was born in the Lone Star State. Now that I have moved back to the dark side (California), there are moments I pause at how much I miss the culinary explosion that Austin supplies.
Austin is the city for foodies, with a vast array of Tex Mex, famous Texas BBQ, & a surprisingly extensive cuisine selection. Here I have rounded up a couple of my favorites to visit when the world gets a little safer! (this also does not include drinks/coffee because frankly, I can do drinks and coffee as a separate list. Let me know if that is something you would like to see!)
Image by Travel & Leisure
A perfect spot for upscale brunch! The interior/exterior is a modern farmhouse vibe with a beautiful patio to enjoy in spring and fall. They serve food all day long and have only heard incredible things about their dinner menu as well. Order the lemon ricotta pancakes or a tasty bakery item!
Holly Roller (UPDATE: PERMANENTLY CLOSED)
***A kind friend of mine has informed me that Holy Roller is permanently closed and I am DEPRESSED. Adding a new favorite above this one to compensate!
I have such a strong love for this place. Between the 'holy' decor or the hangover cure for the century: trash fries, this spot is hands down one of my favorite brunch spots in Austin. Located in the heart of West 6th, Holy Roller is a perfect start to a day drinking excursion or exploring downtown. Get there early (the wait can get long!) and enjoy a mix of classic and southern brunch favorites.
Best BBQ in Austin. Do not fight me on it. I state the facts. Franklins is incredibly famous for its smoked meats, and let me tell you; it does not disappoint. With COVID, they are only open for curbside pick up. My suggestion is to go online two weeks before your visit to see if meat selection is available for purchase. In other circumstances, I would also order to go as the line tends to curve around the block on the weekends. Order the brisket & pulled pork!!
Image by Mattie's website
My favorite ambiance of any restaurant in Austin for so many reasons! I have actually looked up if you can get married here; it is that beautiful! Mattie's is essentially a sizeable southern mansion located in a tranquil part of the city (although the restaurant remains close to downtown). At night, the outside is strung with lights and has the most magical feel. The food is upscale southern and changes with the seasons! Try their buttermilk biscuits and read more on the history of Green Pastures. I loved the story!
Loro holds a special place in my heart as it is the first restaurant I went to when I arrived in Austin in 2018. Located in the South Lamar area, this restaurant's outdoor seating is aesthetically pleasing with woven swings and large family-style tables. The food is incredibly unique as this spot hosts a creative mix of Asian fusion and a full smokehouse! Many favorites on this menu, but consider ordering the crunchy sweet corn fritters & the smoked beef brisket (the mango sake slushie does not disappoint either!).
Fairly certain I took every visiting friend of mine to