Vegetarian visiting Austin for a week
I'm visiting Austin for a week (next week actually) for a conference and I need to find good places to eat while I'm there. I'm a vegetarian, though I would be willing to consider meat if somebody pointed out a "once-in-a-lifetime" meat-eating experience.
Also, cheaper is better, but I'm adventurous, and willing to eat pretty much any cuisine and go to restaurants with any ambiance (or its complete lack).
Your help is greatly appreciated. Thanks!
If you are here for a conference, I suspect you are staying downtown. Enoteca on south congress should be walkable or you can take a short cab ride. They have pizzas, pastas, sandwiches and salads. The quality is very good and it is not too pricey. Also a short cab ride from downtown is Freddie's. It is a good way to experience Austin's laid back vibe. They have a decent veggie burger and a couple veggie sandwich options. If you like mushrooms you may want to have a *likely* once in a lifetime experience by sampling a chicken fried portabello mushroom. It is not great but it is different. They do have great onion rings and homemade honey mustard dressing. But like I said, enjoy a meal there to enjoy a slice of Austin not to be blown away by their food. It is good but not great.
Definitely check out the new flagship Whole Foods at 6th and Lamar.
There's a new trailer-type joint in South Austin called DaVine (corner of S Lamar and Oltorf) that a coworker loves. http://www.davinefoods.com/
There's Casa de Luz, which is sort of a macrobiotic learning center. They have a very nice restaurant that features communal seating, a distinct hippie vibe, and tasty vegetarian food. It's an interesting experience. http://www.casadeluz.org/
We've got a couple of S Indian vegetarian places (Swad and Madras Pavillion). There's even Mr. Natural, a health food store/restaurant.
What everyone upthread said. I don't know where you're staying or your transportation story, so I picked restaurants that are pretty central.
I'm a vegetarian too, and I found that you can eat well here, and for not a lot of money:
Las Manitas - (lunch and breakfasts) I love their vegetarian chorizo plate. I don't believe that it actually tastes like geniune chorizo, but I love everything about this meal!
Polvo's - I love their cactus enchiladas
Ruby's BBQ - Their black bean and cilantro tacos are yummy and cheap
Dog Almighty can make everything on their menu vegetarian, including the chili-cheese dog.
Elsi's - I love that "squash-like vegetable" item. I think it's their Wednesday lunch special
Little Deli - Their vegetarian sandwich is grand
Arturo's - Try their Thai veggie sandwich
Clay Pit (more Indian food)