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May 13, 2008 03:41 PM

Upscale Local Food

I'm coming to Austin for my first time over Memorial Day weekend. I wanted to see if anyone could make some suggestions for all sorts of food. I'd like to do one really nice restaurant that prides itself on local ingredients. I'm not really picky about the type of food, other than its all local.

On the complete opposite side of that, I'd love recommendations for places with the best margaritas (its still in the 50 and 40s at night where I'm from), tacos, and BBQ. Are there any places that have exceptional tongue tacos? I've always found that those are by far the best, but there aren't any spots near me that have that sort of authentic mexican food. As for the BBQ, I love all things pork.

I'm sure I'll get suggestions from the people I'm visiting, but I always like to know a little bit before heading to a new spot. Thanks to all in advance.

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  1. You'll get a hundred different replies to the best BBQ, best tacos and ritas in town. My personal fav for lengua is the Taqueria Arandas on Stassney (there are multiple Taqueria Arandas locations and not all of them are good) or on S. 1st. We've got some professional taco wagon hounds who can probably tell you a better spot, though. Search the Austin board for lengua. As for BBQ, I prefer Salt Lick in Driftwood, which is BYOB. I also like the County Line and Ironworks but SL is still tops with me. Again, search the board for reviews and tips on when to get there (early) and what to bring to drink. My favorite margarita in town is made by Bobby Cook at a gay bar called Rain (at 4th & Lavaca). Other decent ritas can be had at Shady Grove, Trudy's, Maudie's and Z'Tejas.

    I'm not up to date on which upscale place is the best for local ingredients.

    1. Lambert's is upscale BBQ and uses a lot of local ingredients.

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        1. I second the recommendation for Parkside on 6th. It is my new favorite restaurant. Vespaio is also excellent. Get there early, though. They don't take reservations and they get CROWDED. A downtown bar The Cedar Door makes my favorite Mexican martinis in Austin.

          1. re: txgrl99

            Certainly in agreement about the Mexican Martini at Cedar Door.

            1. re: Rene

              Z tejas, and maudie's both have really good margaritas. If you like margaritas with only tequila, orange liqueur, and lime juice go to Gueros.