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Apr 1, 2009 10:53 AM

Authentic Italian and French Rec's

Visiting Austin for the first time and wondered if 'hounds can recommend truly authentic Italian and French restaurants: market fresh food, seasonal food, traditional food, and, hopefully, a good wine list. Thanks for your consideration.....

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  1. I like Chez Nous off of 6th street for French food. They offer a daily prix fixe menu that is a pretty good value if it's an entree that you like. I've never been to Aquarelle, but it gets pretty high marks on this board if you want more extravagant French food

    1. Primizie Osteria is fabulous (just east of IH35 on east 11th). It is not super traditional but the quality of their ingredients are excellent. They always have very interesting items on their menu. They take some traditional dishes and put a new spin on them. On their specials list they note the local farm where they got the meat, cheese, etc.

      1 Reply
      1. re: littleok

        I'll second Primizie. They make a very good gnochi with a sauce of buttter, corn, mushrooms and other things. My East Coast Sicilian-American friend considers their sausage to be almost like "mom's".

      2. Vespaio/Enoteca Vespaio are both really great for Italian. Enoteca is Vespaio's nextdoor cafe, it is typically cheaper and us open for lunch. On South Congress. One of my favorite places, quite popular with Austin hounds aswell.

        1. Quite honestly, I wouldn't come to Austin for Italian. I see you've posted in lots of other cities, so I can't tell exactly where you're from, but any of those cities would have more authentic Italian than Austin.

          That being said, I have had good food at Enoteca and Ciola's, but please know that Austin sets the bar low on Italian.

          1 Reply
          1. re: stephanieh

            Perceptive, stephanieh. I travel a lot and am always interested in what the local chowhounds have to say. I defer to them often. Thanks for the notice.

          2. Olivia on s lamar's food and wine list is strictly french and italian, except for less than a handful of items. They offer a prix fixe on sunday monday and tuesday nights at a bargain with many choices to design your own three course meal. Sunday brunch more of a semi-american style, but easily the best in town.