Bachelor Weekend in Austin: Best Weekend Brunch?
Hi everyone... first time Chowhound poster here. I'm going to be in Austin one week from today for a bachelor party. None of us have spent much, if any, time in Austin previously (most of the party is from New York City), so we're largely unfamiliar with the restaurant scene and would love some suggestions on the best the city has to offer. We're particularly interested in weekend brunch suggestions, as we'll have three whole days (Thursday evening through Sunday evening) to kill.
There are a couple of vegetarians in the group, but everyone else eats meat and everyone is a serious foodie. Boozy is good — it is a bachelor party, after all — but the food quality is the main concern. Casual/young/fun is definitely preferred, and obviously large groups must be accommodated.
Thanks in advance for your input!
Wow! There are tons of places that got left off this list that just need to be mentioned:
(1) TRIO at the Four Seasons. Never been, but is constantly heralded as the best brunch in Austin. Foodie-friendly, with lots of choices.
(2) Magnolia cafe. It's what many Austinites think about when they think of brunch. More upscale diner-y, breakfast-y.
(3) Cantina Loredo. It's a Mexican-fusion restaurant downtown, and they have a buffet with eggs to order. A good amount of vegetarian options (pancakes, fruit, salads, eggs., etc), $1 bloody marys $1 bloody marias (bloody with tequila, if you can handle it), $1 mimosas.
(4) Sagra. A little north of downtown in an old house. Foodie food. Also $1 drinks.
(5) The Belmont. They have ala carte menu, but they also have an all you can eat, served family style, menu, almost entirely breakfast-y brunch. The Cinnamon roll is awesome. The eggs, potatoes, bacon, etc. were all excellent. The Cap'n Crunch French Toast is good, although I was slightly disappointed. $5 carafes of mimosa, I believe. It's also got a great atmosphere with a nice open courtyard to enjoy on a Sunday morning.
Hope you haven't made any definite plans yet, because you will seriously
Another vote for Lambert's. It's my favorite restaurant in Austin, a nice mix of great food from Texas BBQ to more adventurous cuisine, and a great atmosphere. Decent to sometimes exceptional service, but reasonable prices. Their brunch is like $25 per person, all you can eat. Can't remember if that includes Mimosa's.
Followed somewhat distantly by Fonda and Chez Zee, both featuring great atmosphere's, but not so great food. Fonda has the better service, though the piano player at Chez Zee takes requests, and has played some Nirvana and Stones for me before, which I find delightful.
You need to experience Austin. Brunch on Sunday, Nutty Brown Cafe. Friday night the 28th is Bruce Robinson....... country music songwriter........very good.
If you don't go to the Broken Spoke on South Lamar you are going to miss one of the last honky tonks in Texas. Have great lunch serving Chicken Fried Steak. If you click on my name it will take to my bio., click on my blog to see videos of these two places.
Taverna also has a (boozy and young) Saturday brunch. It could accommodate your group, and has a few vegetarian friendly options (the pear and Gorgonzola pizza being my favorite). I'm not it's biggest fan, but plenty of people disagree with me, and even I'll admit it has one of the cooler scenes for brunch.
My pick would be Fonda San Miguel.
Love the atmosphere: feels like an old Hacienda, beautfiful landscaping, even a parrot
Love the mango margaritas
There are so many choices on the table, I generally get one small spoon of everything and then am too stuffed to go back.
I think the chef's name is Miguel Ravajo (sp?). He's got a cookbook out.
This is the brunch I take good friends to when they come to town.
IIRC, the crowd is mixed (not entirely young).
www.fondasanmiguel.com for more info and pics, etc.
Depending on the size of your party, Lambert's may not easily accomodate you. So definitely make reservations. Though it is a chain, Fago de Chao was a fun bachelor weekend and their salad bar, while expensive, is very vegetarian friendly.
I do not recommend Mulbery for brunch. I say drive to Lockhart for some barbecue at Smitty's--very veggie unfriendly though.
Lambert's would fit the bill...either for Sunday brunch or dinner any night. Not the world's best barbeque, but a good combo of quality food, sold cocktails and lively scene (especially at night) for a weekend of bachelor festivities. And it's still likely to be better than the NYC barbeque options (even after considering the recent explosion in available NYC bbq options).
Mulberry would be a good choice for Saturday brunch...there are fewer brunch options that day, and its limited but good menu seems like it'd be a good fit.
Uchi would be my pick for the foodiest destination in town. It deservedly gets lots of love here. Although you'll have to wait, their tiny bar is fun.
Parkside would be another good dinner choice. The past couple of times Ive gone didn't wow me as much as it did on my first few visits. But it's one of the few places in Austin that takes its food seriously without any pretention. Places like it are a dime a dozen in NYC, though.
I would recommend Lambert's on 2nd Street. They do a Sunday brunch buffet that is excellent but the price also includes ordering some eggs and other dishes made to order. Their bloody marys are my favorite in the city. It's definitely a fun crowd and there is plenty to do in the area before/after brunch. South Congress Cafe would be my second pick. Both can accomodate a large group although South Congress Cafe may not take reservations.