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Feb 19, 2010 08:05 AM

loved Austin! review of recent trip

My partner and I recently visited Austin, and did good search of this board beforehand for some recs. By far and away, our favourite spot was the Roaring Fork bar downtown. Despite plans to sample happy hours all over town, we ended up there more often than not. While the Big Ass burger was good, so was the fondue pot with lamb chops, the kettle of green chile pork, the crab cake, the guacamole.... And during happy hour (4-7) it was such a deal! The drinks were also good, and the service was excellent (they cheerfully substituted gin for rum in the mojito for me!! hey, don't knock it til you've tried it, it's like a Collins with mint...)
Other places we really enjoyed for various reasons:
On South Congress: Doc's and Joe's (my first frito pie!!!)
Up by the university: Mellow Mushroom pizza (the philosopher's was delicious!)
Lambert's for the music
Stubbs for the gospel brunch (I know, probably not the best in town, but close to our hotel...and the food was actually a lot better than I thought it'd be!)
Whole Foods Market for lunch
The Jackelope on 6th
This definitely won't be our last trip to Austin! We loved the city and thought Austinites were among the friendliest folks we've encounters. Thanks for all the advice I picked up by lurking on the board before our trip!

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  1. You did great in your Austin eateries. Of course, there are many excellent places you didn't make it to, hence the need for a return trip!

    I second the positive reactions to Roaring Fork. Monday happy hour is especially good; and the lamb chops fondue tastes considerably greater than it sounds.

    1. Thanks for the review! It's always nice to hear out-of-towners' opinions of the local spots. You indeed hit some good ones, although there is plenty left for a second trip. I'm glad you enjoyed it!

      3 Replies
      1. re: txgrl99

        Oh, we will SOOO be back! I'm happily compiling recs for our next visit. Would be particularly interested in chowhounders' opinions on the best frito pie in Austin..... But seriously, I AM making a list for the next visit, so recommend away!

        1. re: orphish

          Thanks for posting your thoughts on your visit!

          In regards to frito pie, I had a fantastic one last weekend at Smokey J's BBQ at 2222 and 620. It's a haul if you're based downtown but oh geez was it good. Bed of Fritos (of course) then a layer of beans (pinto I believe), chopped beef, cheese and onions. There was something on it that was a little sweet, perhaps some relish? I don't know but it was a little bit of heaven. The BF and I fought over it.

          1. re: missmitzi

            Sweet! I work a stone's throw away from there and need to check that out. Thanks for the rec!