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Looking for a "Meat and Three" around the Austin area.

I'm looking for a southern style restaurant that serves one meat with 3 sides of vegetables, I know that sounds silly but "Meat and Three" restaurants are very common style found in Tennessee and I'm trying to impress a girl who's a little homesick. I want to surprise her by taking her too a place where she can get some comfort food. She has joked about how food around here always just come with 2 sides. Can anyone out there help me out?

It doesn't have to be in the Austin vicinity. I'm totally open to day trips to San Antonio, Houston and any small town in between

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  1. Hoover's NW offered a meat and three special. They're no longer open, but the original on Manor might offer it as well. Can anyone confirm? Otherwise, their regular menu is essentially meat and two sides, but they're huge portions.

    1. I don't know of any, but I'm very interested in finding such restaurants (I'm trying to have a little protein and lots of veggies with meals). I've been resorting to a la carte options at restaurants that have lots of veggie options (like Kerbey Lane and Threadgills and Hoover's).

      1. Threadgills has a "meat & three."

        1. Yep, it seems like most places here usually only serve two sides, but you can always just order an extra side.

          Hoover's is pretty good, and so is Hill's Cafe. Both can be pretty lackluster if you've been to some of the amazing meat n' three places you'll find in the deep south, but as far as my experiences go, they're the best options in Austin. That could be a totally incorrect statement, of course, as I haven't been to every restaurant in town, so I'd REALLY love to hear if there are some better options. This is the kind of food I grew up on, and I miss it.

          With respect to your comment about places outside of Austin, Maxine's in Bastrop is supposed to be great, but I haven't been. I really wanna check it out sometime soon; it tied Queen Lola's for no.1 in the Fearless Critic for southern food.

          2 Replies
          1. re: popvulture

            Don't actually eat at Lola's, just give her a donation. It's a one person operation and it takes forever to get an entree.

            1. re: Rptrane

              Yeah I left her out of the list because she's such a small operation and you never know what you're gonna get or how it's gonna turn out. Lacks the consistent, assembly line nature of your typical meat n' threes place.

          2. Southern Hospitality has some darned fine food, but it's buffet and lunch only. http://www.sohosfoods.us/ Call ahead to see if they're open - I think there's a new baby and they took some time off to focus on that.

            Royer's Round Top Cafe is about 1.5 hours away and a bit upscale, but fabulous - http://royersroundtopcafe.com/ - limited hours there as well, make sure you're going at the right time.

            But neither place comes with a third side standard, I'm afraid. Even the Lu Ann platter at Luby's is a meat-and-two. http://www.lubys.com/en/menu.asp?sn=2

            1. Arkie's Grill has meat and three!
              It's only open weekdays, and only until 3PM.

              3 Replies
              1. re: Alan Sudo

                Purely hearsay, but I once had a cab driver in Austin tell me that Arkie's foor was better than Hoover's. I can't vouch for the cab drivers bona fides, but it's one more small piece of data!

                1. re: Alan Sudo

                  Indeed. We joke that Arkie's is actually the meat and "four minus one" - at any given lunch, they only have 4 sides, & it's easiest to order by telling them which one you don't want.

                2. Schobels Restaurant in New Braunfels has great home cooking. They are buffet style rather than meat + 3, but it's still delicious. Anyone else been there?

                  1 Reply
                  1. re: Sweet_Cheeks

                    Man that brings back memories! I haven't been in several years but I used to love that place.

                    EDIT: sorry, I just notice the New Braunfels part. I was thinking of the Schobels in Columbus.

                  2. I no longer live in Austin but, when I did, loved Dot's place best for home-style cooking. After we moved, I read somewhere that Dot's had burned down, but that she was rebuilding. Then, that she did rebuild. And recently, that she died, but that her son was going to be taking over the restaurant.

                    Anyone know the status of this? Did the son take over? Is it still among the best restaurants in town?

                    2 Replies
                    1. re: Jaymes

                      From what I could find on the web, it's gone. Bummer– the reviews I'm finding are making me drool.

                      1. re: popvulture

                        I'll tell you, there was none better. Legendary.

                    2. The Green Mesquite has a meat and three on their menu by that name and I really like their catfish, pulled pork, fried okra, green beans, huspuppies, the fries aren't too bad either - maybe handcut? Their jambalaya is pretty good if a tad on the tame side but with nice sausage hunks. And the peach cobbler with a scoop of their vanilla bean is some of the best I've ever had - especially considering it's made with canned peaches. so so good. As popvulture mentioned (I think it was him) their BBQ isn't bad, but I prefer the more southern cooking stuff. Oh, they also have frito pie. Not had that. Also, they might just be the friendliest waitstaff in town or tied for it.

                      4 Replies
                      1. re: slowcoooked

                        And I've always liked their ribs. The brisket, not so much. But the ribs and sides are pretty dang good.

                        1. re: Jaymes

                          Blue Bonnet cafe in Marble Falls or the Monument Cafe in Georgetown might have a meat and three

                          1. re: ericthered

                            The Blue Bonnet is a great suggestion. And the drive is beautiful. Especially when the bluebonnets are in bloom. You could take 1431 there, and 71 back. That's definitely what I'd do if I wanted to treat the girlfriend to a wonderful afternoon.

                            1. re: Jaymes

                              I quadruple thumbs up Blue Bonnet too. get the coconut cream pie. take a camera and get a holiday photo of the two of you in a field of flowers. reap what you sow :-)