Normally when you think of Austin cuisine, the words “Tex Mex” are the first to words to pop into your head, but Austin, Texas has so much more to offer. Here are our selections for Austin’s 10 best restaurants.
Located just 15 minutes away from the Texas Capital, Franklin Barbecue always has a line out the door with customers waiting for their #1 Texas barbecue. Even in the middle of Austin, Franklin Barbecue’s shop has the atmosphere of a roadside diner and features southern-style favorites like brisket and pulled pork, both by the pound and on sandwiches. They are open Tuesdays through Sundays from 11 am until they run out. But don’t worry – you can always order online too.
900 E 11th St, Austin, TX 78702, +1 512-653-1187
La Condesa is a tasty and trendy modern Mexican restaurant with bright colors, a lovely wooden bar, and outdoor dining. They feature a plethora of contemporary Mexican cuisine, including sopas, seviche, and an extra-special guacamole topped with crab, apple, and coconut vinegar. You can even rent La Condesa’s private indoor and outdoor space that provides a beautiful view of downtown Austin and Austin City Limits. The restaurant’s overall atmosphere makes you feel like you’re drinking their craft cocktails and artisanal beers at a chic garden party.
2ND Street District, 400 W 2nd St, Austin, TX 78701, +1 (512) 499-0300
Banger’s Sausage House & Beer Garden
With this one, the name says it all. Banger’s has tons of sausage and it’s made pretty much any way you can imagine. They have Turducken sausage, banger’s and mash, currywurst, and even a vegetarian sausage made from beets, walnuts, and goat cheese. Banger’s Sausage House is complemented by its rustic-chic Beer Garden, which features long, wooden family-style tables under twinkling lights. While enjoying a brew and a specialty sausage on a warm Austin night, you can relax listening to some live music.
79 Rainey St, Austin, TX 78701, +1 (512) 386-1656
Bakery, Cafe, Pub Grub, German, American, $$$
After spending the day in downtown Austin, Easy Tiger is a great place to relax and kick back. This hip cafe is part bakery and part beer garden, and allows you the chance to enjoy some food and drink next to a gorgeous creek. Whether you need a cup of locally roasted coffee and some homemade bread or a local brew and board of cheese and sausage, Easy Tiger has you covered. Their snacks will keep you going, no matter what you need.
709 E 6th St, Austin, TX 78701. +1 (512) 614-4972
Scholz Garten has been around since 1866 and is the place to go to eat burgers, drink beer, and watch a game. Plus, it’s right next to the Frank Erwin Center at the University of Texas at Austin. At Scholz’s, you can enjoy some German-Meets-Mexican cuisine with either a German Burger on a pretzel bun with sauerkraut or a San Jacinto Burger with refried beans and corn chips. Don’t want to miss the game? You can get your Scholz Garten food to-go.
1607 San Jacinto Blvd, Austin, TX 78701, +1 (512) 474-1958
Eastside Café is one of the oldest restaurants on Manor Road – they make nearly everything from scratch, and feature a rotating menu of chef specials. What really makes Eastside Café special is that they grow their own vegetables, and whatever they don’t grow, they get locally sourced. So, you know you are eating fresh at Eastside Café. From their enchiladas to their artichoke manicotti, you know you’re in for a great plate at Eastside Café.
2113 Manor Rd, Austin, TX 78722, +1 (512) 476-5858
Blue Dahlia Bistro
At Blue Dahlia Bistro, you can get the feel of eating at a European countryside while in the heart of Austin. Blue Dahlia Bistro serves local, organic, and simple dishes at both private and communal table. You can even enjoy your Mushroom crepes with bleu cheese or brie and walnut tartines with a homemade jam in the elegant ambience of their outdoor patio. Paired with a glass of wine, any of Blue Dahlia Bistro’s dishes will ease you into the Austin food scene. Make sure to buy a homemade baguette before you go.
1115 E 11th St Austin, TX 78702, + 1 (512) 542-9542
John Mueller Meat Co.
For no-nonsense BBQ, look no further than John Mueller Meat Co. John Mueller Meat Co features the perfect picnic spot to enjoy your legendary BBQ served from a trailer. Though the restaurant is just a few minutes from downtown, it still provides the atmosphere of a backyard BBQ. Once you have finished your traditional BBQ meal, you can explore John Mueller Meat Co’s butcher and bakery, to take some of the home-cooked goodness home with you.
2500 E 6th St Austin, TX 78704
In Central Austin, Ruby’s BBQ is one of the best places to get pit-smoked BBQ with a Cajun flair. This roadhouse has a quaint kitchen feel, as well as a lovely outdoor patio. Enjoy your BBQ that has been smoked in an authentic brick pit to give it that perfectly smoky flavor. This Cowboy cooking method taps into the traditions of German and Czech settlers. In addition to their BBQ, Ruby’s has Cajun cuisine, vegetarian dishes, and tacos to match any diner’s needs.
512 W 29th St Austin, TX 78705, + 1 (512) 477-1651
Contigo provides a wonderfully relaxed atmosphere to enjoy farm-fresh Texas dishes. The restaurant is modeled after Contigo Ranch in South Texas, but on this ranch model in Austin, there’s no work, just good eating. On long picnic tables, you can enjoy Rabbit & Dumplings or Ox Tongue Sliders accompanied with a seasonal cocktail on a quiet evening in East Austin. Contigo accepts reservations, so you don’t have to worry about waiting for a table.
2027 Anchor Ln, Austin, TX 78723, +1 (512) 614-2260