When I visited Austin, Texas for a long weekend, I had one goal in mind: EAT AS MUCH AS HUMANLY POSSIBLE.
Anyone who knows anything about Austin knows that it is a city that is known for two major things: great live music and amazing food. Since Austin is a city that loves to eat, it was a no-brainer for me to add the city to my list of places to take a foodcation.
In addition to exploring Austin’s food scene with my friends Dora and my Nick, I teamed up with Austin Eats and Austin Passbook to discover some of the best places to eat and drink that the city had to offer.
Exploring the City with Austin Passbook
The lovely people over at Austin Passbook provided me with a passport to the city that gave me 2-for-1 food truck and excursion deals across the city of Austin. The passbook contained over $600 worth of deals at over 40 destinations in the city.
Since I only had a short time in the city, I did not get to eat my way through the entire passport like I had planned, but I was able to visit a couple of the places listed including Bananarchy and Gourdough’s.
Bananarchy is well-known throughout Austin as being the revolutionary dessert food truck. With their frozen bananas slathered in fair trade chocolate and then dipped in toppings such as graham crackers, granola, or peanuts, these frozen treats are definitely not something you want to miss during a trip to Austin.
Are you a vegan? Bananarchy has vegan chocolate too! They have literally thought of everything to make your mouth happy.
Practical Info | Bananarchy – 701 E. 53rd St. and 603 W. Live Oak St. | Facebook: Bananarchy
Visiting Gourdough’s was pretty high up on my list of things to do when I visited Austin. In addition to wanting Tex-Mex and BBQ, I knew that I could not leave the city without trying one of Gourdough’s famous donuts.
With my Austin Passbook in hand, I headed to the downtown location of Gourdough’s with my friends Dora and Mack and ordered the ‘Son of A Peach’ (pictured above), which was a massive doughnut stuffed with peach filling and covered in cinnamon sugar and cake mix topping.
I was not nearly as adventurous as my friend Mack who ordered the ‘Squealing Pig’, a doughnut covered in cream cheese icing, bacon, strawberry jalapeño jelly, and candied jalapeños. Although I do not personally dine with swine, I thought this doughnut was definitely picture-worthy.
Practical Info | Gourdoughs – Multiple Locations in Austin, see website | Facebook: Gordoughs
Practical Information about the Austin Passbook
An individual Austin Passbook costs $20 and if you buy in bulk you will receive a discount on your purchase. For each Austin Passbook that is sold, 5% of the proceeds go to providing health care for Austin’s independent musicians, and keeps the music alive in the city! Get your Austin Passbook here today and start enjoying the city (*Update: new Passbook available May 2016)!
Exploring the Food Scene Independently
What is better than having great friends?
Having great friends who accompany you during your food-cation and are nonjudgmental when you order more food than your stomach can handle. Yes, my dear Austin friends are the food loving kind of people that I like to have in my life.
On my first night in Austin, I was fresh off the plane, and I was very hungry. Accompanied by my friend Dora, I decided to make eat at Torchy’s Tacos, known for having some damn good tacos.
I don’t know if I was so hungry because I had not had a proper meal since I left New York, or if I was just excited to try my first tacos in Austin, but I ordered three tacos (which turned out to be more than I could possibly eat in one sitting), a locally made brownie, and locally produced lemonade, and I have to say that I was pretty impressed.
Practical Info | Torchy’s Tacos – Multiple Locations, see website | Website: torchystacos.com
Beer on Rainey Street: Banger’s & Craft Pride
In Austin on a Sunday? Head over to Rainey Street for some good Sunday Funday fun.
Accompanied by my travel blogging friend Nick who I met at BlogHouse in Chicago, my first stop on Rainey Street was Banger’s Sausage House and Beer Garden. My first impression of Bangers was that it reminded me a lot of beer gardens that I had been to in Munich, Germany during my second Euro-Trip.
With over 100 beers on tap and 30 varieties of house-made sausages, Banger’s is a wonderful place to go and hear live music while stuffing your face. Additionally, Banger’s also has a ‘Big Band Brunch’ which they serve from 10 am – 4 pm every Sunday, and who doesn’t love a good Sunday Brunch? Amirite?
Practical Info | Banger’s Sausage House & Beer Garden – 79 Rainey Street | Facebook Page
Our next stop on Rainey Street was to Craft Pride, a bar that only serves high-quality craft beer from the state of Texas; so if you want to try out some delicious beers that you can only find in Texas, Craft Pride would be the place to go.
In addition to having delicious craft beers, in the backyard of the bar, you can listen to live music and buy some delicious ‘Detroit Style’ pizza from the Via 313 trailer (not pictured because as usual, I ate it too quickly).
Tex-Mex: Migas at Polvos
The following morning, my friend Dora and I made our way to Polvos Mexican Restaurant. I was very interested in trying Tex-Mex, so I ordered Migas (freshly scrambled eggs mixed with corn tortilla chips, freshly diced Jalapeño Peppers, onions, and tomatoes and served with a side of refried beans and homemade potatoes) as my breakfast dish.
The service was good, the Migas were delicious, and if I was not driving, I would have one or two of the margaritas that they are well known for.
Practical Info | Polvos Mexican Restaurant – 2004 S. 1st Street | Facebook: Polvos Austin
At the Airport: Salt Lick & Amy’s Ice Creams
I almost left Austin without eating barbecue.
I know, I know – that seems insane, right?
My time in Austin was very limited and all of the places that I wanted to eat barbecue at had long lines – so I decided not to eat at any of them. Luckily, AUS airport has an outlet of the popular Salt Lick barbecue restaurant, so I was able to have a savory pulled beef brisket, and it was worth every. single. bite.
I felt that I should end my culinary journey to Austin on a sweet note, so I headed over to the famous Amy’s Ice Creams in the AUS airport and ordered one of their seven standard flavors: the Mexican Vanilla, and it was just the right treat to have as I was ending my foodcation.