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Lamberts is Fancy, But Not NYC Fancy

6 December 2008 1,816 views 2 Comments

sign_006Christine is the only person I know who has been a vegetarian her entire life. Where did she want to eat for her first meal in Austin after getting off the plane from New York? Lamberts.

Lamberts’ tagline is “Fancy Barbecue” and that’s exactly what it is.

What’s great about the place is that it marries style with substance and the food definitely comes first. It opened in 2006 after the owners spent two years restoring it to the way it was in the 1870s when it was Austin’s first general store.

Located downtown in the 2nd Street District, Lamberts is a triple threat. The food, bar, and daily live music are all worth a visit in their own right. I’ve been for both lunch and dinner and have heard that their Sunday brunch buffet is to die for.

Austin used to be the type of town where you never needed reservations. It’s quickly changing and Christine and I got a first-hand sense of that when we stopped in to get a table at 8 p.m. and were told that we wouldn’t be seated until 10. Instead, we hovered at the downstairs bar until two women got called to their table.

liquorThe bartendress treated us wonderfully. Christine wanted to order a bunch of sides as a vegetable plate and she said it would be no problem. She ordered four sides and was only charged $14, the same as my BBQ plate. Normally sides are ordered family style and cost $6 each.

We were also able to order a 1/2 glass of wine at the end of the meal and she poured a full glass and only charged for half. Now that’s what I call service!

Some of my favorite Austin musicians play at Lamberts. A sampling include Ephraim Owens, Brannen Temple, Jitterbug Vipers, Erik Hokanen, and Gary Clark Jr. and the Marshall Ford Swing Band. In fact, we might head over there tomorrow night to check out some great jazz. Of course, there’s also Heybale! at Continental Club, Dale Watson at Ginny’s Little Longhorn Saloon, and Monster Big Band at Ruta Maya. Decisions, decisions!

christineSome of my favorite dishes at Lamberts include:

Appetizer: Achiote Seared Chickpeas

Salad: Fried Green Tomatoes

Entrees: Hanger Steak; Brown Sugar and Coffee Rubbed Beef Brisket;

Sides: Waffle Fries with Smoked Paprika; Cauliflower with Jalapeno and Garlic; Brussels Sprouts, Celery Root, Parsnips;

Desserts: Fried Apple Pie with Goat Cheese Ice Cream and Caramel; Blackberry Almond Crisp; Maple Banana Bread Pudding.

With entrees ranging from $14-$40, a night out a Lamberts can get pricey so if you are watching your budget, I’d urge you to check out happy hour from 5 p.m. – 7 p.m. 7 days a week. All alcoholic drinks are $2 cheaper and you get half-price apps and bar food.

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