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New Restaurants in Austin

4 March 2012 7,108 views 46 Comments

Those making their annual pilgrimage to Austin for SXSW this week may be interested to know what’s new in the Austin food scene since last year. The focus of this post is on brick and mortar restaurants; A Mike’s Life covered new food trailers since last year. For more ideas on where to eat in and near Austin, spend some time checking out the Austin Food Blogger Alliance’s Austin City Guide.

Contigo patio by Michelle Cheng

Contigo patio by Michelle Cheng

This post isn’t meant to be a comprehensive guide to every new restaurant that has opened over the past year, but it is meant to include some of the most popular spots. We also surveyed members of the Austin Food Blogger Alliance for their recommendations, and the two that received the most votes are starred in the list below. Please note that some of these restaurants have opened since we closed our survey in late 2011.

Contigo Tempura Green Beans by Michelle Cheng

Contigo Tempura Green Beans by Michelle Cheng

**Contigo: A comfortable, mostly outdoor East Austin bar and restaurant serving small plates, sandwiches, fries, charcuterie plates, and a nice cocktail menu.

Easy Tiger

Easy Tiger

Easy Tiger: Bake Shop & Beer Garden featuring artisan bread (including baguettes, croissants, pretzels), locally roasted coffee, housemade meats (sausages, corned beef, pastrami), a full bar and more than 30 draft beers.

Bakery at Easy Tiger

Bakery at Easy Tiger

El Alma: Chef Alma Alcocer’s (formerly of Jeffrey’s) Mexican-inspired restaurant located on the corner of Barton Springs and Dawson.

Elizabeth Street Cafe

Elizabeth Street Cafe

Elizabeth Street Cafe: French Vietnamese restaurant on South 1st and Elizabeth serving breakfast, lunch and dinner.

Crispy Vermicelli Cakes Brunch Dish

Crispy Vermicelli Cakes Brunch Dish

Gourmands: East Austin bar serving sandwiches and soups.
Hillside Farmacy: Can’t wait to try this deli, specialty grocery store, and bar by Sonya Cote of East Side Show Room.
Hopfields: cozy gastropub serving homestyle French food and an interesting beer selection at communal tables.
**Kome: home-style Japanese meals by the couple behind Sushi-A-Go-Go, in a cozy environment at an affordable price.

Kome Ika Ya Grilled Squid by Michelle Cheng

Kome Ika Ya Grilled Squid by Michelle Cheng

Lenoir: A French-inspired and locally sourced restaurant on S. 1st by Todd Duplechan (formerly of TRIO) and Jessica Maher, where every night is $30 prix-fixe and diners choose their own three courses.
Lucy’s Fried Chicken: James Holmes Southern-fried cooking is getting local love for their fried chicken, deep fried deviled eggs, and more down home-style favorites.

Crudo at Olive & June

Crudo at Olive & June

Olive & June: An impressive wine and cocktail menu, selection of small, shareable plates, house-made pastas, and comfortable atmosphere make Shawn Cirkiel of Parkside’s newest restaurant a lovely choice for a night out.

Papi Tinos Patio

Papi Tinos Patio

Papi Tinos: Located in an old house on E. 6th Street, Papi Tinos is a great space for happy hour or dinner while enjoying a margarita and interior Mexican meal on a warm Austin spring evening.
Stiles Switch BBQ and Brew: Located in one of the oldest shopping centers in Austin, Stiles Switch may look familiar — as the space was used for the pool hall scene in the film, Dazed and Confused. I’m hearing good things about their brisket.

Thank you to Michelle Cheng of Foodie is the New Forty for sharing some of her photos with me. What is your favorite restaurant that has opened in the past 12 months? Have you tried any of those listed above?

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  • http://twitter.com/StellaTex StellaTex

    Man, I need to get a second job so I can try all these ridiculously amazing restaurants that keep popping up!

  • http://shefskitchen.wordpress.com/ shef

    ohhh i had no idea about el alma and gourmand's! loved lenoir! can't beat the price and the ambience was just beautiful. cannot wait to try stiles too. so glad u made reference to dazed and confused :), love that movie –one of things that makes me so happy about austin! 

  • http://twitter.com/mikegalante Mike Galante

    I can definitely say Lenoir, Kome, and Contigo will all be around for a very long time.  Each brings inventive food and (in the case of Contigo) atmosphere.  Now I need to get myself over to Stiles Switch and Gourmands.  I'll be interested to see how many of these places will be around next year.  My guess (and hope) is most of them should be safe because they're all pushing to give us something new and different.

    Thanks Jodi, great list of new spots!  And thanks for the link to my trailer post :)

  • http://twitter.com/MaryMakesDinner Mary Makes Dinner

    Great list!  I love Easy Tiger.  It's definitely a new favorite of my husband and I.  El Alma and Kome are also really great.  I'm looking forward to checking out the other places you mentioned, especially Elizabeth Street and Contigo.

  • http://shefskitchen.wordpress.com/ shef

    ohhh i had no idea about el alma and gourmand's! loved lenoir! can't beat the price and the ambience was just beautiful. cannot wait to try stiles too. so glad u made reference to dazed and confused :), love that movie –one of things that makes me so happy about austin! 

  • http://twitter.com/mikegalante Mike Galante

    I can definitely say Lenoir, Kome, and Contigo will all be around for a very long time.  Each brings inventive food and (in the case of Contigo) atmosphere.  Now I need to get myself over to Stiles Switch and Gourmands.  I'll be interested to see how many of these places will be around next year.  My guess (and hope) is most of them should be safe because they're all pushing to give us something new and different.

    Thanks Jodi, great list of new spots!  And thanks for the link to my trailer post :)

  • http://twitter.com/MaryMakesDinner Mary Makes Dinner

    Great list!  I love Easy Tiger.  It's definitely a new favorite of my husband and I.  El Alma and Kome are also really great.  I'm looking forward to checking out the other places you mentioned, especially Elizabeth Street and Contigo.

  • Michelle

    So many places to try! We loved Easy Tiger and now I must go back to Contigo and try the tempura green beans. Great post Jodi!

  • jodibart

    I didn't love Gourmands, to be honest. But Stiles Switch is the real deal!

  • jodibart

    Elizabeth Street and Contigo are both GREAT!

  • jodibart

    Good to hear about Hillside Farmacy. I've been twice and loved the Forager sandwich, I'll have to try the steak sandwich next time. 

  • Wendythewonderful

    Soo want to try Easy Tiger. Visited Hillside Farmacy twice already. You MUST get the steak sandwich, it is frickin’ amazing.

  • Sommer Maxwell

    We love Hopfields, but can't wait to try Contigo, Olive & June, Lenior, Elizabeth St. and Hillside Farmacy. We need a babysitter so we can go out more!

  • jodibart

    I didn't love Gourmands, to be honest. But Stiles Switch is the real deal!

  • jodibart

    Elizabeth Street and Contigo are both GREAT!

  • jodibart

    Good to hear about Hillside Farmacy. I've been twice and loved the Forager sandwich, I'll have to try the steak sandwich next time. 

  • Sommer Maxwell

    We love Hopfields, but can't wait to try Contigo, Olive & June, Lenior, Elizabeth St. and Hillside Farmacy. We need a babysitter so we can go out more!

  • Ginny Bell

    We are so spoiled in Austin with all these amazing new additions! Papi Tino's brunch may be the most relaxing way to spend a Sunday. Contigo, Hillside, and Easy Tiger were instant favorites for me. I still have yet to try Lenoir but have heard only rave reviews. Next on the list!

  • Ginny Bell

    We are so spoiled in Austin with all these amazing new additions! Papi Tino's brunch may be the most relaxing way to spend a Sunday. Contigo, Hillside, and Easy Tiger were instant favorites for me. I still have yet to try Lenoir but have heard only rave reviews. Next on the list!

  • http://hilahcooking.com/ Hilah

    I didn't realize so many places had popped up in the last year! Thanks for the recommendations, Jodi.

  • Heather Santos

    Haven't been to these places yet, but Contigo and Easy Tiger are at the top of my list of interesting places to try!

  • http://hilahcooking.com/ Hilah

    I didn't realize so many places had popped up in the last year! Thanks for the recommendations, Jodi.

  • Heather Santos

    Haven't been to these places yet, but Contigo and Easy Tiger are at the top of my list of interesting places to try!

  • http://twitter.com/bakemeaway Jessica

    I've been to Contigo, Easy Tiger, and Hillside Farmacy so far and want to go back to all! Think Elizabeth Street may be the next stop…

  • http://frommaggiesfarm.blogspot.com/ from maggie's farm

    I've been to exactly ZERO of these new fab places, though most have popped up on my must try lists.  Thanks for focusing my efforts (and $$).

  • http://frommaggiesfarm.blogspot.com/ from maggie's farm

    I've been to exactly ZERO of these new fab places, though most have popped up on my must try lists.  Thanks for focusing my efforts (and $$).

  • jodibart

    Right?!

  • jodibart

    Adam and I are super excited to try Lenoir.

  • jodibart

    Go back to Contigo before it gets too hot! 

  • jodibart

    I've been to Papi Tino's twice, but never for brunch. Adding it to the list!

  • jodibart

    Elizabeth Street Cafe is wonderful. I recommend it for brunch!

  • jodibart

    You've been too busy checking out (and reporting back on) all the cajun delights in town!

  • jodibart

    Right?!

  • jodibart

    Adam and I are super excited to try Lenoir.

  • jodibart

    Go back to Contigo before it gets too hot! 

  • jodibart

    I've been to Papi Tino's twice, but never for brunch. Adding it to the list!

  • jodibart

    Elizabeth Street Cafe is wonderful. I recommend it for brunch!

  • jodibart

    You've been too busy checking out (and reporting back on) all the cajun delights in town!

  • jodibart

    Right?!

  • jodibart

    Adam and I are super excited to try Lenoir.

  • jodibart

    Go back to Contigo before it gets too hot! 

  • jodibart

    I've been to Papi Tino's twice, but never for brunch. Adding it to the list!

  • jodibart

    Elizabeth Street Cafe is wonderful. I recommend it for brunch!

  • jodibart

    You've been too busy checking out (and reporting back on) all the cajun delights in town!

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