Austin Restaurants

Though Mexican, Tex-Mex, and barbecue are the default cuisines, everything from Brazilian to Pacific Rim fusion has made headway here, and there are strong vegetarian and natural-food followers.

To find the best barbecue, local consensus tends to be that you've got to head out of town to Lockhart, Luling, or Llano, in the Hill Country. Nevertheless, there are several fine options within the city limits, the bulk of them simple places.

In some venues the music and food share nearly equal billing, like Threadgill's, whose massive chicken-fried steak is as much of a draw as the well-known blues and rock acts on stage. Stubb's Bar-B-Q hosts a popular gospel brunch on Sundays.

Austin is a casual city, and the dress code is almost always "come as you are"; a few restaurants require a jacket for men. Tips are generally 20%. Smoking is prohibited inside restaurants and bars, though some allow smoking on their outdoor patios.

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  • 1. Congress

    $$$ | American

    An evening here is no regular weekday affair. As Chef/partner David Bull intended with this crisply elegant fine dining concept, this restaurant...Read More

  • 2. Driskill Grill

    $$$ | Sixth Street District | American

    Dominated by shiny, dark paneling and etched glass, this would-be cattle baron's club inside the Driskill Hotel recalls the palatial restaurants...Read More

  • 3. Second Bar + Kitchen

    $$ | American

    With all the high-class sophistication you get from Chef/owner David Bull's Congress restaurant, his adjacent brasserie-style restaurant is...Read More

  • 4. The Carillon

    $$$ | University of Texas Area | American

    In 2014, executive Chef Josh Watkins left The Carillon—a stylish New American concept he helped launch in 2008—but the highly regarded fine...Read More

  • 5. Uchiko

    $$ | North Austin | Japanese

    Austin’s Uchiko might have started out as the "little brother” of Chef Tyson Cole’s now famed Uchi restaurant, but four years later the contemporary...Read More

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