Exploring Texas is all about the food. Whether in Houston at the Rodeo or in Austin at a local coffee shop everywhere you go you notice nuances of an unexpected foodie culture.
Dosey-Doe at the Houston Rodeo
The chips made an excellent appetizer, they were light and easy to eat as we people watched. I also suggest washing it down with some Raspberry or Peach Sweet Tea as we did.
After we finished off a plate of fries we went for the best bar-b-que brisket at Goode’s Co. When ordering they give you the option of getting your sandwich on homemade jalapeño cheese bread, go for the jalapeno bread.
The rodeo also offers your traditional “fair food”, nachos, pretzels, hot dogs and cotton candy.
After an evening of Rodeo in Houston it was time to get weird in Austin. But before leaving the traditional southern comfort of Houston we stopped for some Kolache’s which are essentially doughy bread filled with various cheeses or meats, it can also have fruit filling.
Yo quiero mas queso
The drive to Austin from Houston was about three hours, but it was an easy ride with little traffic (at least from my perspective of traveling between New York and Washington D.C.). On arrival it was naturally time to eat again. Austin has a lot of local restaurants that pride themselves on using only local grown food.
Kerbey Lane Cafe is on Guadalupe Street near the main campus area of the University of Texas. The atmosphere is expected of a college town restaurant, local artist can sell their work that hangs on the walls, there are large windows to look out and people watch as you enjoy their famous queso. Well, it might not be famous, but it should be. The Kerby queso is a series of layers that make the ultimate dip. On top, pico de gallo, then a think layer of white queso and finally delicious Guacamole, of course served with chips and salsa.
For dinner that night we went to Iron Cactus Mexican Grill and Margarita Bar just off 6th Street. Since we were keeping it casual sitting at the patio bar area was the perfect choice. There they offer small plates and drinks. If your a beer drinker Texas is all about its native Shiner Bock. But at Iron Cactus go for the margarita, it’s strong, it’s tasty and it’s on the rocks.
Mozart Coffee Roasters sits along Lake Austin. With a large patio, and equally spacious enclosed sun room you can always catch a glimpse of the glistening water and large houses the surround the lake. A picturesque morning or afternoon makes this the perfect brunch place. If only they offered more brunch options. When we arrived at 11am on a Wednesday there was little to choose from for breakfast other than a bagel with cream cheese. I am more of an egg person than a pastry or bagel person so I went for a veggie quiche. Overall I suggest going to Mozart, the serenity of Lake Austin makes it worth a trip and if you go later for lunch they offer more in terms of sandwiches, salads and delicious pastries.
Living in Washington, DC I know all about food trucks, so I was pleasantly surprised to find a variety of food trucks in Austin. I went for the Thai Truck since I was in a green curry mood. Food trucks a must when exploring Austin, because as I said Texas is all about the food.