Austin, on the eastern edge of Texas Hill Country, is not only the state capital, but lays claim to being the "live music capital of the world." It’s also a center for film and home to the University of Texas and Formula 1's Circuit of the Americas raceway. Its abundant parks and lakes are popular for hiking, biking, swimming, boating and other outdoor pursuits. It's the home of the greatest tacos, especially of the breakfast variety. (tacos are my love language) Austin is also the home of The Flagship Whole Foods. This is like no other Whole Foods ever. I could spend an entire day here. They have 8.00 wine flights that I cannot stop dreaming about. The iconic grafitti makes my heart happy and all the food trailers make my taste buds dance. They are everywhere!! The queso, the BBQ (All Hail Brisket) The Kayaks,Amy's ice cream, avocado margaritas, Alamo Drafthouse, Austin City Limits, SXSW, Moto GP, Barton Springs, every little store and restaurant on South Congress.
Karen is lucky to live in Austin and I am lucky to be able to visit anytime I want from Oklahoma.
My favorite vintage cowboy boots always accompany me on my journey as well as my favorite pearl snap vintage tops, sundresses, and a beloved vintage cross-body bag.
I typically stay at The Fabulous San Jose Hotel when I am not staying on Karen's ranch. A half-mile south of downtown, in Austin's authentically funky South Congress neighborhood, The San Jose perfectly fits its location: It's unpretentiously stylish, relaxed, and comfortable, and surprisingly easy on the budget, cheaper even than the big chains downtown. (lodging is just pricy in Austin. They have something going on every weekend too so book in advance.)
Once a thirties motor inn, it’s been renovated in a sort of Texas-Zen style, with bare concrete exterior walls under red tile roofs and crushed granite walkways traversing a courtyard garden planted with native vegetation. The former motel rooms and bungalows have been redesigned in a stripped-down modern style, with queen beds, sparkling white bathrooms stocked with Dr. Bronner’s peppermint soap and Malin & Goetz apothecary, writing desks with Eames side chairs, and not much else. Adore the minimalist interiors, handmade furniture, custom sheets, and kimono bathrobes! The snack kit in the hotel room is fabulous (I swear Liz knows Herdez salsa wins me over every time. I can eat that stuff with a spoon) and the hotel is dog friendly. (my spotted boys love this.) You can also reserve a bicycle. (another huge plus). Liz Lambert is an absolute goddess.
The South Congress Hotel is fabulous too.
I am thrilled to share some of my faves with you on the blog. Karen has her fave too which you can reference on the blog too.
The charming Josephine House is a must!
Elizabeth Street Cafe ...
Elizabeth Street Cafe is a charming outpost offering French breakfast bites & creative Vietnamese plates. They serve Stumptown Coffee, exotic teas, and they have national newspapers. I am instantly in love with everything ESC has to offer!
I have a hard time deciding between the breakfast Banh Mi , The Singapore Noodles, Or The Crispy Vermicelli Cakes. And I also need a chocolate croissant because the waitress says they are the best in the world! And come on, I have to know for certain. Lin and I share the croissant and go with The Crispy Vermicelli Cakes with a delish ginger pork sausage, fresh farm over medium eggs ( i love my eggs runny..Lin is a well-done egg kinda man so compromise has to be made here) & an herb and radish salad. The mint is just delightful with the dish and adding some Sriracha just made it mind blowing!! The French press was delightful and I give it 5 stars!
Hillside Farmacy--The Austin Eastside. I absolutely love love love this area of The ATX and need to really spend more time there. We had an amazing farm to table breakfast surrounded by 1950's pharmacy decor. In the 1950's the building housed The Hillside Drugstore so they kept the original cabinetry and antique pharmacy displays. I am instantly in love, of course. Our breakfast was divine and the Of Montreal in my ears was equally fab . Highly highly recommend.
Let us know your faves in the comments!