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Travel | Brews and Barbecue in Austin, TX

Hola my friends.  As promised in my Trekking Around Texas post, today I’m going to share some of the food and drink we had in Texas.  I didn’t snap photos of all the places we went. I missed the food trucks and local Indian restaurant called G’Raj Mahal, which was originally a small restaurant run inside a garage, but it became so popular they were able to open their own full-scale restaurant.  We actually learned that this is quite popular in Austin.  Many restaurants start as food trucks or small, garage-type restaurants.  They try out recipes and build a following and gain capital.  Then, if they can pass that “test,” they move to a more full-scale operation.  This makes Austin saturated in really fantastic food that also offers a huge diversity of small, locally-owned restaurants.
austin, tx

Our first day in Austin we visited La Barbecue which was in an up-and-coming neighborhood in East Downtown Austin.  We were warned it put out some kick-ass barbecue, was very popular, and we’d likely have to wait in line.  All of the above were true.

 

 

We arrived just has they opened the doors, at 11am, which made our wait time slightly longer. Novices, clearly.  But the sun was shining and we were on vacation, so we didn’t really mind too much. The swarms of people waiting promised that our patience would be rewarded.

 

austin, tx

 

It isn’t decor that brings you to La Barbecue.  A collection of picnic tables with precarious umbrellas and ports-potties were strewn about the small, fenced in, side street lot.  But the smell of the multiple meat smokers and relaxed attitude certainly draws you in.

 

 

The upside to waiting in the line to order is you get your food immediately. As you order someone is cutting your slice of brisket or scooping your pulled pork.  Everything goes by weight and the price is casually jotted onto your meat-stacked wax paper.  You are then allowed to pile on any additional items you want: pickles, onions, jalapenos, and so on. My only disappointment came when they informed us beer was only for sale on Saturdays and Sundays which made me curse the fact that we arrived on a Friday.

 

Both of our orders were piled onto one tray.  I order a pulled pork sandwich, which was a newer venture for me as I am usually not much of a meat-eater.  Michael ordered a rib and slice of brisket.  We also got some of their homemade chipolte coleslaw.
The pulled pork was delicious, not too soft but not dried out, and full of that good smokey flavor.  Michael’s ribs fell right off the bone and he informed me the brisket was, hands down, the best he ever had.
Our friend ordered a little bit of everything, getting one of the house made sausages, ribs and brisket. La Barbecue offered fantastic Texan BBQ and we left totally stuffed and completely satisfied.

 

The next day we headed out of downtown Austin to a plot of land which was home to Farmhouse Pizza and Jester King Brewery.  It was the perfect marriage because you could have beer tastings and order pizzas all in one swoop.
Opened less than two years, this little co-op had a few open-air barns scatted around the property along with a newly built barn for the brewery.  Loaded with plenty of picnic tables and seats, it was easy to find a little spot to settle in for some beer and pizza.
 

 

 

 

 

We started by ordering our pizza from Farmhouse Pizza which was home to a huge brick-oven, the perfect ingredient to good pizza, in my opinion. We split a Li’l Heifer, with fresh mozzarella, and a Penelope, with smoked prosciutto, mozzarella, arugula and cherry tomatoes.  The Penelope was my personal favorite.

 

 

 

We opted for a table inside the biggest open-air barn and then moved on to beer tasting.

 

 

Jester King was a unique brewery as they ran as a true farmhouse brewery that created wild ales.  They used well water, locally grown and malted grains, and wild yeast.  This process creates a sour beer, which was something I’d never tried before.  They have a very different taste than a typical ale, but I really liked them a lot.  If you’re a beer person and have never had a sour beer made with wild yeast before, I highly suggest you give it a try.

 

 

 

 We started with the Nocturn Chrysalis which had Oregon-grown blackberries.  We also tasted the RU55 and Boxer’s Revenge.  

 

 

I’m embraced the free, relaxed atmosphere of Austin with my outfit wearing a new tank from Forever21 that I’m quite sure will be one of my summer 2014 favorites.  I couldn’t find this exact on for sale online but a similar one is here.

 

 

My headwrap is the Boho Braided Headwrap from Claire’s. If you’re looking for some cute headwraps/headbands for the summer, Claire’s is the spot.  They have every kind of hair accessories from flower crowns to beaded, vintage headbands and boho-style headbands.  And all at budget-friendly prices (you know I love me a deal!)

 

My necklace is the Gold Spear Necklace from an online jewelry boutique called Dreaming Daisy.  The shop was created by a blogger friend, Kai, and her shop is another great stop to pick up some great summertime jewelry pieces without breaking the bank.  The Gold Spear Necklace is only$13!

 

Even the restrooms at the Jester King/Farmhouse Pizza compound had character, built into this old, metal RV.  We popped our heads inside to check them out and they had a surprising amount of class, for RV bathrooms that is.
If you find yourself in Austin for a bit of time, and have a taste for micro-brewery beer, you’ll definitely want to make the quick trip to Jester King to try out their farmhouse-style beer and relax at this easy-going place.
Have you ever had a sour beer?
 
What’s your favorite BBQ food item?
 

Are you rocking the headwrap trend this year?
Before I go, make sure to check out the newest recipe from Eat, Firm Love.  These are 21 Day Fix Recipe: Banana Oatmeal Cookies, which makes eating clean fun and delicious. Lisa, the creator behind Eat, Firm Love, created a great video tutorial of this recipe, which shows how simple these are to make! I think these would be perfect to make ahead of time and use as quick and easy breakfasts!   The necklace from Dreaming Daisy was sent to me in return for my review.  All opinions and thoughts, as always, are my own.Signature