Happy Saturday night, friends. I’m sitting on my couch sneezing up a storm with a box of tissues in my lap and two empty water bottles on the floor. Sinus infections totally knock me out but I’m determined not to let this one get the best of me, especially since tomorrow is July! Since my last post, I read Kathy Freston’s book “The Lean“ and heard her speak at an event– for the record, she’s gorgeous and hilarious in person. After that, seeing “Forks over Knives” and a few others, I decided to try out the vegan thing for a bit. I eat a mostly plant-based diet anyway, so why not experiment
torture myself sans butter . Naturally, this is the perfect time to talk about Texas.
Braised meat has become one of my favorite things to eat recently (I was showing people pictures of the pork belly I had at Ippudo while Kathy was speaking. Whoops.), and I don’t know that you can set foot in the Lone Star State without trying some. Before I get to the food though, I’m going to call my trip to Austin with Danielle my adventure for 2012.
I know. It’s Austin. So lame. But in my defense we totally booked it last minute, and ended up walking past people’s houses and cacti in a 30 minute attempt to find good booze for day drinking (East Side Showroom and Takoba!) and over bridges and railroad tracks to the southern part of town for shopping (Maya Star and SoLa; be prepared to buy too many dresses for your own good) with nothin’ but a half-dead iPhone guiding our way. We also ran down Lady Bird Lake and practiced yoga at Wanderlust LIVE and found ourselves invited to a bikini bike wash. We did a lot in two days.
We based our eats on Michael and Alejandra‘s response to a tweet I sent out the day before we left. First night we went to Lamberts for super outstanding ribs, collards and beer. Second night was at Second Bar + Kitchen, and probably one of my favorite restaurant experiences. We sat outside, ordered a cheese board and a jug (!) of wine on tap, and hung out in the warm weather. The apricot preserves on the board were my favorite.
Enter braised beef short ribs with black truffle grits and crispy cippolini onions. THIS was everything. Like, seriously so delicious. The entire dish was melt-in-your-mouth and the short ribs were the best I’ve had. Texas in a bowl, y’all.
We ordered three desserts to help finish off our wine: blueberry vanilla fried pie, sweet potato whoppie pie and chocolate pudding pops. We had just walked through the entire city, so. These sweet bites were cute and whimsical. Perfect way to end a really fun trip!
I enjoyed the city so much, I’ll be back to Austin in October for Austin City Limits and hopefully can (maybe?) make South by Southwest happen this year. If not, next adventure’s to Boulder, Colorado. Or anywhere I can spend time outside AND eat braised goodness. Or fried pie. We’ll see how long this veganism lasts.