Austin's culinary scene has never been better, and our annual CultureMap Tastemaker Awards on May 17 will celebrate the best of them all. We've already introduced you to the city's Rising Star Chefs, now meet the nominees for Neighborhood Restaurant of the Year.
These favorites reflect the neighborhoods they serve, each bringing a creative flavor and experience to their individual communities of Austin.
Chef Shawn Cirkiel's Spanish tapas restaurant has made a stylish addition to Airport Boulevard where Hyde Park and North Loop residents don't have to travel far to get a taste of Spain. Bullfight's extensive menu, featuring authentic small plates and an all-Spanish wine list, brings a touch of class and prestige to a neighborhood now flourishing with culinary options.
Whether the crawfish are in season or we're just looking for some rowdy live Louisiana zydeco, this South Austin spot is our Cajun destination. Evangeline Cafe near Brodie Lane prepares unbeatably authentic Creole cuisine, including a divine seafood gumbo and endless amounts of Abita on tap.
Fabi + Rosi
The welcoming patio makes Fabi + Rosi an ideal destination for Old Austin residents to enjoy an afternoon of drinks and delicious appetizers. The delectable dinner menu, featuring German and French influenced farm-to-table fare, also makes for a convenient date night.
Foreign & Domestic
Foreign & Domestic has been satisfying Austin appetites since 2009, but the seasonal menu still tastes as fresh as ever. The restaurant's North Loop location makes it the perfect neighborhood headliner — where locals might treat themselves to a night of cocktails and small bites at drink.well., a lavish dinner at Foreign & Domestic, and after-dinner drinks down the street at The Tigress Pub.
Fukumoto Sushi & Yakitori Izakaya
Serving the east side with first-rate yakitori, fresh cuts of sushi, and other Japanese flavors, Fukumoto is a trendy taste of Tokyo. This East Sixth Street restaurant has quietly established itself as one of the city's finest sushi suppliers.
Noble Sandwich Co.
Austin's premier sandwich spot happens to be a Burnet Road neighborhood favorite. Noble Sandwich Co.'s savory sammies pack a ton of heat and meat into every mouthwatering bite. We love the seared beef tongue sandwich, and you can never go wrong with the renowned duck pastrami. Don't sleep on the weekend breakfast menu either, ideally enjoyed on the back patio.
The Peached Tortilla
With menu highlights ranging from the JapaJam Burger to bahn mi tacos, Burnet Road's colorful fusion eatery provides one-of-a-kind bites combining traditional Asian flavors with Southern flair. The Peached Tortilla also offers another Burnet Road brunch that needs to be tasted in order to be believed.
This past year was another triumph for Ramen Tatsu-ya, one of North Austin's most impressive success stories. Chefs Tatsu Aikawa and Takuya Matsumoto's bowls of self-described "Japanese soul food" fed relentless lines of neighborhood noodle lovers and garnered national buzz as some of the finest ramen this side of the Pacific. The popularity of the North Austin original warranted a shiny new South Lamar Boulevard location, as well as a menu expansion that showcases the tastes and talents of the celebrated chefs. Despite the endless accolades, both locations continue to function as integral parts of their respective neighborhoods.
Via 313 Pizza
Brothers Brandon and Zane Hunt made a splash in 2011 when they brought the flavors and traditions of their hometown Detroit to the East Austin community. While their craft pizza concept has expanded to another trailer residency on Rainey Street, as well as recent brick-and-mortar spots in Oak Hill and the campus area, the original location outside of Violet Crown Social Club continues to stay true to its roots. Via 313 is serving up some of the tastiest — and most unique — pies in town.