News you can eat

Uchi launches affordable late-night menu and McConaughey pours new bourbon in this batch of Austin food news

Uchi's new affordable late-night menu and more Austin restaurant news

Uchi late night bite

Wagyu yaki onigiri is part of Uchi's new late-night menu.   Photo by Logan Crable

Editor's note: We get it. It can be difficult to keep up with the what’s what and who’s who of Austin food. But we have you covered with our regular roundup of the freshest Austin restaurant news.

Want a taste of Uchi without the full $100-plus dinner tab? The lauded Austin restaurant’s new chef de cuisine, Joe Zoccoli, has introduced a new late-night menu available on the patio Sunday-Thursday with prices ranging from $3.50-$7. The capsule menu includes a vanilla ice cream sandwich topped with hazelnuts and served with chocolate sauce, as well as two mouthwatering savory dishes: satsuma imo onigiri with fried sweet potato and nori aioli and Wagyu yaki onigiri with kimchi emulsion. A new affordable sake selection will be available, too.

Cafe 605, the casual eatery and coffeehouse inside the Hotel Van Zandt, is upping its game with the introduction of Tuesday evening live music residencies every month curated by director of music and social programming Janice Bond. First up is folk singer/songwriter Nichole Wagner through the end of April, followed by Tje Austin in May and Sydney Wright and June. Also music to our ears is the introduction of several new dishes like kolache and song-themed cupcakes from executive pastry chef Yolanda Diaz and a new beverage program that includes four new Italian varietal wines available by the glass and a rotating selection of local craft beers.

Speaking of sushi, a new modern Japanese restaurant, TenTen, is coming to Austin as part of the Blueprint development on West Sixth Street. The building will also include Mayfair, a nightclub decorated with a Victorian theme, and the previously announced new location of bowling bar The Goodnight.

Foreign & Domestic is also shaking things up with enough news to fill its own roundup. The North Loop restaurant is introducing Oyster Tuesdays with dollar oysters and half-off rosé, bubbles, and white wine; Wine Thursdays with 25 percent off all bottles; new housemade pastries and bread; new comfy furniture on the patio; and new menu items like spring pea carbonara. Chef Sarah Heard will also be inducted into the Austin chapter of Les Dames d’Escoffier on May 6 and will be in the kitchen for Indie Chefs Week at Riel Restaurant in Houston on May 3. Phew!

Cane Rosso will welcome former Apis and Pizzeria Sorellina chef Adam Brick on April 23 to preview his new upcoming concept, Marina’s. Brick will be making four pizzas for the evening, including a carbonara pie, as well as a handful of vegetable and pasta dishes and one dessert.

The second area location of popular brewpub The Ginger Man is now open in the Hill Country Galleria. Like the downtown outpost, the new Bee Cave bar and restaurant features more than 60 taps and a huge bottled beer selection. Exclusive to the new location is a full cocktail menu and a new food menu featuring charcuterie, wings, new sandwiches and salads, and a weekend brunch.

The League Kitchen & Tavern is opening a new location in Belterra Village in Dripping Springs. The new restaurant will be the third location for the local mini-chain known for bringing chef-driven food and curated beverage menus to the outer reaches of Austin. Although the exact opening date has not been established, the launch will be sometime in May.

Tipsy Texan and Austin Food & Wine Alliance's Official Drink of Austin is back in Austin on May 10. This year, the boozy competition is moving to the Fairmont Austin with a new crew of judges including musician Tameca JonesWe Are Austin host Trevor Scott; corporate executive pastry chef for New Waterloo Amanda Rockman; Half Step creative director and owner Chris Bostick; and last year's winner, Alexis Mijares.

Matthew McConaughey is bringing a little Texas terroir to his gig as creative director of Wild Turkey. In collaboration with master distiller Eddie Russell, Austin’s favorite son is launching Wild Turkey Longbranch, a new small batch bourbon filtered with oak charcoals and Texas mesquite. The bottles, with a suggested retail price of $39.99, will hit U.S. shelves in May.