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7 things to know in Austin food right now: Sneaky restaurant openings and must-hit events

7 things to know in Austin food: Sneaky restaurant openings and events

Brick's Pub
Brick's Pubs specializes in monster burgers. Brick's Pub/Facebook
Troublemaker Austin
Troublemaker wants Austinites to give burritos a spin. Troublemaker/Facebook
Ranch Rider canned cocktails
Ranch Rider canned cocktails will giddy up in December. Photo courtesy of Ranch Rider
SRSLY Chocolate bar
So much SRSLY Chocolate, so little time. SRSLY Chocolate/Facebook
Geraldine's "Friends" cocktails
Geraldine's is celebrating 25 years of Friends with a new cocktail menu. Courtesy photo
Brick's Pub
Troublemaker Austin
Ranch Rider canned cocktails
SRSLY Chocolate bar
Geraldine's "Friends" cocktails

Editor's note: We get it. It can be difficult to keep up with the fast pace of Austin’s restaurant and bar scene. We have you covered with our regular roundup of essential food news.

Openings and Closings
Presto change-o. In the wave of a magician’s wand, Troublemaker is already primed to debut after East Austin’s The Hightower shuttered in early September. Owned by the same team as the East Seventh Street favorite, along with a couple of new faces, the concept will be part watering hole, part record store, and part casual restaurant. Check it out beginning November 8 from 7 pm-2 am.

Brick’s Pub, a new bar in the former Independence Fine Foods space at 1807 Slaughter Ln, Ste. 100, sneakily soft opened on November 1. In addition to offering cocktails, the bar also specializes in over-the-top burgers. What all of this has to do with Brick Top, the murderous villain from Guy Ritchie’s 2000 film Snatch, we don’t know. But actor Alan Ford proudly grimaces on the banner of the concept’s Facebook page.

Local bean-to-bar obsessives SRSLY Chocolate opened its first pop-up shop on November 1 at 4402 S. Congress Ave. #105. Co-owner Bob Williamson tells CultureMap that the store carries the brand’s full line of chocolate bars, plus gift sets, advent calendars, nibs, and bonbons. Hours are Thursday through Sunday, noon to 6 pm through at least December 22. Williamson says there is a chance the team will keep the tiny space open through Valentine’s Day 2020.

Event Menu
Do you live to make pour decisions? Does getting through the day require mo’ scato? The Wine & Food Foundation is checking in at Hotel Ella from 7-9:30 pm on November 14 for its annual Big Reds & Bubbles event. In addition to serving a more than 100 fine wines, restaurants like Foreign & Domestic, Oseyo, Tillie’s, and Mattie’s at Green Pastures will be dishing up bites. Tickets are $175 for non-members with a $50 VIP upgrade.

Acclaimed Santa Fe Mexican restaurant Paloma is stopping by Cafe Josie on November 20 for a one-night-only chef takeover. The event is a homecoming for Paloma executive chef Nathan Mayes. Dad Charles Mayes, who just closed Northwest Austin restaurant Cielo Bistro Mexico in late October, was the founder of the beloved Clarksville eatery before selling to current owner Cody Taylor in 2014.

Booze News
Perhaps due to the complete lack of White Claw laws, a new sheriff is galloping into town. Brian Murphy and Quentin Cantu, the co-founders of the Ranch Hand food truck, have launched Ranch Rider Spirits Co., a line of canned tequila and vodka cocktails featuring Texas ingredients. The better-for-you sippers will be available at local bars and liquor stores starting in December and come in three Southwestern-inspired flavors: Ranch Water, Tequila Paloma, and The Chilton with vodka, lemon juice, and sea salt.

To celebrate the 25th anniversary of slightly problematic sitcom Friends, Geraldine’s has created a Friendsgiving cocktail menu, running until November 30. Drinks include Phoebe Buffay’s Princess Consuela Bananahammock with Jager and Giffard banana and the Bourbon-based We Were on a Break, in honor of disappointing human being Ross Geller. A buck from each drink will be donated to fighting food insecurity through No Kid Hungry.