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Acclaimed Austin restaurant team pours Spanish-style cocktail bar into downtown

Austin restaurant team pours Spanish-style cocktail bar into downtown

Kalimotxo Austin
Kalimotxo will serve original cocktails and plenty of wine. Courtesy photo

Just two days after revealing the opening date for long-anticipated restaurant Hestia, the Emmer & Rye team announced it's pouring another new concept in downtown Austin. Kalimotxo, a Basque-style pintxos bar will open adjacent to Hestia at 607 W. Third St., Ste. 105, on November 26.

Pintxos offers a similar experience to tapas, although the rules differentiating the two dining styles are complex and depend on the context and location where the small bites are served. Traditionally, pintxos were served on pieces of bread and stabbed with a cocktail stick, though the word is now used more generally in Spain's Basque Country.

The experience of ordering pintxos is engaging with (or, in Spain, sometimes simply grabbing) dishes from a display on the bar. A release notes that Kalimotxo’s spread will include authentic treats like jamon Iberico, assorted seafood conservas, and Basque burnt cheesecake.

“After living in Spain, I fell in love with Spanish cuisine and culture,” explains partner Rand Egbert in the release. "Basque pintxos bars are a true celebration of wine, food, and people, and I am excited to share it with Austin.”

Helming the bar will be Emmer & Rye vet Alicia Schmidt and Brett Esler, a longtime bartender at Whisler’s. The program will include creative cocktails and plenty of wine served in porróns — glass pitchers that were designed to allow patrons to drink from the same vessel without it touching anyone’s lips.

The technique does require some practice, but what’s a few dribbles when guests can have a festive experience from one of Austin’s most acclaimed culinary teams?

Following the November 26 debut, Kalimotxo will be open daily except for Monday. Hours are 4 pm-midnight, Tuesday through Thursday; 4 pm-1 am, Friday; noon-1 am, Saturday; and noon-midnight, Sunday.