Austin hospitality vets uncork proper Irish pub in downtown space
If ever there were a time to indulge in a proper pint of Guinness, it’s in these grueling days, y’all. And with the opening of a new Irish pub in downtown Austin, you don’t have to wait until St. Patrick’s Day to tap into a little luck of the Irish.
Foxy’s Proper Pub, located at 201 Brazos St., opens on February 24, in the space formerly home to La Volpe, the short-lived Italian eatery that closed permanently last year because of the COVID-19 pandemic. With Foxy’s, restaurateurs Heather and Steve Potts — also owners of nearby Cedar Door and the now-shuttered La Volpe — aim to evoke the vibe of a welcoming, well-loved Irish pub, complete with a menu featuring Irish comfort foods and plenty of Guinness and Irish whiskey offerings.
Originally set to open February 17 but pushed back because of the crippling winter storm, Foxy’s opens to the public on Wednesday with its “St. Practice Day” launch, offering a variety of food and drink specials from 2 pm to midnight.
Though the reimagined restaurant space, curated by set designer Jennifer Long, now boasts the décor elements of an Irish pub, Foxy’s gives a sly nod to La Volpe (Italian for “the fox”) with its moniker, and maintains the spacious multilevel, indoor/outdoor areas that are key to the building’s charm.
Foxy’s beverage director Benjamin Levario worked with veteran bartender Johnny Magennis, former owner of Bull McCabe’s Irish Pub, to create the bar program. Anchored by a spirit-focused cocktail menu, it also includes an expansive Irish whiskey selection and a tap wall featuring the requisite Guinness Irish Stout alongside a selection of local brews. Cocktail specialties include the Foxy Coffee (French press coffee with Bushmills Irish Whiskey, brown sugar, and Guinness whipped cream), the Dingle Mingle (Gunpowder Irish Gin, lavender, and grapefruit), and the Bloody Molly (Deep Eddy Vodka, house-made “Molly mix,” and all the fixings).
Of course, it wouldn’t be a proper Irish pub without grub. And while Foxy’s elevates the traditional pub fare with slightly more refined dishes like seafood chowder and lamb sliders, good old fashioned stick-to-the-ribs dishes also grace the menu, including Scotch eggs (hard-boiled eggs encased in sausage meat, breaded, and fried); a full Irish breakfast; and fish and chips. Additionally, the menu includes lighter bites like Guinness-cured salmon with citrus, coriander, and dill, served with Guinness soda bread, and a root-vegetable Irish curry with basmati rice.
Foxy’s will be open daily from 2 pm to midnight.