Editor's note: The countdown to the CultureMap Tastemakers is on. People are voting, tickets are selling, and we're just a few days away from announcing the winners at our annual blowout bash at the Bob Bullock Texas State History Museum. Read the nominees here and catch up on the rest of the week's most popular stories below.
1. Get a taste of the 8 best Austin restaurants for 2019. For Tastemakers, we've tackled everything from best bar to best neighborhood restaurant, but this is the arguably the biggest of them all. Stop in this weekend to "taste out" why they're the best and stay tuned when we announce the winner on April 10.
2. Austin's next iconic high-rise sets sail downtown with Google on board. Move over, Jenga Building. Construction began on Austin's newest eye-catching high-rise, a sailboat-esque building currently underway at West Fifth Street and West Avenue. If the dreamy renderings have you dreaming of your own port side office, too bad; Google's already snatched up the lease.
3. New barbecue joint boot scoots into Southwest Austin honky-tonk. Ever two-step so hard you dance up an appetite? Then this is the place for you. A brand-new barbecue restaurant just kicked its way into an Austin dance hall.
4. New lunch spot makes headlines on the east side, plus more Austin food news. A new East Austin restaurant and a new South Austin Lustre Pearl lead this week's food news.
5. Austin's red-hot real estate market among the best in U.S. for first-time buyers. Affordability is still a huge issue for many Austinites, so there can be mixed feelings when reports like this come out. Austin ranked No. 14 out of 50 for the best cities, surprisingly better than the rest of state's major metro areas.