News you can eat

North Austin sandwich shop wraps up, tiny bar squeezes onto Rainey Street, plus more food news

North Austin sandwich shop wraps up, plus more local food news

Noble Sandwich Austin
Noble Sandwich Co. is firing up a new concept at its original location. Noble Sandwich Co./Facebook

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.

Little Brother, a new bar from the team behind Brew & Brew, has opened at 89 Rainey St. with an Instagram post coyly tagged “#notopenopenbutopenmaybe.” Those who enjoy personal space along with their beer, cocktail, or coffee should be warned, however. The diminutive space only accommodates a handful of people, ensuring shoulder-to-shoulder hobnobbing.

Noble Sandwich Co. has closed its original location at 12233 RM 620 N., according to a Facebook post. Owners Brandon Martinez and John Bates will be quickly reworking the space into a brick-and-mortar version of Interstellar BBQ, their popular pop-up specializing in small-batch smoked meats. The 4805 Burnet Rd. location of Noble will remain open as usual.

In other stellar news, a company rep has confirmed that a new Galaxy Cafe is gearing up to open at 5145 FM 620 N. in Steiner Ranch. The location will be the fourth outpost for the diner mini-chain. In April 2018, the brand closed its location in the Triangle development after 10 years in business.

We Are Blood is making a major push for blood donations to mark National Blood Donor Month. Through January 15, anyone who donates or attempts to donate will be entered into a drawing to skip the line at Franklin Barbecue and enjoy a private dinner on February 9. Twenty lucky winners will be chosen, each of whom can bring a guest. Click here to find donation locations.

The first Austin location of Thailand-based ice cream shop I-CE-NY will be opening at 11200 Lakeline Mall Dr. in January. The franchise specializes in rolled ice cream (the company calls it “tastefully smashed”) in a variety of flavors including mango sticky rice.

Easy Tiger is easing the post-holiday transition by bringing back its wildly popular king cakes. Made with pain au lait dough filled with butter and cinnamon sugar, the colorful treats feature a hidden tiger figurine instead of the traditional baby. Orders can be placed for pickup at the Sixth Street, Linc, and 365 Cedar Park locations by emailing between January 6-March 5. A limited amount of extras will also be available for pick-up each day in the shops.

Financial website Business Insider named Torchy’s Tacos the best chain the editors ate at in 2018. The writers waxed poetic about the Austin-born company’s queso, street corn, and margaritas and expressed some aww shucks wonderment at the fact that a breakfast taco “combines tasty breakfast food and stuffs it in a tortilla.” Who woulda thunk?