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Austin restaurateur uncorks prestigious award, Taco Ranch offers free fare, plus more food news

Austin restaurateur uncorks award, free taco debut, and more food news

June Rodil June's All Day Austin
June Rodil was named best in the U.S. by Wine Enthusiast magazine. Photo courtesy of McGuire Moorman Hospitality

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.

Austin wine guru June Rodil was handed a big vote of confidence in late September when she was awarded the prestigious title of Wine Enthusiast’s 2018 Sommelier/Beverage Director of the Year. A longtime fixture of the local dining scene, and now VP of operations for McGuire Moorman Hospitality (and inspiration for South Congress cafe June’s All Day), was praised for her work towards broadening the role of sommeliers, a commitment that has included peer education and an active role in wine nonprofits.

As CultureMap previously reported, P. Terry’s owner Patrick Terry is opening a second Taco Ranch at 517 W. Martin Luther King Jr. Blvd. To celebrate the grand opening on October 4, which coincidentally lands on National Taco Day, the eatery will be giving free tacos to the first 100 guests (limited to one per person).

It looks like popular Dallas-Fort Worth entertainment venue Pinstack is ready to bowl over Austin. In late September, the concept filed a public notice of a Texas Alcoholic Beverage Commission mixed beverage permit for a location at 500 Canyon Ridge Dr. #140 in the same shopping center as the Tech Ridge H-E-B. CultureMap has reached out to the company for opening dates.

A more mysterious mixed beverage permit notice shows an application for a new spot to be located on 8509 Burleson Rd., a warehouse space near the Austin-Bergstrom International Airport. The LLC name — creatively called, you guessed it, 8509 Burleson Rd. — offers little clue as to what the project will be, but apparently it will operate late hours.

Cult Charleston, South Carolina, biscuit joint Callie's Biscuits is headed to Austin with a two-day pop-up just in time for the Austin City Limits Music Festival weekend. On October, chef Carrie Morey checks in at The Line for a late night event starting at 9 pm featuring beats from Heart & Soul Soundsystem (tickets are $40). Then, she moves over to Native Kitchen & Bar for The Band of Biscuits, a flaky brunch event in collaboration with Native chef Jim Gilbert and Holy Roller’s Callie Speer.

Speaking of ACL, Vista Brewing and Sun Radio will be hosting their own festival — Outside the City Limits — for folks who want an escape from the Zilker Park crowds. The October 6 event will feature a lineup of country, Western swing, and bluegrass bands, food from the Vista kitchen as well as visiting food trucks Mandola’s and Kimchi Johns, and plenty of beer.

North Loop staple Foreign and Domestic suffered a setback of September 30 when an burglar stole a variety of goods from the restaurant, including beer and wine, cooking equipment, and a 150-pound half pig. The surveillance footage shows an as-yet unidentified suspect entering FND at about 3 am. Owners Sarah Heard and Nathan Lemley are asking for help in bringing the culprit to justice.

Delray Cafe is getting fancy for this October's wing sauce collaboration. The food truck, located just outside East Austin bar Nickel City, is teaming up with Uchiko to make the Ko-a-bunga sauce with fish caramel and kimchi emulsion. The limited edition wings will be available all month.

Uncle Billy’s Brewery has launched a new line of sparkling craft cocktails in cans, which should come in handy during tailgating season. The vodka-based sippers come in three flavors: Vimosa with pineapple juice, orange juice, and coconut syrup; Lady Bird Lemonade with lemon and lavender water; and Leslie’s Cucumber Sipper, a new take on vodka tonics named in honor of sorely missed Austin fixture Leslie Cochran.

For the first time since opening in 2016, Kemuri Tatsu-Ya has expanded operations to include Monday and Tuesday dinner service. The move was facilitated by a new Austin Smoke Works custom smoker, which allowed the lauded restaurant to expand output.

Cookbook Bar & Cafe inside the flagship Austin Central Library has launched Texas Cookbook Month, a free roster of special events scheduled throughout October. Included in the festivities are panels, appearances from cookbook authors, and meet the maker tastings from Texas winemakers.