Here’s a great 2022 aspiration for you, Austin: Take more opportunities to lounge in luxury by the pool. Thanks to the city’s newest upscale poolside restaurant and bar, which is enticing locals with the promise of “a laid-back hideaway among downtown Austin’s urban jungle,” keeping this New Year’s resolution may be a breeze.
Wax Myrtle’s — the ritzy indoor/outdoor eatery and bar located on the fourth floor of the new Thompson Austin and tommie Austin hotels, now slated to open next month — is also set to open in January 2022, with all the amenities a leisurely luxury lover could ever need: access to the pool, a deck, covered cabanas, an oversized fireplace, monthly programming, and a menu of contemporary American fare and plenty of curated cocktails ideal for sipping while lounging poolside and taking in dramatic views of the downtown skyline.
Open to hotel guests, residents of the Sienna residential tower, and the public, Wax Myrtle’s is located at 506 San Jacinto Blvd., and was designed as a welcoming place for locals and visitors to gather, relax, and socialize poolside. (It is Austin, after all, and even in January, we’re likely to experience some blistering weather worthy of taking a dip.)
Guided by Chicago-based restaurant group Land and Sea Dept., the Wax Myrtle’s kitchen is run by executive chef Nick Erven (previously of Aba and Perla’s) with the aid of chef de cuisine Kamat Newman and Land and Sea Dept. culinary director Max Robbins, who collaborated to create a menu of dishes that showcase seasonal produce, local fish, and sustainable cuts of meat.
Menu highlights include Spanish octopus skewer with sweet onion, shishito, and ancho chile; premium hand-sliced fish that’s lightly cured and served with sumac onions and lemon oil; roasted artichokes with balsamic vinegar; and black-eyed-pea falafel with pickled tomatillo and buttermilk.
Also available as the menu expands will be griddled Gulf shrimp with bone-marrow-chile butter and sesame seeds, and a Berkwood Farms pork chop with a brown-butter-pecan glaze.
“One of the things that excites me most about the opening menu of Wax Myrtle’s is the depth of rich flavors that we have been able to explore in the locally sourced ingredients and products,” Erven says. “Whether it’s grains from Barton Springs Mill, Gulf seafood, or the Texas wagyu that we have been lucky to work with, everything we’ve sourced comes with a true sense of place, and it’s been instrumental in developing the menu and shaping the way we want guests to experience it.”
Also instrumental in making Wax Myrtle’s a lavish experience is the restaurant’s curated bar program, created by consultant Shelby Allison and led by Wax Myrtle’s award-wining beverage director Ben Carrington.
The beverage menu will focus on Mexican and American spirits — emphasizing the colors, flavors, and textures of West Texas — and feature savory ingredients as well as spirit-free selections.
Specialty cocktails include the Lone Star State-inspired Moontower cocktail (like a Texas ’tini hooked up with a toddy), with London dry gin, Alessio vermouth bianco, herbed honey oxymel, Agrumato lemon oil, and Texas olives, and the Triple Knot, a warming Old Fashioned with a twist, featuring a base spirit duet of Scotch whisky and reposado tequila with Madeira-Demerara gomme syrup and mole and ginger bitters.
Falling under the category of perfect for partying poolside is the Heartbeat City cocktail — essentially a cousin of the classic Vieux Carré — concocted with cognac, Spanish vermouth, a juicy Caribbean orange liqueur, and lemon.
Check out Wax Myrtle’s on Instagram for opening updates and more info.