News you can eat
6 things to know in Austin food right now: Asian-Southern fusion leader to open new Cedar Park location
Editor’s note: We get it. It can be difficult to keep up with the fast pace of Austin’s restaurant and bar scene. We have you covered with our regular roundup of essential food news.
From a food truck to a culinarily adventurous neighborhood restaurant, The Peached Tortilla has become something of a staple in the Austin food scene. A blend of Asian and Southern American comfort foods 13 years in the making, the menu is available at three locations across Austin, with a fourth coming to Cedar Park in late 2023 at 1915 East Whitestone Boulevard. The new location will seat 82 inside and 38 outside on the patio, will look similar to the locations Austinites are already familiar with, and will feature the same menu items before adding more that are specific to the new location.
Michelin starred chef Curtis Stone, who operates the restaurant Georgie in Dallas, is working to democratize the private chefexperience. A platform he co-created, Gathar, launched into Austin’s gig economy during South by Southwest (SXSW) at a secret house party, and plans to expand to Houston and Dallas later, as well as Florida. Instead of organizing around specific chefs, the website offers menus with small customizations like choosing between one appetizer or another. The most visible meals without filters are event-based and charge per person (as low as $35), but there are also options available for at-home meal prep (starting at $610, but coming out to about $25 per serving). Book at gathar.com.
Austinites who love a free group workout are likely familiar with Swift Fit Events, which offers yoga, cardio, and even fireside tarot at easily accessible downtown locations. The group is opening a new "wellness oasis" at 918 Congress Avenue, which includes a nonalcoholic cocktail bar, Sans Bar. One Sans Bar location already exists on East 12th, where it offers cocktails, tours, events, and even classes for aspiring nonalcoholic mixologists. The space will be open to the public on Fridays starting at 5 pm, from March 31 on.
Other news and notes
James Beard Award-winning chefIliana de la Vega is hosting Mexico City chef Billy Maldonado of Fónico at El Naranjo, one of Austin’s most acclaimed Mexican restaurants. On March 23, Chef Maldonado takes charge of five of six courses including a ceviche, a local fish with beans and habañero ash, a pork chop with spicy broccoli puree, and vegetarian alternatives. The 8:30 seating still has space. Reserve ($110) at elnaranjorestaurant.com.
The always-anticipatedButcher’s Ball is back in Round Top on March 24 and 25. All the ingredients have been sourced from within 100 miles of the Central Texas town, so Austinites can enjoy some foods local to them, plus some in farther reaches east at just half the drive. In addition to cocktails and bites by celebrated Houston chefs, there will be live music and a fun barn atmosphere. A few tickets (starting at $175) remain available on Eventbrite.
It's pretty easy to get a beer with dinner, but The Driskill is escalating things to a multi-course affair as it is wont to do. It's rebooting its Beer Dinner Series on March 28 with help kicking it off from (512) Brewing Company, later leading to a four-part summer series in June. This installation will pair four beers (half IPAs) with salmon tartare, burrata and citrus salad, osso buco, and chocolate and peanut butter semifreddo. Tickets ($80) are available on Tock.