Photo courtesy of Maaribu

What many Austinites may not realize when passing by Maaribu on Guadalupe Street is that the home goods store has a perfect name. A combination of Marfa and Malibu, the chic little showroom and café offers decor in desert tones, eclectic desserts made without gluten and with lots of buzzword ingredients, and the feeling that pursuing little luxuries is part of wellness. Speaking of those truly little treats, Maaribu’s new bakery truck, which feeds the South First Street café, is now open at the Guadalupe Street showroom.

The truck carries a diverse menu of classics (chocolate chip cookies and brownies), savory snacks (rosemary parmesan and cheddar scallion dill scones), and several vegan offerings (matcha cheesecake and dark chocolate mousse). A mysterious golden spice sandwich cookie — nodding to turmeric — beckons with a piped swirl of frosting, while banana and lemon loaves stand by for instant, miniaturized comfort.

A press release shares that Maaribu’s lemon blueberry scones and dragon fruit confetti cupcakes contain “superfoods and adaptogens” and are “full of antioxidants and prebiotics.” While it likely doesn’t matter that the star ingredient in your cupcake could keep you relatively more alive while lost in Big Bend than a boring old strawberry, dragon fruit confetti is an undeniably happy concept.

Other treats available at the café, like the Iced Immortality Mocha with adaptogenic mushrooms, are meant to deliver a tangible boost to energy and resilience to stress. Like anyone with experience in herbs or CBD could tell you, it’s a long-term process, but a little variety is a fun way to break up your usual routine.

Everything on the menu is by pastry chef Serene Warren, who trained in part at the Culinary Institute of America. Despite taking two decades of full focus as a stay-at-home mom, Warren is back in the culinary game, and has created two restaurant concepts before Maaribu, which has taken up most of her eight years in Austin so far.

Maaribu has stores at 3402 Guadalupe St. and 1413 S. First St., with the bakery truck parked at the former. Maaribu stated in an Instagram comment that the truck is open Tuesday through Sunday, from 9 am to 4 pm, and Sundays from 10 am to 3 pm. More information about the brick-and-mortar stores is available at maaribu.com.

Photo courtesy of Watertrade

5 things to know in Austin food right now: Omakase experiences pop up around town

News You Can Eat

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.

Pop-ups and special items

While the chef’s away, the bar goers will play. That’s how that phrase goes, right? Watertrade, an upscale bar attached to the omakase restaurant Otoko, is holding down the fort while chef Yoshi Okai is away in Aspen. On June 17 and 18 only, for the first time, the cocktail bar becomes its very own omakase experience with a pared-down six-course menu ($75). That includes five savory dishes, one sweet dish, a drink, and an optional caviar pairing. The bar will still be offering its izakaya and regular beverage menus. Reserve on Tock.

Never turn down another omakase pop-up: If that means omakase two weekends in a row, you make it work. Leroy & Lewis is bringing its barbecue chops to Texas Saké Company for a unique collaboration with Tare, an in-home omakase experience. The 11-course menu celebrates grilled and smoked meats paired with Asian garnishes and preparations including “beef tongue nigiri, pork brisket spring roll, a BBQ drippings ice cream, and more.” Chefs Michael Carranza and Evan LeRoy are doing something truly adventurous with this one-night-only menu June 29. Reserve on Tock.

There’s no right way to celebrate Pride, but there’s a right way to make a doughnut, and that’s a cake dooughnut with vanilla bean glaze. Sorry. The Salty Donut is doing things right, adding Swiss buttercream, rainbow milk crumb, and edible disco glitter for its celebratory “rainbow funfetti” cake doughnut, available in-store and via Uber Eats all week from June 20 to 26. Proceeds in Austin will go to Equality Texas, a nonpartisan LGBTQ+ advocacy group. If you happen to be in Dallas that week, those proceeds are going to Resource Center Dallas.

Other news and notes

On June 18, Texas Keeper Cider launches its Grafter Rosato, an 8 percent ABV, 10-month aged cider made with Sangiovese grapes and three heirloom varieties. The cidery describes the new offering as having a “pleasing amount of barnyard, earthy notes and bringing a lovely complexity.” This is a great excuse to stop in and try the long new snacks menu, with highlights like a Texas cheese board, blistered shishitos, and panzanella (imagine if bruschetta were a salad). More information about the taproom and bottles is available at texaskeeper.com.

Health and nutrition-focused restaurant The Well is celebrating National Smoothie Day on June 21 with a free add-on ingredient addition or boost. That means ingredients like grass-fed whey isolate, collagen peptides, or plant-based proteins (“adaptogens, Lion’s Mane, CBD, blue majik spirulina, and more”). The 20-ounce drinks also come as bowls with grain-free granola, fruit, and superfoods. Find the full menu at eatwellatx.com.

7 things to know in Austin food right now: Giant soccer-themed hot spot rolls into town


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.

Openings and closings

Some big names in the local hospitality industry are among those pitching Austin on a new “food, fun, and fútbol” destination venue. Opening to the public in February is a unique sports-entertainment concept dubbed The Pitch. Located at 13000 Harris Ridge Blvd. in the 50-acre Parmer Pond business park in Northeast Austin, The Pitch features some definite draws for Austin FC fans and foodies alike. In collaboration with Austin FC and Two Oak Ventures, the concept was brought about by a partnership between Karlin Real Estate/Parmer Austin; several sports-focused, project-management, and design ventures; and, perhaps most notably for local foodies, Corner Kick Hospitality Group, the creative force behind 24 Diner, Irene’s, and Cookbook at the Austin Central Library. Among its offerings, The Pitch — made from multi-level, customized shipping containers — will include a 1,200-seat stadium, jumbo TV screens, sports courts, and an artificial-surface soccer pitch. Planned eateries include high-end burger bar Ranger Burger; Ga Roti, a Vietnamese rotisserie chicken concept; Austin institution Taco Flats; Sand Bar, a beach bar alongside the onsite sand volleyball courts serving frozen tropical drinks; bakery Coffee Club; and a selection of local beer and craft cocktails will be available at the Corner Kick Bar. Follow The Pitch on Instagram for updates.

Another cherished Austin food institution is closing its doors permanently, but for once, it’s for an entirely different reason than the pandemic. La Mexicana Bakery, which opened in 1989 at 1924 S. First St., will close permanently in mid-February when owner Jesus Martinez Becerra retires. While Austinites will no doubt miss the variety of Mexican breads and baked goods (ooh, that tres leches cake, y’all!), Becerra’s daughter encourages locals to see the change not as something negative, but as part of a success story. “Yes, it’s true. The bakery will be closing,” Bianka Lopez said in a Facebook post from Sunday, January 23. “But don’t think we got pushed out. Dad is retiring and wants to enjoy the fruits of his labor. Don’t be sad. Be proud of what a Mexican immigrant [did] to build his American dream. If you know him, you know he’s very humble and a hard worker. La Mexicana holds a special place in everyone’s heart to the Austin locals and has made history to good ol’ Austin. Legacy is what Dad will be leaving behind and no one can ever take that from him.” You’ve still got a few weeks to pop by the bakery for some empanadas.

Meanwhile, a new bakery is on the rise in Leander. Noble Delights Bakery, which had previously been run by owner Regina Noble out of her home and cranks out some super impressive cakes, is renovating a space at 2091-B S. Hwy. 183 to make way for the new brick-and-mortar bakery, which will go in next door to a Papa John’s pizza shop. According to a state filing, Noble and her team will begin renovations on the 986-square-foot space on February 1, with renovations complete by the end of May. As they say at Noble Delights, that sounds delightfully delicious and creative.

Some seriously good coffee is now brewing at the flagship Whole Foods Market at Lamar Boulevard and Sixth Street, thanks to Philadelphia-based coffee brand La Colombe, which has officially opened its first café location in Texas inside the bustling Whole Foods location. Originally aiming to open in early December 2021, the opening was a bit delayed, but a month late hardly even counts in these pandemic times. Open daily from 7 am-7 pm, the new La Colombe, which is an independent retail space and café, features a buzzworthy menu, including its signature brews, lattes on tap, and a rotating lineup of single-origin coffees and blends available in espresso and drip. Check out more about the new café here.

Other news and notes

If you live in the Austin area and love Girl Scout Cookies, we’ve got some sweet news for you. Girl Scouts of Central Texas is making it over-the-top easy for cookie monsters to get their hands on the good stuff this cookie season. The local council has partnered with Austin burger chain P. Terry’s, which will host Girl Scout Cookie booths at select dine-in burger joints around town. The booths will be up and running on the weekends through Sunday, February 27. Hours of delicious operation for the cookie booths are Fridays 5-7 pm, Saturdays 9 am-7 pm, and Sundays 11 am-7 pm. The move is in response to the local Girl Scouts having to pivot their cookie-business plans during the pandemic while still giving Austinites access to all the Thin Mints (and the array of other cookie flavors) they could ever hope for. Additionally, in the spirit of Girl Scouts delivering the goods directly to your door, the local council has also partnered with Favor, which is offering same-day delivery of Girl Scout Cookies within a 6-mile radius in Austin and an 8-mile radius in San Marcos. Search “Girl Scout Cookies” in the Favor app or on favordelivery.com to browse the available treats. And to sweeten the deal, Favor is even offering customers $3 discounted deliveries on all cookie orders, with no minimum purchase.

In mouthwatering news that has us wondering, “Wait, that wasn’t already a thing?” local fan favorite Austin Eastciders is launching a new flavor: Apple Pie Cider. Only available locally and aiming to tap those nostalgic American feelings about apple pie, the new Eastciders beverage is a semi-sweet cider showcasing notes of cinnamon, vanilla, and fresh baked apples, and boasts a 6.9 percent alcohol content. The new Apple Pie Cider is launching as a tasting-room exclusive at Austin Eastciders’ South Austin restaurant at 1530 Barton Springs Rd., which is where the official launch party will take place. Open to the public, the launch party is set for February 11 at 6 pm, and will include live music, cocktails — including an Apple Pie Float and Mulled Apple Pie Cider — and more. Watch Austin Eastciders on Instagram for more info.

Continuing with this report’s sweet theme, we are happy to share this delightful news: The Salty, the wildly popular artisan doughnut shop based in Miami that opened to great success on South Congress Avenue in Austin in August, has launched its local catering program. Now, don’t go thinking this is just another mediocre catering service, as The Salty serves up a pretty charming menu of catering offerings, including doughnut towers, custom doughnut letters, table setups, rentals of its cute doughnut camper, and more. Learn all about the The Salty’s catering treats here.

Courtesy of Huckleberry

5 things to know in Austin food right now: Seafood truck nets new far-out 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.

Openings and reopenings

Some delicious coastal comforts have just rolled into South Austin. Huckleberry, the local seafood truck (and home to perhaps the best ceviche in town), has anchored at The Far Out Lounge on South Congress Avenue. The truck, which features chef-prepared, sustainably sourced Gulf seafood, was originally opened in the summer of 2020 and located in North Austin next to Circle Brewing Co. “After a successful year in business in North Austin, we’re excited to welcome current and new customers to check us out down South at Far Out Lounge,” says Melinda Reese, Huckleberry co-owner. “This is just one of the many exciting developments in the new year. We hope you will get acquainted with our new spot soon.”

Speaking of south side seafood, a new sushi bar has washed up in the Sunset Valley neighborhood. Bluefin Sushi Bar and Ramen, which promises “high-quality ingredients, first-class atmosphere, and delicious eats,” has opened at 5400 Brodie Ln., suite 1200, in the Sunset Valley Marketfair shopping center. Bluefin’s vast menu features everything from tempura dishes and spicy tuna crispy rice to 11 different ramen dishes, and an array of cold small plates, sushi and sashimi, and classic rolls.

The latest eatery to hit a grand slam in the bustling suburb of Kyle, just south of Austin, is none other than ubiquitous American diner Denny’s. According to a state filing, Denny’s will start construction on a new 4,416-square-foot, free-standing restaurant at 19020 I-35 in Kyle on March 1 and complete the build-out by June 1. The eatery is one in a long line of restaurants to recently announce their expansion into the Austin suburb. This will be the first Denny’s location in Kyle.

Following the opening of its first of 11 restaurants in Houston, fast-casual concept Aloha Poke Co. could be moving into the Austin market. According to industry site RestaurantNews.com, Aloha Poke, which started as a food stall in a Chicago train station, has a long-term development plan to open eateries in other Texas metroplex markets, including Austin and Dallas-Fort Worth. Core to the Aloha Poke menu is the build-your-own-bowl option, which includes a variety of rice dishes, meats (ahi tuna, shrimp, salmon, chicken, tofu), and a choice of toppings and sauces.

Other news and notes

If your New Year’s resolution involves eating more tasty treats, perhaps you should consider noshing doughnuts for breakfast (or lunch or dinner) every once in a while, especially considering Austin boasts one of the best doughnut joints in the country, according to one food site. Tasting Table, which recently ranked the best Doughnut Places Across the U.S., highlighted Gourdough’s in Austin, home of “big fat donuts.” Particular notice was given to the South Lamar Boulevard restaurant’s blueberry-filled doughnut holes, the CBD doughnut, and every local’s fave, the doughnut burger, which comes in no fewer than seven varieties. While chains The Salty Donut and Voodoo Doughnut, which both have locations in Austin, got shoutouts on the list for their locations in their home states, Gourdough’s was the only Texas doughnut shop to make the list.

7 things to know in Austin food right now: Tex-Mex favorite heats up Hyde Park


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.


Central Austinites are raising a toast of avocado margarita to the newly opened Curra’s Grill in Hyde Park. The family-run local darling and Tex-Mex staple has opened in the space that previously housed cherished vegetarian restaurant Mother’s Café, which closed in October 2020 after losing its battle with the pandemic. The new Curra’s, now known as the “mother of all Mex,” previously noted that the menu will feature many longtime fan faves alongside family recipes like duck quesadillas and scallops. Though things are still getting up and running, Curra’s Hyde Park also previously promised golf-cart delivery of tacos and margaritas in the neighborhood. Stay tuned for more on that rollout. The restaurant is located at 4215 Duval St. Hours are Monday through Saturday 4-10 pm.

Visitors to downtown bar Valhalla can now hit the sauce — the marinara sauce, that is. Restaurateur Tess Eastwood has opened a fresh pasta eatery inside the bar called Marinara Miracles. The miraculous menu, which feels far more exquisite than any bar food we’ve ever come across, features delicacies like squid-ink fettuccine, custom lasagna, ravioli, bruschetta, meatball subs, and arancini. It’s kind of the perfect fare to nosh after a beer-guzzling night trudging around the Red River Cultural District. Marinara Miracles is open for business Wednesday through Saturday 7 pm-midnight.

Dollars to doughnuts that local foodies who tend toward the indulgent realm have already marked their calendars for Friday, August 27. That’s when wildly popular Miami-based The Salty Donut will (finally!) swing open the doors at its new neighborhood spot at 2000 S. Congress Ave., and wow Austinites with its sticky, gooey, flavor-bomb artisanal doughnut specialties like Texas Chocolate Sheet Cake, Prickly Pear Margarita, and the undeniably spectacular Horchata. Prior to its grand opening, The Salty is hosting a tasty lotto giveaway. All locals have to do is follow The Salty on Instagram and fill out a short lotto form. The Salty will randomly choose 60 winners each day through Thursday, August 26 to visit the new SoCo shop and pick up a free lotto pack that includes six tantalizing doughnuts. The grand opening celebration will continue throughout the weekend with more giveaways. The Salty Donut will be open Sunday through Thursday 7 am-7 pm and Friday and Saturday 7 am-10 pm.

Downtown dwellers and Austinites in search of a sweet meal that will bowl them over need look no further than the Second Street District. Opening in the hot neighborhood downtown spot on Tuesday, August 24 is healthy quick-service eatery Sweetgreen, which serves up super fresh salads and warm bowls. Located at 200 W. Second St. on the bustling corner of Second and Colorado streets next to Jo’s Coffee, Sweetgreen also has two other Austin locations, one on The Drag near the UT campus that opened in December 2020 and one on South Congress Avenue that opened in summer 2020. Hungry locals can check out the plant-forward menu while also sharing some Sweetgreen love with area kids: For every bowl sold on opening day, Sweetgreen will donate a bowl to Brighter Bites for elementary schools in Travis County.

Other news and notes

As the Circuit of The Americas revs up for the Formula 1 U.S. Grand Prix this fall, race fans from around the world are also gearing up to take a bite out of Austin. For F1 weekend October 22-24, COTA will unveil its new COTA Culinary Experience, which will feature five unique food villages — and 45 restaurants — offering a mix of some of the best bites in Austin. Each restaurant will serve two to three menu items for race weekend. The five villages include Rodeo Driveway, a Beverly Hills-inspired sidewalk café; La Cantina, featuring classic Tex-Mex dishes, margaritas, and a fiesta ambiance; Lone Star Land, highlighting all things Texas, but mostly barbecue fare; Taste of Texas, which is inspired by chef-driven food festivals, live music, and picnic culture, will feature gourmet grab-and-go items from favorite local eateries; and the aptly named Biergarten, which will celebrate Texas’ German heritage with Austin purveyors of sausage and schnitzel.

One fast-casual concept is using its noodle and considering reentering the Austin market. Noodles & Co., known for its variety of Asian and Italian noodle dishes, mac and cheese offerings, and stuffed pastas, is “looking for prospective multiunit franchisees to sign on this year within 18-24 months in Austin,” a company rep tells CultureMap, adding that the Austin locations will likely feature lighter options from a smaller footprint. The company, which now boasts more than 450 locations nationwide, had previously opened five company-operated Austin spots, but they were all closed within four years of opening, according to the Austin Business Journal. Noodles & Co. recently told the ABJ that it could move back into Austin with five to 10 restaurants to start and would want to do so sooner than later.

If the pandemic has made you feel like you’re missing out on some meaty, spicy stew a la Homer Simpson, Hotel Vegas is dishing out an event you won’t want to miss. The East Austin venue will host its chili cook-off event, dubbed Rotel Vegas, on Sunday, September 5 from 4-7 pm, when “chili will be served, judged, and consumed by the masses” while DJ Boi Orbison spins all-country vinyl alongside other outdoor music performances. (No word on whether Homer’s dreaded Guatemalan insanity peppers will make an appearance.) Each competing team will present a meat-based and a plant-based chili, and will be judged by a panel in two categories: professional chefs and at-home cooks. Best in Show will be judged by the community. This event is free, but to taste and judge the chili, you’ll have to buy a $5 chili tasting kit (with serving bowls, spoons, napkins, and hand wipes) — well worth the experience. After the winners are announced, a free Hotel Vegas after-party kicks off outside. Hotel Vegas is located at 1500 E. Sixth St.

Austin-based private equity firm gobbles up iconic Texas doughnut shop

Shipley sold

Texas' iconic Shipley Do-Nuts has a new owner. The Austin-based private equity firm Peak Rock Capital announced it has purchased the company from the Houston-based Shipley family. Terms of the deal were not disclosed.

Known for its doughnuts and kolaches, the company has over 300 locations in nine states, including seven in Austin. The acquisition will allow the company to grow with both its existing franchisees and to find new opportunities in other markets.

"My grandfather, father, and I have dedicated our lives to serving Shipley Do-Nuts, our franchisees and our guests. After an exhaustive search, it became clear that Peak Rock Capital was the ideal steward of our business as it pursues the next stage of growth," Lawrence Shipley III said in a statement. "My family is thrilled to continue as investors in the Company, and we look forward to the exciting growth to come."

With the completion of the purchase, Shipley has retired from his position as president of the company. He will focus on other family investments, according to a release.

"Shipley represents an exciting opportunity to invest in a beloved consumer brand with an established reputation for authenticity and quality," Peak Rock managing director Robert Strauss added. "We are incredibly impressed with the franchise that the Shipley family has built, and we look forward to partnering with the Company's management team to invest behind their growth plan."

Peak Rock Capital is an Austin-based "middle-market private investment firm" with investments in various businesses in both the U.S. and Europe. Its other holdings include snack foods maker Halo Foods Ltd. and Turkey Hill, a company that makes ice cream and refrigerated drinks.

Shipley Do-Nuts is the latest Texas brand acquired by a private equity firm. In November, Torchy's Tacos announced it has received a $400 million investment that will allow it to expand to 10 more states over the next four years. Chicago’s BDT Capital Partners acquired a majority stake in Whataburger in 2019 with plans to expand the brand.

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9 grilled, chilled, and oddity-filled events on Father's Day weekend

Father's Day Weekend Events

With all its events and activities, Austin is always a good place to spend some time with dad. But this Father's Day is even more packed with opportunities to celebrate fathers and father figures with the gift of an unforgettable experience. Connect with family and loved ones June 16-18 in local-approved style.

Keep things traditional by breaking bread with your old man at brunch day parties and with special dinner menus. For the dads who prefer a bit of spontaneity, live concerts and curiosity collections on display offer up alternative ways to create memories during this family-focused holiday.

Check out these nine cool things to do with your dad this Father’s Day Weekend, and come back for more ideas as we hear about them.

Friday, June 16

Oblivion Access Festival
This local Austin indie music festival is the perfect experience gift for all the dads who rock. The four-day event will occur at various venues across the city, including Mohawk, Valhalla, and Empire Control Room & Garage. More than 60 bands and musicians pepper the setlist, with Faust, Duster, TR/ST, Tim Hecker, and Godflesh as some of the headliners. Get a full schedule of events and tickets at oblivionaccessfestival.com.

Saturday, June 17

Lake Austin Spa Resort's Father’s Day packages
Give Pops the gift of indulgent relaxation with the help of Lake Austin Spa Resort’s newest father-focused packages. Gift cards are available for Dad to use on his own, or couples celebrating together can try the “My Guy and I” package, which includes a massage for two, lunch from the spa’s Aster Cafe, a pool cabana rental, and more. Guests can also take advantage of a 60-minute facial experience featuring a range of products from the luxe Swiss skincare line, Valmont. Visit lakeaustin.com for booking details.

Oddities & Curiosities Expo
Tap into you and your Dad’s shared inner quirkiness when you explore all things strange and unusual on display at the Palmer Events Center. The expo will showcase oddities from 150 vendors offering wares including taxidermy, Halloween-inspired artwork, skulls, antiques, and more. Guests can also enjoy photo ops, tarot readings, concessions, and sideshow performances. Get more details at odditiesandcuriositiesexpo.com.

Sunday, June 18

Meanwhile Brewing Co. presents a Father’s Day Party with Thinkery
Meanwhile Brewing Co. welcomes fathers and their kiddos to the brewery morning of family-friendly fun for all ages. Thinkery will host two STEAM-inspired children’s projects while parents enjoy their own age-appropriate activities in the taproom. Food trucks on locations will serve lunch and brunch menu offerings to fuel the creative process. Admission to this event is free and open to the public with reservation. RSVP on meanwhilebeer.com.

Mozart Coffee Roasters presents a Father's Day Cherry Pie Eating Contest
Encourage your father’s sweet tooth with a side of friendly competition at Mozart's Coffee Roasters. Participants will have eight minutes to eat as much cherry pie as possible, with the winner being the person who eats the most. Prizes include Mozart's coffee, swag, gift cards, and a sunset boat ride on Lake Austin for the 1st place winner. Admission is free and open to the public. Get more information on how to enter the contest on Eventbrite.

EncoreATX presents a Father's Day Brunch + Day Party
Party with your parents at this lively XO Nightclub Austin event. Highlights of this midday bash include a full bar, a brunch menu featuring chicken and waffles, greens, mac and cheese, yams, and DJ sets. In addition to brunch, the venue makes a slight departure from its usual hip-hop soundtrack, promising "RnB vibes." Large parties are welcome, so the whole family can get in on the fun. Get tickets and more menu information on Eventbrite.

Father’s Day at Perry’s
Elevated Texas steakhouse Perry’s invites fathers and their families to a culinary experience of dad-approved fare. Dine with Dad early for brunch and enjoy a variety of specialty, off-the-menu cocktails. Evening menu items include a three-course pork chop supper, a 22-ounce, bone-in prime rib steak, and other decadent dishes suitable for a king. Reserve a table and get additional menu information on perryssteakhouse.com.

William Chris Vineyards presents its Annual Hog & Goat Roast
Venture out to the acclaimed William Chris Vineyards and give your dad a day off from manning the grill. Guests to the annual roast can feast on slow-cooked hog and goat prepared by the winery’s on-site culinary team, while taking in views of the vineyard and the Texas Hill Country. Wine specials will also be available throughout the event. Purchase tickets to the roast at shop.williamchriswines.com.

Sway presents a Father’s Day Grill Out
Swanky Austin Thai eatery Sway brings "an interactive grill station" to its patio for a family-style culinary experience with Father’s Day flair. Special dishes include smoked meat options, the restaurant’s first-ever burger, and a Thai coffee ice cream sandwich. If a day at Sway sounds great without the grilled options, the regular menu will still be available. Make your reservations on swaythai.com.

Cheers cast reunites in Austin, plus more highlights from the ATX TV Festival

30 years after turning the lights off on the bar, the cast of Cheers reunited in Austin this month. While there were a few cast members missing, including Texan Woody Harrelson, three of the main men of the classic '80s series were on hand for the ATX TV Festival. But that's not all that happened at the fest.

Cheers Reunion

Photo by Jack Plunkett.

Members of the Cheers cast reunite at ATX TV Festival.

The four day celebration of television kicked things off on Thursday, June 1, with an Outlander panel. It just so happened to be World Outlander Day and Catriona Balfe was in attendance. She joined a discussion about what it's like to work both in front of the camera and behind. She even gave the electrified audience a tease of some things that are to come in Season 7 of the groundbreaking series, premiering June 16 on Starz.

Later that afternoon, audiences got a sneak peek of an episode of Manifest, which returned for its final season on Netflix the following day. Following the screening, cast members of Manifest, Justified, and a handful of other projects featured at the fest walked the opening night red carpet.

Highlights from Friday, June 2, included presentations of Primo, Minx, Accused, and Cruel Summer, and a Shark Tank discussion that included Austinite Kendra Scott.

But the biggest highlight of the night was the Cheers reunion: Ted Danson, John Ratzenberger, and George Wendt walked onto the stage at ACL Live amidst raucous applause. The trio, along with co-creator James Burrows, enjoyed a drink earlier in the day at Dumont's Down Low while shooting a segment for The Today Show.

Sadly, there were no female cast members present for the event and though we were hoping for a surprise appearance from Woody Harrelson, one never came. The evening was a success regardless. The gentlemen are just as entertaining as ever, making the sold out audience clap, laugh, and cheer for more.

Danson stuck around for a chat with wife Mary Steenburgen which started out Saturday's programming. Jury Duty packed 800 Congress, as did Mayans BC, while a panel on the WGA strike educated festival goers on the demands of the entertainment union.

Saturday night's main event was a screening and Q&A with the cast and creators of Righteous Gemstones. All main cast members were is attendance. That means Danny McBride, John Goodman, Adam Devine, and Edi Patterson were all there. Like the Cheers reunion, the event took place at ACL Live and was open to non-festival goers who could buy standalone tickets.

The addition of the ACL venue was one of this year's biggest success stories. Addressing the crowd post screening, Devine said that the viewing experience was pretty insane: "You don't get a chance to watch the show with, I'm gonna say, 25,000 people," he joked.

The final day gave fans a look at the upcoming Prime Video docuseries The Ride, which follows a group of bull riders throughout the PBR Team Series — including the Austin Gamblers.

Austin resident Christy Carlson Romano and co-founder of PodCo hosted a podcasting panel with fellow podcasters who previously starred on hit TV shows in the '90s and early 2000s. Stars of The Wizards of Waverly Place and Ned's Declassified took part, as well as the Lawrence brothers: Joey, Matthew, and Andy Lawrence.

Finally, yours truly hosted a panel with The Women of the Good Doctor where we discussed the series' most impactful storylines, what it's like to be a woman in the entertainment business, and what to expect in season 7 of the ABC series.

The ATX Television Festival launched in Austin in 2012. This was the 12th season for the homegrown TV extravaganza.

Alt-rockers Wilco set Austin date on major U.S. tour this fall

Music That Might Change Your Life

Alt-rock band Wilco has added a series of dates across the United States to its 2023 "Cruel Country" tour, including a stop at Waterloo Park's Moody Amphitheater in Austin on Friday, September 29. The band will coming from Dallas the day before.

The tour, which had already revealed 20 dates in Europe in August and September, will start in Wichita, Kansas, on September 25. The U.S. leg will include 22 shows through October 27.

The tour is in support of Wilco's most recent album, 2022’s Cruel Country, a two-disc album that was released to critical acclaim. The record is the band's 12th of their career, dating back to their 1995 debut, A.M. The name Wilco does not refer to Williamson County (sadly for locals), but radio lingo short for "will comply." The alt-country band defined the genre for many, known for gentle jams and poetic lyrics like in "Jesus, etc."

In addition to the tour, Wilco fans can look forward to the release of frontman Jeff Tweedy's new book, World Within a Song: Music That Changed My Life and Life That Changed My Music, which will be released on November 7. The book is mix of memories, music, and inspiration built around the 50-plus songs that changed Tweedy’s life.

Ticket sales for the Austin show will begin with a presale on Wednesday, June 7 at 10 am, ahead of the general on-sale on Friday, June 9 at 10 am at Ticketmaster.com.

Wilco Tour Dates

  • Mon. Sept. 25 - Wichita, KS @ Wave
  • Tue. Sep. 26 - Tulsa, OK @ Cain’s Ballroom
  • Thu. Sep. 28 - Dallas, TX @ South Side Ballroom
  • Fri. Sep. 29 - Austin, TX @ Moody Amphitheater @ Waterloo Park
  • Sun. Oct. 1 - Albuquerque, NM @ Kiva Auditorium
  • Tue. Oct. 3 - Scottsdale, AZ @ Scottsdale Civic Center East Bowl Stage
  • Wed. Oct. 4 - Los Angeles, CA @ The Theatre at Ace Hotel
  • Thu. Oct. 5 - Los Angeles, CA @ The Theatre at Ace Hotel
  • Fri. Oct. 6 - Los Angeles, CA @ The Theatre at Ace Hotel
  • Sun. Oct. 8 - Monterey, CA @ Rebels & Renegades Festival
  • Wed. Oct. 11 - Los Angeles, CA @ The Bellwether
  • Fri. Oct. 13 - Santa Barbara, CA @ Arlington Theatre
  • Sat. Oct. 14 - Berkeley, CA @ Greek Theatre
  • Mon. Oct. 16 - Portland, OR @ Keller Auditorium
  • Tue. Oct. 17 - Seattle, WA @ Paramount Theatre
  • Wed. Oct. 18 - Seattle, WA @ Paramount Theatre
  • Fri. Oct. 20 - Salt Lake City, UT @ Eccles Theater
  • Sun. Oct. 22 - Denver, CO @ Mission Ballroom
  • Mon. Oct. 23 - Omaha, NE @ The Astro Theater
  • Wed. Oct. 25 - Kansas City, MO @ Midland Theatre
  • Thu. Oct. 26 - St. Louis, MO @ Stifel Theatre
  • Fri. Oct. 27 - Bentonville, AR @ The Momentary