Austin

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ShermansTravel experts know where to find the best meal in town at the best price. Our restaurant reviews sift through the mountains of menus to highlight neighborhood gastronomic institutions and up-and-coming foodie hotspots – not to mention where to go for affordable, dependable fare complemented by a charming atmosphere.

Top Restaurants in Austin

Aquarelle Restaurant Francais

Skip the Menu Rapidé and settle in for the three-hour classic-French Menu Gourmand; caramelized scallops with roasted sweet corn-potato compote, pan seared lamb chop, and lemon crème brulée with sablé galette.

606 Rio Grande St., TX, 512-479-8117, www.aquarellerestaurant.com
Tags: romance | expensive | smart splurge

Broken Spoke

Open since LBJ’s administration, this legendary South Austin honky tonk has hosted some of country music’s most acclaimed artists. Willie Nelson has performed many times in the past, but these days he’s more likely to stop in for their famous chicken-fried steak – don’t miss it! Do not attempt to move onto the dance floor unless you’re an expert Texas two-stepper, because this is the real deal! Closed Sunday and Monday.

3201 S. Lamar Blvd., TX, 512-442-6189, www.brokenspokeaustintx.com
Tags: bar | comfort food | country music

Central Market

Satisfy your appetite at the foodiest grocery store in town. The original north Austin location has a playscape, covered patio, and outdoor seating. Weekends are notable for live music and Sunday brunch.

4001 N. Lamar Blvd., TX, 512-206-1000, www.centralmarket.com
Tags: family | budget

Doc's MotorWorks Bar and Grill

Set on the site of a former gas station (hence the name), Doc’s is the perfect hangout for beer (31 on tap), burgers, billiards and shuffleboard.

1123 South Congress Ave., TX, 512-448-9181, www.docsaustin.com
Tags: family | budget | great value | patio

Flip Happy Crepes

Paris meets South Austin with crepes served out of a classic Airstream trailer. Savory (tarragon mushrooms, Gruyère, caramelized onions) or sweet (Nutella and strawberries), these things are addicting.

400 Jessie St., TX, 512-552-9034, www.fliphappycrepes.com
Tags: budget | funky

Maria's Taco Xpress

The breakfast taco is a culinary staple in Austin, and arguably the best in town are served here. They typically contain eggs, spiced meats like carnitas or barbacoa, salsa, and cheese – all conveniently wrapped up in a chewy tortilla. Owner Maria Corbalan, a transplant from Argentina, offers up an abundance of Tex-Mex favorites and live music on the funky patio awash in murals and folk art. You’d be remiss not to sample some of Maria’s Mexican-style, spicy chimichurri sauce (she substitutes cilantro for parsley and includes plenty of garlic – stock up at the salsa bar)!

2529 S. Lamar Blvd., TX, 512-444-0261, www.tacoxpress.com
Tags: budget | tex-mex

Starlite

If you’re thirsty for a cocktail after a long day of sightseeing, seeking a casual meal before heading out to see some live music, or wanting a fine dining experience, this hip eatery can accommodate you. Windows in the vaulted ceiling provide natural light to the spacious ground floor’s chic bar and dining room, which serves a moderately priced bistro menu that includes sandwich favorites like the BLT and grilled cheese, with unconventional touches such as the use of applewood bacon and brioche instead of bread. Meanwhile, in the second floor dining room and lounge, executive chef Josh Hines prepares epicurean delights like foie gras with pluot compote and fresh coho salmon served with a three-cheese risotto.

407 Colorado St., TX, 512-374-9012, www.starliteaustin.net
Tags: moderate | expensive | notable chef | comfort food | new american

Stubb's Bar-B-Que

Come for barbeque (think juicy, slow-smoked brisket), cold beer and live music. Try Sunday’s Gospel Brunch, or combine dinner with a show – Lyle Lovett, Dierks Bentley, and Bob Dylan have all played here.

2622 N. Clark St., TX, 512-480-8341, www.stubbsaustin.com
Tags: family | budget | editor pick | great value

Uchi

Executive chef Tyson Cole elevates sushi to an art form at this South Austin culinary gem. Daily and permanent menus are crafted from international seafood and locally grown, seasonal ingredients.

801 S. Lamar Blvd., TX, 512-916-4808, www.uchiaustin.com
Tags: expensive | notable chef | editor pick | smart splurge

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