Are you hungry? Are you thirsty? Are you looking to get a little toasty? There's a new development in town off St. Elmo in South Austin called The Yard. It is a bounty of food and mainly booze and I am not complaining about it! Here's my top picks for food and drink at each spot:
Let me start off by saying I am not a beer drinker. I got shwasted off of a 40 oz Corona when I was 19 and kissed that lifestyle behind, which is why it is a personal success that I have found a beer THAT I ACTUALLY ENJOY!
St. Elmo has a zesty little number called "Zapp." It's sour, tangy, delicious, and doesn't taste "beery." It almost tastes like a cocktail, which y'all KNOW I'm all about. St. Elmo also has a huge outdoor area that is dog friendly (bonus points), outdoor games, nonalcoholic drinks, AND is owned by super friendly people.
Need some food to soak up all the beer you've been drinking at St. Elmo's? No worries! Soursop is the resident food truck located in their outdoor area. Now, I have never actually eaten anything from Soupsop, but I have enjoyed the free smells while cursing the gods that I can't eat there. Bae has a peanut allergy and I don't want to cross contaminate (they put chopped peanuts on several items).
With that being said, I interviewed Sour Sop regular, Kyle Carter, who says that the "hot gai" (fried chicken sandwich) is his favorite item on the entire menu. I pray that one day, in my lifetime, there is a cure for peanut allergies so I can go HAM on some Soursop.
photo by Courtney Medford
Ah, Still Austin Whiskey. A sparkly little gem that has appeared in my life that I just cannot get enough of. Every Thursday (the first day of the week they are open) I'm like, WHO'S READY TO PARTY? Still Austin serves whiskey (duh) and just released their new Texas Rye Gin. They have a TON of different cocktails, my favorites being their frozen mango habanero margarita and the strawberry lemonade.
Still Austin also does whiskey flights and cocktail flights. Seriously, it is a magical place. My only complaint is that they are only open Thursday through Sunday, which is actually probably a good thing because it forces me to pace myself. :)
Emoji's Grilled Cheese, located outside of Still Austin Whiskey, actually has no relation to The Emoji Movie, which is a good thing because I would rate this food truck WAAAAY higher than 8% on Rotten Tomatoes. Emoji's makes gourmet grilled cheese sandwiches and it.is.divine.
My favorite is the ham and cheese sandwich because it literally tastes like my childhood, only better (sorry Mom, I love you). They also have a chipotle sauce that is served with tortilla chips that I think about at least 4 times a week. Not only is Emoji's a beautiful sandwich making paradise, but it receives infinite bonus points for being WOMAN OWNED!
Okay y'all, I know I've raved about Spokesman before but it's because I'm in a deep love affair with this spot. They serve coffee, tea, beer, wine, gaddamn GATORADE ON TAP and more!
My go-to is their iced almond milk latte and chicken salad (pro tip: ask for a side of pickled veggies) and when I'm feeling extra spicy, the club sandwich. They also have music shows in the back room which is double fun because how many places can you drink, dance your butt off, and get a sandwich all at the same time?! I know. It's great.
The Austin Winery is a chic little place that has a lovely, open ambience and great wine selection. Their space can be rented out for events and they host several fun gatherings. They make a stellar rosé AND even sell a white wine called Euphoria that COMES IN A POUCH. You read that right, a pouch. Perfect for picnics OR hiding in your bikini when going to the greenbelt!
Okay, this place is brand spanking new and hellllllllla delicious. The Loud Juice Cafe is a "boutique cold pressed juice bar and superfood cafe" that I literally have to budget myself for or else I would go here every day. Their acai bowl is the best I've had in Austin (!!!) and they have a lot of super fun add-ins like CBD and dates.
I also love "The Cure," a wellness shot of ginger, lemon, cayenne, and bee pollen. It is freaking spicy and will kick your sinuses in the gut! Not at all related to the taste, but I love cute tiny things and all the wellness shots come in a reusable, little glass bottle.
YES Conscious Cravings now has a new location in The Yard! It is located next to Wooly's Beach Volleyball ATX and The Loud Juice Cafe. If you haven't heard of CC before, they are an affordable, vegan food trailer with tons of gluten free options and NOTHING IS FRIED. Not even the fries. Seriously.
My favorite meal at Conscious Cravings is the eggless tofu salad (mmmm can't even type it without getting hungry) and the carrot smoothie, which is a combination of carrot, pineapple, and mango peach. It's a kickass, healthy meal for under $15!
Now go out there and eat, drink, and be merry!