Eating in Austin
March 30, 2005 3:48 PM   Subscribe

This question is for a friend of mine: Good eats in Austin?

I need to find a restaurant with a quiet, comfortable atmosphere
within a few miles of a hotel on Arboretum Boulevard in Austin for a
working dinner tomorrow evening. The person I'm hoping to please likes
his steak, and the setting shouldn't be overly formal, but I also
don't want us to end up somewhere with bathrooms marked heifers and
steers. Thanks for your help.
posted by interrobang to Food & Drink (8 answers total) 1 user marked this as a favorite
So you've posed an interesting question.

The problem with that area is that it's largely chains, some local, some not so local, mostly upsacle.

For steaks i'd recommend trulucks. It's a smallish relatively high end chain that specializes in seafood and steaks.

Pretty good food and their deserts are great. They're less than a mile north on 183, near borders.

Also in that area is z-tejas (i think they are a chain) that is fusion cuisine that I'm fond of.

Other than that you're stuck with dan mclkluskys (blech), fridays (BLECH), fresh choice, cozymels, and a few other even more horrific places.

If you want to go downtown there are more restaurants, but for what you've described, trulucks is the way to go.
posted by Lord_Pall at 4:30 PM on March 30, 2005

Yo Homie,

This Ask Mefi question did a good job answering this already: Dining in Austin (February 22, 2005)

And I just found a blog about the topic a few days ago, Food Austin: Eating well in Austin
posted by fourstar at 4:33 PM on March 30, 2005

I'd consider Fonda San Miguel. Obviously, not a steak place, but they'll definitely have a few beef- centered dishes on the menu. It's got a refined and somewhat elegant atmosphere in a Mexico kinda-way. Not Tex mex.

OK, I'll level with you- FSM is my favorite restaurant in the world, and I would go there under any circumstances whatsoever. But it doesn't sound like a *bad* fit for what you've described...
posted by carterk at 6:06 PM on March 30, 2005

The Hotel on Arboretum Blvd has to be Renaissance. Consider Z-Tejas or Eddie Vs since they are both within walking distance.

There are about a half-dozen of Z-Tejas around the country (they started in Austin so it really isn't a 'chain' for us). If you have an early dinner on a nice day the view from the patio is outstanding. It isn't steak, but it has that 'southwestern fusion' vibe going.

Next door there's Eddie Vs which is a seafood/steak place owned by the people that own Z-Tejas.

Fonda San Miguel is awesome but definitely not what you're looking for from a business dinner and steak is what you want.
posted by birdherder at 6:30 PM on March 30, 2005

If it's nice weather, go downtown and eat at a good place on 4th St. or Congress after having a good walk around Town Lake at sunset. Don't waste your time on the bats.

That's Austin.

P.S. As an oldtimer who remembers when Kyoto was the first sushi you could get in Austin, Uchi is a treasure.
posted by rleamon at 7:54 PM on March 30, 2005

You might try North-by-Northwest. While I haven't had the steak at NxNW, all of there other food has been pretty good (all two times I've been there, at least) and I think it's reasonably relaxed and quiet. There's also Iron Cactus right there as well, although I think that's more of a fancyish-tex-mex place. Both are close to the Arboretum, down across from REI (360 and Stonelake). I'll second Truluck's, as well.

If you're willing to drive somewhat, though, it sounds like you're really looking for the Austin Land & Cattle Company, down around Lamar &'re looking at about a 10-15 min. drive to get there from the Arb., assuming reasonable traffic.
posted by abingham at 5:12 AM on March 31, 2005

Isn't there an Iron Cactus in the Arboretum now?
posted by whatnot at 7:31 AM on March 31, 2005

Iron Cactus is good for drinks, but their food is not very good. Don't waste your time there.

NXNW has good food, and you can't go wrong.

Eddie V's has good food, but can be a bit on the expensive side.
posted by stovenator at 7:57 AM on March 31, 2005

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