on the range

Virginia's On the Range

Ho, Ho, Help for Santa

Between now and Thursday, Dec. 18, all four Austin Waterloo Ice House locations will act as unofficial drop zones for Project Santa donations. Project Santa is the annual holiday gift drive that provides toys, gifts and gift cards for the small children, youths, and families served by Austin Children's Services (ACS). Read More | Comment »

10:00AM Thu. Dec. 11, Virginia B. Wood

12 Days of Christmas Desserts

While home bakers might cut out cookies shaped like pears, partridges, swans, and dancing ladies for meticulous hand decoration, pastry chef Janina O'Leary is upping the ante. Taking her creative clues from the beloved holiday standard, she's created 12 new desserts that could melt the heart of even the meanest scrooge. Read More | Comment »

12:30PM Wed. Dec. 10, Virginia B. Wood

Culinary Ladies of the Eighties: Susan Auler

Fall Creek Vineyards has long been one of the most successful and well-respected wineries in Texas. In the Eighties, founders Ed and Susan Auler set out to establish the Texas Hill Country as an American Viticultural Area (AVA) and wound up helping to put Austin on the national culinary map in the process. Read More | Comment »

3:30PM Mon. Nov. 17, Virginia B. Wood

The No-DIY Thanksgiving

If your idea of Thanksgiving is being grateful for not doing all the cooking, the following folks are willing to help. We've located a cornucopia of breads, meats, side dishes, whole meals, and sweets – even turduckens. All you have to do is just order ahead and enjoy. Read More | Comment »

3:30PM Thu. Nov. 13, Virginia B. Wood

Springdale Farm Aid

In the days when Texas was a mostly rural, agrarian society, communities came together in difficult circumstances. Barns were raised, crops harvested, and folks helped out their neighbors. Austin's close-knit food community is upholding that historic tradition this weekend with a benefit for Springdale Farm. Read More | Comment »

11:00AM Sat. Sep. 27, Virginia B. Wood

Culinary Ladies of the Eighties

The Eighties were a dynamic time in Austin - real estate boomed, busted, and boomed again; the seeds of the city's development as a high-tech hub were planted and began to flourish; and an embryonic restaurant scene and the Hill Country wine industry both began to blossom. Read More | Comment »

11:00AM Thu. Sep. 4, Virginia B. Wood

National Magazines Have Eyes on Austin Food

September issues of Bon Appétit and Taste of the South came out over the weekend and recognition for representatives of the Austin food scene figured prominently in both. Read More | Comment »

11:15AM Tue. Aug. 26, Virginia B. Wood

The Original Hoffbrau is 80 Years Young

What does it take for a restaurant to remain open in the same location in the same city for 80 years? Hard work, a convenient location, good luck, and four generations of one family willing to mind the store. Austin's Original Hoffbrau Steaks (613 W. Sixth) has all that, and more. Read More | Comment »

12:25PM Mon. Aug. 11, Virginia B. Wood

It's Hatch Chile Season Again

We Austinites pride ourselves on our love for chiles as much as we brag about our tolerance for the summer heat. That's why we willingly surrender to the invasion of thousands of pounds of big green chiles from the agricultural area around tiny Hatch, New Mexico every summer. Read More | Comment »

12:30PM Thu. Aug. 7, Virginia B. Wood

Christopher Kimball's Recipe for Success

Practical New Englander Christopher Kimball founded Cook's Illustrated magazine and the popular PBS cooking show America's Test Kitchen to provide American home cooks with fool-proof recipes that guarantee kitchen success. Periodically, he likes to take the show on the road. Read More | Comment »

11:40AM Wed. Aug. 6, Virginia B. Wood

Mangia! It's National Lasagne Day

We're not sure who makes the decisions about designating days in honor of specific food items, but a national celebration of lasagne sounds fine to us. Some local restaurants are on board with this observance so as they say in Italy: Mangia! Read More | Comment »

12:30PM Tue. Jul. 29, Virginia B. Wood

Gotta Lot More Restaurant News

Baltimore's ramblin' pie man, Rodney Henry of Dangerously Delicious Pies, is re-locating to Austin. I chatted with him yesterday while he and his kids were completing the drive into town to settle down. Read More | Comment »

12:15PM Thu. Jul. 24, Virginia B. Wood


Media coverage of President Obama's whirlwind visit to Austin last week provided great publicity for Franklin Barbecue, Magnolia Cafe West, and Fresa's. However, it could just be that the most distinctive food item served to the President didn't originate in a restaurant kitchen at all. Read More | Comment »

3:30PM Wed. Jul. 16, Virginia B. Wood

Rockstar Bagels Robbed Twice

Bagel man Joe Humel has always worked nights; first as a rock drummer, and then as the guy making hundreds of New York-style bagels for local cafes and coffee shops. Now, Humel's relatively new retail outlet has unintentionally provided someone else with a night job – the thief who has broken into the store twice in the past month. Read More | Comment »

1:45PM Wed. Jul. 16, Virginia B. Wood

Liberté! Égalité! Fraternité! Soirée!

Allons, mes amis. Vive la France! Austinites are always up for festivities and what better reason to party than the independence of France? Several local French-themed businesses have celebrations planned for the annual holiday. Save the plane fare and party here. Read More | Comment »

3:00PM Fri. Jul. 11, Virginia B. Wood

Juan in a Million Open Again Today

When longtime East Austin Mexican restaurateur Juan Meza says he serves breakfast and lunch every day, he really means it. However, Meza's beloved Tex-Mex breakfast mainstay was closed on an ordinary business day yesterday for the first time since the restaurant opened in 1980. Read More | Comment »

11:45AM Wed. Jul. 2, Virginia B. Wood

Summer Specials to Entice You

July and August are notoriously slow months for area eateries: students evacuate, kids go to camp, families travel to avoid the heat. While the local hospitality industry is getting an unexpected bump from World Cup viewing, they've also come up with attractive strategies to stimulate business all summer. Read More | Comment »

2:45PM Tue. Jul. 1, Virginia B. Wood

Don't Eat That Pizzle!

MT Supermarket (10901 N. Lamar) and some of its employees are facing a civil suit filed by the office of the Texas Attorney General that alleges they sold "non-inspected, adulterated and misbranded beef pizzle as human food." Beef pizzle is the industry term for bull's penis. Read More | Comment »

4:10PM Fri. Jun. 13, Virginia B. Wood

Alamo Drafthouse Pilots New Vegan Menu Items

When the Alamo Drafthouse made drastic changes to its iconic menu last spring, the fallout was swift and severe. Read More | Comment »

1:45PM Wed. Jun. 11, Melanie Haupt

Paggi House Closed; Garrido's Sold

Two high-profile central city eateries will close within 24 hours of each other this weekend. One has been a special occasion destination lodged in one of the city's most historic homes since the Eighties, while the other is the eponymous restaurant from one of Austin's most respected chefs. Read More | Comment »

6:00PM Sat. May. 24, Virginia B. Wood

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