We Have an Issue: Toasts All Around
Celebrating the Best of Austin: Restaurants awards, and sending off Music Editor Kevin Curtin
I've had this issue date circled on the calendar for months now, for reasons both celebratory and bittersweet. First, it marks the debut of Best of Austin: Restaurants, the food-and-drink-centric offshoot of our Best of Austin awards. Months in the making, the special issue – which you can find tucked inside the regular issue – doles out winners in 72 far-ranging categories, from Best New Restaurant to Best Dumpling to Best Bathroom and Best Weekend Brunch, as chosen by you, dear readers, through two rounds of voting. Between the winners and the finalists – which we make a point of listing, because they're pretty darn great, too – you've got about 350 highly recommended local establishments worth your time and your extravagant tips. Hats off to Food Editor Melanie Haupt and her team of contributing writers who wrote up all the awards, and a special thanks to the Editorial team for contributing their own favorite dishes, a fun little feature you'll find at the end of the issue.
And now to the bittersweet. Music Editor Kevin Curtin wrote a couple weeks ago about his impending departure to be a full-time dad to Quinn and a new release dropping next month. This is his last week officially on staff, though Kevin is adamant that he'll still be writing regularly and making himself at home around the office. I hope he shows up uninvited every day, bangs into every meeting to crack wise and bounce zany ideas around, and eats through every chip bag in the kitchen. He's a dear colleague and truly just the nicest, most genuine guy. We're gonna miss the crap out of him.
He passes the music editorship mantle now to Rachel Rascoe. Y'all already know her from her music column, "Faster Than Sound"; her crackerjack reporting; her insightful features. She's got terrific instincts, style for miles, and a real passion for the music community, and I know Kevin and I both are eager to see where she takes the section next.
ONLINE THIS WEEK
Good Ol' Texas Indie: Kriss Conklin reviewed Homegrown Live's showcase at the Ballroom featuring Why Bonnie, On Being an Angel, and Font.
The Ritual of itchy-O: Unraveling the mysteries of Fantastic Fest's favorite quasi-house band, a 57-member avant-experientialist collective from Denver.
Speaking of Fantastic Fest: Follow the Chronicle's continuing FF22 coverage, including reviews and interviews, at austinchronicle.com/fantastic-fest.
Early Look at ASHwell: Qmmunity Editor James Scott gets a sneak peek at queer-focused sexual health and wellness org ASHwell's new in-person clinic before its Sept. 22 grand opening.
Crow Bar Arson Investigation: Much-loved South Congress neighborhood pub Crow Bar was destroyed Sunday in an apparent arson; a GoFundMe has been set up to help Crow Bar staff now without employment.
Pyrotechnics at the Alamodome: Photographer David Brendan Hall journeyed to San Antonio to see German industrial metal legends Rammstein perform their only Texas date on a seven-stop U.S. tour.