Easy Tiger Bake Shop
By Virginia B. Wood,
11:20AM, Wed. Jan. 25, 2012
The owners of the long-awaited new Easy Tiger Bake Shop & Beer Garden (709 E. Sixth) sure know how to throw a party!
The small downstairs dining room and spacious outdoor patio were packed with purveyors, media types, and bloggers, happily drinking and noshing on samples of chef Andrew Curren's house-made sausages paired with baker David Norman's exemplary breads.The aroma of fresh-baked bread drew us into the building at street level where patrons will be able to purchase bread, pastries, coffee and tea and sit on bar stools to observe the bakery production through huge windows. I'll admit touring the bakery gave me a serious case of kitchen envy. David Norman's bread bakery is stunning (shiny new equipment, huge commercial ovens, windows overlooking Waller Creek!) and his breads are divine. I'm betting there will soon be a long line of local chefs waiting to purchase Norman's breads to serve in their restaurants. A broad staircase leads to the downstairs dining room, bar, and comfortable lounging patio. With the kitchen on the street level and no dumbwaiter, it looks like the Easy Tiger waitstaff will be giving their glutes a serious workout every shift. Designer Veronica Koltuniak has done a great job with the two-story, turn-of-the-century building, creating a space that is comfortable and welcoming. Chef Curren's beer garden menu offers house-made sausages, jerky, corned beef, and pastrami complemented by krauts, relishes, mustards, and other condiments paired with Norman's fabulous breads. Sommelier Billy Caruso's bar offers cocktails and a wine list as well as 30 craft brews on tap, including some local choices and many popular boutique brews from around the country. My main concern about Easy Tiger is the location. The business will be in a great position once the proposed Waller Creek re-development is finished, but that could take years. There's currently not much daytime foot traffic on that section of Sixth Street and the nighttime crowds almost always end their stroll at Red River rather than Sabine. Parking is going to be a problem, day or night. These guys have come up with a very cool, well-executed concept. I really hope Austin embraces it.