Bye-Bye to Broyles, Hello to De Nada, Birds Gets a Lager, Ice Cream Celebrates Pride, and More

All the news that's fit to get your taste buds quivering

Here’s some of what’s happening in Austin’s culinary scene, as the threat of COVID-19 continues to diminish (among the vaccinated, at least) and the city regains its frequently CBD-enhanced footing.

Yes, it’s your Food News Buffet for the first week of June:

Ooooh, that new De Nada Cantina …

Awwwww, damnit, the Austin-American Statesman’s Addie Broyles, local food writer extraordinaire since 2008, is leaving her daily journo post to embark on a new phase of her career. After more than a dozen years of informing Austinites (and the world beyond) of the city’s culinary goings-on – and reporting on those matters with the sort of open, personal perspective that allowed readers to feel like, hey, this professional’s a cherished member of the family – Broyles hands over the proverbial reins of her column-horse to, well, we’re not sure yet. But we’ll be keeping our eyes peeled, while wishing that old friend the best of good fortune in whatever she turns her many talents to …

We should probably treat Addie to a fare-thee-well margarita somewhere, right? And to some excellent tacos? The possibilities in this town are manifold, of course, but right now we’re thinking of the Eastside’s new De Nada Cantina, the latest endeavor from that Stephen Shallcross and his acclaimed 2 Dine 4 Catering crowd. The venue’s just opened right next door to Sawyer & Co. on East Cesar Chavez, is serving up the happy hours and Interior Mexican taco-forward dinners every day but Tuesday, and, boy howdy, Mickie Spencer has designed the venue’s interior in such a way that it provides a worthy setting for chef Alex Amaro’s excellent cuisine and makes a citizen want to linger and nom the night away …

Shave and a haircut, two brews? How about just one brew, O hirsute beer-lover, because today (if you’re reading this on Wednesday, June 2) is the day that Birds Barbershop starts serving Birds Anniversary Lager, a beer made in cooperation with Independence Brewing, to celebrate 15 years in the tonsorial business. The smooth, limited-edition brew adds another winner to Independence’s long line of Texas favorites. (We’re looking at you, Stash IPA) …

[Speaking of beer, is Austin Beerworks actually releasing 17 unique cans to celebrate the socceriffic Austin FC? Um, yes.]

What's cold and proud and made of yum? Lick x Wunderkeks = Strawberry Lemonade Rainbow ice cream

Okay, y’all, Let’s Get Back To Quintessential deliciousness for Pride Month! Lick Honest Ice Creams and Wunderkeks, two Texas-born, LGBTQ-owned businesses known for fun and thoughtfully crafted ice cream and cookies, respectively, have debuted an unforgettable Pride ice cream flavor: Strawberry Lemonade Rainbow, available (by the scoop or pint) through June 30 at all Austin and San Antonio Lick Honest Ice Creams shops. The frozen confection’s made with tart Texas lemon sweet cream and Lick’s local strawberry swirl, studded with Wunderkek’s colorful, buttery cookie bites, and – oh! Get in line, there’s enough for everyone …

Speaking of deliciousness, you know how the team at Texas French Bread’s been working the outdoor-dining pivot like the culinary champs they are, presenting mouthwatering dinner after dinner after dinner and even serving up the tastiest local brunches beneath the urban Texas sky? Well. Chef Murph Willcott tells us the eatery is closing for a week to attend to some maintenance and restaging, and then … and then they’ll be open for business inside the dining room – for the first time in 15 months! – beginning Wednesday, June 9, at 8am

It's back for the summer: Spicy Chilled Ramen at Ramen Tatsu-ya

We wouldn’t keep this news to ourselves, either: That seasonal treat, the popular Spicy Chilled Ramen, is available now through the summer at all Ramen Tatsu-Ya shops, for dine-in or online ordering for takeout. Mmmmm, yes – that pork, those veggies, the citrus soy dressing, TFW “cold comfort” isn’t meant at all sardonically …

Ghost kitchens, amirite? They’ve totally become a thing lately, and they’re often a boon to all concerned – the owners, the operators, the dining public – and they’ll be flourishing long after these damned ‘ronas are just a bad memory. We’ve mentioned Cloud Kitchens alongside I-35. We’ve told you about the Kitchen United Mix on Burnet. And now, Prep ATX, the largest commercial kitchen community in Texas, has announced its initial lineup of members – including local favorites Tiny Pies, Thanks Danks Jerky, and Brooklyn Breakfast Shop. Listen: The Prep ATX project boasts 55,000 square feet of working space and plans to be a North Central hub for Austin’s burgeoning food & beverage scene when their doors open at 1300 E. Anderson Lane this summer …

What else? Are restaurants – some restaurants, possibly many restaurants – finding it difficult to hire new staff or even, sometimes, keep the staff they’ve got? Because the pandemic got people thinking that maybe it’s time to 86 the institutional bullshit? The Chron’s busy AF food editor Jessi Cape reports on that situation right here

Get it? Got it? Good. Now y’all stay safe out there, eat as well and tip as big as you can, and we’ll see you ’round the madding metrop sooner than later.

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