Jo’s Helpful HAAMburgers, World Saké Day at The Yard, Suerte’s Seafood Flex, Perry’s Fall Feastables, Cory Starr Shines, No Shortage of Good Booze, and More, More, 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 wrangled from numerous PR releases, words on the digital street, and even the occasional (verified) IRL eavesdroppings.

Celebrate World Saké Day at the Yard on St. Elmo

Yes, that’s right, it’s your “Food News Buffet” for the first weekend of October:

There’s still time to bolt some bodacious beef in support of local musicians, as Jo’s Coffee Downtown (242 W. Second) continues its HAAMBURGERS initiative through Sept. 30, with $1 from every burger sold being donated to the Health Alliance of Austin Musicians. And what about the Jo’s at Red River (1000 E. 41st)? That’s where you can supercharge your game-day shenanigans with Tailgate To-Go packs (beers, tacos, frosé), pretty damn affordable and available every Saturday through Nov. 25 …

Of course Texas Saké Company (440 E. St. Elmo) is celebrating World Saké Day at their elegant headquarters in The Yard – and expert barman Justin Kizzart, who doles out their rice wine when he’s not busy designing graphics or kicking ass as a top-ranked sumo wrestler, will be glad to show you what’s what with the company’s latest brews – but we’d be remiss not to also mention local sushi apotheosis Uchi’s special omakase tastings (Sept. 30-Oct 2) in which saké sommelier Peyton Walston pays homage to the occasion with five rare pairings to complement dishes from their menu …

Welcome to Suerte's new seafood restaurant: Este

And it’s about time for More! Good! Food! So, look: Este, the new seafood eatery (at 2113 Manor) from the acclaimed Suerte team, opens on Monday, Oct. 3Laurel, the new restaurant and bar at the Hotel Granduca (320 S Capital of Texas Hwy), is open and ready to bring you a fine menu from the kitchen helmed by chef Tommy Suddeth Jr., the maestro behind the hotel’s amazing Long Table Dinners … that remarkable Provision Dining House in the Triangle (4600 Guadalupe) has been so successful with their Sunday brunches (bc they’re tasty af, is why) that they’re extending brunch service to Saturdays as well … that annual Quesoff is coming up soon, and Austin’s ONETACO wants you to know that they’ll be participating (for the first time ever!) in the cheesy spectacle’s meaty queso category … and Perry’s Steakhouse, where that legendary Friday Pork Chop is only one compelling option among a plethora of exquisite dishes, is offering their yearly off-the-regular-menu fall specials; this means, mmmmm, white bean pork chili, butternut squash soup, a New York strip steak flight, and pumpkin cheesecake – but, nota bene, those are available only through December …

Personal note: One of the reasons your current reporter likes working for Chronicle Food editor Melanie Haupt is that her list of 10 Favorite Austin Restaurants has the good sense to include Komé and Micklethwait’s and Patrizi’s and – oh, see for yourself

Meanwhile Brewing Co. – whose master mixologist Trenten Relles totally, deliciously, kicked our ass with his cocktail for this past Saturday’s Bourbon Battle at Fierce Whiskers – Meanwhile Brewing (3901 Promontory Point), we say, is teaming up with Val Verde Border Humanitarian Coalition for the release of Val Verde, a unique green tea lager, to support the VVBHC’s donation drive. The refreshing lager’s on tap now and the brewery will be accepting donations of clothing and unopened toiletries on behalf of VVBHC through Oct. 3 …

But although Meanwhile’s whiskey wizard Relles might’ve won our personal heart and palate with his amazing coconut-inflected, charcoal-infused concoction, he wasn’t the official champion at Fierce Whiskers Distillery (5333 Fleming) this past weekend: The judges’ top choice was Cory Starr of Tiki Tatsu-ya; and the hotly contested people’s choice was a tie between KinfolksBrian Bounds and, yes, that same Cory Starr. More like Cory Superstarr, amirite?

In (Donnis) Todd We Trust

Remember a few weeks back when we told you about the Garrison Brothers Bourbon Takeover? That annual event wraps in a couple more days, but damned if they’re not following it up with the release of this year’s 134-proof Cowboy Bourbon. You know how people describe their whiskey expressions, right? And how those descriptions sound maybe a little outlandish at first, but also, the more you sip, remarkably accurate? Well, Garrison’s master distiller Donnis Todd swears this is what he gets from the fine amber elixir they’re about to release: “Newly tanned leather, monkey bread aroma, spring jasmine, dark cacao chocolate, syrupy Dublin Dr. Pepper, brown sugar, and Blackstrap molasses with a chocolate bark finish reminiscent of Rocky Mountain Chocolate Factory.” If you’ve sampled the man’s creations previously, you’ll know he’s not just blowing smoke. Which is why bottles of the stuff will be going for around $250 each, with only 8,600 available – released across 42 states, starting on Saturday, Oct. 1 …

Speaking of great whiskey and national takeovers, the Elijah Craig Old Fashioned Week is coming up next – Oct. 14-23 – wherein primo bars around the country will be offering their Elijah-Craig-based takes on that classic cocktail, with proceeds going to benefit the Southern Smoke Foundation. We’re big proponents of that Foundation in these here parts, which is why we’ll be glad to indulge our Old Fashioned jones at such local establishments as Lustre Pearl, Lamberts Downtown, Kitty Cohen’s, South Austin Beer Garden, Whisler’s, and – aw, hell, here’s the whole interactive map of places, continually updated …

Meanwhile, deep in the frenetic heart of Downtown Austin, the W Hotel (200 Lavaca) is hooking up with Waterloo Records to launch a new fall cocktail. Say, what? Say, they’ve got this lovely new bourbon-and-apple drink called The McIntosh – named after the turntable brand, yes – and they’re debuting it in the W’s Record Room on Monday, Oct. 3, 6-8pm, at an event called Off the Wall, where you can pick a vinyl record from their curated array of 8,000 and have it played on the McIntosh turntable …

But, oh, you’re not really into whiskey? You prefer, more often than not, a glass of wine? Then you know that, out near those Garrison Brothers, out there in the rural splendor of Hye? Is none other than the William Chris Wine Company, whence flows so much fermented goodness-of-the-grape that it makes a Texan proud. So, listen: William Chris’ winegrowers Jean Hoefliger and Chris Brundrett will be revealing the truths about Texas wine during a two-part series of virtual wine tastings – called Friends in ‘Hye’ Places – and Part One goes live on Tuesday, Oct. 4, at 7:30pm CST. Suggestion: If you’re planning to tune in for the truth of the terroir, the nitty-gritty of local grape-itude, consider picking up a three-bottle pack (2019 Mourvèdre, 2020 Enchanté, and 2020 Sangiovese) for tasting along at home …

And, let’s see – what else, what else? The Austin Coffee Festival is this Saturday! And so is the Texas Craft Brewers Festival! Also, the St. Elias Mediterranean Festival! And after all that happy hubbub has come and gone, Tuesday brings the latest Pasta Paisanos feast from L’oca d’Oro, and, on Wednesday, there’s chef Al Fini’s Barolo Wine Dinner at It’s Italian Cucina

Hot game day crunchies, hot every day munchies

WUXTRY! Just in time to catch this year’s football-season snacking spree, Colorado’s Boulder Canyon and Austin’s Yellowbird Hot Sauce have teamed up to create Boulder Batch Yellowbird Habañero kettle potato chips. Yow! It’s Yellowbird, so we know they’re gonna be good; but it’s habañero, so, ah, mind your Scoville tolerance, citizen. Note: You can find these crispy flavorbombs at Whole Foods Market

WUXTRY! Who says we’re too snobbish to shout-out big ol’ chains? Listen: Taco Cabana is marking National Taco Day on Tue., Oct. 4, with unlimited $1 bean and cheese tacos and unlimited $12 bean and cheese dozen taco boxes for just that one day – at all Texas Taco Cabana locations while supplies last …

Now eat as well as you can, tip like it’s going out of style, and try to remember, however faintly, what democracy tastes like.


A note to readers: Bold and uncensored, The Austin Chronicle has been Austin’s independent news source for over 40 years, expressing the community’s political and environmental concerns and supporting its active cultural scene. Now more than ever, we need your support to continue supplying Austin with independent, free press. If real news is important to you, please consider making a donation of $5, $10 or whatever you can afford, to help keep our journalism on stands.

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