East

photo by Shelley Hiam

The adventurous cuisine at this rustic outdoor venue is hard to define – certainly sophisticated, but unpretentious enough to fit the ranch-like ambience. The seasonal eclectic menu is matched by stellar cocktails, local brews, and well-selected wines. The dog-friendly patio is the perfect spot to quench your thirst and catch up with friends.

CLOSED

Dedicated locavore chef Jesse Griffiths garners our admiration because he lives the talk, creating regularly changing seasonal menus using the best ingredients that Central Texas has to offer. Griffiths surrounds himself with like-minded talent in a restaurant that reflects quality, sustainability, comfort, and hospitality.

2406 Manor Rd.
512/524-0688
daidue.com

John Anderson

When a small barbecue joint that's only open for lunch rockets to national fame with a service line that has its own Twitter feed, there might be a tendency to assume hype is involved. Not so; the brisket is that good.

900 E. 11th
512/653-1187
www.franklinbbq.com

Not only did the little acorn-adorned trailer survive its 2nd anniversary, they've busted through Austin's barbecue clique barriers. Rumor has it this list-topper is luring the cognoscenti with mouthwatering brisket, specialty sausages, and jalapeño cheese grits. Plus, with occasional live music, craft beer, and sweet treats like house-made moonpies, it's a real good time.

1309 Rosewood
512/791-5961
craftmeatsaustin.com/

photo by John Anderson

When it comes to a favorite plate at this cash-only, humanitarian hole-in-the-wall, we can't decide between morning beignets, the shrimp po'boy for lunch, or the smothered potatoes and cornbread at supper. What's certain is our favorite menu item: a meal donation to the homeless (pork chop and fries for $4).

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Looking for some pasta baby this evening? There's no need to eat your heart out. Patrizi's rolls and cooks their semolina pasta to order, then tops it with gremolata, ricotta, or coddled egg. We like cacio e pepe the best. Those noodles don't need another thing.

2307 Manor Rd.
512/522-4834
www.patrizis.com

John Anderson

Photo by John Anderson

Pull up a chair and savor the moment with strangers. At Blue Dahlia, tables are arranged so that diners brush elbows while they enjoy a midmorning tartine or fill up on French classics like ratatouille. The idea is to create community around a baguette. After all, that’s what breaking bread is all about. Inducted in 2018.

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There once was a little house on Manor Road that served the best artichoke manicotti in all the land, but carrot pasta and sun-dried tomato cream sauce were only the beginning of the story. It’s a tale with plenty of romance (those sparkling limosas) and some very deep drama (the chocolate almond torte), perfect for all our happily-ever-afters. Inducted in 2017.

CLOSED

John Anderson

photo by John Anderson

We’ve been loving those brisket burnt ends since Aaron Franklin’s trailer was located not far from the Chron offices near I-35, way back in 2009. The smoke signals at the now Eastside restaurant are nationally recognized – an Obama fist bump, a James Beard award, and even bad boy Bourdain’s unabashed obsession. Even the notorious hours-long lines can’t deter the steady cult following. But when it comes down to it, Franklin Barbecue has earned its crown because the food comes first, and it’s always delicious. Inducted in 2018.

900 E. 11th
512/653-1187
www.franklinbbq.com

It’s the chicken-fried chicken, y’all. Many of the Southern comfort food pleasures on the menu at Hoover’s Cooking, a two-decades-and-counting Manor Road eatery, have made it an icon: their enormous and delicious pepper-fire soaked and smoked chicken wings, sweet potato coffee, banana pudding, and a side of broccoli that looks like one of the tree people from Lord of the Rings (yeah, we know, they’re called Ents). While the Smokehouse options (Jamaican jerk ribs!) compete with the best of ’em, it’s that chicken-fried chicken, paired with mashed potatoes and a side of jalapeño creamed spinach, that offers something equivalent to the culinary version of a long hug from an old friend. Inducted in 2019.

2002 Manor Rd.
512/479-5006
hooverscooking.com

photo by John Anderson

You’ve seen their quirky, quintessentially Austin sign and enjoyed their fun-loving approach to social media, but did you know that this family-owned and -operated business has been around since 1990? Founders Aurelio and Rosa Torres opened their 10-seat Tex-Mex restaurant serving hella good tacos, and over the years made so many loyal fans that the business expanded to occupy the entire corner, plus some. Now owned and operated by Torres’ son and daughter-in-law, Edgar and Christina Torres, the menu also boasts burritos, platos fuegos (mole enchiladas! carne guisada!), and your new favorite drink menu. (If you imbibe, don’t you dare skip the mango chamoy margarita.) The Torres crew also owns nearby School House Pub and not-so-secret speakeasy Techo Mezcaleria & Agave Bar. And if there’s one good thing about the last year, it might just be to-go margs from this truly beloved Manor Road staple. Inducted in 2021.

2201 Manor Rd.
512/322-9721
www.mimadresrestaurant.com

 
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