How many people have been proposed to at Apis? It has to be a lot, right? Between the spectacular Hill Country setting (that deck!) and a meandering series of set menus focused on fresh global takes on high-quality local ingredients, Apis will make your heart skip a beat.
23526 Hwy. 71 W.
This newly opened all-day cafe features an early menu (until 3pm) with comforting dishes like waffle iron hash browns and cauliflower tots with beet ketchup. The late menu (served 3-10pm) offers chicken-fried steak, crispy mushrooms, and savory churros. As for drinks, choose your poison: well-crafted draft cocktails or coffee beverages by the team behind Wright Bros. Brew & Brew.
The sunny patio of this classy Clarksville cafe is an excellent choice for pristine oysters, cold bar offerings, lobster rolls, and crab cakes – but regulars also know they serve a mean burger. Try their brand-new Clarified Pisco Punch: pisco, Herbsaint, bitters & citrus, warming spices, coconut green tea, and clarified milk wash.
1200 W. Sixth
It’s the ultimate fancy casual: dining al fresco, atop Astroturf, by candlelight. This West Sixth option (outside of the melee!) is known for sweet indulgences, a hearty soak-up-the-whiskey burger on brioche, and cheeky cocktails like the French Sixty-Nine, the Nookie Cookie, and Straight Up D*ck. In other words, it’s perfect for date night.
1401 W. Sixth
Sarah Lindsey spent over eight years developing recipes at Royal Blue Grocery before she opened this restored 1949 railway car as a grab-and-go scratch kitchen about four miles from the Y in Oak Hill. Specializing in rotisserie chickens, porchetta, and roast lamb – all from local farms – plus soups, salads, sandwiches, and desserts, the menu is designed for takeaway. There’s also some seating, which makes it a great pit stop on a winery tour day.
9300 Hwy. 290 W.
In 2013, after a couple of years of health problems, owner Ronald Cheng had an opportunity to reopen in the building where Chinatown started in 1983. He kept some of the former menu items, added some delicious new ones, and gave the whole place a new look – simultaneously reinvigorating his brand and cementing his Austin culinary legacy. Austin is full of restaurateurs. Cheng is a giant. Inducted in 2016.
2712 Bee Caves Rd.
This European gastronomic exploration exudes taste inside and out. The love story that started it all continues through the care and craftsmanship incorporated into everything from the homemade bread to the house-cured Metzger board. Perhaps the very best part, however, is that the price point of this luxe-sounding menu makes it accessible to most. Inducted in 2018.
Jeffrey’s is a rare classic establishment where heart-stopping prices actually equate to fine dining. The centerpiece of the menu revolves around perfectly seasoned and seared steaks, but even those who aren’t carnivores can make a meal of the sides and salads that are just as legendary as the delectable meat. Inducted in 2018.
1204 W. Lynn
In an Austin that often mistakes fine surfaces for fine dining, chefs Stewart Scruggs and Mark Paul’s strip mall eatery is the real deal. Maybe there’s no miles of carrara marble and the fixtures may not require weekly wipe downs with Brasso, but wink has it where it counts – beautiful food made with the best ingredients, immaculate service, and a wine program that’s worth raising a glass to. Inducted in 2017.
1014 N. Lamar
Information is power. Support the free press, so we can support Austin. Support the Chronicle