Another Restaurant Row

Due to the explosive growth in the greater northwest area, FM2222 may just become Austin's long and winding restaurant row. It has the firmly established anchor tenant in The County Line (5402 FM2222, 346-3664) at Bull Creek, plus prime locations from the city all the way to the lake. Tequila Texas Cafe & Cantinais set to open in March at the new Jester Village (FM2222 & Jester Blvd) with a Tex-Mex menu, an extensive list of premium tequilas and signature margaritas, and a seating capacity of 250 with a covered patio! Rumor has it that an Italian restaurant is also slated for that center, while just up the road at the northeast corner of the intersection of FM2222 and Hwy360, another small center is expected to house more restaurants. Stan Adams, owner of Gilligan's and the three Brick Oven Pizza outlets, will open a rustic Italian trattoria with chef Harvey Harris in that location later this year, and there is also buzz about a Mexican restaurant from Old Alligator Grill honcho Doug Foreman. We're watching the developments.

Texas Wine Dinners

Two Texas wineries team up with local restaurants to present vintner dinners in the coming week. At 7pm on Monday, February 20, Ella's Restaurant & Bar (#1 Jefferson Sq., 458-2148) welcomes Ed and Susan Auler, owners of Fall Creek Vineyards. An original five-course menu is planned to showcase Fall Creek's top-rated wines, especially their elegant new Meritus. Messina Hof winemaker Paul Bonarrigo will pour his Grand Star of Texas award-winning Sauvignon Blanc plus four other wines with a five-course dinner at the Brick Oven (10710 Research, Ste. 310; 335-5445) on Thursday, February 25, 7pm. Both dinners require reservations.

Contest Alert

Cookbook lovers, here's your opportunity to win a trip to the culinary equivalent of the Oscars, the International Association of Culinary Professionals/Julia Child Cookbook Awards at the annual IACP conference, which take place this year in Phoenix on April 14. Official entry forms are available at select bookstores, in the March issue of Food & Wine magazine (sponsors of the awards), on the Food & Wine Web site at or by writing the IACP; 304 W. Liberty Street; Louisville, Kentucky, 40202. Only one entry per person, duplicated or faxed copies are ineligible, and entries must be received by March 25, 1999. Prizes include: airfare for two to Phoenix; hotel accommodations for four nights; VIP tickets to the awards ceremony and banquet; a case of Bertoli Gentile al Palato premium extra-virgin olive oil; an assorted case of Geyser Peak wines; a complete KitchenAid Countertop Collectionô in onyx black, and a selection of gifts from Food & Wine that includes cookbooks and subscriptions. Good luck.


Those precocious organic gardening tots at Rhonda's Montessori Garden will star in a segment of Central Texas Gardener set to air on KLRN this Saturday, February 20, at noon... Now that carnival season is over and Lent has begun, rich, decadent pastries are out but lean and lovely Hot Cross Buns are in. From now until Easter, Texas French Bread (various locations) will feature Hot Cross Buns studded with their own fresh candied orange peel and delicately spiced with cinnamon and nutmeg.

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