Boomerang's: Australian for pie; plus, Ruta Maya recognized and Las Palomas celebrated

Cool New Stuff

The tastiest new international comfort food to hit town has to be the Aussie pies at a new spot called Boomerang's (3110 Guadalupe, 380-0032, Australians eat some 2 billion of these savory portable pastries every year, and Texans Jack and Emilie Fennel developed a taste for them while living Down Under. Now, they've brought the pies back to Austin and set up shop several blocks north of the UT campus. We've tried several varieties of the ultra-flaky pies, both meat and vegetarian, and found them very satisfying. Stop by the shop and sample a few pies paired with their big selection of Australian beers... In an article titled "The Obsessive's Guide to Coffee," researchers at Food & Wine magazine recognize Austin's own Ruta Maya (3601 S. Congress, 707-9637) as one of the top five coffee shops in the United States. We love it when our local independent businesses get the national recognition they deserve!... The newest fruit libation on the market is Pama, a vibrant magenta pomegranate liqueur in a tall, sophisticated bottle. The press kit suggests adding PAMA to champagne cocktails and margaritas, but I'm betting bartenders all over the country will be coming up with new concoctions to utilize this beauty... The Corona family of Las Palomas (3201 Bee Caves Rd. #122, 327-9889, celebrated 23 years of serving Interior Mexican cuisine in Austin on Valentine's Day with the debut of their recently renovated and expanded dining spaces. Private and semiprivate dining rooms are now available for special occasions, and they continue to offer a weekly live music lineup that includes jazz, mariachis, and classical guitar. ÁFeliz Cumpleaños!... It's pretty well known that Austin has equally large communities of both foodies and bikies, but what we're less sure about is just how much overlap there might be between the two camps. Are there scores of bike-riding foodies out there? A healthy contingent of foodies touring on bikes? Well, if there are, the perfect brochure for you just landed on my desk. A Boston, Mass., travel-adventure company called Bike Riders Tours ( has put together a series of very interesting bike and/or walking tours in New England, Canada, Ireland, Italy, France, Spain, and Portugal, all with mouth-watering culinary components. Some of the tours are self-guided, while others include the participation of a guest chef, but they all look marvelous. If anyone from here takes one of these tours, I want to hear about it. Culinary bike tours of the Texas Hill Country probably wouldn't be a bad idea either.

Event Menu :: February 16-23

Merchants on Guadalupe between 24th and 38th streets encourage you to let the love linger and participate in their procrastinator's Valentine's Day dream during the Third Thursday on Guadalupe. Wheatsville Co-op (3101 Guadalupe, 478-2667) will feature samples of gourmet chocolates, live music, handmade artisan crafts, Valentine's gift items on sale, and a special Kids' Zone with plenty of children's entertainment. Tom's Tabooley (2928 Guadalupe, 479-7337) will offer two-for-one falafels, a delightful selection of retro candies, plus live demonstrations by local craft artisans; 6-9pm, Thursday, Feb. 15-Friday, Feb. 16.

The Texas Wine & Grape Growers Association (817/424-0570, invite you to a big wine- and food-tasting soiree during their 2006 Southwest Wine Symposium at the Hilton Downtown. The event will feature vintages from 30 award-winning wineries around the state, paired with signature dishes from 10 Austin restaurants. Tickets are $50; 5:30-8:30pm, Thursday, Feb. 23.

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Ruta Maya, Food & Wine, Wheatsville Co-op, Tom's Tabooley, Texas Wnie & Grape Growers Association, Bike Riders Tours, Las Palomas, Boomerang's, Pama

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