Food-o-File

Central Texas Beer Festival cancels; Poteet Strawberry Festival celebrates 65 years

New restaurants are sprouting like wildflowers! The McGuire Moorman Hospitality Group threw a media party to introduce its new Fresa's Chicken al Carbon (915 N. Lamar) and treated guests to samples of its natural rotisserie chicken, homemade sides, and cooling aguas frescas in the restaurant's scenic drive-through lane overlooking Shoal Creek. Fresa's will be open daily with food to go from 11am to 11pm, starting Monday, April 16... Downtown, Swift's Attic chefs Mat Clouser and Zach Northcutt started a soft opening this week, offering their eclectic menu of small plates for half price (and cocktails for full price) while they "develop the concept and refine the service" before the official opening later this month. The new spot above the Elephant Room (315 Congress) will be open for dinner six nights a week; reserve at 482-8200... And in North Central, the eagerly awaited new Hopdoddy outlet (2438 W. Ander­son) opens Monday, April 23. We're also eager to see the newest Tarka outlet on Anderson Lane in a few weeks, and we hear the folks at George­town's renowned Monument Cafe are about to debut a Mexican concept called El Monumento with chef Egil Valentin on the range.

In other restaurant news, Bistrot Mirabelle (8127 Mesa Ste. A-100) now offers full bar service and some outdoor seating... All Austin Chuy's outlets celebrate the homegrown chain's 30 years in business with all-day happy hours, prize giveaways, birthday cake, and limited edition T-shirts on Monday, April 16... During April, Sullivan's Steakhouse (300 Colorado) offers a fixed-price Steak & Cake dinner with a crab cake, filet mignon, and salad for $39... Josey's at the Lakeway Resort and Spa now offers Farm to Table Wednesdays with a special three-course, locally sourced dinner menu each week.

Now is the time to sign up for spring/summer shares in area community-supported agriculture programs: Burro Malo, Edendell, Green Gate, Hairston Creek, Johnson's Backyard Garden, Millberg, Munkebo, and Tecolote farms all have spaces available. Go to www.localharvest.org for details... The Round Rock Farms 2 Market reopens this Sunday, April 15, 12:30-4pm, in the parking lot of St. Richard's Episcopal Church (1420 E. Palm Valley). Potential vendors can contact market manager Carla Jenkins at 512/363-5700 or carla@texasfarmersmarket.org. Also this Sun­day, 1-5pm: the East Austin Urban Farm Tour.

After the recent Austin Beer Festival received such a thorough online excoriation, organizers of the upcoming Central Texas Beer Festival felt the market was so contaminated that they canceled their event in hopes of rescheduling at a more appropriate time. We'll keep you posted about any new date.

The 65th annual Poteet Strawberry Festiv­al takes place April 13-15 in the small farming community south of San Antonio, featuring agricultural demonstrations, kids' entertainment and activities, arts & crafts booths, a carnival, a rodeo, and live music on several stages, plus plenty of food, drinks, and strawberry treats. Complete details at www.strawberryfestival.com.

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KEYWORDS FOR THIS STORY

Fresa's Chicken al Carbon, Swift's Attic, Poteet Strawberry Festival, the Elephant Room, El Monumento, Monument Cafe, Bistrot Mirabelle, Chuy's, CSAs, Central Texas Beer Festival

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