A weekly roundup of Austin food news
I made my first credit card purchase at a local food truck using one of the new Square credit card readers that plugs into smartphones or tablets. For a flat 2.75% processing fee, the Square makes it possible for small-business owners to accept credit card payments without signing a contract for equipment, installing a dedicated phone line, or paying an extra fee per transaction. Frankly, I'm surprised more food truck operators and artisan food vendors aren't using them already. Our own Wes Marshall was traveling in Southeast Asia this spring and says he saw the Square in use everywhere.
UT grad student Will Burdette was one of many interesting folks I met at the Foodways Texas Symposium in March. In addition to teaching English, Will produces a food-related podcast called No Satiation. We had a long talk last week about how I became a food writer and my take on the dramatic changes in the local food community during the time I've lived in Austin. Portions of that conversation will be the basis for two upcoming podcasts at www.nosatiation.com.
Austin-based Schlotzsky's is testing a new gluten-free sandwich bun made by Taylor Made Gluten-Free Bakery in Bryan at their flagship store and training facility, Schlotzsky's Deli (218 S. Lamar). If the bun gets a positive response there, the company may eventually offer it in outlets nationwide... In other healthy food news, homegrown Beanitos chips was noted as a recommended snack food on The Dr. Oz Show this week, and Elevation Burger has added organic bacon to their menu as a topper.
Seems like we run into the folks from Austin Eats Food Tours every Saturday morning at the Downtown Farmers' Market – the company now also offers healthy eating tours of the Whole Foods Market flagship store. Healthy eating specialist Dan Marek leads the free, one-hour tours most Saturday mornings at 10am, offering healthy eating tips and food samples. Book a tour at www.austineatsfoodtours.com.
Congratulations to Kendall and John Antonelli, who welcomed the arrival of Everett Max Antonelli (8 pounds, 3 ounces; 20 inches) on May 2.
The rumors are true: Art Blondin is serving up his exemplary ribs, sausage, and side dishes at Jax Neighborhood Cafe (2828 Rio Grande) every night after 6pm. Blondin says many of his Artz regulars are turning up on Monday nights to eat ribs and listen to Sarah Elizabeth Campbell.
Hospitality entrepreneur Doug Guller's new concepts should debut this weekend in the old Jaime's Spanish Village location. Pelons Mexican restaurant, the 508 cocktail lounge, and Zorro's food truck are now at home in the historic space at 802 Red River.
The McGuire Moorman Hospitality Group has another new restaurant on the horizon: Clark's (1200 W. Sixth) will feature a raw bar and fresh seafood, and should be open in the fall... Chef Larry McGuire reports he'll develop some tasty bar food for Steve Wertheimer's new blues club, C-Boy's (2008 S. Congress), in the old Trophy's location, once that project is further along.