The Austin Chronicle

Places That Still Take Reservations in Casual-Town, Texas

By Wes Marshall, March 15, 2013, Food

Asti (408 E. 43rd, 451-1218) is a local treasure, family owned and serving authentic Italian food with cutting-edge preparation and focusing on fresh, local ingredients.

Clark's Oyster Bar (1200 W. Sixth, 297-2525) is a small, white-tiled spot with perfect seafood and a small but incredibly well chosen wine list. High-rollers will enjoy the Cham­pagne and caviar. We go nuts for the bread!

El Naranjo (85 Rainey, 474-2776) is very much a traditional Mexican restaurant, but similar to one you would find in a major Mexi­can city; chic, with modern furnishings and a menu that celebrates the best of Oaxacan cuisine.

Fino (2905 San Gabriel, 474-2905) offers modern Mediterranean food in servings from tapas-size to full dinner portions. Excellent drinks and wine list. Ask for one of their romantic patio seats.

La Condesa (400 W. Second, 499-0300) is Downtown in the middle of all the action. This hip Mexican restaurant also has one of Austin's hottest bar scenes, with lavish amounts of tequila and mezcal consumed nightly.

La Traviata (314 Congress, 479-8131) is a chef-owned Italian restaurant that's been a popular Downtown destination for 13 years. The cozy interior and warm service are the perfect backdrop for an inventive menu that seldom strays far from tradition.

Perry's Steakhouse & Grille (114 W. Seventh, 474-6300) has a full menu, but trust us, get the pork chop. The fancy steak-house vibe and trophy wine list can push a bill pretty high, but, oh my God, that pork chop!

Vino Vino (4119 Guadalupe, 465-9282) started life as a wine shop and has morphed into a reliable wine bar with inventive food and superb service, all in a bright, fun atmosphere that welcomes all who love wine.

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