9400-A Arboretum Blvd., 512/346-3506
Every dish on the menu has a surprise inside – some combination of ingredients that fills the time between ordering and the first bite with heavy anticipation.
- 2008: Critics Best Community Asset Chef (Male) (Jack Gilmore of Z'Tejas)
- 2004: Critics Best Brake/Break (Local Eateries Serving Lunch to Road Crews on Sixth & Lamar)
- 2004: Readers Best Brunch Crowd (Z Tejas)
- 2001: Critics Best Way To Get Your Jalapeño On
- 1990: Critics Best Happy Hour
Latin-inflected fine dining in the sumptuous Four Seasons hotel right in the heart of Downtown Austin.
98 San Jacinto, 512/478-4500
Where chicken wings meet the Mediterranean. Using halal meat, meals are served with pita, garlic sauce, and sides that range from mashed potatoes to rice.
1200 Barbara Jordan Blvd. #340, 737/300-1000
Nothing tests the mettle of a musician like having to compete with the best sunsets in Texas. Opened by Beau Theriot in 1982, the Oasis has grown from a remote ranch house on the western edge of town to a four-tiered food and entertainment fortress overlooking Lake Travis with a capacity of 2,500. Neither a 2005 fire nor the 2010-13 drought stanched the venue’s momentum. During the spring and summer months, the Oasis features live music on weekends and select Thursdays. Frequent fliers include venerable all-purpose show band Rotel & the Hot Tomatoes and Eighties glam-metal specialists LC Rocks.
6550 Comanche Trl., 512/266-2442