out in Austin

As I mentioned, my little family spent the week in Texas for Spring Break, starting in Dallas for the first part and finishing up in Austin. Neither city is new to us but with each new visit, I’m reminded how cool everything is in the big T.

Now without any surprise, I am only here to tell you about the eating I did all over Austin. I had intentions of doing other things buuuut no I didn’t. So let’s dive right in, shall we?

Perla's calamariSpent a lovely Friday afternoon on the porch at Perla’s, sipping a mimosa cocktail and indulging in the lightest, freshest batch of calamari. Perla’s is a pretty amazing little seafood spot on South Congress, with a shaded patio that is to die for. My cousin/friend Kristen and I (plus Harry) hung for quite a while that afternoon and it.was.glorious.

Doc's shrimp tacosDoc's chicken sandwichKenny and I returned to South Congress Saturday afternoon to explore a bit more. South Congress definitely appears to be a super hoppin’ strip  to visit and that day was packed with tons of people and dogs wearing tutus (there was apparently a parade? but I don’t think you can ever be sure in Austin).

We buzzed in and out of a few shops but then ultimately found another patio to kick back on. This time it was Doc’s Bar & Grill and alongside my Corona, I had a delicious trio of shrimp tacos and Kenny had a chicken sandwich. Everything was tasty and easy and spot-hitting great, which is pretty much exactly what Doc’s was that afternoon.

Sway prawn miangeOur biggest, fanciest dining night out was actually to Sway, a recommendation and date with our cousin/friends Kristen and Marc. This thai spot on South 1st Street was super swanky but like all things in Austin, not at all snooty or pretentious. Even with our wiggly plus one at a giant shared table for 16, there was enough space and proximity for everyone to get along.

We started with a prawn appetizer, which was pretty righteous. The betel leaf was used to fold it up like a taco, and the sprinkling of peanuts was the very right garnish. Yumtown, USA.

Sway wild boar ribsThere was then the wild boar ribs. These were…tough, but I am pretty sure that’s to be expected with boar. I don’t really remember caring about these and I am pretty sure the party felt the same way…

Sway son in lawBut the clear star was the Son in Law dish, under the grilled and crispy entree option. With a crispy farm egg, braised pork shoulder, thick soy, and nahm prik pla (no idea), this one was hearty and I was all about it. (Especially the egg, which should also come as no surprise to anyone.)

Sway xo musslesWhile the rest of the group went for a curry dish (I believe they went with the Jungle Curry (texas wagyu beef, red chili, baby corn, eggplant, peppercorn, and coconut cream)), I advocated for the XO mussels. I am not a super fan of curry, so even though I knew I wasn’t going to go hard in on sharing that one, in exchange I wanted something I would go hard for, and my frontrunner was an obvious one. These little buggers were yummy. Each one was plump and fatty and the combination of bacon, garlic, ginger, lemongrass, thai chili, and sweet onion made these a home run.

The rest of the trip included things like a Cafe Medici latte, a Bangers sausage, a few different slices of food truck pizza, and a few nights spent on Rainy Street. For feeling like we sort of have our Austin bearings, I think we did it right. Until next time Austin!


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