Thursday, May 25, 2017

A Weekend in Austin- What to Eat

Walton's Fancy & Staple- Great spot for breakfast downtown and the prices are pretty good! The service was friendly and fast and the coffee was delicious (I had a lavender latte). The French toast was super yummy and so was the adorable (and very Instagrammable) avocado toast. 

Elizabeth Street Cafe- I'm conflicted with this restaurant. On one hand, it is super cute, just as cute as the photos. The menu is extensive and the prices are good. I think our issue was that the flavors were a bit stronger on everything than we wanted. My friend and I are both from cities that have a ton of amazing Vietnamese options so our standards are a bit high. I do have to say- my crab spring rolls (really summer rolls) had a ton of crab in them which was a nice change! Avoid coming during the lunch rush because it is crazy busy.

Gourdough's- I do love anything sold out of an Airstream. It's right by Elizabeth Street Cafe and while the donuts looked crazy, the one we got was surprisingly light and not overly sweet. 

Lucky Robot- This was likely our favorite meal of the trip. Lucky Robot has a great happy hour and the service is stellar. We had some cute little cocktails and a delicious assortment of rolls. The decor is so super cute! They even have the most adorable yellow porch swings as seats!

More Home Slice/Home Slice- There's good news and bad news. The bad news- Home Slice is closed on Tuesdays. The good news- More Home Slice is right next door and it's open every day. Their pizza is inexpensive and yummy and it's such a great evening snack. It even held up really well cold in the hotel room!

Cafe No Se- This restaurant was located inside our hotel which was super convenient because it was adorable and the menu looked really yummy. The decor is bright and cheery, even on an overcast day. The food was pretty good- modern takes on more ordinary breakfast staples like bagels and lox. My only issue was that the service was really slow even though it wasn't busy.

Fresa's- I loved this place. First- it's got a really gorgeous courtyard and if it hadn't been so warm, I would have eaten outside. The restaurant is very colorful and the food is so good. We had guacamole and one taco each which surprisingly, was plenty of food. The tacos are HUGE. We had the salty cajeta ice cream which came with the cutest cookie (seriously, an Instagram worthy cookie) and was so delicious. 

Alcomar- This was the last stop on our trip and I really think we ended it with a bang. Luckily my travel buddy likes oysters too so we split an order along with some very strong margaritas during happy hour. The prices were great, the restaurant is super cute, and the service was fast and friendly. I have to say, I love getting oysters in the South because Gulf oysters are so much larger than the little ones I've gotten on the west coast!

Amy's Ice Cream- Total last minute addition after Lucky Robot since it was right next door. I wanted to try it out anyway and was super excited we had time to visit! They change their menu frequently but we had the most delicious turtle sundae. 

Perla's- I really wanted to come here but we really didn't have enough time to hit everything on our list. This one got eliminated because it was pricier than the others but it's definitely on my list for next time. I love seafood and the courtyard is as cute in real life as it is on Pinterest. 

Hey Cupcake- I forgot to take a picture of the truck! Augh! They were out of almost everything but I did get a pretty delicious strawberry cupcake with this really awesome strawberry cream cheese.  

Wednesday, May 24, 2017

A Weekend in Austin- What to Do

We didn't have a ton of time in Austin but I'm so happy about all the things we got to see. While there are plenty of museums and parks, we really just wanted a relaxing shopping/mural hunting/eating trip and that's exactly what we got!

Murals- There are so many murals in Austin, there almost isn't enough time in a weekend to hunt them all down. We grabbed just about everything in the South Congress area and I don't think we got them all anyway. A Taste of Koko was such a great resource for us in planning which murals to see. It even includes murals we hadn't found on other Pins before!

Consuela- This shop was so colorful and adorable. I didn't have space in my suitcase for a lot of souvenirs (I always pack my little under-seat carry-on for short trips because I vehemently refuse to pay for overhead space) so I didn't get anything but my friend, Michelle, got the cutest banana bag. Everything is designed in Austin as well so it's not mass produced like a regular souvenir shop!

Co Star- What really got me was the array of mannequins with cat heads. So weird! Awesome assortment of fun pieces including a table full of the cutest graphic tees!

Kendra Scott- I frequently drool over the pieces on the Kendra Scott website and seeing them in person was so much better. For a small shop, they have all of the main pieces. 

Maya- There are plenty of shops with cute clothes that are overpriced but Maya's was surprisingly reasonable. The quality was actually better than some of the more expensive places and the service was definitely friendlier. 

Monkey See Monkey Do- I love quirky places like this! All kinds of monkey and geek themed items. I stocked up on zombie finger puppets (I collect them... I know, it's weird). 

Big Top Candy Shoppe- Very cool old fashioned candy shop with the fun assortment of taffy and other candies plus a soda fountain. I got a really nice lemon Italian soda that was both cheap and yummy (like $2). 

Texas State Capitol- We had to get a little history and education in our visit so we stopped at the Capitol building. Security is really nice and while we didn't take the tour, it was a real treat to see. The building is gorgeous and surrounded by a lot of great memorial statues. 

ModCloth- I absolutely HAD to come to the Mod Cloth flagship store. It's got a cool concept- all the clothes are available in every size to try on and if you purchase anything, they ship it to your home for you. Great if you want to do some serious shopping but are low on luggage space! I've been a huge fan of Mod Cloth for a while and my only drawback has ever been the sizing so buying here eliminates that issue. 

Lone Star Riverboats- We had to see the bats. While lining up on Congress Avenue bridge is always a free option, I'm not a huge fan of crowds and the cruises were $10. It's a couple extra dollars if you buy in advance (which you should because the cruises do sell out). For $10, we got a fun, educational tour of the Austin skyline and a prime view of the bats exiting the bridge at sunset. Worth every penny and then some!

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