Here's where Austin food critics and bloggers ate this week:
AUSTIN AMERICAN-STATESMAN —"Some Rosedale residents may not want to hear it, but Épicerie Café & Grocery is an excellent addition to their neighborhood." That's Matthew Odam's take on chef Sarah McIntosh's "rather boisterous" little cafe, which opened in a former salon space despite protestations from the neighbors. It rates a 7.5 of 10 for great sandwiches (the lamb's "shaved into velvety folds"), a veal breast with "with surprising tenderness," high-quality baked goods and one of the best cheeseburgers in the city. On the downside, Odam's disappointed by a deconstructed duck prosciutto salad that's "too cute by half" and a cheese program that "could use a crash-course in curds."
AUSTIN CHRONICLE —Mick Vann finds that John Mueller "has become almost gracious at his new digs" at John Mueller Meat Co. on the east side. He writes that Mueller's "at the very top of his game," serving "fantastic" barbecue behind Kellee's Place. Vann says the brisket may top Franklin Barbecue's, and the beef ribs for which Mueller's become known? "There were sugar cookies of caramelized fat hanging onto the edge of a crusty bark, and the meat underneath literally melted in your mouth." If anyone's worried whether Mueller will make another sudden departure from this operation, Vann reassures: "this newest endeavor looks and feels very permanent to me."
FED MAN WALKING —Mike Sutter breaks down the banh mi at Baguette House, finding "a better class of fast food" despite a "rubbery pork loaf" that's "sliced thin like the luncheon loaf of misspent youth." In fact, Sutter's favorites at the North Austin spot aren't banh mi at all, but a pâté chaud that's "as cheap as a fast-food biscuit and dramatically more satisfying" and the spring rolls, filled with "layers of tender grilled beef with the robust character of street food."
· Diners will be glad Épicerie Café & Grocery moved in [MyStatesman]
· The Lazarus of Barbecue Rises in East Austin [Austin Chronicle]
· Sandwich City: Baguette House [Fed Man Walking]
· All Restaurant Reviews on Eater Austin [-EATX-]
épicerie. [Photo: Spencer Selvidge/EATX]