clock menu more-arrow no yes mobile

Filed under:

The Biggest Austin Restaurant News Stories of 2017

From the Unbarlievable controversy to Supernatural co-star’s Hill Country brewery

Community activist Marcos Mancillas speaking in front of Unbarlievable
Community activist Marcos Mancillas speaking in front of Unbarlievable
Nadia Chaudhury/EATX
Erin Russell is associate editor of Eater Austin, a native Austinite, and a big fan of carbs.

If 2017 taught us anything, it’s that bad behavior will no longer go unnoticed, and the same was true in Austin restaurant news. The most-read story of the year involved the owner of circus-themed Rainey Street bar Unbarlievable getting called out for racist comments online. Exciting new restaurants —from a celebrity-owned brewery to a new massive Asian supermarket—and Franklin Barbecue’s alarming closure also caught the eye of Eater Austin readers this year.

Here are the 10 most-read stories of the year (excluding maps and guides) on Eater Austin of 2017:

1. Rainey Street Bar Unbarlievable Is Under Fire for Racist Comments

Unbarlievable owner Brandon Cash responded to unfavorable comments on Facebook, Yelp, and Google with racist and crude language, prompting outrage and protests. Cash was apparently ousted from his affiliation with adult bowling alley The Goodnight, but Unbarlievable still stands.

2. ‘Supernatural’ Star Jensen Ackles Is Opening a Texas Brewery

The actor and his family announced plans to open a brewery, Family Business Brewing Co., in Dripping Springs, which is still under construction. The head brewer is Nate Seale, formerly of (512) Brewing Company.

3. Massive Korean Supermarket H Mart Lands in Austin

The popular Asian grocery store chain H Mart has since announced an opening date in January and the food court lineup, which looks amazing, featuring Korean fried chicken and barbecue from noted San Francisco chef Deuki Hong.

4. Franklin Barbecue Caught on Fire

The Austin institution was put out of commission in late August thanks to a stray ember, and closed for three months. It thankfully reopened last month, just before Thanksgiving.

5. Inside Ramen Tatsu-Ya’s Funky Texas Izakaya, Opening This Week

Take a look back at Kemuri Tatsu-ya's beginnings, before the national accolades started rolling in.

6. NBA Star Leaves $14 Tip After Spending $487 in an Austin Bar

Oklahoma City Thunder basketball player Andre Roberson’s 2.8% tip stirred the ire of the internet, especially considering his recent contract for $30 million.

7. Austin Restaurants Closed Today for Hurricane Harvey

Though Austin did not suffer catastrophic damages like Houston, the record-breaking hurricane’s effects were felt all throughout Texas. After the storm, the city banded together to raise money for repair efforts.

8. Biderman’s Jewish-Style Deli Opens in Far West With Sandwiches and Soups

Bagel news is important news. Biderman’s Deli quickly became a neighborhood go-to with classic sandwiches, soups, coffee, and sweet sweet carbs.

9. Jester King Brewery Pulls Out of Beer Collaboration With Wicked Weed

After the North Carolina brewery was bought by the Anheuser-Busch conglomerate, Jester King decided to cancel a planned collaboration on principle.

10. Asti Suspends Lunch After Employees Leave In Light of Immigration Raids

After two women in charge of lunch left the restaurant over fears of ICE raids, the owner of the Hyde Park Italian restaurant had to suspend the service while searching for replacements.

H Mart

9896 Bellaire Boulevard, , TX 77036 (713) 468-0606 Visit Website

Family Business Beer Co.

19510 Hamilton Pool Road, Dripping Springs, Texas 78620 Visit Website

Jester King Craft Brewery

13005 Fitzhugh Road, Austin, TX 78736 512 537 5100 Visit Website

Kemuri Tatsu-Ya

2713 East 2nd Street, , TX 78702 (512) 803-2224 Visit Website

Biderman's Deli

3742 Far West Boulevard, , TX 78731 (512) 340-1404 Visit Website


76 Rainey Street, Austin, Texas Visit Website

ASTI Trattoria

408 East 43rd Street, , TX 78751 (512) 451-1218 Visit Website

Franklin Barbecue

900 East 11th Street, , TX 78702 (512) 653-1187 Visit Website