clock menu more-arrow no yes mobile

Filed under:

Austin’s Best Dining Neighborhood of 2017, According to Local Industry Experts

Abundant choices in the east and downtown areas

Rattan chairs surround a bar at Le Politique.
Le Politique
Wynn Myers

As is the tradition as we near the end of 2017, Eater asked a trusted group of friends, industry types, and local bloggers for their takes on the past culinary year in Austin. The annual survey spans eight questions, from dining surprises to best food neighborhoods and disappointing meals. All answers will be revealed as the week rolls on — cut, pasted, (mostly) unedited, and in no particular order. Readers, add your answers in the comments below. Question number four:

What was the best dining neighborhood of 2017?

Tom Thornton, freelance food writer and contributor at Eater Austin

There's a strong case for Burnet Road, but the biggest growth has been in Mueller.

Jolène M. Bouchon, critic at Austin Monthly

In previous years, it's been Holly, but I've seen a more equitable distribution this year. You can get a lot of great food on the East Side, but you can find equally excellent meals along the Burnet corridor and down South.

Sommer Brugal, freelance writer and contributor at Eater Austin

South First Street. With Elizabeth Street Café, Mellizos Tacos, Bouldin Creek Café, Sway, Soup Peddler, El Primo, Fresa’s Chicken al Carbon, and Seventh Flag Coffee, one can have upscale dining, quick eats from food trucks, and delicious coffee all within a few blocks.

Jane Ko, blogger at A Taste of Koko

Downtown AustinLe Politique, Flower Child, Holy Roller, and Tumble 22 all opened in downtown Austin this year.

Erin Kuschner, editor of Time Out Austin


Matthew Odam, restaurant critic at Statesman

East Austin had five of my top eleven restaurants of the yearDai Due, Juniper, Kemuri Tatsu-ya, Franklin Barbecue, and Pitchfork Pretty, so I'll say broadly say "East Austin." (And L'Oca d'Oro and Kyoten Sushiko are kind of in East Austin, despite being in Mueller neighborhood.)

Kelly Stocker, creative consultant and contributor at Eater Austin

East Austin.

Anastacia Uriegas, freelance food and cocktail writer


Brandon Watson, food editor at CultureMap Austin

Maybe it's because I started working there, or maybe there's the excitement of impending hotel construction or the opening of the Central Library, but downtown has a renewed energy. Le Politique and the impending Fareground feel like just the beginning.

Erin Russell, associate editor of Eater Austin

Holly — with Pitchfork Pretty, La Matta, and Kemuri Tatsu-ya going up, there's really no other option.

Nadia Chaudhury, editor of Eater Austin

Downtown Austin is transforming into an actual worthy dining destination: Holy Roller, Tumble 22, My Name is Joe Coffee Co., Forthright, excellent cocktail bars and coffee shops, etc., etc. There are even more to come in 2018 with Fareground, Brew & Brew’s new restaurant and brewery, the expansion of Tex-Mex stalwart Polvo’s, and whatever is in store for the Line Hotel and the large restaurant portfolio of the Fairmont.