Spring and bluebonnet season is upon Austin and Texas right now, which means it’s that point of the year to check out the next slate of highly anticipated restaurant openings in the city.
The spring season will bring new restaurants from known chefs and restaurants. There’s Phililip Speer’s next big restaurant: the modern Mexican-leaning Comedor, heralded by chef Gabe Erales (formerly of Dai Due Taqueria). Then there’s forthcoming East Austin hotel Arrive with two restaurants overseen by Lenoir’s Jessica Maher and Todd Duplechan: the Portuguese-Goan restaurant Vixen’s Wedding and casual bar and restaurant Left’s Brick Bar. Pastrami-slingers Mum Foods is finally open an (albeit) temporary brick-and-mortar deli and Kome is getting into the hand roll-game.
With that, here are Austin’s most anticipated restaurants this spring, plus looks at the summer and beyond.
See an impending restaurant opening missing below? Send it through the tipline. This guide will be updated throughout the season as details change and places open.
Location: 501 Colorado Street, Downtown
Key Players: Philip Speer, Gabe Erales, Alan Delgado, William Ball
Projected Opening: April 2019
Status: Now open
Finally, Speer announced details for his previously hush-hush downtown restaurant. First, it will focus on modern Mexican cuisine, which makes sense since the kitchen is being led by Gabe Erales, who left Dai Due Taqueria and spent time at Noma both in Copenhagen and Mexico City. Helping out is Austin chef Alan Delgado, who had been the executive chef of tasting menu restaurant Counter 3.Five.VII and runs his own pop-up dinner series. And yes, Speer is getting back to doing what he loves: pastries and desserts. Expect dishes like house-made tortillas, hoja santa leaf-wrapped grilled dorade, mole verde, and more.
Vixen’s Wedding and Lefty’s Brick Bar at Arrive East Austin Hotel
Location: 1813 East 6th Street, East Austin
Key Players: Todd Duplechan, Jessica Maher, Thomas Calhoun
Projected Opening: May 2019
The boutique hotel boasts two restaurants when it opens this spring: the Goan- and Portuguese-inspired Vixen’s Wedding, which will emphasize seafood, house-made breads, natural wines, and cocktails. And then the casual Lefty’s Brick Bar, with sandwiches (like a po’ boy and banh mi mash-up), rotisserie meats, and indoor/outdoor space.
Location: 1023 Springdale Road, Govalle
Key Players: Masazumi Saio, Takehiro Asazu, Kayo Asazu
Opening Date: Wednesday, May 1, 2019
Essential Austin Japanese spot Kome, along with longtime Uchi chef Saio, is opening a new restaurant in Govalle which will feature three things. First, there will be casual hand rolls. Then, there will be quick, 45-minute omakase on the weekends. Finally, Uroko will also host educational culinary classes too. It’ll be found within the Springdale General complex, which is coming together.
Location: 2113 Manor Road, Cherrywood
Key Players: Matti Bills, Geoffrey Ellis, Madison Collins, Alex Manley
Projected Opening: Tuesday, April 23, 2019
Though Mum Foods’ very first brick-and-mortar is only opening for a year, it’s still going to be worth a visit or two. Along with sandwiches filled with great pastrami, beef sausages, and cold-cut meats, there will be sides like fermented and pickled foods, sides, and salads. Pastries, which will be concocted by Collins, will make use of beef fat, as well as breads by Alex Manley. The deli is taking over what had been Eastside Cafe’s pie shop. Mum still plans on opening a forever-brick-and-mortar with the deli, production facility, and maybe a bakery, in the future.
The ambitious East Austin Hotel from La Corsha Hospitality will feature one restaurant and two bars, opening in mid-April 2019. The restaurant, Sixth and Waller, from chef Jason Stude, will focus on international comfort foods. The rooftop bar Upside will take its cocktail inspirations from Central and South America and the Caribbean. The Pool Bar will highlight rums, agave spirits and frozen drinks. (1108 East 6th Street, East Austin)
Korean fried chicken restaurant and beer bar chain Left Wing Bar is opening its first American location on campus in the Urban Outfitters’ Space 24 Twenty sometime this April. The menu boasts of Korean fried chicken with plentiful sauces. (2416 Guadalupe Street, Drag)
Kerbey Lane Cafe’s healthly-focused restaurant High Note is set to open sometime in mid- to late April, although chef Joe Anguiano is no longer part of the project. The menu focuses on offering something for every diet need. Think toast slathered with edamame toast and avocados, poke wraps, and juices with optional booze. Baked goods and breads will come from Sour Duck Market and GYF Bakery, and ice cream from vegan sweets shop NadaMoo. (300 South Lamar Boulevard, Zilker) Status: Now open
French-Louisiana cafe Epicerie’s museum expansion into the Contemporary Austin’s sculpture park Laguna Gloria is set to open in late April with a simple comfort food menu (sandwiches, salads, baked goods, cookies) with dine-in and grab-and-go options and coffee/beer/wine. (3809 West 35th Street, Tarrytown)
Chicago-based third wave roasters Intelligentsia is opening up its very first Texas cafe in Austin sometime in the late spring. The coffee shop will be found within downtown office building Third + Shoal with speciality coffee and espresso drinks, plus food from local Austin restaurants and vendors. (208 Nueces Street, Downtown)
Chi’lantro is bringing its Korean-Mexican fusion fare and late night hours to downtown Austin with a new brick-and-mortar in May. (303 Colorado Street, Downtown)
The St. Genevieve replacement bar, Wonder Bar, is opening sometime in the spring, with interactive elements, cocktails, and food. (11500 Rock Rose Avenue, Domain Northside)
Asian restaurant Sugar Pine is opening up on Wooten in April with bento boxes, onigiri, and ice cream with flavors like black sesame seed and green tea. (8578 Research Boulevard, Wooten)
Summer 2019: Austin Proper; Buzz Mill Coffee [Govalle]; DeSano Pizzeria Napoletana [Downtown]; Hold Out Brewing; Intelligentsia Coffee; Julie Myrtille Bakery; The Kebab Shop; Nixta Taqueria; Pinch Boil House; Rebel Cheese; Rosedale Kitchen & Bar; Salt Traders Coastal Cooking [Zilker]; Swedish Hill Bakery & Cafe; Tipsy Alchemist; Toss Pizzeria [Westlake]; Ways and Means Oyster House
Rest of 2019: Alamo Drafthouse [Cedar Park]; Captain Quackenbush’s Coffeehouse and Bakery; Carve American Grille; Cuba 512; Family Business Brewing Co. [St. Elmo Public Market]; Hestia; Hopdoddy Burger Bar [Plaza Saltillo]; Night Owl [Round Rock]; Ranch Hand; Paperboy [brick-and-mortar]; Punch Bowl Social [downtown]; Salt & Time [St. Elmo Public Market]; Tiki Tatsu-ya; Unknown Lick Honest Ice Creams restaurant [St. Elmo Public Market]; Velvet Taco [South Congress]; WineLair
Unknown: [Rock Rose, Austin airport]; Batch Brewing; Bee’s Knees; Bobo’s Snack Bar; Burgerim; Cat’s Pajamas; Central Machine Works Brewery and Beer Hall; Counter Cafe [West Campus]; East Side Pies’ Market [Rosewood]; Fat Ni BBQ; Gati; The Goodnight [downtown]; Guild; Hummus Republic; LeRoy & Lewis [brick-and-mortar]; Magical Dessert Bar; Marinas; Mayfair; Mutts Canine Cantina; Nobibi; Oseyo; Parkside [Austin airport]; Pokeworks; Roya; Schaller’s Stube Sausage Bar [brick-and-mortar]; TenTen; Unknown Parkside Projects Restaurant [Hyde Park]; Unknown Ranch 616 Bar; Valentina’s Tex Mex BBQ [brick-and-mortar], Yard Milkshake Bar