clock menu more-arrow no yes mobile

Filed under:

Austin Icon Shady Grove Closes After Almost 30 Years

The Zilker restaurant’s last day of service is today

The iconic sign at Shady Grove on Barton Springs
The iconic sign at Shady Grove on Barton Springs
Shady Grove/Facebook
Erin Russell is associate editor of Eater Austin, a native Austinite, and a big fan of carbs.

Shady Grove, the Zilker-adjacent restaurant known for live music and strong margaritas, is permanently closing after service today, after 28 years in Austin, as confirmed in a call to the restaurant. It’s unclear what will happen to the space at 1624 Barton Springs Road.

The owners of Tex-Mex chain Chuy’s, Mike Young and John Zapp, opened Shady Grove in 1992, serving Southwestern-tinged fare like green chili cheeseburgers, queso, tacos, and more. It was perhaps best known for hosting free live music every Thursday during the summer.

Though no reason has been given for the closure, the area’s skyrocketing real estate value (the site was most recently appraised at $5 million) and the reduced business due to the COVID-19 pandemic are likely causes. Unlike many of the other permanent closures due to the COVID-19 pandemic, Shady Grove was serving takeout.

Barton Springs Road has seen a lot of turnover recently. Barbecue and brewery restaurant Uncle Billy’s also closed on the same street in October, after 13 years in business, though the brand is still producing beer and canned drinks. Irish pub Darcy’s Donkey closed in June last year after eight months in business — that spot is now a second location of Ski Shores Cafe.