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The Most Exciting Restaurants of 2024, According to Austin Dining Experts

A new pizza spot, a barbecue truck’s next step, and an unnamed fine-dining spot

A plate of meats and vegetables.
A barbecue plate from LeRroy & Lewis.
Taylor Gorman
Erin Russell is associate editor of Eater Austin, a native Austinite, and a big fan of carbs.

As is the tradition as we near the end of 2023, Eater asked a trusted group of friends, industry types, and local bloggers for their takes on the past culinary year in Austin. All answers will be revealed before the year ends — cut, pasted, (mostly) unedited, and in no particular order. Question number five:

What restaurant or restaurant-related debut are you most excited for in 2024?

Eric Webb, freelance writer and Eater contributing writer

I will be at Bambino from the L’oca d’Oro team with bells on.

Pat Sharpe, restaurant critic, Texas Monthly

I’m dying to see what chef Michael Fojtasek (of Olamaie and Mai Day) plans to do with the main restaurant at the Albert Hotel in Fredericksburg, scheduled to open soon. They’re not saying what the menu will be — just gourmet farm-to-table. It will be in a historic structure on Main Street next to the little building with the cute bas-relief stone elephant over the door (if you’ve been to Fredericksburg, you know which one I mean).

Nicolai McCrary, Austin staff writer, the Infatuation

Leroy & Lewis is one of my favorite barbecue spots in the whole city, and it’ll be cool to see what they do with the larger space. I’m very excited and curious to see what Con Todo gets up to next with an expansion. Some of the biggest glow-ups in Austin had food truck origins. It blows my mind that places like Odd Duck once served food in a little dirt lot on South Lamar.

Chris Hughes, features editor, Texas Highways

I already mentioned Bambino, so I’ll say the brick-and-mortar of LeRoy & Lewis Barbecue. Evan LeRoy is so talented and I can’t wait to see what he introduces with more space.

Madeline Hollern, editor-in-chief, Austin Monthly

Excited to try Bambino, the L’Oca d’Oro pizza spinoff.

Lenny Dewi, @eats_n_noods

Chef Bob of Sekse Fud Ko is opening a new concept, Lao’d Bar. Also waiting for the opening of Raku AYCE (All-You-Can-Eat) Sushi in Round Rock, Fresh International Market, and Happy Lamb Hot Pot.

Jane Ko, blogger, A Taste of Koko

The Kitchen by Kimbal Musk (Elon Musk’s brother) — definitely intrigued.

Darcie Duttweiler, freelance writer and Eater contributing writer

I can’t wait to eat all of the pizza at L’Oca d’Oro’s Bambino. I’m irrationally excited about Donkey Mo’s finally opening a brick-and-mortar. I’m also looking forward to whatever winemaker Rae Wilson does next with a future Austin tasting room.

Erin Russell, associate editor, Eater Austin

I’m excited for Bambino. Pizza from L’Oca d’Oro? I’m in. I also agree with the crowd that, given the wonders they currently churn out of a small trailer, giving LeRoy & Lewis more space is sure to yield great things. I also know a certain award-winning fine dining vet is opening a new restaurant, and I’m excited to try their food!

Nadia Chaudhury, editor, Eater Austin

Seconding, thirding, fourthing, etc. the LeRoy & Lewis physical restaurant. The team has been dreaming of this new space for years so it’ll be exciting and fun and delicious to see the results. It also just makes me happy that it’s also in South Austin.

I’m looking forward to seeing Origin Studio House to unveil its fully realized community space with drinks, coffee, and food.

Plus, I know Nickel City’s Travis Tober’s new bar Half Moon at the already-opened Murray’s Tavern patio will be hella fun when it opens.

But also, if there are chefs/restaurants/food trucks opening something new next year, let me know!!!!!!

Wine For the People [Fredericksburg]

113 East Park Street, Fredericksburg, Texas 78624 Visit Website

LeRoy & Lewis [Restaurant]

5621 Emerald Forest Drive, Austin, Texas 78745 Visit Website

Origin Studio House

2925 East 12th Street, Austin, Texas 78702 Visit Website

The Albert Hotel

213 East Austin Street, Fredericksburg, Texas 78624 Visit Website

SXSE Food Co (Seksē•Füd•Kō)

415 East Saint Elmo Road, , TX 78745 (512) 902-5048 Visit Website

Bambino

979 Springdale Road, Suite 153, Austin, Texas 78702

LeRoy & Lewis

121 Pickle Rd, Austin, TX 78704 (512) 945-9882 Visit Website

The Kitchen [Austin]

400 West Sixth Street, Austin, Texas 78701 Visit Website

Donkey Mo's

5312 Airport Boulevard, Suite D, Austin, Texas 78751

Half Moon

2316 Webberville Road, Austin, Texas