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Someone holding up two stacked halves of a torta sandwich with melty cheese, meat, and vegetables.
A torta from La Plancha.
La Plancha

The Hottest New Restaurants in Austin, August 2022

Tortas to Peking duck to vegan tacos

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A torta from La Plancha.
| La Plancha

Readers of Eater usually have the same question: Where should I eat right now? Amid the pandemic, the Austin restaurant scene remains as exciting as ever, as new places have continued to open. With all of this in mind, Eater is updating its monthly heatmap (now in its 126th iteration), highlighting a mix of exciting restaurants, trucks, and food services open right now.

This August update adds Brazilian pizza restaurant Delucca, vegan Mexican spot Nissi VegMex, Chinese restaurant Bamboo House, and torta spot La Plancha.

Know of something new and exciting that should be on our radar? Email the Eater Austin team at austin@eater.com. To see which places were previously on the heatmap, visit the archive. For a look at Austin’s outstanding dining destinations, check out the Eater 38 map.

Health experts consider dining out to be a high-risk activity for the unvaccinated; it may pose a risk for the vaccinated, especially in areas with substantial COVID transmission. The latest CDC guidance is here; find a COVID-19 vaccination site here.

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Note: Restaurants on this map are listed geographically.

Honey Pig Restaurant

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East Coast Korean barbecue chain Honey Pig opened its first Austin location in July. The restaurant features grill-it-yourself brisket, and bulgogi, with other dishes like noodles, soups, and bibimbap to round out the menu. Honey Pig is open for indoor dine-in services.

Delucca Gaucho Pizza & Wine Austin

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The Dallas-Fort Worth mini-chain made its way into Austin with its all-you-can-eat Brazilian pizza in July. The toppings are internationally wide-ranging, from chicken tikka masala to Mexican elotes to halal Buffalo chicken, plus dessert ones like a guava-mascarpone pie. Takeout orders can be placed online; there are indoor dine-in services.

A plate of four varied pizza slices, meatballs, and a green salad.
Slices of pizza at Delucca Gaucho Pizza & Wine.
Delucca Gaucho Pizza & Wine

Nissi VegMex

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The East Austin food truck turned into a physical restaurant back in April, serving up vegan Mexican fare in Wooten. Look out for tacos, burritos, flautas, and chalupas made with soybeans, such as carne asada, birria, and chicharrones. Takeout and delivery orders can be placed online; there are indoor dine-in areas.

Patrizi's

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Fresh pasta makers Patrizi’s opened a second location in Cuernavaca in Westlake this May. The new counter service restaurant serves breakfast and lunch items like panzerotti stuffed with eggs or Nutella, sandwiches, and house-made focaccia. The dinner menu has those famous pastas like carbonara and cacio e pepe alongside salads and snacks, and the restaurant has a full bar. It’s open for dine-in only with indoor and outdoor seating.

A focaccia sandwich with tomato slices, white cheese, and green leaves on a metal tray.
A focaccia sandwich from Patrizi’s
Patrizi’s

Bamboo House

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The mega-popular Houston Chinese restaurant made its Austin debut in July, bringing along its ever-so-famous crispy Peking duck, plus other Sichuan specialties, to the Crestview neighborhood. There are indoor dine-in services.

Ensenada

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For a taste of Ensenada, Mexico, head to the bright Chestnut truck. Co-owners and mother-and-daughter team Liz Everett and Stephanie Everett Martin are slinging out all sorts of seafood-filled treats, from fried fish and shrimp tacos to cócteles de camarones to ceviche tostadas since June.

La Plancha

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The new Mexican street food restaurant in Blackland is all about tortas since July, with barbacoa, vegan quinoa-black bean patties, fried chicken, and even eggs. The menu is rounded out with tacos and quesadillas. To-go orders can be placed online; there are indoor and outdoor dine-in services.

Diner Bar Austin

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Finally: chef Mashama Bailey and Johno Morisano opened their first-ever Texas restaurants in Austin this year within the Thompson Austin Hotel. The second of these is the Southern-New American table-service restaurant the Diner Bar in April, rounded out by chef de cuisine Kristine Kittrell. This means hearty dishes like the decadent foie gras, grits, and strawberry mostarda; fantastic fried ugali paired with salsa macha; and buttery shrimp and Carolina gold rice, plus there’s a raw oyster bar and lots of martinis. It’s open for indoor dine-in service.

Local Foods

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Houston cafe Local Foods expanded to its permanent location in downtown Austin in June after an extended pop-up. The cafe serves sandwiches, salads, beer, wine, and more. Local Foods is open for dine-in and carryout.

A pile of sandwiches.
Sandwiches from Local Foods.
Julie Soefer

Dean's Italian Steakhouse

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The sleek, loungey steakhouse opened in the ground floor of the JW Marriott hotel in June. If offers hearty handmade pasta, fresh seafood like crab legs, and of course, high-end steaks. Dean’s is open for indoor dining and has a patio as well.

Maie Day

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South Congress Hotel has a new restaurant with Maie Day, from hospitality groups MaieB (Olamaie) and New Waterloo (which runs the hotel) in May. The chophouse menu features steaks, a tomahawk pork chop, a raw bar, and cocktails. It’s open for indoor and outdoor dine-in services.

Casper Fermentables

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Farmers market staple Casper Fermantables opened a fast-casual deli and store in Sunset Valley in June. The store serves bagel sandwiches, focaccia avocado toast, kombucha, and other fermented goods.

Side Eye Pizza

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One of the founders of pizza truck Dough Boys (RIP) is continuing his pizza legacy with Side Eye, which opened in July. Side Eye offers Neapolitan pizza from a wood-burning oven, including creations like the Hippie, which features Italian sausage, kale, cipollini onions, fontina, white sauce, and spicy Calabrian peppers. The pizza truck even has a vegan cheese option. Outdoor dining is available at Meanwhile Brewing.

A pizza pie topped with pepperoni slices, sliced round onions, sliced green olives, and globs of white cheese and red sauce.
PIzza from Side Eye.
Kayla Burton

Honey Pig Restaurant

East Coast Korean barbecue chain Honey Pig opened its first Austin location in July. The restaurant features grill-it-yourself brisket, and bulgogi, with other dishes like noodles, soups, and bibimbap to round out the menu. Honey Pig is open for indoor dine-in services.

Delucca Gaucho Pizza & Wine Austin

A plate of four varied pizza slices, meatballs, and a green salad.
Slices of pizza at Delucca Gaucho Pizza & Wine.
Delucca Gaucho Pizza & Wine

The Dallas-Fort Worth mini-chain made its way into Austin with its all-you-can-eat Brazilian pizza in July. The toppings are internationally wide-ranging, from chicken tikka masala to Mexican elotes to halal Buffalo chicken, plus dessert ones like a guava-mascarpone pie. Takeout orders can be placed online; there are indoor dine-in services.

A plate of four varied pizza slices, meatballs, and a green salad.
Slices of pizza at Delucca Gaucho Pizza & Wine.
Delucca Gaucho Pizza & Wine

Nissi VegMex

The East Austin food truck turned into a physical restaurant back in April, serving up vegan Mexican fare in Wooten. Look out for tacos, burritos, flautas, and chalupas made with soybeans, such as carne asada, birria, and chicharrones. Takeout and delivery orders can be placed online; there are indoor dine-in areas.

Patrizi's

A focaccia sandwich with tomato slices, white cheese, and green leaves on a metal tray.
A focaccia sandwich from Patrizi’s
Patrizi’s

Fresh pasta makers Patrizi’s opened a second location in Cuernavaca in Westlake this May. The new counter service restaurant serves breakfast and lunch items like panzerotti stuffed with eggs or Nutella, sandwiches, and house-made focaccia. The dinner menu has those famous pastas like carbonara and cacio e pepe alongside salads and snacks, and the restaurant has a full bar. It’s open for dine-in only with indoor and outdoor seating.

A focaccia sandwich with tomato slices, white cheese, and green leaves on a metal tray.
A focaccia sandwich from Patrizi’s
Patrizi’s

Bamboo House

The mega-popular Houston Chinese restaurant made its Austin debut in July, bringing along its ever-so-famous crispy Peking duck, plus other Sichuan specialties, to the Crestview neighborhood. There are indoor dine-in services.

Ensenada

For a taste of Ensenada, Mexico, head to the bright Chestnut truck. Co-owners and mother-and-daughter team Liz Everett and Stephanie Everett Martin are slinging out all sorts of seafood-filled treats, from fried fish and shrimp tacos to cócteles de camarones to ceviche tostadas since June.

La Plancha

The new Mexican street food restaurant in Blackland is all about tortas since July, with barbacoa, vegan quinoa-black bean patties, fried chicken, and even eggs. The menu is rounded out with tacos and quesadillas. To-go orders can be placed online; there are indoor and outdoor dine-in services.

Diner Bar Austin

Finally: chef Mashama Bailey and Johno Morisano opened their first-ever Texas restaurants in Austin this year within the Thompson Austin Hotel. The second of these is the Southern-New American table-service restaurant the Diner Bar in April, rounded out by chef de cuisine Kristine Kittrell. This means hearty dishes like the decadent foie gras, grits, and strawberry mostarda; fantastic fried ugali paired with salsa macha; and buttery shrimp and Carolina gold rice, plus there’s a raw oyster bar and lots of martinis. It’s open for indoor dine-in service.

Local Foods

A pile of sandwiches.
Sandwiches from Local Foods.
Julie Soefer

Houston cafe Local Foods expanded to its permanent location in downtown Austin in June after an extended pop-up. The cafe serves sandwiches, salads, beer, wine, and more. Local Foods is open for dine-in and carryout.

A pile of sandwiches.
Sandwiches from Local Foods.
Julie Soefer

Dean's Italian Steakhouse

The sleek, loungey steakhouse opened in the ground floor of the JW Marriott hotel in June. If offers hearty handmade pasta, fresh seafood like crab legs, and of course, high-end steaks. Dean’s is open for indoor dining and has a patio as well.

Maie Day

South Congress Hotel has a new restaurant with Maie Day, from hospitality groups MaieB (Olamaie) and New Waterloo (which runs the hotel) in May. The chophouse menu features steaks, a tomahawk pork chop, a raw bar, and cocktails. It’s open for indoor and outdoor dine-in services.

Casper Fermentables

Farmers market staple Casper Fermantables opened a fast-casual deli and store in Sunset Valley in June. The store serves bagel sandwiches, focaccia avocado toast, kombucha, and other fermented goods.

Side Eye Pizza

A pizza pie topped with pepperoni slices, sliced round onions, sliced green olives, and globs of white cheese and red sauce.
PIzza from Side Eye.
Kayla Burton

One of the founders of pizza truck Dough Boys (RIP) is continuing his pizza legacy with Side Eye, which opened in July. Side Eye offers Neapolitan pizza from a wood-burning oven, including creations like the Hippie, which features Italian sausage, kale, cipollini onions, fontina, white sauce, and spicy Calabrian peppers. The pizza truck even has a vegan cheese option. Outdoor dining is available at Meanwhile Brewing.

A pizza pie topped with pepperoni slices, sliced round onions, sliced green olives, and globs of white cheese and red sauce.
PIzza from Side Eye.
Kayla Burton

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