AN INSIDER’S GUIDE TO SXSW
Over at indieWIRE check out their guide of the best spots to eat, drink and shop while in Austin. Updating the list from last year, they also have contributions from people who know the lay of the land: Matt Dentler, Janet Pierson, and Austin native, director Bryan Poyser. (And head over to our SXSW page to read a guide to follow SXSW through social media.)
Here’s a few of my favorite picks from the iW guide.
BEST TEX MEX: Overall the top place for Mexican food was the highly recommmended Manuel’s (310 Congress Ave). A local noted that it’s, “Not cheap, a bit noisy but convenient and tasty,” while another encouraged, “If you’ve never had mole (pronounced, “moe-laay”) enchiladas, go here, order them and prepare to be a convert.” While Manuel’s was the top choice, other noted suggestions included the always crowded Guero’s on South Congress.
Also, Off the beaten path, but well worth the adventure: Polvos on S 1st Street. Authentic food and super-strong margaritas.
Juan in a Million (2300 E. Cesar Chavez) is known by locals as the best spot for hangover rescue when it’s so bad you have to wear your sunglasses just to get out the door.
Polvos on south 1st. “Highly recommend is the chile relleno al nogal. I don’t even like chile rellenos – it is that good.” Also try Curra’s on Oltorf- their avacado margarita is worth a sip. Also el azteca on the east side rocks..
Expensive: Try Fonda San Miguel, great food “but for me Tex-Mex is all about the cheap.”
COCKTAILS: For the well-steel livered, SXSW has many parties and coolios hopping out and about, but for another option, locals recommended The Speakeasy (412 Congress Ave) and its roof-top hang-out scene, along with the pet friendly Opal Divines, and the Driskill Hotel (604 Brazos St), which is always popular. For the best margarita downtown, one local recommended Vivo. And to those looking for a late-night drink, they offered a tip to drop by the popular Beauty Bar (617 E 7th St) or Foundation (307 W Fifth St). Cheers!
If you are a filmmaker, musician, artist then you should too. try: Rio Ritas (cafe and cocktails), good knight (drinks and some small bites) or Shangrila all on east 6th all within a block from each other. Around town: Longbranch on East 11th.
LATE NIGHT FOOD: Anyone hungry afterhours is tipped to try McCormick & Schmick‘s (401 Congress Avenue) late-night happy hour featuring, “insanely cheap and delicious appetizers & limited entrees.” Other locals suggested Kerby Lane (open all night, 3704 Kerbey Lane). But the widely recommended Magnolia Cafe (1920 S Congress Ave) is without a doubt a good choice anytime, it’s open 24 hours and offers an array of tasty items.