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A Pound A Day in Central Texas - Part I

On June 30th we had the grand opportunity of hosting our oldest daughter’s wedding and celebration… in Austin, Texas, so this blog is part 1 of a food tour of Central Texas as experienced by my palate and now my waist line. We really enjoyed the wedding and returning to old haunts to eat … and my waist line can prove it. After two and half weeks of dieting and cycling, I still need to lose another pound or two to return to my pre-trip weight … but it was worth it!!!

Downtown Austin

Saturday Breakfast - Café Java, Round Rock, TX

$ (1 out of 5)

✔✔✔✔✔ (5 out of 5)

This is my old haunt and has a special place in my heart. The food is excellent and the staff is very friendly. I mostly have eaten the breakfast food, but every time I’ve eaten from the lunch and dinner menu it has been a very, very good experience. Check out the specials on the board they are usually extra special.

I really like the omelets … all of the them … from the traditional Ham and Cheese omelet to the California omelet with avocado and beans sprouts to the country omelet that has cheese, sausage and hash browns in the omelet. The hash browns here are the best I’ve ever had … I think part of the reason is that they cook them in butter … I’ve had to ration my intake. The filtered coffee is relatively inexpensive and flows freely, but you can also order custom coffees from the barista.

My wife’s favorites are the banana pancakes, the breakfast tacos and the Eggs Benedict.

A couple can eat a very nice and filling breakfast for under $20.

The location is a non-descript shopping center (or strip mall) location but the interior design, the food and especially the staff more than make up for the plainness of the outside. It is worth your while to walk in and try it out.

Sunday Lunch - Black’s B-B-Q, Lockhart, TX

$$ (2 out of 5)

✔✔✔✔✔ (5 out of 5)

This is a new B-B-Q place to us, since it is located in Lockhart, a 40 minute ride from downtown Austin and about an hour from our old home in Round Rock. It is probably a good thing for our petrol bill and our waistline that we had not discovered this place while living in Central Texas. Black’s is probably the best Bar-B-Q I’ve had.

The location is quaint. We arrived on a hot June Sunday, temp at 38C (100F), so the streets were relatively quiet except outside Black’s B-B-Q where things were bustling. When arriving at Black’s you are immediately in the serving line where you will pick out your sides and your meats. There were a large variety of sides but I went with the traditional sides of potato salad and coleslaw. For meats there is a choice of brisket, beef ribs, pork ribs, pork loin, turkey, and chicken. I had the brisket and the beef ribs. Most of the meats are by the pound. As a warning the servings are large. I originally ordered two beef ribs, the gentleman behind the counter asked: “are you sure?” as he plunked down the largest beef rib I had ever seen. My reply: ”One will do”. As it turned out I just needed the one rib not the brisket too…but you only live once. The bill for the two of us was about $40 and our eyes were definitely bigger than our stomachs…. although we gave it our best shot.

Most Sundays, Black’s has live music. On this Sunday, our favorite Central Texas Blue Grass Band, The Sieker Band was playing. As far as décor this place is the real thing … many places aspire to be this kitsch, but this is all original.

No beer or wine here, so come prepared to drink sweet tea or soft drinks (or water) or call ahead to check out the BYOB policy.

Monday – Wildfire Georgetown, TX

$$$$ (4 out of 5)

✔✔✔✔✔(5 out of 5)

This is our favorite “special dinner” restaurant in CenTex. This restaurant is not for vegetarians. My favorite dish is the “cowboy rib-eye”. Carol’s favorite is the Filet Mignon. The second favorite for both of us is the pork loin. To quote my wife “the roasted corn hickory shrimp chowder is awesome”. The hot applewood bacon spinach salad is a favorite of us both. We’ve shared a meal with others who have ordered the Bison and the Ostrich. They both said it was very nice.

The wine list is not the most extensive I have ever seen, but matches our palate and the menu very well. If you’d like a wine suggestion ask Jo, the manager, for a recommendation, she is very familiar with the wine list. Wildfire also has several local beers on tap and a full bar. The dessert menu is very tempting and has not disappointed when we have had room left for dessert … not often because of the big portions.

The restaurant is just off the square in Georgetown, TX and within sight of the historic County Courthouse. The square is a great place to take a walk and window shop while “walking off” a great dinner.

See You in the Pub!

Jet Lag Jack

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