Howdy, y'all! As I mentioned in my previous post, I did a fair amount of traveling this fall (Philadelphia, Austin, and Dublin), so here's my long-awaited post on Texas! I traveled to Texas back over Columbus Day weekend with my friend Alina to visit our friend Bri, who goes to grad school in Austin. It was a very short trip (only 1 full day!) but we were able to squeeze in a lot of fun and food while we were there! I wanted to pass along a few recommendations in case anyone is looking to plan their own trip down south.
Alina and I flew into Dallas because it was cheaper, then rented a car and made the 3-hour trip to Austin. When our flights landed in the late afternoon, we were both really hungry and there was no way we were going to last until we got to Austin. So we decided to make a pit stop for food before beginning the drive, and we settled on BoomerJack's, a sports bar located near AT&T stadium. It was your standard, grease-soaked bar food, but with gluten free options! It's always really exciting to me when places like this - which I would never expect to have something that I can eat - actually make an effort with gluten free food. They could make the fries in a separate fryer upon request, so Alina and I decided to start with some cheese fries. They were super greasy and fattening, but it's such a luxury to be able to eat this sort of food that I just couldn't resist. After that, I ordered a chicken sandwich with a side of fries. By the end of the meal, I was stuffed and ready to make the long drive to Austin!
Once we got to Austin, we had one of the best gluten free brunches of my life at Blue Dahlia Bistro, located close to where Bri lives. It's a little French cafe located in hot, sunny Texas, and it's adorable. There's a leafy, shaded patio out back that was absolutely perfect - I would definitely suggest asking for a table back there rather than inside. They had a ton of gluten free options and could do any of their tartines (open-faced sandwiches) gluten free. It was so hard to pick just one, but I ended up deciding on the ham and gruyere. The gluten free bread was great, and I ate almost every bite. I am dying to go back and try more, like the smoked salmon one or the French goat cheese. Absolute perfection.
I didn't take pictures of my last few meals but wanted to give a few shoutouts and bonus recommendations. For our sole dinner, in Austin, we ended up doing kind of two half-dinners. First, we headed over to the restaurant where Bri's boyfriend works, Juniper. There weren't a ton of GF options, and no gluten free options marked on the menu, but the staff was helpful about pointing out the things that I could and couldn't eat.
After that, we met up with Bri's friends at a barbecue joint, Black's BBQ, where most of the meat options are gluten free (check their website for details). I was already pretty full from dinner #1 but still managed to save room for some brisket, which was great. I would definitely go back again.
I'm hoping to make another trip down to Austin next year, so stay tuned for more recommendations at some point in the future!