A visit to Austin would not be complete without checking out the Alamo Drafthouse Cinema. This legendary theater chain (there are nine locations across Texas and one in Virginia) is known for serving beer and food alongside its fantastic curated film screenings—like the Lord of the Rings marathon and hobbit feast or a boy cartoon versus girl cartoon smackdown with all-you-can-eat sugar cereal buffet.
Yes, there are showings of first-run movies too. We scoped out the South Lamar location to see True Grit. The theater is laid out with extra-wide seating rows, terraced higher than normal so that servers can pass between them without obstructing people's views. While you watch, you can write down food and drink orders on a white sheet of paper that slips into the rail in front of you. And the Drafthouse lives up to its name, offering a lot of Austin's local craft beers on tap, including a great porter made in the city by 512 Brewing Company with local pecans. Toasty, malty, but balanced enough to finish clean and dry.
Can someone in the Bay Area please open a franchise, stat?
Alamo Drafthouse Cinema, South Lamar
1120 S. Lamar Boulevard, Austin