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Optimista's Profile

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I love bean and cheese tacos

Bring a friend and split one carne asada and one bean & cheese!

Apr 11, 2015
Optimista in Austin
1

Bachelor party

Will you have a car?

Apr 11, 2015
Optimista in Austin

I love bean and cheese tacos

I totally agree. I would not normally order bean & cheese anything, but that burrito is amazing.

Apr 09, 2015
Optimista in Austin

Sala and Betty on Airport - soft opening report

Must be one bad chef (or one good chef) back there, as my experience of several of those dishes was vastly different than yours. Ah, consistency - the bane of so many Austin restaurants.

Mar 24, 2015
Optimista in Austin

Saturday Breakfast

I haven't been since they changed chefs, but TRACE used to serve a pretty mean breakfast.

Mar 24, 2015
Optimista in Austin

Best Group recommendation for a recruiting event?

You could probably get by on $1000 at Salty Sow, but I don't *think* their private room is large enough to seat 25.

Hopfields' private room might accommodate your group and I'm pretty sure you could get out for around $1000 there.

Z Tejas on 6th Street could probably fit both your budget and space needs.

Mandola's at the Triangle also has private space and for sure you could spend less than $1000 there. I'm not sure how big their private space is, though, as I've never been in it.

Mar 15, 2015
Optimista in Austin
1

Sala and Betty on Airport - soft opening report

I've been twice, now. First time they were only serving the drive-through menu so four of us got a family meal (1 lb of meat and two large sides) with half sirloin and half pulled pork and chose garlic green beans and fries as our sides. The pulled pork was the standout of the meats and both sides were excellent (the fries so much so that we ordered a second side of them to share). We also split the wagyu sandwich and it was excellent. For dessert, we split a brulee of the day (earl grey) and a souffle. Loved them both.

On our second visit, four of us split two fried chicken biscuit apps and they were awesome. I'd order those again in a heartbeat. My husband and I also split a kale salad which was fine, but the kale needed a little more massaging and it was neither large enough nor special enough to merit the $10 price tag. My husband got a bowl of chicken & dumplings for dinner and the small taste I had was wonderful. I got the lamb chops, which I thought were the biggest fail of the evening - two teeny tiny lollipop chops that were overcooked and sort of bland. The kale & turnips served with the chops were pretty tasty, but not overwhelmingly so, and for $30 this dish was just way too small and not that great, particularly when you consider that the family meals are just $34. One of our friends got the garbanzo pancakes, which were super interesting, and another got the salmon, which was again okay but not special. We split the upside down cake of the day (plum) for dessert and it was perfectly flavored and very moist.

I'll probably order from the drive-through menu again next time (you can order from the drive-through menu when you dine in).

Mar 15, 2015
Optimista in Austin

Hard Hat XII

It's called Fresh Helm and they serve steak? Hmm.

Mar 10, 2015
Optimista in Austin

Man bites dog

Whoa! I've passed that Lowe's trailer so many times and never thought to try it. Adding it to my list - thanks, 'hounders!

P.S. Agreed re: Man Bites Dog.

Mar 10, 2015
Optimista in Austin

Popping up all over - What are our favorite ethnic restaurants?

We eat at Ya Ya's pretty frequently. I like it a lot. Their lemongrass tofu (in bun form or over rice) is my favorite. I think better banh mi can be found elsewhere, though.

Feb 27, 2015
Optimista in Austin

Special restaurant for a 21st Birthday celebration

Glad you enjoyed yourself! Food trucks are really fun, particularly because you get to gloat about the fact that it's not freezing cold with 18" of snow.

Feb 26, 2015
Optimista in Austin

Immediate and Urgent Need

Darn, sorry I missed chiming in on this. Hope you had fun.

Feb 26, 2015
Optimista in Austin

Popping up all over - What are our favorite ethnic restaurants?

Thanks to ridgeback, I got to attend one of the pop-ups for the coming-soon Wu Chow. I was SUPER impressed with their dim sum offerings. Xiao Long Bao hands down the best in Austin (not saying much, but still).

Feb 26, 2015
Optimista in Austin

Popping up all over - What are our favorite ethnic restaurants?

I liked it. Did a little write-up on my blog if you're interested:
http://foodieisthenewforty.blogspot.c...

Besides, the restaurant is named after you - you have to try it! :)

Feb 26, 2015
Optimista in Austin
1

Barley Swine vs. Qui

Agreed.

Feb 16, 2015
Optimista in Austin

Popping up all over - What are our favorite ethnic restaurants?

Vietnamese - I would add Sunflower for their family-style dishes (sizzling seafood platter, sea bass, shaken beef)

For Szechuanese food, I actually prefer Sichuan River over Asia Cafe (though I will agree that Asia Cafe is excellent). Sichuan River is my favorite, but second favorite is Szechuan House.

Korean - I love Together, but that may be influenced by the fact that we always go there with a Korean friend who knows the owner and just basically takes over the ordering.

Russia House - meh.

Japanese - I'd add Hanabi for sushi.

Italian - I'd add La Traviata.

For Ethiopian, I much prefer Taste of Ethiopia or Karibu over Aster's.

I'd add Troy for Turkish food.

Feb 14, 2015
Optimista in Austin

Sunday Night Dinner Austin?

And it's damn good fried chicken, to boot!

Feb 09, 2015
Optimista in Austin

Sunday Night Dinner Austin?

Fixe is open on Sunday nights. We had a really great meal there recently that pleased both the more adventurous and less adventurous palates in our group. Entrees aren't HUGE, but they are at least not small plates...

Feb 06, 2015
Optimista in Austin

Sunday Night Dinner Austin?

Neither of those are open on Sunday nights...

Feb 06, 2015
Optimista in Austin

Special restaurant for a 21st Birthday celebration

Uchi would be my first choice from this list if it were MY birthday. Barley Swine would be my second choice. Barley Swine is the only all-prix-fixe spot on the list, which makes it harder to afford for a young adult.

Feb 06, 2015
Optimista in Austin

Peached Tortilla

Yes, this friend of ridgeback's LOVES the pork belly bowl. Housemade kim chi is awesome, too (there's some in the bowl, so you get a twofer!).

Feb 06, 2015
Optimista in Austin

Place near-ish Bass Hall for 4 including veggie/lactose-intolerant and picky eater?

Did you see the other suggestions? Milto's or Texas French Bread might work if your picky eater doesn't do Asian food...

Jan 28, 2015
Optimista in Austin
1

Place near-ish Bass Hall for 4 including veggie/lactose-intolerant and picky eater?

I love Salty Sow, but most of their veggie dishes involve dairy.

Jan 27, 2015
Optimista in Austin

Place near-ish Bass Hall for 4 including veggie/lactose-intolerant and picky eater?

Steeping Room is only 20ish blocks farther north than Bass. Unless that person is coming on foot or by bicycle, that doesn't really seem "super inconvenient" to me.

That said, what about Aster's Ethiopian (my least favorite Ethiopian in town, but at least convenient to Bass), Milto's, Texas French Bread, Zen, or Thai Kitchen? There's also YaYa's at 38th and Guadalupe, but that's only marginally closer to Bass than Steeping Room.

Jan 26, 2015
Optimista in Austin
1

Weekend in Austin

My top three for "eclectic" would be:
Uchi or Uchiko
Barley Swine (same chef/owner as Odd Duck, but I think the tasting menu really lets the amazingness shine)
Foreign & Domestic

Jan 21, 2015
Optimista in Austin

RIP VIII

Don't miss Sichuan River. My favorite Szechuanese in town.

Jan 16, 2015
Optimista in Austin

Delaney's Icehouse

Oh, bah. That's too bad.

Jan 09, 2015
Optimista in Austin

Best King Cakei in Austin?

A few years ago, I had one that Walton's Fancy & Staple had made and it was DELICIOUS. I don't know about authenticity, but it definitely scored on my tasty scale.

Jan 09, 2015
Optimista in Austin

10 to remember-

I do love that mushroom pizza! Haven't tried the rest - will do so.

Jan 04, 2015
Optimista in Austin

10 to remember-

Thanks, byanow!

GOTW - what dishes at St. Philip do you think are more noteworthy?

Jan 04, 2015
Optimista in Austin