sqwertz's Profile

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HaTe fOod TrAILerS tRaIlORs EtAh

I don't Twitter <gag>. Which is another reason I don't do food trailers. I'm not going to chase around food trucks on Capital Metro busses. For normal restaurants I make a decision a day or two (or five) in advance to patronize them. I shouldn't have to check in with some obnoxious social networking site an hour before I plan to eat there just to see if they're open or parked where they normally park (which isn't possible for me anyway).

I did however read Melvin's website in it's entirety the day before I went. No mention there that they were going to be closed. A restaurant's website should be considered the premier method of communication for conveying the fact that they'll be closed for an extended amount of time.

And to add to the insult was the fact that I had already gotten off the bus, so I had to wait another 38 minutes in the cold drizzle for another bus to come by.

-sw

about 11 hours ago
sqwertz in Austin

HaTe fOod TrAILerS tRaIlORs EtAh

I haven't tried to go to a trailer for probably two years or more for just this reason. And it was reinforced I can't remember all of them because they're dead to me (and some probably are dead).

about 11 hours ago
sqwertz in Austin

HaTe fOod TrAILerS tRaIlORs EtAh

We will never, ever, plan on visiting a food trailer again. They have been closed 13 out of 20 times during published hours, and

Melvin's was no exception today.

We give up. We'll eat at Burger King!

-sw

Mar 01, 2015
sqwertz in Austin

Saturday Lunch

I always wondered what that sad little red trailer in that vacant parking lot was. You can't see any signage from Duval (making left on 53rd going West) but I go by there twice a week - Saturdays at 5:30pm and Tuesdays at 3:30pm - when they're apparently always closed. But Google street view says they do indeed have customers! ;-)

Feb 23, 2015
sqwertz in Austin

Restaurants with lean red meat options?

It took me about a half dozen of them to figure out what was slightly off about what would have otherwise been perfectly executed burgers, but the burgers at Central Market Cafe (at least the Westgate store) are made with fairly lean ground beef - at least 90%+ lean ground beef.

It wasn't until I made one at home using 90% lean beef that I realized that this is what CM was doing wrong, too.

-sw

Feb 23, 2015
sqwertz in Austin

Hard Hat XII

YABB (Yet Another Burger Bar) on S. Congress just north of William Cannon (yes, SOUTH Austin <gasp>) in the new strip mall. "Billie Jean's Burger Bar". Still looks to be at least a month away.

Looks like it was a former trailer briefly parked at the Red Shed after VIA 313 vacated the spot. Saw the trailer, never knew it had a name or what it served.

I guess we haven't been saturated with burger joints down South here yet. This location is a burger void (except for insignificant fast food).

Feb 19, 2015
sqwertz in Austin

Kids' Menus

The owners of lil'buco also recently opened up a tapas bar, 'abbrev's', in the former Your Mom's Burger Bar on Airport.

http://www.abbrevsrestaurant.com/

-sw

Feb 06, 2015
sqwertz in Austin
1

Where's the boudin?

I'm not one to seek out boudin. I had an excellent smoked version at John Mueller's most recent soft opening party, but it was never on the menu again. So I had to make my own. It was pretty good, considering it was only my 2nd time ever even having boudin. Also had filling leftover for boudin balls.

Feb 05, 2015
sqwertz in Austin

RIP VIII

They still have a new location down here in the condos next to Broken Spoke.

Feb 01, 2015
sqwertz in Austin

Gumbo South of the River

I'm not a gumbo fan and have never had theirs, but Cypress Grill (William Cannon and Mopac) serves it. Appetizer portion costs $5.

Feb 01, 2015
sqwertz in Austin

What Austin really needs

The restaurant USED to be called "Buffalo Wild Wings & WECK", but due to budget cutbacks they had to drop the third W because they were using up too much ink.

I put coarse salt and caraway on many of the breads I make (or finish) at home. Don't think I've ever had a proper weck sandwich, but I've loved the salted caraway breads every since I was a kid - weather it be heavily seeded rye or the studded breadsticks popular in German and Italian cuisine.

My favorite thing to make are salted caraway soft pretzels.

Jan 29, 2015
sqwertz in Austin

Local source for aji amarillo paste?

Are these the kind you found at Fiesta? Mine is almost gone so I need to stock up on some more. I got these as gifts.

Also, if you're really into aji pepper, Sprouts (usually) and a few other places have aji-stuffed olives from South America which are the bomb.

Jan 24, 2015
sqwertz in Austin

RIP VIII

The sign went up two Tuesdays ago, just as I went to get my $1.09 Tuesday Thigh and Leg Specials. The place did as well as any other Popeye's in the area. I think the Tuesdays Specials did them in! I caught them closing early on Tuesdays a couple times in November and December - as early as 8:45PM once (supposed to be open until 10:30).

Jan 16, 2015
sqwertz in Austin

kecap manis In Austin?

MT Supermarket has several brands/varieties. I buy the ABC brand (yellow label - "medium sweet" - more versatile than the red label). Look on the left side of the store towards the kitchenware - that's where you'll find the "International" sections <insert irony here> including the kecap. I don't think they stock it by the general purpose soy sauces.

My second biggest gripe about MT is the organization SUCKS. The first most important gripe is the lack of shelf prices. I would buy a lot more there if things had prices.

-sw

Jan 11, 2015
sqwertz in Austin
1

Lobster.

I forget if Escarpment HEB has a tank (Manchaca doesn't), but if they do they're going to be the same ones they sell at Central Market, but probably cheaper.

-sw

Dec 29, 2014
sqwertz in Austin

Recipes from Victor's Italian Restaurant

Assuming the restaurant was in the 1940's, it looks like his son is in the local phone book...

Also, did you see these?

http://texashistory.unt.edu/ark:/6753...
http://texashistory.unt.edu/ark:/6753...

-sw

Dec 22, 2014
sqwertz in Austin

HEB Pork Butts bone in 1.47 Today's Ads - Nov. 23

My HEB had the pork butts in a separate cooler on the bread aisle endcap since they are overloading the regular meat bins with Christmas hams. I picked up one each ham and butt. They also had whole hog heads (my HEB hardly ever has those). Just add some spare ribs and you can build your own Frankenpig for about $2/pound! <snork>

Dec 19, 2014
sqwertz in Austin

HEB Pork Butts bone in 1.47 Today's Ads - Nov. 23

And again this week - sale started today. I'm down to one. Probably pick up two more. They can be made into anything. I did a bunch of Vietnamese pork dishes with the last one. Banh mi tacos, for example (was out of rolls) :-)

https://www.flickr.com/photos/sqwertz...

Dec 17, 2014
sqwertz in Austin

Golden Corral

Heh. Sirloin Stockade. I Didn't think they still existed. First restaurant I ever ate at in Austin. Corner of Lamar and ... Koenig? Where the KFC is now in the parking lot of Randall's. Err, I mean Half Price Books and Goodwill ;-)

-sw

Dec 17, 2014
sqwertz in Austin

Golden Corral

By "parking in the grass" I assume you mean the Parmer/I35 location. I could never understand how that location was always so consistently packed. It must be that Far North Austin Culinary Mentality! <ducking> Other locations aren't like that. Heck, the one at Lamar near Rutland had to close down from lack of business.

-sw (a Southerner)

Dec 16, 2014
sqwertz in Austin

Golden Corral

It's been a year since I've been there. You have to know what to get. The burger at lunch isn't bad, but the meatloaf sucks (too much bread filler). Salisbury steak is good, while the fried chicken can be really dry. The pre-made cesar salad is good, but most of the vegetables are way overcooked from sitting there all day. Nothing is fantastic. Keep your eyes out for items that just came out of the kitchen.

For the same price you can go to Buffet Palace right around the corner (from my nearest Golden Corral) and have a much better experience.

Dec 16, 2014
sqwertz in Austin

bulk bread yeast -- where?

Email HEB corporate and ask which local stores still carry the product you used to buy. I shop HEB's from Parmer to Slaughter and I can tell you their stock varies drastically between different stores. It doesn't seem like that long ago I've seen it on shelves.

You're probably not going to like this answer, but Restaurant Depot (membership only, but it's free with resale or non-profit tax form) carries 2-lbs of Fleischmann's Active Dry Yeast for $6.32.

-sw

Dec 13, 2014
sqwertz in Austin

Hard Hat XII

RIP: Hunan Lion at William Cannon and Manchaca. It's been there for at least ... 20 years? It must have really gone downhill because those long-established Chinese restaurants rarely shut down.

Hard Hat: "Jalapeno's" is taking it's place. Looks like they also have another location, but no website other than the lame Facebook presence.

Oh, and just in time for Christmas when the demand is high, a new snow cone trailer opened up in the parking lot of the Texaco at Monarch and Manchaca <shrug>

Dec 08, 2014
sqwertz in Austin

Hard Hat XII

According to signage outside, Giovanni's Pizza Stand of Valero gas station fame from a few years ago (Barton Skyway at Lamar), has opened up another location inside the newly reopened Valero at Manchaca and Redd.

http://www.giovannispizzastand.com/

Dec 06, 2014
sqwertz in Austin

small dinner rolls?

Rhodes brand frozen dough balls. They are 1.25" round raw dough balls that you thaw and let rise to whatever size you want. Looks for orange packages in the frozen garlic bread/Texas toast section in 12 count or larger 36 count packages (usuauly on the bottom shelf at HEB - never saw them at Walmart).

Most HEB's sell Pepperidge Farm slider buns in the regular prefab bread aisle (top shelf).

Packaged like King Hawaiian rolls, this time of year every supermarket should be selling the par-baked square dinner rolls in the square foil pans, but they can be kinda dense.

Dec 06, 2014
sqwertz in Austin

Hard Hat XII

Giovanni's from the Barton Skyway/Lamar Vallero fame from a few years ago (pizza and pasta) has opened up another inside the recently reborn Vallero at Manchaca and Redd.

Dec 03, 2014
sqwertz in Austin

RIP VIII

I remember seeing it once then I forgot about it. Wasn't open long. Can't think of any other Chinese food in that area, though.

Dec 02, 2014
sqwertz in Austin

Hard Hat XII

That whole stretch from I35 to ... heck - Lamar could use a bulldozer, including the underutilized county/state buildings and the sausage shop. House Pizzeria could do much better in a different location. I guess we could keep I&O and Quality Seafood. And Specs - of course! But get rid of practically everything else or at least make it look like less of a dump. Put in some small buildings in the unnecessary parking lots of Highland mall, too. This doesn't mean more fast food or high density housing above retail stores, either.

Dec 01, 2014
sqwertz in Austin

HEB Pork Butts bone in 1.47 Today's Ads - Nov. 23

You should find that that bone (the shoulder blade) does extend into the meat but usually it's no more than 7-8% of the total roast by volume.

The small one I got 3 weeks ago was really fatty. About half of it was bacon consistency streaks of meat alternating with streaks of fat. Out of the 100 or so I've cooked, that was the weirdest one.

Nov 23, 2014
sqwertz in Austin

smokey denmark - what are the favorites?

So I gave them another shot. I got the 14 count package of kielbassa at HEB. Definitely fresher than what I had before. Not too salty or greasy, nice size grind, and good flavor. The skins are kinda tough so char them really good.

I used to be really into smoked sausages but the last few years I'm just kinda indifferent to them. So it's hard to get too excited over them. I'm using them in a grit casserole this morning with onion, red bell pepper, green onion, jalapeno, and sharp provolone and gruyere cheeses.

Nov 23, 2014
sqwertz in Austin
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