Austin Java incorporates fresh, local ingredients into its menu whenever possible, serving only cage- and hormone-free eggs and organic, fair-trade coffee, prepared locally using a low-emission, biofuel-powered roaster. Sample the community-minded cuisine by diving fork-first into breakfast (served all day), lunch, and dinner. The Caesar Chavez salad, a highly organized concoction of romaine lettuce, leads croutons and parmesan cheese on a victory march to your mouth ($5.99), while vegetarian-friendly options such as the confetti pasta ($8.99) and the spicy African peanut soup ($3.99 for a cup, $4.99 for a bowl) keep hungry herbivoyeurs in check. Build your own burger ($7.79, with additional ingredients $0.59–$0.99 each), or decode the DaVinci chicken sandwich, topped with marinara, parmesan ($8.29), and the blueprint for a flying machine. Austin Java also offers all-day breakfast, with options such as omelettes ($7.29–$8.99), eggs benedicts ($7.79–$7.99), and build-your-own-breakfast tacos ($1.99 with three ingredients; $0.69 for each additional item) pleasing palates. The Barton Springs location also boasts a new full bar, allowing for savory sips of brews and booze between burger or breakfast taco bites.
Chef Jam Sanitchat’s cooking career began at 5 years old, when she began following her grandmother around their kitchen in Thailand. After journeying to Austin for graduate school, she opened Thai Fresh delicatessen, where she began teaching classes and cooking. Thrice Cafe is her newest culinary undertaking—an expansion of Thai Fresh that pairs coffee drinks with innovative Thai-inspired dishes, all cooked fresh when customers order.
Sanitchat and her crew cobble together local meats, eggs, and vegetables into light and healthful breakfasts, sandwiches, and salads. They also concoct vegan and gluten-free baked goods, which pair with specialty beverages brewed from Casa Brasil coffee or selections from the lengthy wine and beer list.
Cushy couches and tables populate the interior, and umbrellas shade a verdant outdoor patio. Throughout the week, the café hosts live music and open-mic nights, where guests can showcase their talents to a receptive audience instead of a collection of unresponsive sock monkeys.
Called the "Grand Dame of Austin restaurants" by the Austin Chronicle and recognized by Business Insider as one of the most beautiful restaurants in the country, Green Pastures exemplifies Southern hospitality. A typical Sunday here sees guests relaxing amongst the majestic oaks of the surrounding Victorian estate while sipping traditional milk punch spiked with bourbon, rum, and brandy and gaining a new appreciation for how drunk cows must be all the time.
The rest of the week, guests gather around tables in the Burgundy Room, Music Room, and Green Pastures's other dining areas to savor the menu's offerings. French-inspired gourmet cuisine weaves a common thread through the elegant selection, but there are also regional specialties, including a Texas game sampler with quail, venison, and boar sausage. Guests can also enjoy a round at the 1888 Bar?though it's a small space, it packs an impressive selection of wines, champagnes, and spirits.
Founded in 2009, The Coffee Bean & Tea Leaf currently has four locations within Austin, opening 2 more soon. CBTL is a locally owned Texas franchisee of The Coffee Bean & Tea Leaf, the oldest and largest privately-held specialty coffee and tea retail business in the United States.
Lift Café brews both traditional and exotic espressos, in addition to feeding coffee cravers a hearty selection of wraps and salads. The café's extensive drink menu has several caffeinated concoctions, everything from a straight-up cup of joe ($1.65–$2.05) to the Penguin ($3.25–$4.10), a café mocha infused with vanilla syrup, whipped cream, and crumbly cookie pieces. Find the energy to do nightly battle with your backyard's haunted tree thanks to one of Lift Café's nutritious smoothies, such as the hill country runner ($4.75–$7.55), a blend of passion fruit juice, blackberries, peaches, maca, and flax-seed oil. For a quick bite, the housemade Soy Joy breakfast taco ($2) with soy-rizo, avocado, and black beans will please herbivores, while the Fred Vito Italian ($6.75) packs pepperoni, salami, ham, and provolone into a pocket of meat-loving bliss. The rockadoodle salad ($6.75), a delectable amalgamation of spinach, bacon, grilled chicken, feta cheese, bell peppers, and a shallot vinaigrette, helps hip folks fuel up for underground poultry-rock shows.