Orchestrated by the crafty hands of baker Amanda Hogoboom, Amanda's Country Cakes creates custom-made desserts capable of subduing any degree of sweet-tooth spasm. Catering to festive occasions such as birthdays, weddings, and underwater tennis competitions, Amanda's sugary eats offer an assortment of cake flavors, such as white, marble, and strawberry, and the buttercream icing can be manipulated into congratulatory messages and delicate designs. Choose the 1/4–slab of frosted confection to dish out at a celebration, or pick up a dozen handheld cupcakes ideal for a children's tea party or high-stakes juggling competition. Each delicious morsel is molded in Amanda's personal kitchen, where customers can retrieve their orders along with two balloons to brighten their day and elevate their mood.
Family owned and operated, Two Brothers BBQ serves up a bounty of barbecue favorites on its menu, with high-quality ingredients and careful cooking uniting to wield savory and saucy sustenance. Relish the wrangling of rebellious wisps of hickory smoke with sliced meats such as beef brisket, turkey, or pulled pork ($6.29 for a half pound, $11.49 for a pound), or slam into a full slab of ribs ($18.99), cooked to perfection over the still-warm coals of found meteorites. For boosters of the bun, Two Brothers' West Wichita and El Dorado locations now offer The Burger Grill, with premium grilled burgers and decalescent dogs filling feast-holds and arriving via optional carhop service. Send your taste buds on a delicious trip back in time to the 1984 of the future with a Big Brother cheeseburger ($5.69), or go for the tubular tastes of the chili dog ($4.99), a quarter-pound kosher dog topped with smoked-brisket chili, onions, mustard, and cheddar. Side dishes (from $1.39 to $1.49/individual, up to $7.49–$7.99/quart) include french fries, corn cobettes, green beans, and scalloped potatoes.
The quick-serving cooks at Spangles engage appetites in a '50s-themed dining environment, having recently bolstered the menu with a saucy taste of the Far East—Wok 'n' Roll Bowls, which come in three flavors ($4.49 each). The sweet chicken teriyaki and sirloin steak spoon with stir-fried carrots and broccoli on a bed of steamed white rice, and diners longing for legumes can sink their teeth careening into the spicy kung pao chicken bowl crowned with peanuts. Keep thirsty mouths from imbibing ketchup packets by dangling a pair of 32-ounce soft drinks in front of them ($1.69 each). Ten varieties are available, such as tropical punch, green-peach tea, Pepsi, and root beer.
“Stepping into the restaurant is like visiting the home of an Ethiopian friend,” writes the Austin Chronicle about Habesha Restaurant & Bar. Woven straw mesobs—hourglass-shaped tables designed for communal eating—are central to the restaurant’s traditional decor, along with Ethiopian artwork. The friendly staff is always happy to welcome newcomers, explain the menu, show them how to properly stretch before a meal, and make dish suggestions.
However, it's the authentic eats that form the backbone of Habesha Restaurant & Bar. To start, head chef Selam Abebe uses grains from Idaho to prepare injera, a traditional Ethiopian flatbread used to scoop up bites of food in place of utensils or your neighbor’s hand. She then prepares vegetarian and meat wot, tibs, and fitfit using recipes and techniques from her homeland. As the child of Ethiopian restaurateurs, Selam has had plenty of experience preparing the traditional dishes—she’s been cooking professionally since age 20.
Meals at Habesha Restaurant & Bar often end with a coffee ceremony, a sign of friendship and respect in Ethiopian culture. Servers carefully roast green coffee beans, grind them, sing them a lullaby, and then steep the grounds in hot water to create a rich, black coffee that they serve with hot popcorn.
For more than a decade, True Lies Bar and Grill has kept it simple, serving up spirits and steaks. The steaks come in myriad styles—sirloin, ribeye, and chicken-fried, among others—and they're only the beginning of the eatery's hearty meals. The culinary team also serves up chicken-fried chicken, and grills classics like hot dogs and cheeseburgers, which patrons often eat to the tune of live music.