Location, location, location! The food is clearly the key consideration at any great restaurant, but some establishments clearly have better views than others. Check out these 10 Austin hot spots with the best dining atmospheres in town:
The minute you walk in the East Austin eatery you see the rustic beauty everywhere. The funk and the personality carry right down to the food and drink. Their menu of locally sourced produce and poultry from the Jacoby family ranch is notably one of the tastiest in town. Take a stroll around the grounds, drink in hand, and enjoy the Colorado River walk and farm friendly creatures while you wait to be seated. The river-view outside deck makes an absolute perfect brunch locale on a pretty day. Be sure to swing through the Mercantile on your way out for a curated collection of boutique fashion and home items.
Lenoir is a delightful place with well executed food. Soak in the warm Texas air over a glass of wine in the little backyard wonderland while you wait to be seated. Picnic tables, strung white lights, and a little “shack” designed for drink orders welcome you outside. Food wise, the creativity is insane and very vegan friendly. An overall beautiful and romantic space and an ideal destination for summer night hangouts and sips. The ambiance here is simply the bee’s-knees.
This South Congress restaurant is the daddy of all seafood spots in Austin. Home to the prettiest oak-shaded patio, and flourishing with New-England style decor, Perla’s is an absolute pleasure, start to finish. Not only is it great for its own decor, but it also offers up plenty of SoCo people watching opportunities. It’s perfect for special occasions and pop tarts served at brunch.
The cocktails, the ambiance, the views! Located in Hotel Van Zandt, Geraldine’s is Rainey Street’s new place to be. The restaurant spans the fourth floor, and is equipped with a modern bar, performance stage, and pool overlooking beautiful downtown Austin. Attention to detail is everything here.
We wouldn’t be doing Austin justice without mentioning this BBQ staple. While the food is the real crowd pleaser, the property in itself is worth the drive. Stacked with a series of family style tables, bocce ball, local brew, and wine tastings, what more could one ask for? BYOB? Yep – you can even bring your own!
The cutest little gem serving up inexpensive Greek bites with unlimited, indoor/outdoor seating options. Opt for swinging seats on the patio or cushioned couches and benches by the fire pit. Step inside the quaint house furnished with vintage fittings and fast, free wifi. The ambiance magically suits whatever your mood is at the moment. Great for daytime studying and coffee chats or evening sangria accompanied by live music. Come dressed up. Come dressed down. Either way you can enjoy the wide wine selection and eccentric setting.
Beachy in theme, this local island retreat is just plain festive and fun. Head to the hut for tacos and tequila, and an outside patio deck the length of the restaurant. In addition to magical Lake Austin views, strong drinks and great food make the Tex-Mex joint a local favorite. An island get-away perfect for all ages and within city limits.
Contigo is a choice location just outside of downtown for amazing, well, everything. The completely outdoor rustic eating area is true to Texas and very rancho-chic. The food offerings are farm to table and as such, vary often based on ingredient availability. The beer and drink selections are at a premium, and pair wonderfully with the eclectic American fare. Great for groups, plenty of parking. Oh, and bring your pup, too, as they are dog friendly!
There’s a reason this place is a top wedding venue in Austin, the atmosphere is completely magical. Rustic elegance is the name of the game here. Dressed in Edison-style lights and clean art, the multi-leveled restaurant is textbook Italian and straight up decadence. Just be sure to leave room for dessert.
The cutest little taco place around, Taquero Mucho is located off of West 6th in downtown Austin. Serving up pink drinks, tacos, and lots of photo ops this place is a must stop for perfectly pink pics!
Featured photo via Perla’s Facebook