Austin Pizza Wars 2017 Coming Soon

Posted by on Aug 17, 2017 in News, Rob's Blog

Dining Out with Rob Balon pioneered Pizza Wars 17 years ago when Austin had relatively few really decent pizza joints. But all that has changed. We now are blessed with a number of Upper East Coast (CT, NYC, JERSEY) and Italian spots, not to mention za from Detroit. So much so that our cup is […]

Rob Reviews Lunch at Jobell Café and Bistro

Posted by on Aug 13, 2017 in Reviews

After having had several memorable dinners at Jobell Café & Bistro on Highway 12 in Wimberley over the past year, I recently had a chance to finally try their lunch. Big question: what the hell took me so long? Jobell takes on an inviting glow as shafts of light from the noonday sun illuminate the […]

Juliet Italian Kitchen: The Dynamics of a Restaurant’s Mid Course Correction

Posted by on Aug 9, 2017 in News, Rob's Blog

The restaurant business is enormously competitive. Typically, restaurants that are successful over the long haul face a variety of challenges, not the least of which is the challenge to realistically assess one’s own concept/operational plan and the decision to either change or augment that plan as necessary. Owner Dan Wilkins and Exec chef Jacob Weaver […]

Burgerville To Open in Dripping Springs

Posted by on Aug 9, 2017 in News, Openings

Miles Frost, a long time player on the Austin restaurant scene is opening Burgerville in the Pig Pen Trailer Court on 290 in Dripping Springs. Miles had a great restaurant in Westlake with his Redbud Grille and he almost singlehandedly saved Smoke’n Hops on 290 when he took over as GM and started serving his […]

Big Cat BBQ in Cedar Park Celebrates 2nd Anniversary on August 12

Posted by on Aug 3, 2017 in News, Rob's Blog

Lunch at Big Cat BBQ with KEYE-TV’s Chikage Windler and family. One thing that is critical to new restaurants is anniversaries. Each one, particularly the first three, is cause for celebration in the arduous restaurant biz. So Big Cat BBQ on 401 W Whitestone in Cedar Park is understandably pretty buzzed about their 2nd anniversary […]

Happy Lobster Truck Now Permanently Rolling Through Austin

Posted by on Aug 2, 2017 in News, Openings

A spin-off of a popular Chicago food truck that serves Maine lobster rolls, The Happy Lobster Truck is now out and about in Austin. They are not tied to one location but are cruising to different locations throughout the city. Can’t wait to try one as I grew up on lobster rolls, fried clams and […]

Rebel Pizza Closes

Posted by on Aug 1, 2017 in News

We have learned that after a fairly brief tenure just off Anderson Lane, Rebel Pizza has now closed. This restaurant was the inspiration of Frank and Nina Seely, who had previously operated Trento in Davenport, which now houses Jack Allen’s Kitchen. Rebel was a cool location with good pizza and lots of original art adorning […]

Rob Reviews Café Blue at Galleria

Posted by on Jul 31, 2017 in Reviews

From their beginning at a seasonal location near Volente Beach to their current digs at the Hill Country Galleria at Bee Cave, Café Blue has maintained two hallmarks that characterize successful restaurants: innovative and consistent cuisine and a sense of how to deliver a pleasing experience to customers. My recent dinner at their new Galleria […]

Hamachi Crudo at Homespun Kitchen and Bar

Posted by on Jul 28, 2017 in News, Rob's Blog

We had some excellent crudo last night as a course at a William Chris wine dinner at Homespun Kitchen and Bar. Unlike a preparation of fish for sashimi, crudo uses different spices and olive oil to actually create a layer that coats the fish. I’m not suggesting that crudo can approach the texture of a […]

Homespun Kitchen and Bar Tries Menu by Ballot

Posted by on Jul 25, 2017 in News, Rob's Blog

Many restaurants try to come up with interesting promotions to attract customers. But Homespun Kitchen and Bar in Dripping Springs has a new one that’s worth looking at. Owners Jennifer and Randy decided to let customers vote on the top five dinners they’d like to see at the restaurant. Ballots were given to all patrons […]

EurAsia Sushi Bar & Seafood’s Great Fish Dishes

Posted by on Jul 22, 2017 in Reviews

My admiration for EurAsia Sushi Bar & Seafood continues too grow. This neat new restaurant in Oak Hill at the Y blends Indonesian cuisine along with seafood dishes and Japanese sushi and sashimi. So far I’ve been focusing on the Indonesian part of the menu with delicious results. But the fish dishes deserved their turn […]

ATX Cocina Opens Monday July 17th on San Antonio

Posted by on Jul 17, 2017 in News, Openings

In what seems to be an extension of the endless efforts of investors to become the Mexican equivalent of what Olamaie is to Southern food, welcome to ATX Cocina. Lots of big local players behind this one. Larry and Guy who no longer need last names due to their local notoriety and new GM Matt […]

The French Boulangerie: an Endangered Species?

Posted by on Jul 16, 2017 in News, Rob's Blog

Nowhere in the world is the art of making and consuming various styles of bread more indigenous to local culture than in France. The epicenter of this are the thousands of boulangeries or local bakeries that spread across the country. They make everything from traditional baguettes to the indispensable croissant. They have a history that […]

Looking for BBQ Shrimp? Check Out the Gnarly Gar at Point Venture

Posted by on Jul 14, 2017 in Reviews

I have been to New Orleans many times and always seem to work my way over to Pascal’s Manale for their amazing BBQ shrimp at least once on each visit. Eating this dish is a messy but glorious experience as you’re engulfed in flavors you might never have thought possible. Owner Luke DeFelice and his […]

The Wise Guy Kitchen has Closed

Posted by on Jul 10, 2017 in Closings, News, Rob's Blog

The Wise Guy Kitchen, the 5th St. food truck with the usual dishes named after organized crime guys, has gone dark. I tried it once and found it to be OK. I grew up not far from NYC and had the opportunity to sample the grinders and hoagies from Brooklyn to Queens that Wise Guy […]

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