Although folks might not quite realize it yet, downtown Austin got a nicely wrapped Christmas gift in the form of the new Cafe Blue restaurant at the site of the former Crave across from the convention center on 2nd.
This was dead space in an areas of town that could ill afford to have it, particularly from an optics standpoint. But now with Ben Nathan and his great team, one of our Top 25 restaurants will have a 2nd location [apart from the one at the Galleria].
This is a bold move to take on high end space like this for partners Pete Clark and Jason Landtroop, particularly given the volatility of downtown dining as of late. But an excellent place like Cafe Blue should have a stabilizing impact on the area and be good for all parties concerned.
The interior is flat out gorgeous, just what you’d expect from a Top 25 restaurant at a critical location. And the food, as always, will be slam dunk delicious. Great cold water oysters, beautiful shellfish dishes like the Coconut Shrimp, perhaps the best New England-style Clam Chowder in the city, and wonderful Sea Bass and Salmon dishes. And their Lobster Eggs Benedict at Sunday Brunch is a show stopper.
I’m looking forward to going again and I suspect there may be a bit of a wait. That’s far more tolerable than a shuttered restaurant at one of the most visible corners in the city.
Best of luck to Cafe Blue. I’m sure they’re pretty happy next door at Fleming’s as well.
You can read our most recent Cafe Blue review at www.diningoutwithrobbalon.com