Check this page out weekly to stay up to date on all the best upcoming food and drink events in Austin, updated every Monday for the week ahead.

December Programming:

She’s Not Here, 40 North Pizza, and Old Thousand have debuted a $7 happy hour food and beverage menu with half-priced bubbles, available at all three locations. 40 North also introduces a NEW Fried Chicken Sandwich made with southern fried chicken breast, Napa-Red cabbage slaw, buttermilk dressing, house pickles, and Fresnos on a challah bun. The Fried Chicken Sandwich is available on both 40 North’s happy hour and regular menus. She’s Not Here is also adding a NEW Menchie Katsu, puffed rice panko crusted pork steak stuffed with white cheddar and fried to golden perfection and accompanied with a kewpie ranch dipping sauce, to its happy hour and late-night offerings. Seven-dollar happy hour menu highlights include (full menus available here).

Four Seasons Hotel Austin’s new restaurant is offering a series of festive drinks by head bartender Sarah Rahl for the holiday season. The line-up includes the Hearth and Haven, a bourbon cocktail with pear and cinnamon tea honey, the Forevergreen, a vibrant minty sipper and the World’s Best Buttered Rum made with barrel-aged Treaty Oak rum.

For those already tiring of Christmas cheer, W Austin’soffering up the chance to highlight your inner grinch with its Who-Tel Bar. The Grinchmas themed take-over will transform the hotel’s Secret Bar into a scene right out of Dr. Seuss’s Whoville, with a “W-centric” spin. The Who-Tel Bar will be open to the public for most nights until December 28th.

Fresa’swill once again offer a special menu this holiday season featuring tamales, tamale meals, and desserts. Pre-orders will start on Saturday, December 8 and can be placed online at www.fresaschicken.com. Same-day orders can be placed from December 22 to 24 starting at 11 a.m. until sold out. I’d love for you to consider including this news in any roundups/features you may be working on in the coming weeks! This year, Fresa’s is offering two types of tamales: Chicken Tinga or Black Bean & Cheese. Holiday desserts will include Mexican Wedding Cookies and Brown Butter Fudge Brownies by the dozen and Candy Cane Crunch Ice Cream by the pint. All three offerings will be available at both locations from December 22 to December 24 only. These special menu items will be available for pre-order or for same-day ordering. 
 
Bakery Lorraine will have pies, Buche de Noel’s and limited edition holiday-themed macarons boxes available for order at their Austin location. Inside the Buche de Noel’s are a vanilla mousse, cherry compote and a chocolate sponge soaked with kirsch syrup. This is by special order only for $45 and will start being available for pickup by Dec 12th. The pies will be $26 each and customers are able to place orders now through Thursday, December 20th. Pick up day will be Sunday, December 24th, Christmas Eve.

Independence Brewing Co. and Alamo Drafthouse have a holiday beer that has become a seasonal favorite among Alamo Drafthouse patrons—a yearly release called End Credits. The recipe for End Credits changes with each release and this year’s version is a German Chocolate Cake Stout. End Credits is available now through December 31 at all 20 Alamo Drafthouse locations in Texas and both Alamo Drafthouse locations in Denver.

For a limited time, Hopdoddy will be mixing up winter shakes such as Cranberry Cheesecake filled with cranberry, white chocolate and orange-scented cookie crumble and the Pecan Brown Sugar made with toasty pecans, maple & brown sugar, cinnamon and a hint of expresso. Pro tip: shakes can be taken To-go or can be made boozy and sipped on in-house!

Indulge in Mattie’s new featured dish for Neighborhood Family-Style Night. Made for sharing with friends, family and groups of four or more, enjoy a Beet Salad with cardamom yogurt, preserved lemon, arugula & hazelnuts + Beef Short Rib with red wine risotto, cremini mushrooms, collard greens & grilled carrots price is $24 per person.

Gibson Street Bar is decking the halls all month long for its first ever Gibson Wonderland. In true Gibson fashion, the bar will feature bountiful over-the-top decor, an instaworthy sleigh photo-op and specialty themed libations. Guests can also enjoy the holiday musical stylings of the Misfit Toys every Wednesday from 7:30 p.m. to 10:30 p.m. leading up to Christmas.

COVER 3 is in the midst hosting its 9th annual Toy Drive benefitting Partnerships for Children (PFC), an Austin-based nonprofit organization that offers special resources, support and comfort for foster children and families in our community. The restaurant group is accepting donations in-store at all Austin locations now through Monday, December 10. I’d love for you to help us spread the word by sharing this news today, as well as keeping the event top-of-mind for any additional coverage opportunities in the days ahead. Those interested in participating in the toy drive are asked to bring a new and unwrapped toy to COVER 2 or any COVER 3 location (excluding San Antonio). COVER 3 will later deliver the gifts to PFC, where they will then be distributed to fulfill the holiday wishes of the 5,200+ foster children in the Austin community. Monetary donations are also being accepted, and can be made in-store or online HERE.  It is also worth noting that this toy drive is part of COVER 3’s ongoing and year-round support for the local nonprofit for which the restaurant team has raised nearly $500k in total over the past 8 years. 

SUGGESTED GIFT BUYING GIFT FROM PFC

  • Newborns (0-36 months) – Education learning toys, ride-on toys, talking books
  • Preschoolers/Grade-schoolers/Pre-teens (3-12 yrs.)
    • Girls – barbie dolls, princess-themed items, stuffed animals
    • Boys – video games, remote control vehicles, action figures
  • Teens/Young Adults (13-18 yrs.)
    • Girls – Jewelry making kits, bath and body products, scarves
    • Boys – Sports jerseys, skateboards w/ helmets, basketballs/soccer balls/footballs
  • Additional needs for holiday gifts can be found listed HERE

During December only, Perry’s Bar 79 at Perry’s Steakhouse is shaking it up with the Holiday Wine Thyme cocktail. The festive drink is made with Perry’s Reserve Cabernet Sauvignon, Hennessy VS Cognac, fresh lemon juice and served with a sprig of aromatic thyme. Price: $9 each.

AWAY Spa at W Austin has you covered with daily flash sales running through December 17th.  Additionally, if you buy $250 worth of gift cards you can get an additional $25 gift card for yourself through December 31. The flash sales are listed below

  • December 11: 20% off all gift sets today
  • December 12: Receive a Free W room fragrance (1fl oz.) with any AWAY 75 minute massage received today
  • December 13: Purchase a Foreo Luna Mini cleansing device and receive a Mini Play travel size device ($39 value).
  • December 14: Receive a nail service today and you can receive a complimentary January service of the same value.
  • December 15: Schedule a 90-minute detox massage for January for the price of a 75 minute detox massage. (Lucky Locals discount can apply, too!)
  • December 16: Bonus Lucky Locals discount day for Austin residents.
  • December 17: 20% off all holiday-themed retail products.

Second Bar + Kitchen’s downtown location adds two winter favorites to their seasonal beverage menu, including: après ski classic Verte Chaud, made with house hot chocolategreen chartreuse and Mexican vanilla whipped cream; and Housemade Hot Chocolate made with a house hot chocolate mix (cocoa powder, cinnamon, cardamom, turbinado sugar, salt, 70% chocolate chips) and hot milk.

In the spirit of giving, Craftsman has launched an “I Think, Therefore I Yam” cocktail where $2 of each $12 libation will benefit Meals on Wheels. In addition to being both charitable and delicious, this cocktail is a visual sensation illuminating each glass with a fiery glow. It consists of Waterloo Gin, Frangelico Hazelnut Liqueur, lemon, house-made sweet potato purée, sugar and is topped with a flaming marshmallow.

For the remainder of 2018, The Carillon is offering their Sommelier selection of wines at unheard of prices. Hurry in, as these offers wont last! See the full selections here. Curated by Beverage Director Susie Scott, The Carillon’s full bottled wine selections are offered at half price all night long with their new Thursday night happy hour special.

 
Suerte will officially be open for brunch on the weekends from 10:30 a.m. to 2:30 p.m. The menu—from executive chef Fermín Núñez—will include Suerte’s take on freshly baked Mexican pastries, brunch tacos, eggs, Mexican pastries, drinks to cure your hangover and more.
 
Popular fast-casual restaurant Greenhouse Craft Food has opened its new location on the square in Georgetown, TX. Located at 708 S. Austin Ave., facing the south facade of the Williamson County Courthouse, Greenhouse Craft Food’s new site serves as the flagship location for the locally focused eatery and features both classic menu items from its Round Rock location and all new menu selections exclusive to the Georgetown restaurant. Led by Executive Chef / owner Rob Snow and Chef de Cuisine Todd Engel, the all-new, 3000 square foot Greenhouse Craft Food features a cozy, modern farmhouse design and a creative menu with an emphasis on smoked meats, weekly specials (including high-end and early bird), Texas craft beer and wines, malts and milkshakes, and more. The restaurant is open Tuesday-Thursday from 11AM – 9PM, Fridays from 11AM – 10PM, Saturdays from 9AM – 10PM and Sundays for weekend brunch, from 9AM – 3PM.
 

The Austin Trail of Lights will be open to the public from Monday, Dec. 10through Sunday, Dec. 23, 2018 in Austin’s beloved Zilker Park. For more information and to plan a trip to the Trail of Lights, please see here. Limited quantities of early access, premium tickets are also available, and guests are encouraged to purchase tickets ahead of time to secure their preferred dates. Tickets can be purchased via the online event calendar at austintrailoflights.org/calendar – pick your preferred date, then purchase tickets. The 2018 Austin Trail of Lights full entertainment calendar has been announced. ZIP Fast Passes are the ultimate convenience. ZIP Fast Passes include:

  • One hour early access to the Austin Trail of Lights at 6 p.m.
  • Enter through an exclusive ZIP entrance
  • Access to the heated Zilker Lounge with complimentary cookies, cocoa and comfortable seating
  • Premium heated washrooms
ZIP admission hours are 6-10 p.m. on Dec. 11-23. ZIP passes are $15 on Dec. 11-13, and Dec. 17-19. ZIP passes are $20 on Dec. 14-16 and Dec. 20-23. Platinum Passes are available for a VIP experience. The full Platinum package includes:
  • One hour early access to the Austin Trail of Lights at 6 p.m. through private, dedicated entry
  • Valet parking for one vehicle – parking opens at 5:30 p.m.
  • Platinum concierge planning before and our Platinum Team to guide you at the event
  • Golf cart shuttle access to the Platinum Lounge and Trailhead
  • Access to a private, heated Platinum Lounge with comfortable seating and exclusive bar
  • One drink ticket per Platinum Pass, valid at bars throughout the park
  • One ride pass per Platinum Pass, for exclusive entry to the Ferris wheel or carousel
  • Access to the Zilker Lounge where you’ll find cookies, cocoa, comfortable seating
  • Premium heated washrooms
Platinum pass prices range from $80 for an individual pass, $150 for a two-pack (includes valet parking for one car) and $260 for a four-pack of tickets (includes valet parking for one car). Platinum passes are available Dec. 10, Dec. 13-16, and Dec. 19-23.
 
Desert Door, the only domestically produced sotol made in Driftwood, Texas, is now available for purchase online in 41 states at shop.desertdoor.com through the spirits-focused e-commerce platform SpeakeasyCo. This news comes as Desert Door just celebrated its first successful year in business and its expansion of distribution sales network in bars, restaurants and liquor stores across Texas. Now with the online shop, consumers across the country will have access to the popular, unique spirit just in time for the holidays.
 
December 11th:
 
Chef Callie Speer and her team at Holy Roller will welcome some of the city’s most prominent chefs and personalities for a pie eating contest to kick off the holiday season on Tuesday, December 11th at 6:00p.m. Defending Champion, Chef Casey Wilcox of Central Standard, will be back for the pie eating showdown. Participants will dive head first into some of Holy Roller’s homemade pies, all in the name of fun and charity while spectators will be able participate by placing bets on who might win. Guests are encouraged to purchase raffle tickets and use those to bet on the chef or personality they believe will take the cake, well… pie in this case. From there, the raffle tickets from the winning chefs’ bucket will be drawn for some raffle prizes, including a pair of wristbands for weekend 2 of ACL 2019! 100% of the proceeds from the raffle tickets sold will benefit SAFE (the merger of Safe Place and Austin Children’s Shelter) which is an organization that aims to help women and children who have been affected by domestic violence. There will be pie on hand from Holy Roller’s own Britt Castro. There may be no better way to celebrate the holidays with some friends and raise money for women and children in need.
 
December 13th:
 
The team behind Ramen Tatsu-Ya and Kemuri Tatsu-Ya are opening a new concept, Domo Alley-Gato Tatsu-Ya, patio bar and food truck next door to Ramen Tatsu-Ya’s location on the eastside. The patio space will grand open on Thursday, December 13. Domo Alley-Gato seeks to transport guests to the vibrant, buzzing nightlife found in some of Japan’s biggest cities. The space’s food truck, Karē Ban Ban, will offer dishes made with a painstakingly created 23-spice Japanese curry, and the bar will feature a vibrant drink menu of cocktails, Kirin Ichiban beer with frozen foam cap, a DIY Chu-Hi menu, and more.

Shake Shack loving dog parents now have another excuse to frequent their favorite burger joint. BARK has teamed up with Shake Shack to launch a Shack-inspired line of toys including a BarkBurger, Frenchie Fries and a Never-Melt Milkshake – the toys are now available on BarkShopShack Shop, and UO MRKT for a limited time. To mark the occasion, Shake Shack will be hosting an BARK Austin Launch Party at the Shack Shack at the Domain on Thursday, December 13 from 6-8 p.m. Fetch tickets for the BARK Austin Launch Party here to grab a brew while your dog snags a chew. Tickets to attend the event are $15 and include a BARK x Shake Shack toy and a beverage including beer and wine of choice. Proceeds from the events will benefit the Austin Humane Society.

 
There is still a handful of tickets left for the Slow Food Austin annual Beer & Cheese Tasting with 512 Brewing and Antonelli’s Cheese on Thursday, Dec. 13. Proceeds go to Slow Food Austin programming including their Farmer Relief Funds and Scholarship Programs. More info can be found at www.slowfoodaustin.org.
 
December 15th: 
 
It’s the most wonderful time of the year and Craftsman is celebrating with an #ATXmas bash Saturday, December 15 from 6:00 p.m. to 2:00 a.m.The ‘grammable event features an inflatable, house-sized Santa couch so you’ll never have to worry about being too big to sit on his lap. Drink specials courtesy of Dickel Whiskey and Dos XX  include $8 holiday cocktails such as the Bourbon Hot Chocolate with homemade whipped cream and cinnamon as well as $5 beers. The party wouldn’t be complete without food specials which include $1 off meat skewers from Botteco Espeteria and $1 Gochujang chicken wings from Alley Cat. Party admission is free.
 
December 16th:
 
My friend Shruthi Parker is hosting a holiday charity event, Keep Austin Warm 2018! This event will be held at Barr Mansion on December 16th from 4pm-7pm, and will be raising funds for Austin Pets Alive, Safe Alliance, and Hope Food Pantry Austin. Guests will enjoy a fantastic variety of local Austin eats and drinks, music by DJ Ella Ella, swag bags, photo opportunities, a raffle, and a whole load of holiday cheer! Every incredible vendor has donated their services to make this event memorable and give back to our beloved city.  You can buy a ticket here (100% of ticket sales go to the three organizations).
 
December 19th:
 

From Wednesday, December 19 to Saturday, December 22, Geraldine’s will transform its fourth floor pool deck into a life-size snow globe. Decked out with a snow machine, disco ball, and festive décor, the tented rooftop will transport guests to a winter wonderland complete with marshmallows for roasting and holiday cocktails for toasting. The menu will be curated by head pastry chef Yolanda Diaz and bar director Caitlyn Jackson. There will be a curated selection of holiday favorites and forgotten classics on rotation by guest vinyl DJ Janice Bond. Each night, the event will be followed by live music performances on Geraldine’s indoor stage. For more information, visit www.geraldinesaustin.com or call 512.476.4755.

Christmas Programming

New Years Eve Programming

Uchi’s New Year’s menu offers the kind spark to make sure this year goes out with a bang! The twelve-course menu, $195 for two, includes bites like bay scallop with dashi lavash and bruleed grapefruit, mussel tortellini, king crab with brown butter and turmeric congee, and beef cheek with lemongrass, shallot and preserved blood orange bordelaise.

Uchiko is offering dinner at $185 for two, with a nine course meal. The meal includes oysters with kasu sorbet and golden trout roe, scallop with sweet potato and persimmon, a guinea hen with foie, quince, and endive, and a wagyu ribeye with black truffle, preserved lemon, and bone marrow.

At $75 a person, customers at Vino Vino can enjoy a five-course meal complete with wine pairings and a complimentary midnight toast. Guests can choose a classic risotto, shrimp with fennel and saffron, Texas quail with black eyed peas and a scallion crema, or venison paired with tea glazed carrots and a madeira reduction. Check out the full menu here.

Parkside is offering a NYE dinner menu at $70 per person with optional wine pairing $25 per person, plus tax and gratuit.  Upstairs at parkside is also open for large parties.

On Monday, December 31 from 9 p.m. to 2 a.m., Rose Room will be selling tickets for the party of the year, starting at $30 here. Admission gets you both into The Rose Room and 77 Degrees – guests can expect two live DJs and bottle service pricing deals depending on group size. Table sections and reserved seating are also available at both venues by calling 512-743-1400. 21 + only. 

Olive & June is offering a NYE dinner menu at $95 per person, with optional four course wine pairing at $45 per person, plus tax and gratuity.  They will have normal hours with just one extra seating at 10:00pm.

Guild is ringing in the New Year with a special six-course prix fixe dinner on New Year’s Eve. Dinner is priced at $75 per person, with an optional $35 wine pairing, and they will be taking reservations from 5 to 10 p.m. Additionally, an oyster a la carte menu will be available in the bar area, and there will be a champagne toast at midnight. For more information and to make reservations, please visit www.GuildAustin.com.

Wu Chow will have a tasting menu at $65/person, with $10 add ons of soup dumplings, and $35 add on for wine pairing. The full menu is available at WuChowAustin.com.

Ring in the New Year at Whisler’s Annual New Year’s Eve Bash. DJ Jeff Strange will be returning to play another legendary all-vinyl set from 10pm to 2am. And once again, Whislers will be dropping its annual Best Of cocktail menu featuring Whisler’s cocktail favorites of days gone by. Make sure and stay for the champagne toast at midnight!

On Monday, December 31 from 9 p.m. to 2 a.m.St. Genevieve invites you to ring in the new year, as they take you back to the 1920’s for an evening of opulence, revelry, and music. Guests are encouraged to dress to impress in their best Gatsby attire. The party will feature a menu with classic prohibition cocktails of the time and entertainment provided by a live DJ. $20 cover at the door. 21 + only 

TRACE invites guests to experience an unbelievable spread of the most indulgent foods you can imagine. From a queso fountain to a truffle bourbon milkshake, TRACE has the perfect setup for your last meal before your diet.  Dinner will be served reception-style and includes champagne. Join TRACE for the most gluttonous and sinful eats and beats by DJ Mova. The cover charge is $75 and tickets can be purchased here.

Olamaie will be open for dinner on New Year’s Eve this year. They will be doing a three-course menu for $85 per person – complete with a glass of complimentary bubbles! The menu will be based on their regular menu, with a choice between dishes for each course – there will be items available for dietary restrictions as well (vegan, GF, etc.). There will also be an additional pairing available. Reservations are now open via email and OpenTable.

W Austin invites guests to an extravagant Vices and Virtues New Year’s Eve celebration spanning two floors. Event goers can give into their vices in the Living Room Bar where each room will be themed with a different vice accompanied by SolFire beats. Alternatively, the Virtues celebration upstairs will be dripping in glamour to help resolutions take flight with the help of Capyac music and beats by Kid Slyce. There’s a $75 cover charge to the Vices party with complimentary admission for hotel guests. The Virtues party ticket packages range from $150 to $300. An elite package to attend both parties goes for $375. Tickets can be found here.

January 1st:
 
William Chris Vineyards will be hosting theirAnnual New Year’s Day party featuring a distinctly southern BlackEyed Pea Cookoff at the vineyard in Hye, Texas on Tuesday, January 1The festivities start at 1:00 p.m. and the ticket price for general admission is $25 and will include a new year’s toast for adults, plenty of blackeyed peas and live music. Children over 12 will require a ticket. The event will also feature an eating competition, and those who want to participate will be able to sign up the day of. Tickets will be available for purchase online at www.williamchriswines.com/Experiences/Event-Calendar.
 
On Tuesday, January 1 from 11 a.m. to 5 p.m., celebrate the first day of the new year with a $16 brunch buffet at The Park which will include all the favorites such as biscuits and gravy, applewood smoked bacon, migas, sausage, french toast, pancakes, and more. The New Years Day brunch will also feature $2 mimosas with five flavors to choose from – classic orange, strawberry citrus, prickly pear, mango ginger and pineapple basil – as well as $5 build-your-own Grey Goose Bloody Mary Bar.
 
That’s all I have for you this week, and feel free to email me at ane@thehungrychronicles.com in case I’m missing anything important going on this week.

 

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