Sunday, March 22, 2015

Texas Bluebonnets

Spring comes early in the south. We've spotted our first Bluebonnets:

Thursday, March 12, 2015

Where to find Classic, Old-School Austinites

Waterloo was founded in 1839 as the seventh, but final, capital of Texas. Shortly thereafter, Waterloo was renamed to Austin, as Stephen F. Austin is to Texas what George Washington is to the United States.

For a while, Austin was a quiet capital, better known as a college town with the University of Texas founded in 1883 and St. Edward's University in 1885. The city was founded with around 500 residents, half of whom fled the city when the government recessed or school was not in session. But once the capital boomed, it boomed! The secret was out - Austin was cool.

In the early 1900s the city's population was around 22,000 residents versus a 656,000 population as of 2000. Nowadays, statistics state that over 100 people move to Austin each and every day. And that trend does not seem to be slowing down or changing any time soon.

But what about those that were here before the boom? The oldies-but-goodies. The "founders" if you will. Well, I’m lucky enough to have married into an “old” Austin family. Most, if not all, of my husband’s family and friends went to the same elementary school together, rooted for one of the only high schools in the city (go Maroons!), and matriculated to the University of Texas, or "UT".  For years they’d go to the same Austin stalwarts, not just to eat, but also to gather, see other friends and family, and dine on what was (and for some joints still is) quintessential classic Austin grub.

When you refer to "the old Austin" many places and nostalgic thoughts can pop into one's mind.  Over the years whenever we've visited a classic Austin restaurant I’ve always listened, knowing that someone at the table had a unique personal memory or story to be told. Below are some of the stories, quotes and places where you're likely to stumble upon old, classic Austin and Austinites:

“For years people have come in on Sundays and stayed for several hours eating and drinking.  You’d see big families that essentially made the restaurant into their own personal dining room, just like home. Matt would greet you upon entering, as he did at the original location on Caesar Chavez. It’s perfect.” - a nostalgic 65-year-old Austinite

"You kids would run around and play while we would sit and eat. It was a mess, but it was like home, we knew everyone at every table so someone was always watching out for one another's kids." - a mom speaking to her 35-year-old son

"To order it right, you always say 'gimme a large bob'" - on the famous Bob Armstrong dip

2613 South Lamar Blvd
Sunday-Thursday* 11am - 10pm
Friday and Saturday 11am - 11pm
*Closed on Tuesdays