The gist: This food truck-slash-casual sit-down restaurant serves Austin’s most authentic Thai cuisine. Bangkok-born chef Thai Changthong has racked up rave reviews and awards nationwide, and rightly so—his work more than lives up to the accolades.
The food: Staples like pad Thai and Thai green curry are cooked up to perfection, but it’s the rarities that will blow your mind. You may not have heard of khao moo dang (it’s not typically featured on western menus), but trust, it’s the clear winner, showcasing the juiciest homemade Thai BBQ pork, soaked in rich and brothy gravy and topped with Chinese sausage and boiled egg.
The cost: Appetizers $7 - $14, mains $13 - $20, wine by the glass $12 - $14, cocktails $10 - $13.
How to book: Stop by for first come, first served seating, order take-out via Toast, or get delivery via Postmates.
The gist: Helmed by Peruvian native chef Diego Sanchez, Simi Estiatorio brings Greek fine dining to Austin, with a focus on ocean-fresh seafood. It’s on the pricey side, but you’re paying for quality ingredients brought in daily from both land and sea.
The food: You can’t leave without trying the pristine seafood, of course. There’s charcoal-grilled Maine lobster if you’re in a celebratory mood, otherwise the whole fish range includes fangri, a Mediterranean white snapper, and lavraki, a prized lean white fish that’s mild and sweet. There are land options too, like Kotopoulo, AKA roast chicken with lemon potatoes. The drinks menu features cocktails, domestic and Greek wines, as well as baller bubbles like Perrier Jouet, Cristal, and vintage Dom Perignon.
The cost: Appetizers and salads $14 - $32, mains $28 - $98, beer and wine by the glass $9 - $25, cocktails $17 - $25.
How to book: Reserve via OpenTable.
The gist: Here for the eco-conscious, The Well incorporates nutrition, local and sustainable farming, and naturally bold flavors into a wellness studio-style dining room. Everything on the menu is non-GMO, free of soy, gluten, peanut, corn, and refined sugar, and cooked with olive, coconut, or avocado oil. If Gwyneth Paltrow were Texan, this is where you’d find her.
The food: Signatures include the vegan (but fishy-textured) watermelon crudo with black pearl onion and lemongrass dashi. The mushroom brown rice risotto is a black truffle-laden sensation, and don’t feel bad about indulging afterward. Desserts are designed around fruit, nuts, and seeds, and cocktails are crafted using stunners like cold pressed organic juices and sweetened with natural sugars like agave, honey, and dates. Go for the Majik Matcha, packed with smoky mezcal, blue majik spirulina, matcha tea, raw organic honey, sparkling water, and aquafaba (vegan egg whites).
The cost: Starters and shareables $8 - $17, salads and mains $15 - $45, cocktails $12 - $16, wine by the glass $10 - $17.
How to book: Reserve via Resy or order take-out via Toast.
The gist: South Lamar’s new sizzling Korean hot spot is K-BBQ on a mission. Their speciality is jjim, a method of slow-cooking or braising meats until extremely tender, so expect a fall-off-the-bone situation every time.
The food: First-timers should try the signature beef short rib jjim, a pile of soft, meaty chunks cooked on cast iron with vegetables in a sweet soy sauce and sided with steamed white rice plus your choice of add-on (kimchi, mozzarella, egg, or glass noodles). It’s big enough for up to three to share, though two hungry stomachs will suit just fine. The seafood pancake jeon is a lighter, crispier take on the traditional if you want something smaller, and the seafood soon dubu soup, a hearty combo of silken tofu, clams, scallops, shrimp, and vegetables, feels like it was whipped up by grandma. Drinks wise, expect a selection of cocktails, beer, wine, and tasty Korean spirits like soju and makgeolli.
The cost: Starters and shareables $8 - $24, barbecue platters $55 - $75, individual mains $18 - $24.
How to book: Stop by for first come, first served seating or order take-out online.
The gist: Husband-and-wife chef team Bradley Nicholson and Susana Querejazu bring fresh, wholesome dishes spotlighting local farmers to the Commodore Perry Estate’s Instagram-perfect gardens. The restaurant has been booked solid since opening earlier in the year, so plan ahead if you’re trying to snag a table.
The food: Star dishes include the grand aioli platter and whole-roasted black sea bass with seasonal greens, but there’s more than enough to keep herbivores happy. Plant-based shareables like garden hand rolls with cucumber dip, grilled beets with dill and garlic, and chickpea and green corn salad are verifiably Michelin-worthy. Dessert wise, the chocolate shaved ice is the ideal antidote to Austin’s year-round heat.
The cost: Dinner shareables $9 - $34, desserts $8 - $14, cocktail and wine prices vary.
How to book: Reserve via OpenTable.
The gist: Chef Nic Yanes takes classics from Northern Italy and sprinkles them with farm-to-fork Central Texas flare alongside a wine list starring the best of Tuscany and Piedmont. Swoon.
The food: Inside this date night dream, every component is arranged with an artist’s touch, from fluffy potato fingers accompanied by a dollop of dijon cream to the Little Lettuce Insalate's parcel of leaves tucked beneath honey-shallot vinaigrette. For bigger plates, the pan-roasted scallops and sunchoke velouté and chicken saltimbocca won’t let you down, and for dessert, try the delicately whipped panna cotta dusted with zesty blood orange granita. Bellissimo. They also offer a range of tasting menus for those looking to sample through the hits.
The cost: Antipasti and insalate $9 - $40, primi and secondi $19 - $48, dolci $7 - $9, cocktails $9 - $18, wine by the glass $11 - $15, tasting menu and prix-fixe costs vary.
How to book: Reserve via OpenTable or order take-out via Toast.