Where to Eat in Austin Right Now

From date night-worthy fine dining to top-notch taco trucks.

The Well
The Well | Photo courtesy of White Light Exposure
The Well | Photo courtesy of White Light Exposure

Culinary capitals of America make way for the newest member of the club: Austin. Once known solely for Tex-Mex food trucks and big juicy barbecue, today Austin proudly serves up a melting pot of international flavors. We have upscale European-inspired dining where each dish is a work of modern art, and Asian restaurants that have the power to transport you to the streets of Bangkok or Seoul with a single bite. And don’t worry, the tacos and brisket aren’t going anywhere. We’ve truly got it all—eat your way through these local gems to see for yourself.

East Side King Thai Kun
Photo by Lenny Dewi

Thai Kun

The Domain

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.

Simi Estiatorio
Photo by Emma Ramirez

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 Well
Photo courtesy of White Light Exposure

The Well

Downtown

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.

Jjim Korean Braised Bbq
Photo courtesy of Jjim BBQ

Jjim BBQ

South Lamar

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.

Lutie’s
Lutie’s | Photo courtesy of Commodore Perry Estate

Lutie’s

Hancock

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.

Juniper

East Austin

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.

Ramen Tatsu-ya
Ramen Tatsu-ya | Photo by Jane Kim

Ramen Tatsu-ya

South Lamar

The gist: Chef Tatsu Aikawa’s ramen skills have developed a devoted following in Austin, and you can now enjoy his famed Japanese soul food in the northern, eastern, and southern corners of the city (sorry, west siders).
The food: It’s all about that broth—the team simmers those bones for hours on end to produce a rich and creamy tonkotsu. The original is the go-to, with chashu pork belly, ajitama egg, wood ear mushrooms, and scallions. There’s also a veggie option made with soy and mushroom broth, tofu, and a variety of earth-grown goodies. Extra toppings are available for the extra hungry, so why not slap on a bonus of naruto maki, pickled ginger, and enticingly briny seaweed?
The cost: Sides and appetizers $4 - $6, ramen $11 - $14.50.
How to book: Reserve via Resy and order take-out via Toast.

Garrison
Garrison | Photo courtesy of Garrison

Garrison

Downtown

The gist: An open-concept kitchen, Texas Post Oak flame-grilled dishes, and a sexy wood-paneled private dining room team up for an excuse to get all dressed up downtown.
The food: Entrees off the grill include a (potatoless) Parisienne gnocchi with scallops and a juicy pink wagyu eye of ribeye with charred broccoli. The tater tots (not potatoless) are heaven—especially if you love cheese and black truffle (and who doesn’t?). The beverage list spans select cocktails, wine, and beer curated to complement the upmarket digs.
The cost: Starters and sides $7 - $100, mains $28 - $120, cocktails $16 - $24, wine and beer prices vary.
How to book: Reserve via OpenTable.

La Tunita 512

East Oltorf

The gist: Armed with an Instagram feed full of crispy red tortillas, tender beef birria, and melty queso that sells out daily, chef-owner Gerardo "Jerry" Guerrero has officially captured the attention of a taco-obsessed city.
The food: Guerrero slow-roasts his guajillo-based beef brisket until it’s fall-apart tender, serving the flavorful meat in a handful of delicious forms: The birria taco (birria wrapped in a handmade tortilla fried in beef fat), the quesotaco (a birria taco with griddled Monterey jack cheese), the mulita (essentially an overstuffed quesadilla), and the ramen (birria ramen served with Tapatio noodles). Always order a side of consomme, a rich broth made from beef, onion, cilantro, chile, and spices that’s essential for dunking. Oh, and did we mention birria is the ultimate hangover food?
The cost: Tacos $2.50 - $3, ramen $8, mulita $4, consomme $2 - $3.
How to book: Stop by for counter service or order take-out online.

JewBoy Burgers
Courtesy of JewBoy Burgers Instagram

JewBoy Burgers

Airport Boulevard

The gist: Shalom y’all! Owner Mo Pittle blends flavors from the El Paso border with Jewish traditions for a unique feast spanning burgers, burritos, and all kinds of fried sides.
The food: The Yenta Burger adds a crunchy latke to the classic JewBoy burger—a third-pound freshly ground beef patty perched atop diced grilled onions, stacked with double cheese, steamed to melty perfection, topped with lettuce, pickles, and mustard, and served on a squishy Martin's potato roll. The Puro Picadillo burrito is the ultimate Jewish-Tex-Mex mashup: A giant tortilla stuffed with seasoned ground beef, grilled onions, hatch green chiles, chopped latkes, and of course, a hefty serving of Texas-style queso.
The cost: Burgers and hot dogs $3 - $12.50, burritos $4.50 - $8, sides $2.50 - $6, beer and wine $4 - $14.
How to book: Stop by for first come, first served seating, order take-out via Toast, or get delivery via Grubhub and Favor.

Nixta Taqueria
Courtesy of Mackenzie Smith Kelley

Nixta Taqueria

East Twelfth Street

The gist: Chef Edgar Rico harnesses Mexican tradition and his culinary know-how to elevate the humble taco, dishing up a bill of heirloom corn tortillas filled with textures and colors you’d expect to see in a fine dining establishment, yet served in a neighborhood setting.
The food: Tacos and tostadas begin with fresh masa made inhouse from heritage corn. The vegan beet tartare tostada is a must try, a crisp shell topped with earthy roasted beets, salsa macha aioli, avocado crema, horseradish, and lime for a one-two punch of flavor and texture. Make the Tropical Sueño your take-out dessert—it’s a popsicle made with pineapple, mango, and lemon dipped in chamoy and lime zest.
The cost: Tacos and tostadas $4 - $10, desserts $5.50 - $9, soft drinks $3 - $6, beer and wine $3 - $50, pantry items $9 - $11.
How to book: Stop by for first come, first served seating, order take-out online, or get delivery via Grubhub, Postmates, and Favor.

Kinda Tropical
Courtesy of Kinda Tropical

Kinda Tropical

East Seventh

The gist: A former filling station finds new life as a colorful café complete with a full bar, all-day dining, and a breezy patio filled with brunching patrons sporting band tees and flip-flops.
The food: Those on a health kick can opt for a vegan pulled jackfruit sandwich or saucy sesame salad, while their naughtier pals can indulge in a maple CBD waffle washed down with a frozen cocktail. They also peddle boozy ice pops in four yummy flavors. A Monday through Friday afternoon happy hour with dollar-off brews, $7 cocktails, and $7 snacks sweetens the deal.
The cost: Starters and sides $2 - $12, dinner mains $7 - $12, brunch mains $4.50 - $12, cocktails $7 - $12, beer and wine by the glass $4 - $10.
How to book: Stop by for first come, first served seating or order take-out via Toast.

Suerte

East Sixth

The gist: An inhouse masa program and top-notch mezcal selection lead the way for a celebrated lineup of modern Mexican fare made with locally sourced ingredients.
The food: Hailed as the best Mexican restaurant in Austin, the menu here changes regularly to reflect only the freshest, seasonal produce from local farmers, but their corn tortillas are always made using heirloom grains. Dinner highlights include the Suadero tacos with confit brisket and oak-smoked pork chop while brunch features an out-of-this-world kolache with pineapple and queso. Of course, these should all be accompanied by Suerte’s legendary cocktails (Don Dario is the move). Lucky hour (AKA happy hour) is available daily to heighten the festive vibes.
The cost: Starters, pastries, and sides $6 - $18, dinner mains $11 - $36, brunch mains $12 - $18, dessert $8 - $9, cocktails $8 - $15.
How to book: Reserve via Resy or order take-out via Toast.

LeRoy & Lewis

South Congress

The gist: With a rotating selection of smoked barbecue by the pound and a focus on alternative cuts and creative sides made with locally sourced ingredients, this is food truck gold.
The food: Known for his innovative takes on Texas ‘cue, pitmaster Evan LeRoy incorporates elements of fine dining and scratch-made cooking into every aspect of his menu-on-wheels. Look forward to brisket, ribs, and sausage plus flavorful and creative sides like cauliflower burnt ends and kale Caesar slaw alongside a deep yellow cheddar cheesecake with apple butter that’s far from what you’d expect (in a good way).
The cost: Meat and veggie mains by the ½ pound $10 - $18, sides $5, sandwiches and combo plates $8 - $20, dessert $6.
How to book: Stop by for counter service or order take-out online.

Fukumoto
Courtesy of Fukumoto

Fukumoto

East Sixth

The gist: Chef Kazu Fukumoto’s masterful approach to yakitori and sushi plus the knowledgeable, friendly staff makes this Japanese standby a perennial top pick.
The food: In addition to an expansive array of nigiri and sashimi, skewers grilled over charcoal, and mouth-watering maki, this beloved izakaya packages prime bento boxes for take-out and delivery only. Standouts include the King salmon skewers, the YST roll (smoky yellowtail, shiso, tomato, Thai chili mayo), fried chicken karaage, and a palate-pleasing chef’s choice sashimi platter.
The cost: Starters $4.50 - $13, mains and yakitori $3-$14, maki, sashimi, and nigiri $3 - $25.
How to book: Call 512-770-6880 to reserve, order take-out online, or get delivery via UberEats.

Spicy Boys Fried Chicken
Courtesy of Spicy Boys

The gist: This ambitious food truck hawks its Asian-inspired, delectably crispy fried chicken sandwiches, wings, and endlessly buttery, curry-laden roti from its posts at St. Elmo Brewing, Zilker Brewing, and a freshly debuted Fairweather Cider location—perfect for gameday eats.
The food: While much of the menu falls on the chill side of hot, we can’t stop obsessing over the mouth-numbing lemon Sichuan wings and fiery hot gai chicken sandwich (spicy fried chicken, Massaman mayo, Swiss cheese, Thai basil, pickles). Throw in a side of tots tossed with your choice of wing sauce for a complete and balanced meal.
The cost: Starters and sides $1.99 - $4.99, mains $7.99 - $11.99.
How to book: Stop by for counter service, order take-out online, or get delivery via Favor.

Huckleberry
Courtesy of Huckleberry

Huckleberry

North Burnet

The gist: Chef Davis Turner cut his teeth with star local chefs before returning to his Southern coastal roots with Huckleberry, a food truck peddling Gulf Coast-inspired comforts out of Circle Brewing’s lot.
The food: Go big with favorites like the Gulf Coast fish sandwich (fried Gulf black drum, pickles, tomato, lettuce, onions, lemon caper remoulade, challah bun), po’boys stuffed with fried shrimp or fried oysters, or the Thursday-only Angus smash burger guaranteed to sell out in a flash. On-theme sides like fried green tomatoes, bean dip, and coleslaw round things out.
The cost: Starters and sides $3 - $15, mains $12 - $36.
How to book: Stop by for counter service.

Cuantos Tacos

East Oltorf

The gist: Stationed inside his cartoonishly cute bright yellow truck, chef Beto Robledo regularly sells out of his game-changing lineup of Mexico City-style street tacos.
The food: Suadero (braised, crisped brisket), cachete (beef cheek), buche (pork stomach), carnitas (pulled pork), and longaniza (chorizo-like Portugese sausage) are all cooked to perfection on a vertical rotisserie or trompo. And while each cut sports its own unique textures and flavors, Robledo’s masterful touch makes them all equally appealing, especially when double-wrapped in fragrant nixtamal corn tortillas and topped with cilantro, onion, homemade salsas, and a squeeze of lime. For a few bucks more, you can get your filling of choice in griddled quesadilla form.
Cost: Tacos $2, quesadillas $3 - $5, soft drinks $2.
How to book: Stop by for counter service or order take-out and delivery via Grubhub and Postmates.

Dough Boy

East Oltorf

The gist: Known for Neapolitan-style pies marked by an utterly addictive blistered crust, this Eastside pizza project sees chefs Tony and Max smothering hand-tossed dough with seasonal ingredients before firing them in a massive Italian wood-burning oven.
The food: Pillowy 12-inch pies come in all forms, from the classic Bob-A-Rita (red sauce, herbs, fresh mozz, basil) to creative flavor bombs like the Green-Go (garlic cream, smoked mozz, provolone, spicy pork sausage, roasted onions, broccolini, secret green sauce). Enquire about Live From The Garden, a rotating special that makes good use of garden-fresh seasonal ingredients.
Cost: Extras and sides $1 - $10, pizzas $12 - $18.
How to book: Stop by for counter service, order take-out online, or get delivery via Grubhub and Favor.

James Wong is a contributor for Thrillist.