Leaving today, it's been a wild five days.
Flew into SAT (San Antonio) to visit a friend at Canyon Lake, which is pretty much in the middle of nowhere. Drive to Spring Branch took 50 mins in moderate traffic. Family Italian rest called Italian Garden nearby has better food than anyone has a right to expect.
The drive to Austin took 1/12 hrs, checked into Marriott Residence Inn, went to Piranha Killer Sushi for dinner. LOVE this place and went back 3x during our stay. Not only is the sushi killer, the martinis are sublime. I'm a vodka gimlet drinker and they are so hard to get right. Theirs was perfect.
City getting more crowded and crazy by the day. Rained first two days, now it's sunny and gorgeous. There are tons of pedi-cabs around, many available. So easy to walk everywhere.
Sat night dinner at Wink on Lamar. Been there before, it's fantastic. Lots of locals on dates. Sophisticated, mostly couples, food is inventive, fresh and delicious. I was impressed that I could order beef tartar without the onions, meaning it is prepared to order. And STINKING good. Pork belly, spinach salad, flourless choc cake, all fabulous. Highly recommended, reservations a must.
There's a Lifeway Kefir truck in front of Marriott giving away these yummy frozen kefir cups. I've been inhaling them.
Food truck central (southbites) is located near convention center at Rainey & Driskill. I didn't eat there, but the Chi'lantro truck looks and smells killer.
The "skywalk" or elevated sidewalk on parts of 4th St is really annoying and clogs foot traffic. suggest taking 3rd or 5th when downtown.
Dinner Sunday at a total throwback Italian rest called Carmelo's. It was pretty empty - not a good sign during SX, but the food wasn't bad at all, though overpriced. Very close to hotel, but only go here if you need a relatively quiet place to eat and talk, or if you are having dinner with your grandparents. I tasted the caprese salad, beef carpaccio, chicken parm and plain pizza. All were pretty good, except the pizza, which was too thick for my NY sensibilities.
There's some good boutique shopping down on 2nd St, which is also called Willie Nelson Ave.
Good place to buy groceries/wine/sandwiches are the two Blue Ribbon stores. Small but nice selection.
Monday night - back to Piranha for a sushi, sake and martini blowout. LOVE that place.
OK, time to head to the airport. Music people are arriving. It's a madhouse. Enjoy.