APRIL 5-8 AND OCT 11-14, 2018
Day 1: WELCOME TO AUSTIN: A CITY UNLIKE ANY OTHER IN TEXAS
- Check in at The Driskill - located in the heart of Austin
- Enjoy dinner and craft brews at East Side King at Liberty
Welcome to Austin, the most unique city in Texas! Not only is it on track to be the best BBQ city in Texas, it is home to over 700 food trucks, some of the best breakfast tacos in the country, and a progressive food scene that is on par with the best food cities in the country. After you arrive and check in at the four-star hotel The Driskill, we will head over to the welcome dinner at East Side King at Liberty. This is a unique and at the same time incredibly classic Austin set up. East Side King is one of the series of Asian inspired food trucks by Top Chef winner Paul Qui. The truck is parked on the back patio of a very Texas style bar called Liberty. We will relax out on the patio eating some of the tastiest food truck food in existence and sipping Texas craft brews.
Meals included: Dinner and two drinks
Day 2: Food trucks, knife-making demo, dinner at olamaie, the austin music scene
- Taste the best of Austin's food trucks
- Eat at La Barbecue without waiting in line
- See how Travis Weige crafts Weige Knives by hand
- Savor an exclusive meal selected by the chefs at Olamaie including wine pairings
- Enjoy local music
Austin, a city of just under one million people, has over 700 active food trucks. These aren't just the workaday trucks one might find outside a construction area; these are gourmet kitchens on wheels. There are BBQ trucks, pizza trucks equipped with wood fired ovens, homemade donut trucks and just about every type of international cuisine one could imagine. There are always a handful of food trucks on every Austin restaurant “best of” list and some of the best food in the city can be found at food trucks. We will start our day by visiting a number of them, trying the best trucks the city has to offer, and even stopping at La Barbecue, one of the best BBQ spots in Texas. We will also get our first glimpses of the city in the daytime and learn about the history and the future of this unique town.
After learning about the Austin food truck scene, we will head over to Weige Knives to learn how handmade knives are constructed. Travis Weige makes beautiful custom knives to order, using a variety of metals and handle materials. These are beautiful, high-performance knives that people wait months to receive, and we get the chance to see how they’re made. If interested, guests can order their own handmade knives onsite.
Dinner will be at the acclaimed Olamaie. Michael Fojtasek and Grae Nonas founded the restaurant and were named Food and Wine Best New Chefs in 2015. They combined their love of vintage cookbooks and Southern cooking with their high-end dining training to create Olamaie. The flavors will be familiar to Southerners and the techniques are contemporary and creative. Chef Fojtasek will be creating a special family-style meal just for us that contains all of the most famous Olamaie dishes, paired with wines chosen to highlight the food. If we are still standing after this exciting day, we will head to one of Austin's classic bars to hear a local band. Austin is center of the Texas music scene, and many musicians make the city their home.
Meals included: Breakfast/Lunch on tour, Dinner (including wine pairing)
Day 3: Epic Texas bbq tour, dinner at barley swine
- Tour four classic and new BBQ joints, including small meals at each one
- Explore downtown Austin
- Enjoy a multi-course tasting menu with wine at the renowned Barley Swine
Austin is rapidly becoming the capital city of Texas BBQ. This is a relatively recent phenomenon, and we will learn why firsthand by going on a five-hour BBQ tour. There are historic BBQ pits within an hour north and south of Austin. We will take a trip through this history, experiencing both classic and new Texas BBQ. The first two locations we will visit have a combined 200 years of BBQ experience. These are classic central Texas BBQ joints. We will then try two top-notch, modern-style Austin BBQ restaurants, and one will include a pit tour and the chance to ask as many questions as we can of a Texas BBQ pit master.
The afternoon is free to explore the quirky and unique city of Austin (or take a nap to recover from all that BBQ). Downtown Austin has many local stores, bars and museums to explore.
Dinner will be at Bryce Gilmore's restaurant Barley Swine. Chef Gilmore was a Food and Wine Best New Chef in 2013, and Barley Swine is on just about every “best of” Austin restaurant list. Gilmore focuses on local products prepared creatively and beautifully. We will have a multi-course tasting menu with wine pairing. We will also get a chance to check out some beautiful Weige steak knives in action at Barley Swine.
Meals included: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner (including wine pairing)
Day 4: Breakfast tacos, Franklin BBQ, and Keep Austin Weird
- Taste the best of Austin's taco joints for breakfast
- Franklin BBQ for lunch without waiting in line
- Explore Austin's unique shopping scene
Austin is known for music, BBQ, progressive restaurants, food trucks, tacos and being weird. We will have covered all but two of these during the weekend thus far. The motto, "Keep Austin Weird," is seen and heard regularly while in the city, and it doesn't take long to understand what Austinites mean by it. It is the creative center of Texas, and on Sunday we will visit some great examples of weird and unique Austin. We will have the chance to do some shopping at local stores that just don't exist elsewhere in the world at shops like Parts and Labor, Uncommon Objects and Monkey See Monkey Do.
Austinites will argue that the best tacos in Texas can be found here, and we can't leave Austin without thoroughly checking out the taco scene. Breakfast tacos, lunch tacos, snack tacos and dinner tacos can be found at food trucks and restaurants all over town. We will hit two of the best spots for breakfast tacos. We will cap off the trip with an amazing lunch from the best BBQ in Texas from Franklin BBQ (without waiting in a five-hour line)!
After we finish lunch, we will head back to the hotel to pick up our luggage and head to the airport on our way back home.
Meals included: Breakfast, Lunch