Archive for SXSW

Deep In The Heart of Texas…

Posted in Food, Hotels, Travel with tags , , on March 17, 2009 by travelwizard

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It’s Texas time. Yep, SXSW is here again, the annual, Austin based music festival that spans a week in the middle of March each year. In preparation for 6 solid days of beer at breakfast, BBQ and bands, I have been steadily increasing my beef  and beer intake..it’s kinda like training for the marathon, except instead of improving my BMI, I will be expanding my stomach so that I arrive in Texas prepped and ready to..er..eat. Here’s a rundown of my favorite spots to take a break from music madness – and it is truly madness. If you’ve never been, it’s like nothing you have ever done and it requires great stamina, a good pair of sneakers and a full stomach.

Here’s my quick guide to navigating Austin and surviving SXSW:

Where to Stay: The Driskill Hotel

The Driskill is one of the oldest establishments in Austin. Started in 1886 by a distinguished cattle baron, The Driskill is one of my favorite hotels in Austin. It’s design is distinctly southern, right down to the hospitality and taxidermy animals. Each room is stately and luxurious and it’s location right on 6th street makes it a perfect hotel to navigate the festival. 

Eat right:

Texas cuisine offers up two distinctly delicious choices – Tex Mex and BBQ. You can’t go wrong with either but lucky for you, there is plenty of time for both. For breakfast, I always make a point to head to Polvo’s, an Austin institution for Mexican food. GOD, Tex-mex is amazing. I especially crave the breakfast taco’s here. I don’t even want to know what kind of calories exist within this food because I don’t want to kill my buzz. I shall refrain from investigating. 

For lunch, there is BBQ. Delicious, delicious BBQ. The brisket, those ribs, THAT SAUCE. It’s criminal how good it can be. It’s really the only time I feel justified eating numerous animals at the same time. There are a few place in and around Austin I tend to hit up. The first being Rudy’s…a fantastic spot right outside of town that seriously has the best brisket and baby backs west of the Texas border. Okay..maybe it is not that good but it’s pretty special. This year I might venture to Green Mesquite or Salt Lick if I procure a car but sometimes that can be tricky when navigating set times for over 1500 bands. Green Mesquite was recently featured on one of my favorite late night food network shows – Diners, Drive In’s and Dives. I swear Guy Fieri has the best job but I really want home to lose the bleached hair – but that’ s a side issue.

What to See…

Oh..so many great bands to see…The Temper Trap, Fool’s Gold, Lissy Trullie, Little Boots, Pains at Being Pure At Heart, Glasser, Rye Rye and so on and so on. 

 

Did I mention I went to the Rodeo pre-sxsw? A staple of Texas culture. 

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