Austin Welcomes Newest Asian Eatery, Fukumoto

Fukumoto  | Yelp, Scott T.

Fukumoto | Yelp, Scott T.

Austin welcomes its newest Japanese eatery Fukumoto, opened by Chef Kazu Fukumoto. Gaining a reputation for his expertly prepared sushi, Fukumoto opened his eponymous restaurant to feature another side of Japanese cuisine: yakitori, a style of cuisine the chef found lacking in Austin's vibrant culinary scene.

Yakitori cuisine involves cooking over a  high heat Japanese Bichotan charcoal, a process Fukumoto studied intensively in his native Japan before bringing his concept to Austin. And while the restaurant took longer to open than the chef predicted, he is now excited to welcome diners to come and try yakitori for themselves. Read More

Austin Experiments with Community Share Restaurant Concepts

Community Share Restaurant Lenoir  | Yelp, Jasmine B.

Community Share Restaurant Lenoir | Yelp, Jasmine B.

A new restaurant model has debuted in Austin that looks towards the local dining community for support. Introducing the idea of a community share restaurant, several Austin restaurants have reportedly been experiencing success under the model. The model works by offering patrons restaurant gift card accounts at reduced prices, as well as a number of other incentives such as invitations to cooking classes, wine dinners and other events.

Restaurants such as Lenoir have found the guaranteed beginning of the year cash flow incredibly beneficial and the community share concept has also worked to increase goodwill amongst diners and ensure repeat customers. Read More

Commercial Kitchens Serve as Testing Grounds for Austin Chefs

In addition to Austin's vibrant culinary scene, the city is also known for its array of packaged food producers. In an attempt to encourage more artisanal experimentation amongst chefs in this arena, Austin has several commercial kitchens set up throughout the city. These commercial kitchens serve as culinary incubators, allowing for local chefs to test out their product ideas without incurring the cost of installing commercial kitchens in their own restaurants.  

The kitchens also act as a space that can be utilized by both caterers and mobile food vendors to prepare food before traveling. Learn more about Austin's commercial kitchens here

Austin Restaurants Experiment with Alternative Types of Proteins

Lonesome Dove's Rattlesnake Sausage  | John Anderson

Lonesome Dove's Rattlesnake Sausage | John Anderson

At some of Austin's more experimental restaurants, a new type of protein has begun making its way onto diners plates: snake. Restaurants experimenting with the reptile have found snake to be an incredibly versatile protein that offers a complexity of flavor. Very lean with many small bones similar to fish, the preparation may be a bit more labor intensive, but the exotic nature has led to quite the appeal amongst adventurous diners.

At Thai restaurant Sway, snake is not an unusual addition to the menu as the restaurant serves up a number of alternative type proteins including stingray, alligator and fried chicken hearts. For others, like Lonesome Dove Western Bistro, adding rattlesnake to the menu fit in well with the restaurant's Western inspired dishes. Read More

Urban Outfitters To Unveil Two Restaurant Concepts in Austin

Philadelphia based clothing chain Urban Outfitters is looking to expand its operations into the restaurant industry with plans to open two unique restaurant and bar concepts in Austin. While the concepts do not yet have names, they are set to open on Austin's Guadalupe Street, also known as "the Drag."  

The concepts' location are in close proximity to the University of Texas campus and the retailer has already purchased the leases for five retails spaces on the same street in the hopes of launching an Urban Outfitters 'mega-center' nearby. This move is not Urban Outfitter's first entry into the food industry as the chain currently hosts The Gorbals restaurant inside its Brooklyn location.

Will Urban Outfitters' retail/restaurant crossovers find success with Austin diners?  Read More