Easter in Austin, TX
There are endless places to eat barbecue in Austin and endless quirky restaurants with retro signs like this. But if you want to eat barbecue at a quirky place with a cool sign, this is the place to go!
This 19th century limestone building has housed everything from grocery store to furniture store to an old tavern years ago. But since the 1990's it has been one of the most popular food and music venues in Austin. The old limestone building serves the brisket and sauce created by Christopher B "Stubb" Stubblefield and welcomes performers like Willie Nelson and BB King to it's indoor and outdoor stages.
Food and Church
If you're having to drive 2.5 hours to meet your kids for brunch, then you might not have time for church and brunch. So here's a little compromise. In the lower half of the building you have a stage set with some awesome gospel music. Those seated downstairs were getting the whole deal. It was pretty loud for conversing. But hey, you're not supposed to talk in church anyway.
There are so many options for dining. We were seated in a fun little room with red candles on the fireplace mantle and warm plank wood floors. There were only about 4 tables and we could hear the music plenty fine from in here. We even had some great photos of old Stubb's himself.
Here is the photo of Stubb, in his early days of cooking. He grew up in Navasota and Lubbock with his 11 siblings. He spent time picking cotton and serving in the Korean war before ending up in Austin in 1984. He died in 1995 before his restaurant moved into the current building on Red River.
Here's a photo from when the building was once a tavern. It must have catered to fishermen and hunters.
This is how the bar looks now. It's hard to see with people in the way, but not too much has changed.
Bloody Mary Bar
It seems a bit sinful to have Bloody Marys while listening to gospel singers, but it seemed to be the thing to do at Stubb's. The vodka arrived in jars of ice at our table, then we moved to the bar to customize!
Inside and Out
Part of the fun of the place, is the flow from in to out. There was seating down in the yard and the informal buffet was served on an outside deck. Since this is as much music venue and restaurant, there's a huge outside area where concerts play from various levels and locations.
Time to Eat
We sat at a cute metal top table beside a brick wall while we pigged out on our buffet feast. The plate above shows my first trip...southern style grits, migas, fried catfish, biscuits, gravy and a super spicy enchilada! I went back later for the brisket that they're famous for. All was excellent.
What to Wear?
Anything goes at Stubbs. Which is pretty much like any place in Austin. I saw tee shirts and shorts and a 3 piece purple suit. My daughter and I posed with white glove... in memory of my childhood Easters!
This wasn't your usual Sunday brunch, so there were a lot of tables filled with big families and large parties. So the people watching was a little livelier.
We were at the 10:30 seating, so it could be a different crowd for the second seating. Maybe we would have seen more church hats. Heidi seemed to be the only one sporting a festive hat!
Bottles of Sauce!
What a nice surprise to be handed a bottle of Stubb's famous BBQ sauce as we headed out the door! We decided to do some posing with our white gloves. We figured they may want to use this is future advertisements. You just never know.
Or maybe the men could sell it better. The main thing I noticed when we stood outside posing, was that quite a crowd was congregating on the corner with us. The 10:30 group had basically been booted and the 12:30 crowd was standing in line to go in. We could have lingered for days at our table. There had been a nice breeze blowing through the open doors. But it was hard to be grumpy about leaving when we had a free jar of sauce!
The crowd on the sidewalk all seemed to be in the same festive chatty mood, enjoying "after meal good spritis". You have to hand it to the Stubb's crew. They were very efficient. They do this every week and they're darn good at it. They left us wanting more... in a good way. We will have to go back!
The Dining Blog
This is a blog about Dining Adventures. Sometimes, I talk about food. Below, you can read how this started.
On July 4th 2011, I set a goal to try 50 culturally diverse restaurants in one year! (I knew that was possible, living in the Houston area) I spent the year pulling in friends and family to join me, on some unusual dining adventures. I met some curious people, tried some scary foods and explored places and cultures I never would have otherwise. Even though I met my goal, I learned too much to end my adventures in dining. I have continued blogging about memorable dining adventures of all kinds, near and far... and all the discoveries and funny things I've learned along the way!
Locations and types of dining adventures, are listed further down.