Sunday, April 28, 2013

Quick Trip to Austin

A few weeks ago, the husband and I decided to take a long weekend and visit Austin, Texas.  I tend to over-plan, so I promised him I would try to relax on this trip.  After an (unexpectedly) very long day at work, we headed south and got into town about 2am.  With no hotel reservations and no idea that the Austin Marathon was that weekend, we ended up at a place in Pflugerville.

 On Saturday morning, we enjoyed our complimentary hotel breakfast and then strolled through a farmer's market before heading to the South Austin Brewing Company's First Anniversary Party (which we learned about on the internet that morning).  

The Evil Wiener food truck was on site and exactly what I was wanting from Austin.  

James (the husband) had the Colonel Klink brat (delicious!) and I got the truck-made fried pickle chips.  

 There were two beers on tap to sample:  a Belgian Saison (my favorite) and Belgian Golden Ale (his favorite).  One keg of their brand new Strong Ale made a special appearance later in the afternoon and I was a big fan of that one as well (I think we snagged the last two glasses).

And here's a close-up of my pickles just for fun.  These were great...and I've definitely had my fair share of fried pickles.  

 There was live music by Austin band The Gourds and we met lots of great people.  In fact, within our first few hours out and about in Austin, we had made plans with two different sets of folks!  That's probably the biggest idea I'll take away from Austin.  Everywhere we went, people were so friendly.

We went to a great place called Easy Tiger that night (which was recommended to us by a couple we met at the brewery) and decided to check out Congress Avenue the next day.  We had a late night with new friends so we got a late start that morning.

We loved browsing in the Farm to Market Grocery and picked up some local fruit and pepper jams (and tried to pick up some local beer...a little too early on Sunday).  We had lunch at Home Slice Pizza.  Good food and super cute place.   I forgot to get a photo of the actual restaurant where we ate (and their fun bar out back), but this was their take-out shop just a few doors down.

 And obviously I had to stop at Big Top Candy Shop for chocolate-covered bacon (and some hard to find Haribo gummies). 

So sad this place wasn't open.

But really I just loved looking around town.  So different from home, but so comfortable and so much fun.  Definitely one of my favorite weekend trips ever.

And even though I had a great time, I will probably make hotel reservations next time.  But I think Austin is a great place to go without a vacation strategy.  I'm not sure I'll feel good about forgoing plans on all of our future trips, but I'll be okay with it next time we visit there.  Maybe it makes me feel a little bit more like an Austinite or something.

And this is where I want to stay next time we visit.  Can't wait!