I found an old wallet filled with punchcards from Austin. There were about thirty in there. Didn’t I say I was a paper hoarder? If it’s printed, I want to keep it. I decided to record some of my favorite places in a tiny journal. Some of the punchcards were from places I love, whereas some had awful memories – like bad service. Here are some of the more memorable ones:
Maoz is a chain I was excited to see in Austin. It exists in New York but getting one in Austin was a gem. First off – their salad bar was absolute fire. It’s endless beets… let me know if you know a salad bar that good. Until then, I’ll lament the loss of Maoz. When Maoz had to shut down, I was definitely sad. Sure, it’s corporate, and some may argue it’s a sanitized version of Middle Eastern food, but what girl could forget her first falafel experience? One of my closest friends, who was a student from New York, had found a little refuge in Maoz.
Remember when fast-casual was nothing but an idea? Now we have Chipotle, build-your-own pizza places, and Verts (another fav of mine) – endless fast casual options. When How Do You Roll? Opened in Austin, we thought it was a revelation. Overtime, I think people quickly realized that sushi prepared in a sushi kitchen, with raw fish, was better than anything Maki had to serve. That’s ok though. Those were better times.
My partner rarely gets excited for restaurants because he is a diehard cook-at-home type of guy. However, a place he loved was Elevation Burger. Not only did they have lettuce wraps, they were the beginning of grass-fed beef in Austin. Unfortunately they had to go to make way for more expensive dining options for Austin, but it was an OG.