Second semester of college definitely ended on a better note than did last semester, but my credit card wasn’t as fortunate (after eating eat way more times than I should have, I also happened to lose it at the end of the semester…). Anyways, here’s to good grades and good food!
Austin’s known for its food trucks, and recently, our school has started a partnership with several food truck to allow them to operate right next to the gym (perfect spot, amirite?). One of the trucks is Chi’lantro BBQ, which fuses Mexican and Korean flavors to create some really incredible food. Their Kimchi fries are their most popular, and consists of your choice of protein (I got beef), caramelized kimchi, cheddar + monterey jack, onions, cilantro, magic sauce (actually amazing), sesame seeds and sriracha over fries. My friend ordered the chicken tacos, which included lettuce mix, onions, cilantro, corn or flour tortillas, house-made salsa. Both entrees were reasonably priced (around $7 for each), and although they might not look like a large serving, they’re both delicious and filling.
On the north side of The Drag is Coco’s Cafe, known for its boba (a Taiwanese tea-based drink that contains a tea base mixed with fruit or milk, to which chewy tapioca balls and fruit jelly are often added). I ordered the passion fruit boba along with the bacon pork with rice. My friend and I were taking a break from studying for finals (get ready to read all about my academic life this past semester in a later post LOL), and she got the chicken lo mein. Now, Coco’s is definitely more expensive than the food truck (and also a little more expensive than its neighbor boba place, Tapioca House), but OMG, that was some actual authentic Chinese food!!!
Next up is Pinch, another Asian food truck located about three minutes from my dorm (ahh, how convenient…) that recently has grown in business due to the closing of Don’s, the famous Japanese food truck half a block away. Although there are only five items on the menu, the fried chicken that they offer is stellar: my friends and I all ordered the same dish — the teriyaki fried chicken bento box. The focus definitely is on the chicken, and you get a single broccoli and asparagus and little rice & pickled cabbage, but it’s incredibly filling (their spicy sauce is also amazing).
Two blocks behind Pinch is Mango8, home to Austin’s best shaved ice/snow ice. We ordered the mango snow ice with boba and real mango pieces, and it was enough for all four of us. The toppings really complement the ice, so it’s not terribly sweet, and everything just seems to melt in your mouth. Finally, right across from my dorm is Einstein’s Bagels (which takes our UT dining dollars!!!) so of course you can find me there on the weekends. Here’s the nova lox bagel, which is two pieces of bagel topped with cream cheese, tomatoes, onions and salmon. Perfect for getting you going on a weekend morning!
If you ever get the chance to stop by Austin someday, definitely check out these places, and I’ll be back in December with part three of WTF (hopefully my credit card can handle it LOL). Also, if you missed out on semester one’s food, check it out here!