Spicyland in Austin

Austin, Texas!

Here we are. We left our friends in Houston after lunch, and after a small snafu involving a major interstate being closed, requiring a detour and resulting in completely dead iPhones, arrived in Austin early evening. So….a bit longer than the anticipated ~three hour drive. No matter.

Rooftop bars on Sixth Street, here we come.

Austin rooftop 1

Austin rooftop 2

Beer me - Austin rooftop

Beer me. Okay.

Giant Jenga - Austin rooftop

Giant Jenga

The sun had long set but it was still sooo steamy out. Late night downtown Austin in August….we loved it.

Me, Austin rooftop

Austin rooftop 3

Austin rooftop 4

Come to find out, Sixth Street on the Saturday night before students at UT-Austin started fall classes was freaking NUTS.

Austin - Sixth Street 1

Crazy nuts, I say. And live music at nearly every doorway. LIVELY vibe, ya’ll.

Austin - Sixth Street 2

The next day, Sunday, was the Austin Chronicle Hot Sauce Festival. More about that in the next post!

Also, it was very, very HOT.

Austin, Texas in August – remember? HOT.

After we left the show early afternoon, DT and I were both sweating profusely. I know that’s a desirable description, and we both felt extra desirable after spending a good part of the morning and afternoon outside in the AUSTIN, TEXAS AUGUST HEAT.

Because it was HOT.

Austin Capitol 1

Austin Capitol 3

DT wasn’t entirely sold on visiting the Austin Capitol, but I was really interested. Not only is it beautiful outside, but it was AIR CONDITIONED [and also beautiful] inside.

Austin Capitol 2

Austin Capitol 4

Let’s just say DT changed his tune when we found a cool refuge. 😉

Austin Capitol 5

Austin Capitol 6

Austin Capitol 7

And it really was remarkable.

Austin Capitol 8

Austin Capitol House of Representatives

Austin, TX Capitol House of Representatives

Austin Capitol HoR

And, have I mentioned, air conditioned?

Austin Capitol 9

Austin Capitol 10

Look there in front, there I am!

Me, Austin Capitol 1

And here, a cannon and me. Historic.

Me, Austin Capitol 2

Me, Austin Capitol 3

Our accommodations in Austin were provided by Mike’s business partner. He was generous enough to donate his little A-frame cabin for our stay.

Austin A-frame 1

It was beautiful scenery as we drove about 15 minutes from downtown, along a hilly and windy road. We had no idea the terrain here was so rolling.

Austin A-frame 2

It was such a funky place! You’d never realize you were so close to a big, bustling downtown. This felt like wilderness.

Austin A-frame 3

Austin A-frame 4

Lake Austin could be found down a path coming off the deck. I didn’t walk down there because I was terrified of seeing a snake. There, I said it.

Austin A-frame 5

Ahhh! So, so PRETTY.

Austin A-frame 6

Austin A-frame 7

Once we unloaded our things and settled in a bit at the A-frame, we headed back toward downtown in search of dinner. Tex-Mex was the dream.

Austin skyline

We found Serranos – their menu looked like just the ticket.

Serrano's 1

Their patio was so nice and spacious, but everyone had flocked to the cool indoors. I would have loved to sit outside, but it was still so very HOT. We headed inside too.

Serrano's 2

Serrano's 3

DT ordered their fish tacos….

DT's dinner

….I chose the veggie enchiladas with their chipotle sauce.

Serrano's enchiladas

OMIGOSH we were so hungry! After a long day jumping around town and lots of time in the sun, we were ready for a flavorful meal like this. Totally hit the spot.

Veggie enchiladas

It was dark by the time we left the restaurant. Serranos also had this cool amphitheater space we noticed as we walked through the patio area again.

Serrano's amphitheater 1

We strolled through downtown while we digested, then headed back to the ol’ A-frame.

Serrano's amphitheater 3

The next morning we had plans to meet Lara, the gal behind LaLa’s Lemonade. DT’s sister and brother-in-law Tom put us in touch – Lara’s husband grew up with Tom here in Minnesota and they are now settled in Austin.

We met up at Magnolia Cafe, a popular breakfast-all-day spot.

Magnolia Cafe 1

Magnolia Cafe 2

Magnolia Cafe

Lara has been working away at LaLa’s Lemonade a lot longer than we’ve had Hellraising Hot Sauce, but it was fun to share small, local business stories and hear about her challenges, successes, and inspiration. Even though we make totally different products in totally different states, there were many commonalities, mostly the spirit of creating something you’re really excited about. We talked shop, man!

Magnolia Cafe menus

Magnolia’s food was really delicious too. 🙂

Magnolia Cafe 3

And that was our quick, toasty spin through Austin! Oh – and more about that hot sauce show up next!

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