Chic, edgy brasseries for very late night dining
Justine's is truly one of a kind. This moody, eclectic restaurant serves incredible French bistro staples late into the night, so stop by for steak frites or some French onion soup in their stunning space. If you aren't hungry, the vintage decor, classic cocktails, vinyls playing, and rebellious atmosphere make this a perfect place for few drinks, especially in their chandelier clad, velvet tent out back.
Some of the best barbecue the city has to offer
Owned by the granddaughter of Taylor, Texas barbecue king Louis Mueller, this hip spot inside of a Quickie Pickie convenience store makes some of the best brisket, pork ribs, and house-made sausage in the city. If you are looking for a budget friendly way to try their delicious meat, opt for their sliced brisket sandwich. While the line isn't too bad if you show up early, it can extend out the door during the lunch rush. So if you want to skip the line, place an order online for pickup.
Austin Art Walk
Colorful street art tour
Austin is filled with incredible murals and works of street art, with the highest concentration of art and talent in East Austin. Starting on Cesar Chavez, this tour will cover 1.2 miles of murals, street art, and local art history. You will even leave with your own booklet containing the Instagram info of every artist on the tour.
Austin Art Walk
Casual spot for Japan meets Texas small plates and drinks
This lively, fun spot covered in Texas and Japanese iconography serves unique Tokyo meets Austin dishes alongside stiff drinks. Think Texas ramen, sticky rice tamales and guaca-poke, all of which pair nicely with both their sake flights and pitchers of local beer. Reservations are highly recommended for this truly unique Austin dining experience. If you like it here, try their original spot Ramen tatsu-ya with three locations in Austin, DipDipDip Tatsu-ya for shabu-shabu, and Domo Alley-Gato Tatsu-ya for Japanese curry.
Casual, neighborhood spot for great craft cocktails
You might not expect it from this unpretentious, affordable spot, but they serve some of the best drinks in the city alongside an expansive whiskey list. The rest of the offerings at this laid back spot are more along the lines of beer and a shot deals as well as Detroit style coney dogs, wings, sliders, and fries from the Delray Cafe food truck out front.
The heart of Austin's Black heritage
In the 1920’s the African American population in Austin was thriving in East Austin, as well as in other parts of the city, clustered around churches, Black-owned businesses, and segregated schools. Noticing this, the city council decided to use their 1928 City Plan to solve the “segregation problem.” They had to get creative because a 1917 Supreme Court decision made it unconstitutional to use zoning laws to segregate neighborhoods. Their work around was to cut off city services to all areas of the city that housed Black residents except East Austin, forcing them to relocate to what the city designated the “Negro district.” In 1962, the racial divide was physically cemented when I-35 was constructed over East Avenue to separate the Black and Latino population from the rest of the city. Six Square is the cultural district that flourished as a result and in spite of that forced segregation. While gentrification has claimed many of the cultural landmarks in the neighborhood, some highlights still remain including the George Washington Carver Museum which has a few small exhibits and a genealogy center, the Dedrick-Hamilton House which is a historic home that was built and owned by one of the country's first freed slaves, and the Historic Victory Grill (that is now home to chicken and waffles restaurant The Rolling Rooster) that was a hub of black nightlife and hosted greats like Etta James, Billie Holliday, and B.B. King.