Lutie’s Garden Restaurant – Detailed Review
Lutie’s Garden Restaurant is a beautifully tucked away contrast from the industrial area of Red River and East 41st Street. It is located in the Commodore Perry Estate which is adorned with lush gardens, fountains, roses, and hedges which gives the property a feeling like you’re walking on palace grounds.
The estate is now a mix between a 53-room hotel and a social club. It is a historical building that was originally built in 1928 for Commodore Perry and his wife Lutie. It originally served as a residence for the Perry’s but since then has been multiple schools. Now the Commodore Perry Estate is a hotel that houses the restaurant Lutie’s and is a must-visit Austin stop.
The Dining Room
Lutie’s dining room is gorgeous with ferns hanging from the ceiling, chandeliers, and gold accents, and the patio is just as nice, overlooking the gardens. The food and drinks are outstanding, honestly one of the best meals I’ve had in my life.
Their executive chef Bradley Nicholson has cooked everywhere from Barley Swine to three-Michelin-starred Benu in San Francisco and under former Noma chef Matt Orlando at Amass, in Copenhagen. He has mixed his knowledge of foraging and responsibly sourced cuisine with his hometown in Mississippi. Chef Bradley has combined that with Austin notes into an outstanding menu. I highly recommend checking out Lutie’s.
We tried three of the cocktails on their list. The Indigo Kick is fruity and on the sweeter side with vanilla infused Ketel One, blackberry basil shrub, local honey, ginger beer, and lemon. This was my personal favorite. The Provençalita is light and citrusy with Lalo Tequila, Lillet, sparkling wine, lavender, herbs de provence, and lemon.
Lastly, Perry’s Gold is more smokey and spiced with Ron Zacapa 23, El Dorado 8-year, coconut ginger syrup, cardamom bitters, and lime. It came out with an ignited cinnamon stick as the garnish which was really unique and smelled amazing.
The Main Course
We started our meal out with a crudo. It originally was supposed to be snapper but was switched to a scallop crudo, and we were not disappointed. The fresh scallops are paired with pickled ramps, fresh strawberries and a citrus dressing. I have tried a lot of ceviche and crudo in restaurants around Austin and this is one of the best.
It is beautifully balanced with tart ramps and sweet strawberries and finished with flakey salt. Next, we had the Estate Bread that came out with brown and cultured butter beautifully layered in stripes. The bread was warm and soft on the inside and salty and crunchy on the outside. I wish I had ordered more to take home.
More Tasty Goodness
For the larger dishes, we ordered the barbecue lobster which came with shellfish butter and mushrooms. Luckily our server gave us the great insight to save some bread to dip in the sauce of this dish. Lastly, we got the halibut which was one of the most extraordinary unique and simple dishes I’ve had. It was Delta Blues rice, halibut and smoked trout roe.
We mixed it all together and the combination of the buttery rice and fish with the explosion of salty and smokey trout roe was exceptional. We finished our meal with Kouign Amann ice cream with warm homemade caramel poured over it tableside.
Kouign Amman is a buttery pastry layered like a croissant with sugar. Overall, we had an amazing experience at Lutie’s with both the food and friendly service. I don’t say this lightly, but we enjoyed one of the best meals I have ever had at Lutie’s and can’t wait to go back.