Sunny’s Backyard – An Impossibly Delicious Take on Plant-Based Pub Food

Constant innovation has been made in the plant-based food sector in these past few years, with meat substitutes becoming almost indistinguishable from the real thing. The search for more memorable dishes that include these substitutes is one I have decided to take more seriously after visiting Sunny’s Backyard. In a decisive win for vegans (and omnivores) across Austin, this newly opened bar and pet-friendly eating space now proudly offers its own delicious take on plant-based pub food.

A New Local Spot

What is it about Sunny’s Backyard which sets itself apart as a vegan eatery in a city which is not exactly lacking in them? To start, there is the property, which can be described as business in the front and party in the back. The gravel lot and red exterior of the front of the pub may seem unassuming, but beyond the wooden gate to the side lies a spacious and pet-friendly outdoor seating area as well as the heart of the restaurant. Here, guests can enjoy live events and outdoor games such as Giant Jenga while waiting for their food and drinks.

Sunny’s may be relatively new to the Austin pub scene, but the owners have certainly embraced being a local establishment. An assortment of cocktails featuring locally brewed liquor puts a Texas twist on familiar beverages. Perhaps the best example of this was my Texas Mule made with Tito’s vodka, or the Still Austin Old Fashioned with TX whiskey. An impressive selection of beer and IPAs are available on tap.

The food is where things get interesting. Every Wednesday to Sunday, from 5 PM to 10 PM, the colorful truck situated in the back patio hums to life as orders are cooked and sent out from the kitchen housed within. Husband/wife pair and co-owners Charissa and Merritt have set out to create a smooth transition for those dipping their toes in the world of plant-based dining. Patrons can expect colorful pub food fare with an Asian street-food twist, and plenty of finger-friendly plates piled high with “meat” and drizzled in sauces.

Finger Food Aplenty

I knew that the first thing I had to try were the restaurant’s signature beer-battered loaded fries, and what adjective is better used to describe fries than “loaded”? These crispy waffle-cut potatoes are topped with the cashew-based Credo queso, the restaurant’s “Spare Rib”, and Jalapenos. Finishing up the plate (with a friend) had me feeling significantly less sluggish and greasy afterwards, a far cry from the loaded fries of many other restaurants. Oh, and they were the best fries I have eaten in a long time.

Wanting to explore some of the items that made Sunny’s menu unique, I ordered the Crispy Banana Peppers and Wonton Cheese Sticks. While similar to fried pickles, the mild spiciness and breading on these golden rings really made it stand on its own. The use of wonton wrapping instead of batter on the cheese sticks was an interesting choice, and they provided great texture for the Chao cheese inside of them.

The presence of all this tempting fried comfort food does not take away from the fact that Sunny’s has a solid lineup of salads and bowls. The personal recommendation of the owner prompted me to order the Brussel Sprout Salad, apparently a house favorite. Safe to say, my entire opinion of Brussels Sprouts changed for the better upon trying this salad and realizing they could be more than tasteless mush.

Familiar With a Twist

The theme of “familiar, with a twist” continued to our entrees, as both dishes impressed me with how similar they were to their meat-based counterparts. The Spare Rib Wrap out as having been the same meat on the loaded fries, and the Chipotle tortilla went well with the Asian-influenced sauces and veggies the wrap contained. Entrees had the option to be served with either a side “Plain Jane” salad or their wonderful fries.

Most pleasantly surprising to me was my own Hot Stuff Baby! Burger, available for a limited time. This was my first exposure to meat substitute patties, and I don’t think I could have found a better place than Sunny’s. This Jalapeno-stuffed Impossible burger is served with more grilled Jalapenos and Credo queso. The garlic Aioli and spring greens which made up the rest of my burger were fresh, decidedly fresher than the sad and wilted lettuce I had grown used to from too much fast food.

Sunny’s is a place I can truthfully say I am glad I got to visit and write about. I was admittedly a skeptic of plant-based meat, having never tried it and thus believing it could not amount to the real thing. The dedication to introducing their recipes to others and the care with which they make each order is immediately apparent. Whether you are seeking a new vegan eatery or are just dipping your toes in the water of plant-based food, Sunny’s is a bright new spot on the ATX food scene.

Our Favorite Spots to Take a Dip in Austin

Summer is here and there are so many things you could be doing around town. No matter what your summer bucket list entails, swimming has to be on there with the countless placed you could take a dip in ATX. Here are some of our favorite spots to take a dip in Austin.

Barton Springs

Okay, don’t hate us for making Barton our first spot. We know it’s a little cliche, but it’s the pinnacle of Austin swimming holes. The Barton Springs Pool is a local favorite because of its cool, 68 degree water year round and its cheap prices! The Pool has been open since 1837 and gets its water from nearby natural springs. If you’ve never been to Barton, you have zero excuse not to this summer; it’s a great place to stop by for swimming laps or endless tanning. It’s the perfect mix of swimming hole and swimming pool. Currently, the Pool is requiring reservations in order to maintain capacity, which you can make on their website!

Barton Springs (The Free Side!)

If you’re a little more adventurous, but you still want to stay in Central Austin, Barton’s free side is for you. While Barton’s pool is awesome because of its ample seating and cleaner water, the natural side of Barton boasts more nature and wildlife as well as a lower price — free! To get here, you’ll park around Zilker Park and mosey on over to the water. There’s a bridge safe to jump off of, a few rope swings, and scattered spots to sit at around the walking path. It’s definitely a fun spot to hit if you’re trying to save a few bucks!

Austin Motel

Missing that swimming pool vibe? Check out Austin Motel’s Daily Pool Passes to visit their iconic, kidney-shaped pool! Passes are $20 Monday-Thursday and $40 Friday-Sunday from 11AM-5PM, with discounted Adult Swim Passes for $15 from 5PM to 10PM. Their pool bar is open for all time slots, so grab a cocktail while you’re there! After your slot is up, dry off at Gueros or any other of the amazing restaurants SoCo has to offer. Why not make a day of it?! Reservations for daily passes are available on Austin Motel’s website.

McKinney Falls

Back to swimming hole territory, McKinney Falls is another Austin classic, even though it’s a little farther out of town. McKinney Falls State Park has awesome campsites and cabins, hiking trails, and, of course, swimming spots. The Upper Falls and Lower Falls are the go-to swimming spots for visitors. When there’s been good rain, there’s beautiful waterfalls at both spots! The entrance fee for the Falls is $6, and it’s a great place to check out if you’re looking to get out of the city but don’t want to go too far!

Sculpture Falls

If you want to go on a little hike before your swim, this is the spot for you! Sculpture Falls is a section of the Greenbelt with some sweet waterfalls. It’s about 2.5 miles from the trailhead, so it’s a relatively easy hike! This is another cool swim, with the water staying around 70 degrees year round. If you need to cool off on your hike there, no worries: there are several small pools along the trail! This one’s also alcohol-friendly, so don’t forget your coolers!

Mouth-Watering Tex-Mex on East 6th

On the northeast corner of a food truck in East 6th Street lies one of Austin’s hidden gems. Texsueño, a longtime dream of Chef Brandon Martin, brings both quality and fine-dining techniques to the Austin food truck scene. For the last eight years, Martin has sought to change the local perception of food trucks. Martin infuses his experience as a chef at high-end restaurants and his passion for Tex-Mex cuisine by introducing the city to his “sueño”, the Spanish word for dream.

The Origin Story

After taking his talent around the country working in high-end kitchens in Chicago and New York, Martin returned to Austin. Here he had stints working in the kitchens of some of the city’s best restaurants like Odd Duck, Barley & Swine, and Foreign and Domestic.

Following through on his longtime dream of opening up a Tex-Mex food truck, Chef Brandon Martin has done his part to put Austin food trucks on the map. Few food trucks around the city of Austin compare to what is going on in the kitchen at Texsueño. Here, Chef Brandon is whipping up huge flavors in a tiny truck with ease. A maestro of the miniature kitchen, Chef Brandon Martin is making some of Austin’s best tacos and margaritas.

Margarita Time + Starters

The handmade margarita mixes with flavors like Ancho Tamarind and Strawberry Thai Basil are the perfect accompaniment to a bottle of tequila or as Chef Brandon recommends, a bottle of mezcal. The killer margaritas are ideal for washing down his crispy house-made chips. Covered in delicious house salsa or the smoked bean dip, these pack layer upon layer of flavor into each bite. Although the starters leave any diner in food euphoria, it is the tacos that take Texsueño to the next level.

Did Someone Say Tacos?

With classics like a crispy, hard shell beef taco and carnitas, as well as more unique tacos like the sweet potato taco, Chef Brandon will take you on a rollercoaster of flavors. The crispy beef taco is a street food classic perfected. The flavor brings me back with nostalgia to growing up and eating hard shell tacos all around Los Angeles. Biting into the simple yet expertly crafted carnitas taco left me with a hand covered in the juice that dripped out of the succulent carnitas meat.

I thought I had reached taco nirvana following the crispy beef and carnitas tacos. However, the sweet potato taco took me to another dimension of flavors. With sweet potatoes made in three different ways and a sweet, candy-like pecan-golden raisin salsa, the sweet potato taco left me convinced that I never needed meat in a taco again. Perfectly balancing sweet and savory, the sweet potato taco was unlike any taco I have had so far.

There’s more to the mind-boggling flavors that pop like fireworks once they hit your tongue. One can tell that Chef Brandon puts his passion and love into each dish that comes out of the Texsueño kitchen. My experience at Texsueño was truly incredible, and I couldn’t help but get on the phone to share with all of my friends. I just had to let them know that on East 6th Street sits some of not only the best tex-mex bites I’ve ever had but some of the most unbelievable eats in the food oasis that is Austin, Texas.

A Day on South Padre Island, Texas

After spending the school year in Austin, I’m back home in the RGV. My friends and I are always trying to find ways to fill the sweltering summer days, and more often than not, we end up defaulting to a beach day! Whether you’re a local or visiting for the first time, keep reading for our quintessential day on South Padre Island.

Breakfast at Yummies

A day spent in the sun means fuelling up first thing in the morning! You’ll find there’s no shortage of seafood on SPI, but stop at Yummies Bistro for an expansive menu including fresh fruit, omelettes, and more. 

“Sea” the Turtles

Like see the turtles? Get it?? Anyway, this place is a must-see for any beach or animal lover. Sea Turtles, Inc. is dedicated to rescuing and rehabilitating injured sea turtles, educating the public, and assisting in conservation efforts. Starting at 10:30, 15-minute turtle talks are given periodically until the facility closes at 5. Come here to learn a bit about the wildlife in the area and see some for yourself!

Hit the Beach!

Well, duh, right? You’re probably at SPI for the beach. Still, this part is kind of customizable. Depending on the waves, you may want to consider picking up a boogie board or surfboard from one of the nearby shops. If you’d rather not get in the water, lay out on the beach or experiment with sandcastles. And if you’re here in late September or early October, check out the annual Sandcastle Days to see some of the most skilled sand sculptors and their elaborate creations. 

Lunch at Wanna Wanna

By now, you’re probably getting hungry, but that doesn’t mean the beach fun has to stop! Wanna Wanna Beach Bar and Grill’s beachfront location (with volleyball nets out front) makes it the perfect place to grab lunch without even having to rinse off. This place is a favorite of locals and is always filled with the sounds of laughter and live music. It’s also pet-friendly, and you may even spot a few friendly stray cats waiting around for you to drop your shrimp.

Go Bananas

I don’t care how old you are or how childish it seems–banana boat rides are it. Essentially, you board a slippery tube and get jerked around by a maniac on a jet ski (they’ll go easier on you if it’s your first time, though), trying not to fall off. It’s kind of like an oceanic roller coaster, and always results in lots of laughs. There are tons of providers of these rides all over South Padre Island, but here’s a link to one. Or, if you’re feeling more spontaneous, you can probably ask anyone working at a restaurant or hotel and they’ll direct you to the nearest stand.

Watch Some Dolphins

Who doesn’t want to go out into the middle of the ocean and feel like a Disney princess? Dolphin Watch Tours are a super fun and relaxed way to catch a glimpse of some more wildlife. Fair warning: it can be hit-or-miss. Sometimes you’ll only see one or two, but there’s also a possibility you’ll have a dozen swimming alongside your boat. If you ask me, it’s worth it to wager on that.

Dinner at Padre Island Brewing Company

You may be surprised to learn that in addition to tons of seafood and cool wildlife, South Padre Island is also home to Texas’ second oldest brewery. Padre Island Brewing Company has something for everyone (and as a vegetarian, I can rarely say that on SPI). Whether you’re looking for pizza, salads, or some of the Island’s famous seafood, you’ll leave feeling satisfied and with something delicious still sizzling on your tastebuds.

Soak in the Sunset

This one is kind of difficult, because the sun sets on the opposite side of the island from the beach. The sunrise usually makes for better beach viewing, but if you have a difficult time rousing yourself for that (and I don’t blame you), try googling some of South Padre Island’s best sunset-viewing locations. Stop at Laguna BOB’s or try out a sunset cruise! 

Dessert at Dolce Roma

By now you’re hot, tired, and probably pretty sunburned. There’s no better way to end a beach day than with some smooth, refreshing gelato. Dolce Roma Cafe has multiple locations and a plethora of flavors, making it an easy and fun way to end your day on South Padre Island.

Our Visit to The Wayback Cafe

Nestled in the twisting roads of the Austin hill country, The Wayback Boutique Hotel & Café is the perfect place to slow down and treat yourself. The Wayback Cafe is the largest of several cottages dotting the property, easily visible from the parking lot. The cabin is encircled by small outdoor tables and immaculately maintained grounds, including a garden from which herbs and strawberries are procured.

The Starters

The interior of the café is stylish yet cozy, with bar chairs plush enough to sink into. Our server brought out the Summer Picnic Board – a charcuterie board featuring Antonelli’s Meats & Cheeses – alongside water and Richard’s Sparkling Water to get us started. I’m thankful I didn’t go alone, because I have very little knowledge of how to properly assess a charcuterie board. Once I was done marveling at the excellent presentation of the board, my friend Jenna helped me arrange complimentary foods on my extra plate.

After the charceauterie we moved onto cold soups and salads. First, we tried the Chilled Avocado and Cucumber Soup. This was akin to a savory smoothie in a bowl, with a pleasing texture from the avocado and an uplifting brightness from the cucumber. TheShaved Fennel and Grapefruit Salad had a different kind of brightness than the soup – it was invigorating thanks to the grapefruit slices and the bitterness of the arugula. These options proved The Wayback menu’s pairing ability – both starters complimented each other and naturally made way for a sip of the lightly bracing Elizabeth Spencer Sauvignon Blanc, Napa, CA 2020.

Entree

Our entrée paid homage to its roots with a gingham paper and basket which was dainty enough to look relatively at home with the rest of the menu. This is a new addition to the menu, and as soon as we tasted it Jenna and I agreed it would have been a tragedy had it not been added. I’ve had Lobster Roll before, but this was on another level. The potato bun was fluffy and subtly seasoned to keep you coming back for more. The lobster, attained in Maine, showcased its depth of flavor with little interference.

We received the Luau Freddy cocktail alongside the Lobster Roll. This comprised of Denizen Rum, prosecco, curacao, orgeat, lime juice, and mint. The Luau Freddy was great in keeping the playfulness introduced by the entrée alive. It stopped just short of a tropical flavor to somehow make you feel coastal and fancy at the same time.

Dessert

Now, despite enjoying an appetizer, two starters, an entrée, wine, and two special drinks, I still felt ready for dessert. That’s not to say the dishes so far hadn’t been filling. Rather, they were satisfyingly filling as opposed to being overwhelming, which I consider the mark of an excellent chef. The chef proved their excellence further with the decadent Lemon Curd which finished off our meal. This was truly a celebration of citrus. The cool, simple splendor of the Lemon Curd is beyond explanation and every spoonful takes your breath away.

Overall, The Wayback Cafe is very impressive. The servers are all personable, enthusiastic, and knowledgeable. They plan out and finely execute their dishes. The atmosphere is relaxing and rejuvenating, and the aesthetic is consistent and clean. Austin’s Wayback Cafe is a necessary addition to your list of self-care or date destinations. It’s its own little ecosystem within the hill country, and I am thrilled to have visited!

Patrizi’s – Authentic Italian on the Go

The thought of homemade, hand-pulled pasta made and sold from a truck may sound improbable, but Austin’s food scene never ceases to amaze. This is the case with Patrizi’s, who continue the tradition of sharing authentic Italian food with its community since opening in Beaumont circa 1948. The kitchen and town may have changed, but the mission remains the same 7 days a week from 5 PM – 9 : 30. Austin, if you haven’t checked this gem out, you won’t be disappointed!

Symbiosis in Outdoor Dining

Planted in a lot off Manor Road in the shadow of the Vortex Theatre, Patrizi’s raises the bar for outdoor seating. Guests can enjoy a spacious side patio and generous placement of covered stage front seating. The lot hosts live music and events, entertaining hungry guests as they wait for their food. Particularly of note is the existence of two trucks, one dedicated entirely to the pulling of fresh pasta daily. This lends the entire operation a much more settled and cozier atmosphere, blurring the lines between food truck and full-fledged outdoor restaurant.

The setup of the “outdoor restaurant” approach places Patrizi’s at the center of its own little multi-business ecosystem. Hungry guests exiting the Vortex Theatre can enjoy live events and a romantic, authentic Italian dinner at the nearby Patrizi’s. Visitors to the truck can enjoy a theatre production after eating a pile of pasta. Both the restaurant and theatre share a common symbiotic relationship with the Butterfly Bar, which provides full drink service for the establishments. An intuitive QR code system allows for tableside ordering and delivery of all your beverages.

My Experience

Walking up to the gate, any concerns I may have had regarding COVID precautions were eased. A hostess immediately greeted me, checking temperatures and pointing to socially distanced seating. Framed local artwork lavishly decorated the truck itself. New pictures are being uploaded to the site and rotated throughout the year. The stage was also occupied by a weekly trivia event, and many guests were enjoying the all-night “Texas Two-Step” special: A Lone Star beer and shot of Whiskey for $5. A sign written in chalk showcased drink specials and let me know that Happy Hour was from 5 – 7.

An employee saw me standing in line and immediately came to answer any questions I had about the menu. They informed me of the second truck on-site, and that Patrizi’s sources their vegetables and dairy from local farms. The substitution of certain ingredients in dishes in conjunction with Texas seasonality was interesting to me (the use of arugula/basil mix vs. straight basil to make pesto, and the use of Texas pumpkin seeds instead of pine nuts), providing a unique twist to more classic Italian dishes. You can choose to have any pasta dish on the menu served by itself or in a smaller portion with a side salad. After ordering, my waiter showed me to a sanitized table at the large, covered patio and given a number.

Authentic Texas-Italian Food

The menu has retained many of the original restaurant’s items, but seasonal dishes come and go throughout the year. Pasta entrees are available year-round, from more traditional Italian options like the Cacio e Pepe or Pomodoro to Patrizi’s own Red Sauce or The Great Leopold. You can add toppings such as giant homemade meatballs or house-cured pancetta to any pasta for a fee. Vegetarians will be happy to know that a majority of the dishes and sauces contain no meat. Sadly, gluten-free and vegan options are lacking beyond salads and some appetizers due to the use of egg and dairy in pasta.

Patrizi’s wait time and service structure was, if anything. more reminiscent of a traditional restaurant. I had my food brought out to me in courses, beginning with the House Salad that came with my meal. Now, a house salad is a humble thing, and its ingredients are often be simple. However, the execution is very important and telling of a restaurant’s ability to make any salad on its menu. It’s often included on the menu as an afterthought, and I don’t choose salad much ordering out for this reason. That being said, I think this might have been the best salad I have ever eaten.

Delicious Pasta and Other Forms of Bread

The next dish brought out to me was the mark of a true Italian restaurant: garlic bread. I am glad to say that Patrizi’s did not disappoint me. A plate of grilled ciabatta with cloves of roasted garlic and local grana cheese spread makes for a great appetizer. The mango-infused margarita courtesy of The Butterfly Bar also made for a refreshing drink to go with my food.

The final dish to come out was the centerpiece of the meal, the Carbonara Alexandra. Their house-cured-and-smoked pancetta and grana cheese gratuitously tops the carbonara. This dish would have easily been the highlight of my meal if I weren’t already so full. It’s been awhile since I’ve had homemade pasta, and the dish certainly didn’t disappoint. Compared to the dried sticks I’m used to cooking with, the difference in texture and overall freshness was immediately noticeable.

If the thought of authentic Italian food with a Texas twist in an outdoor environment sounds appealing, Patrizi’s may be among the best of what Austin has to offer. The close-knit relationship between this trio of businesses has allowed for the growth of an admittedly pretty cool spot for a dinner with friends.

Austin City Limits Returns

A few weeks ago ACL Music Festival announced their 2021 lineup. That’s right – Austin City Limits is coming back in full force. ACL is set to take place on the weekend of October 1st through 3rd and the weekend of the 8th through 10th. Miley Cyrus, Billie Eilish, and DaBaby and more are headlining the event, and we’re anticipating a massive turnout. In fact, all tickets sold out within a week of the announcement! 

What is ACL?

For those who are new to the Austin music scene, ACL is one of the most popular attractions of Austin. An outdoor music festival with a variety of artists, ACL runs from the morning or early afternoon all the way to nighttime. The event takes place annually at Zilker Park, so there’s plenty of room to walk and take pictures in between sets. It includes eight stages to accommodate the over 100 performances it offers. Some of the best Austin restaurants nearby also offer food and drink at the ACL Eats Food Court. 

ACL Fest Announces Lineup With Billie Eilish, Stevie Nicks, & Miley Cyrus

Unfortunately due to the COVID-19 pandemic, ACL cancelled the festival in 2020. So the excitement to be back in action is very high, and this will be the festival’s 20th anniversary! As COVID-19 is still active, many people wonder how ACL plans to prepare for a safe festival that prevents further spread. ACL officials say that there will be safety measures for everyone involved. They have also partnering with Austin Public Health and the City of Austin. They will be advising people to get vaccinated before the festival.

But What About COVID?

Vaccines are a big part of what allowed Austin City Limits to return this year with their high efficiency rates. Many people have already gotten vaccinated. Currently over 35% of Texas’s population is fully vaccinated, and over 44% have received at least one dose. ACL urges festival attendees to sign up for email updates and check social media. Officials will continually update festivalgoers with the health and safety measures that will be taken.  To see the rest of the lineup and more info on the festival make sure to check out the official ACL website: https://www.aclfestival.com/ .

We Try CC’s Sweets

Being home from college for the summer means hitting up my favorite food places I have missed during the school year, and I am so excited to take you along with me. Located in McAllen, Texas, CC’s Sweets is the perfect bakery for those with a sweet tooth who want a creative twist to their favorite treats.

This past week I had the opportunity to review some of CC’s Sweets’ most popular desserts, and my review is nothing less than favorable. From strawberry lemonade cupcakes to mangonada macarons, CC’s Sweets is a bakery that is not afraid to think, or should I say bake, outside the box.

The Cupcakes

After a tough decision of which sweet to taste first, I chose the cupcakes. CC’s Sweets has a wide selection of cupcake flavors. Some of these change weekly, ranging from classic birthday cake to churro flavor. This past week’s ‘Fun Flavors’ were: Churro, Rocky Road, Banana Split, Strawberry Lemonade, Chocolate Peanut Butter Pretzel and Cake Batter. All the cupcakes were flavorful and made my mouth water after the first bite. Personal favorites: Churro (cinnamon sugar swirl cake with cinnamon sugar buttercream), Rocky Road (chocolate cake topped with chocolate buttercream, marshmallows and almonds) and Cake Batter (vanilla funfetti with cake batter buttercream).

The Macarons

Next, I tried the macarons. Like the cupcakes, the macarons had creative and unique flavors and were excellent in taste. The flavors I tried were Pistachio, Birthday Cake, Watermelon, Rosewater, Cookies & Cream, Mangonada, Fruity Pebbles and Chocolate. I had never tried a macaron, but after having CC’s, it is safe to say I am a macaronholic. Personal favorites: Cookies & Cream (tastes like an Oreo), Fruity Pebbles (tastes just like the cereal) and Watermelon (tastes like a watermelon-flavored candy).

The Cookies

I left the cookies for last. I felt guilty eating them at first; the decorated cookies were too pretty to eat. I quickly got over this, as boy did they taste heavenly. CC’s Sweets has impressive artistic skills when it comes to decorating their sweets. So not only do they look amazing, but their desserts taste amazing too. They even decorated a Texas Tasty cookie for our visit– how sweet!

& More

CC’s Sweets not only has unique food items but also has an eye-catching interior/exterior design. The bakery’s storefront is welcoming and surrounded by pink walls, which I loved being a fan of the color pink. In addition, the large glass displays show off CC’s wide selection of sweets, capturing the customer’s eye as soon as they walk in. Next to the bakery, CC’s Sweets has a patio that includes pink tables where customers can sit and enjoy their treats. These pink tables are also perfect for taking pictures.

Check out their Instagram @ccssweets for more pictures that will have you driving to McAllen, Texas, to try their mouth-watering sweet treats.

Day In The Life of a Millennial Moving to Austin

The population in the five-county Austin metro jumped to an estimated 2,295,303 according to U.S. Census Bureau figures released May 4. This is an increase of 3% from the prior year, the fastest population growth among metros with at least 1 million people. With so many new people moving to Austin, we decided to put together a list of what a day in the life of a millennial moving to Austin may look like.

Visit Lady Bird Lake

Running through the heart of downtown Austin is Lady Bird Lake, an oasis for outdoorsmans’. One can run or bike alongside the river on the 10 mile loop that surrounds it. You can also take to the water and rent a paddle board or kayak from the Texas Rowing Center. Some of the best views of the Austin skyline can be found floating on the water of Lady Bird Lake.

Texas Farmers’ Market at Mueller

In the Mueller neighborhood right outside downtown Austin, the Texas Farmers’ Market is the place to be for fresh produce. All produce is organic and sustainably raised, making the market a prime choice for conscious consumers. A producers’ only farmers market focused on sustainable agriculture, the Texas Farmers’ Market has countless vendors ranging from produce to artisanal foods. Because of this, you can always find fresh, quality ingredients that vary from season to season.

Mt. Bonnell

Sitting high up in Covert Park within the Balcones neighborhood of Austin is the city’s highest point. Mount Bonnell is Austin’s most scenic outlook, requiring only short hike and 102 stairs up the trail. It’s one of Austin’s best viewpoints, looking out over the hills of West Austin and Lady Bird Lake. Whether one is looking for a romantic date destination, a stellar view, or just a hike through one of Austin’s most beautiful areas, Mount Bonnell is always a good time.

South Congress

One of Austin’s most charming areas is in the heart of downtown Austin and just south of Lady Bird Lake. The street features shops and stores of all kinds, and some of Austin’s best eats within a four block radius. South Congress makes for a great place to spend a lovely Austin day.

The shops that South Congress features are delightfully quirky. You could stop by at Allen’s Boots and experience the Texan lifestyle with endless rows of cowboy boots and hats. Or visit Jo’s Coffee and get a cup of java by the famous “I love you so much” mural. Whether you end up shopping until you drop or eating at one of the many unique and delicious restaurants that line South Congress, you are bound to have a good time in one of the city’s most popular and unique areas.

The Domain

For a great day of shopping and eating in North Austin, the Domain will take care of all of your retail needs. With over 100 shops and restaurants ranging from high-end stores to conventional retail stores, there is something for everyone at the Domain. In addition to the innumerable storefronts, the Domain is home to residential units, office space, and multiple hotels. For endless entertainment, retail shopping, and a wide range of restaurants, the Domain is the place to be.

Barton Creek Greenbelt

For an outdoor adventure in south Austin, the Barton Creek Greenbelt is the place to go. Starting from Zilker Park and running its way through the heart of southwest Austin, the Barton Creek Greenbelt is home to some beautiful swimming holes, cliff jumping spots, and scenic outlooks. With numerous access points located along the 13 mile Green Belt trail, one can enjoy a swim, some sunshine or a nice bike ride under the central Texas sun.

Zilker Park

The Zilker Metropolitan Park is undoubtedly Austin’s favorite park. The park is 351 acres of recreational space, with great views of Downtown Austin and Austin staples like the Barton Springs Pool. A picnic on the vast green grass of Zilker surrounded by fellow Austinites and their many dogs followed by a quick dip in the everso refreshing Barton Springs Pool makes for a wonderful day in Austin. Sourced from underground springs, the Barton Springs Pool is three acres of crystal clear water perfect for countering the draining heat of an Austin summer. Being a staple of Austin, it’s only proper for anyone moving to Austin to visit at least once.

A New Pretty Patio and Pizza!

A new pizza spot has opened up on Manor Road and it’s gotta go on your Austin food bucket list! Love Supreme Pizza Bar opened a few weeks ago and they’re serving some amazing pizzas, sides, and cocktails. Chef Russell Victorioso prepares an offering of two different styles of pizza, Neapolitan and Detroit styled pizza, which is different from a traditional pizza joint that just sticks to one.

Cocktails from Love Supreme Pizza bar, a new pizza place in Austin.

Patio Vibes

My favorite part of the restaurant is the ambiance they have created with their décor and open dining space. They have a huge patio that is really cute and strung with lights that flows into the bar area and dining room through an open wall.

If you always find yourself googling good patio spots in Austin like I do, definitely check out this spot. You order from the bar directly. We tired the frozen Strawberry Margarita and the Hibiscus-Lime Cooler both of which were really refreshing and well balanced.

The Food

The Honey Sambal Chicken wings are amazing. They are the perfect balance of spicy and sweet and have a lot of meat on the bones. We also tried the “Love Supreme’ pizza which had pepperoni, sausage, red onion, kale, broccoli, rabe, chili flake, watermelon radish, and mozzarella. It was served Neapolitan style with perfectly chewy and crispy crust. It was definitely different from a traditional supreme pizza, but the flavors really blended well together, and the crust was amazing.

Honey Sambal Chicken wings from Love Supreme.

To finish the meal, we ordered one of their giant warm chocolate chip cookies which is decadent and perfectly soft. I definitely will be returning to Love Supreme Pizza and taking advantage of their beautiful patio and great food. I sat inside when I visited but I’m looking to return with my dogs. With great cocktails and ambiance, I recommend anyone in Austin craving pizza to check .