Tacos in Texas: La Condesa, Austin

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Tacos La Condesa

La Condesa’s artisanal tacos 

Tacos in Austin are like pizza slices in New York. They’re everywhere. I dined at La Condesa restaurant in buzzing downtown Austin to learn more about quintessential TexMex cuisine. Condesa is known for its hip Latin style and 2-story bar serving over 80 types of tequila.

My group dined in the 20-pax private dining room located in the basement of the historic Flour House, built originally as a brewery in the 1860s. The dining room feels like a warm wine cave setting with heavy wooden arch beams overhead and vintage black and white photos on the walls. The stone vault is popular for fun food classes and group dinners.

The building was later designed by local architect/designers Michael Hsu and Joel Mozersky. The chic space features an open-air blue staircase, oak wood furniture and bright modern art. The dim lights reflect on the stone brick walls and murals creating a cool clubby vibe. It’s easy to get comfortable here, especially with an award winning margarita in hand.

The bar features a wildly creative margarita menu combining sweet, salty and spicy flavors shaken and poured over ice, garnished with a variety of salts specially flavored in-house. I tried the Alma Blanca margarita infused with tequila, ginger, lemongrass/aloe syrup, pineapple juice and hibiscus-rose salt. I knew our meal would be special after my first sip.

Another highlight of the night was the guacamole platter offering a choice of eight different guacs. We swiftly passed the sampler board around our table, spooning the spicy blends of salsa, avocado and jalapenos onto our warm tortillas. The tray seemed endless and everyone kept sharing and comparing flavors. We ordered a variety of tacos, each on corn tortillas topped with fish, beef, chicken and cilantro leaves. The ingredients are sourced locally based on traditional recipes from across Mexico.

Desserts by Pastry Chef Laura Sawicki include a decadent chocolate tart with caramel and ganache. The sweet and savory treat is topped with salt and coconut ice cream.

La Condesa is located across the street from the W Austin and popular music venue, Austin City Limits. Stay tuned for our “On Location” story on the Travaasa Austin in our July/August issue.

La Condesa Sampler

La Condesa Sampler

Guacamole Platter

Guacamole Platter

Margaritas

Margaritas

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