Thanks to everyone who posts on the board - I relied on several discussions for our 3 day weekend trip. We live in Austin, both mid-30s. All prices w/o tip.
We had lunch at Sandbar. It is only open for lunch - we didn't know that. I had the roasted lobster bisque. It was the same consistency as a latte and looked just like one. The roasted flavor was lovely (again like a good coffee), but I think I wanted some more body in the soup and discernable pieces of lobster. My husband had the New England clam chowder and we both agreed it was great - everything you want in a clam chowder: hearty, good vegetable presence, good clams, not super heavy, but the right level of creamy.
I then had the shrimp and tuna ceviche. Very good. He had the boiled shrimp - which were huge, but he thought they were so-so and maybe a little undercooked. The service was slow but fine and his soup and my ceviche were very good. I would go back; my husband probably wouldn't. He found it crowded and over-hip. It was about $50 including a (cheap) bottle of wine.
We had early dinner at El Mirador. I pondered the choice heavily, but it was closest to the hotel and we were pressed for time. Margaritas were overly sweet with the sweet and sour mix. We had the lime chicken caldo to start and it was excellent, excellent, and excellent. Chips and salsa were good to very good. Salsa was smoky with medium heat.
I had the shrimp chile relleno. I am not a believer in seafood in chile relleno, but it seemed to be a specialty of the house (maybe because it was a Friday during Lent?), so I got it anyway. The outer layer (encrusted in tortilla chips) was good, cheese was good, but the shrimp were the quarter sized ones that make me think of sea monkeys. I think I would try something else next time. I really liked the warm cabbage "salad" it was served with. Husband said the beans were okay. He had the puffy tacos that he said were good but not special. I thought they looked both tender and crispy but not greasy for a puffy taco, which is a good thing in my book. It is not fancy inside, but nice, with several families and after-work groups. I think we spent about $35 including two drinks.
Breakfast at Guenther House. He wanted biscuits and gravy and I like pretty gardens, so we decided on there. Portions were giant. He liked his dish (gravy had sausage in it) - I thought was overwhelming. I had buttermilk pancakes - also good, could only eat half. It was a little too tea-roomy for us ambience-wise (the house coffee is flavored), but the building and the grounds are nice if you want to have a very lovely baby shower or something similar. We spent about $30 including coffee, oj, milk, side of patty sausage (bad texture - don't get it), a change from pecan butter syrup to maple syrup (seemed weird to me), and an egg. I don't think the food is the main draw, but it is better than 90% places with that kind of atmosphere.
We look forward to going back to SA and trying some more of what the town has to offer.
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