Had a delicious dinner and serene experience at the Texas French Bread on 29'th and Rio Grande.
Driving away I actually thought, OK if I were to buy a place in this neighborhood, I could just WALK to amazing dinners Thurs - Sat evenings (not to mention probably-delicious breakfasts any day of the week.)
I have been wanting to try their breakfasts, but also read in that lengthy article in the Statesman that the children of the original Texas French Bread owners had decided to start serving dinner Thursdays - Saturdays evenings 6pm onwards, with an emphasis on locally sourced ingredients whenever possible.
A type of Caprese salad with the most flavorful tomatoes I've had this year, fresh mozarella and basil, and a seasoned garlic olive oil. Interesting plating; very unlike traditional caprese.
OH, and BIG tasty garlicy-olive-oily homemade breadcrumbs. (w/a smidge too much olive oil for my tastes, but they were still delicious)
Redfish, fresh from the gulf, a substantial fillet, sauteed to the point of doneness but still completely moist. There was a tasty sauce of some kind; good but did not interfere with my enjoying that amazing redfish fillet.
Side (alongside the redfish): Lentils. I am so glad I did NOT know Lentils were the side dish in advance because I probably would not have ordered it. I thought I did not like lentils. I *loved* those lentils. The lentil 'broth' added a depth of flavor I've never tasted before when making myself eat those things.
Every single mouthful tasted so fresh. For 2 reasons - because of supremely good ingredients, but also because (this sounds obvious but...) it tasted like EVERYTHING finished cooking the second before it landed on the table. Hard to describe... In comparison, it made everything I'd eaten in the past week taste like it had been prepared a week in advance.
They also offered a complimentary glass of wine as they do not have their liquor license yet.
This meal completely relaxed me. Interesting tunes, pleasant-enough interior, perceptive service. It was not crowded at all which concerns me because the place should be packed.
I believe their dinner menus completely change each week based on what's fresh and available.
Because I very much want this place to thrive and prosper with their dinner / breakfasts foray, I'm annoyed at the Texas French Bread website
Someone needs to drop whatever else they are doing and change it. I don't get an inkling of the amazing dinner experience they deliver from their website. If I had not glanced at the Statesman article, I would not have tripped over the restaurant from a location perspective, and I certainly would not have guessed that a place called "Texas French Bread" could create one of the best dinners I've had this year in Austin (another favorite being Restaurant Jezebel.) I wish they had their weekly dinner menus on their website.
Also, it's inaccurate. It describes being open Monday - Friday for breakfast, when they are now serving breakfast on weekends as well. Almost no other website has their correct opening hours either.(Chronicle, etc)
All in all, a delicious dinner and wonderful experience. I hope they do well.
TEXAS FRENCH BREAD
2900 Rio Grande
Austin, TX 78705-3616