Meals in the Old West were known for being simple, fresh and made with spirit. Roaring Fork, with locations in Austin, TX and Scottsdale, AZ, pays ode to this period by utilizing all three aspects by means of food preparation and interior decorum. My evening spent with my friend Erin at Roaring Fork’s downtown location in Austin was truly memorable and I have their gracious staff, known for their impeccable service standards, to thank for that.
I immediately felt homey and cozy when we walked through the double glass doors of the downtown Austin entrance-and that wasn’t because it was 50 degrees outside and any inkling of warmth was greatly appreciated. The atmosphere, from the dim lighting to the stone covered walls transferred me to a Colorado ski lodge, making me want nothing more than a spot by the fire and a Hot Apple Toddy in my hand.
The walk to our table took us through the Saloon where you can pull up a chair at the bar for an after-work cocktail with coworkers or dinner with friends. They even have a stone fireplace you can sit in front of and enjoy an intimate meal-very romantic! Venturing into the main dining rooms, I couldn’t help but notice the decorum; antler chandeliers, twisted iron rod fixtures atop each booth, canvas maps lining the tops of walls and the table lamps trimmed in dark barbed wire. All remarkably captured the theme of the American West.
We were greeted by two waiters shortly after taking our seats and given two leather-bound menus, neatly branded with the Roaring Fork logo. For drinks, I decided to change up my normal wheat ale order and requested a glass of the White Zinfandel (recommended for those who prefer a sweeter wine) and Erin order the Chardonnay. When asked if we’d like to start off with an appetizer, we choose the Queso Con Puerco served in a hot iron skillet with mixed pieces of Green Chile Pork and paired with salted Corn Tortilla Chips in a spiral rod holder. If you like queso with a spicy-kick, this dish is a must!
When it came to choosing our entrees, we had to tell our waiters at least twice we needed more time. The menu makes it difficult to pick just one thing! Resorting back to the ways of the Old West, the best food was prepared over a simple wood fire. Lamb, chicken, beef, pork and fresh fish entrees are all perfectly prepared by wood fire rotisserie, open flame grill or wood oven roasting. I went with the Bacon-Wrapped Pork Tenderloin served on White Falls Mills Cheese Grits and Mexican Street Corn, and yes, it tasted just as scrumptious as it sounds. Give me the option of bacon-wrapped anything and that’s it, decision made. My medium rare pork tenderloin was perfectly pink and savory, and the mix of cheese grits and Mexican street corn epitomized the concept of comfort food.
Spectacular cuisine, quality service…we couldn’t have been more satisfied with our dinning experience at Roaring Fork. To end our meal on an even higher note, we ordered the Apple pie baked in a crisp and flaky crust surrounded by caramel sauce and topped with a scoop of vanilla ice cream. Superb!
701 Congress Ave.
10850 Stonelake Blvd.