Favor For Good Kicks Off – $1 Donation To Soldiers’ Angels On Every Delivery 5/22-5/29

Favor, Austin-based on-demand delivery service, on Monday announced the launch of its Favor For Good campaign in support of Soldiers’ Angels, a national nonprofit headquartered in San Antonio that is dedicated to providing aid and comfort to the  men and women of the United States military, veterans of all eras and their families. Driven by Favor’s commitment to community first, Favor For Good harnesses the simple act of delivery to make a positive impact within the Texas community.

In honor of Memorial Day, Favor will donate $1 to Soldiers’ Angels for each Favor placed from a variety of restaurants in all 15 Favor cities throughout Texas between Monday, May 22 – Monday, May 29, 2017. By participating in Favor for Good, the community can help Soldiers’ Angels provide aid and comfort to the 40,000 Texas service members, veterans and their families the organization aims to support in 2017.

“Soldiers’ Angels is honored to be partnering with Favor for this excellent campaign,” said Amy Palmer, President and CEO of Soldiers’ Angels. “We owe our service members and veterans so much for the sacrifices they have made for our freedoms and this campaign is an effortless way for all Texans to give back to these brave men and women.”

Make your delivery count and honor the sacrifice of America’s service members by placing a Favor through these Austin restaurants:

  • Andiamo Ristorante

  • Austin Cake Ball

  • Banzai

  • Black Star Co-Op

  • Carmelo’s

  • Fresa’s

  • Flyrite

  • Il Forte

  • Maiko Sushi

  • Papadom

  • Slab BBQ

  • Texas Wings & Grill

  • Thai Spice

  • Tyson’s Tacos

  • Quality Seafood

About Favor

Favor is the easiest way to get anything delivered in under an hour. Whether it’s lunch at the office, a household shopping list or those errands you just don’t have time for — your personal assistant (we call them Runners) can deliver it in just a few taps. Founded in 2013, the Austin-based on-demand delivery company has grown to over 20,000 active Runners and has delivered more than 5 million Favors to-date. Favor is currently available in 15 cities across Texas, where it is currently the best rated delivery service. For more information, visit favordelivery.com and follow Favor on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram.

About Soldiers’ Angels

Soldiers’ Angels is a national 501(c)(3) nonprofit that provides aid and comfort to the men and women of the United States Army, Marines, Navy, Air Force, Coast Guard, their families, and the growing veteran population. Founded in 2003 by the mother of two American soldiers, hundreds of thousands of Soldiers’ Angels “Angel” volunteers assist veterans, wounded and deployed personnel, and their families in a variety of unique and effective ways. (Tax ID# 20-058-3415). Learn more at www.soldiersangels.org.

Where to Celebrate National Wine Day on May 25

Need ideas on where, around the globe, to celebrate National Wine Day on May 25? We have a few thrilling ideas!

Ama Vida Alfresco Dining

Ama Vida Alfresco Dining


In celebration of National Wine Day on May 25, AmaWaterways is inviting travelers to toast to the holiday with a special offer available on its wine-themed cruises – showcasing the acclaimed wine regions along Europe’s Danube, Douro, Mosel, Rhine, Rhone and Seine Rivers. Travelers who book an AmaWaterways wine-themed sailing can now save up to $1,500 per stateroom, with dates available throughout 2017, and will have the unique opportunity to immerse themselves in the rich heritage of the world’s most famed wine regions. AmaWaterways’ wine cruises are hosted by top wine experts and feature complimentary lectures, wine tastings, exquisite cuisine with paired wines and exclusive shore excursions to historic vineyards and wineries, as well as private wine cellar tours. In addition, AmaWaterways’ co-owners – Rudi Schreiner and Kristin Karst – collaborated with winemaker, Jim Clendenen, to make AmaWaterways’ very-own Concerto Wine. The partnership has resulted in a red Pinot with flavor notes of dark red fruit, wild strawberries, earth, spice and cocoa.

Lodge Seating Area

Lodge Seating Area

Brasstown Valley Resort & Spa / Young Harris, GA

Situated amongst the Blue Ridge Mountains and just two hours outside of Atlanta, Brasstown Valley Resort & Spa is the perfect destination to celebrate National Wine Day.  With North Georgia’s wineries continuing to earn praise from critics and wine-lovers alike, the resort offers ease of access to the regions most acclaimed vineyards and tasting rooms.  Guests may book a stay at this luxurious resort to experience this new wine destination and tantilize their taste buds, while enjoying spectacular views of the surrounding countryside.

Sonesta Coconut Grove Miami

Sonesta Coconut Grove Miami

Sonesta Coconut Grove Miami / Miami, FL

Recently unveiling its new happy hour menu, Sonesta Coconut Grove’s widely recognized restaurant, Panorama Restaurant & Sky Lounge, provides for the ultimate spot with great deals to celebrate National Wine Day. Guests can relax and unwind with an appealing range of wine options by the glass for $5, as well as light bites ranging from sweet chili glazed wings to roasted garlic hummus and pita chips, while overlooking breathtaking views of beautiful Biscayne Bay.

Sonesta Fort Lauderdale Beach

Sonesta Fort Lauderdale Beach

Sonesta Fort Lauderdale Beach / Fort Lauderdale, FL

Celebrate National Wine Day at the laid-back, sophisticated Sonesta Fort Lauderdale Beach, where wine enthusiasts seeking great wine, cuisine and unobstructed views can look no farther. Providing spectacular views and innovative cuisine at the hotel, Bistro Restaurant, is offering half price wine bottles with the purchase of any entrée during National Wine Day only. While there, guests can overlook the sugar-sand beach and taste dishes and appetizers ranging from lamb rack short rib ravioli while sipping on a favorite choice of wine.

Erind Halilaj Named Executive Chef of New Waterloo’s Il Brutto

Halilaj will oversee culinary operations for the upcoming Italian restaurant, bar & sandwich shop

Erind Halilaj

Erind Halilaj

Photography provided by Nicolai McCrary.

New Waterloo is excited to announce Erind Halilaj, formerly of Obicà Mozzarella Bar, as the executive chef of Il Brutto, the group’s neighborhood Italian restaurant, bar and sandwich shop opening in East Austin later this summer.

Born in Albania and raised in Italy, Halilaj pursued a culinary career after receiving a degree in economics and tourism services management. In Milan, he held prominent positions at various 5-star luxury hotels, including chef de partie at Hotel Principe di Savoia, sous chef at AC Hotel Marriott Milano, and chef tournant at Excelsior Hotel Gallia. Halilaj worked at several other hotels and restaurants in Italy, including as executive chef of private club Canottieri Restaurant, before an opportunity with JW Marriott brought him to Florida in 2014.

After making the move to New York City that same year, Halilaj was named executive chef of Obicà Mozzarella Bar, then promoted to its corporate chef within his first year. There, he was charged with concepting menus, overseeing multiple kitchens, developing training programs, and opening Obicà locations worldwide. He joined New Waterloo as Executive Chef of Il Brutto and its counterpart, a 1,600-sq-ft sandwich shop, in spring 2017.

“Italian cuisine is rooted in simplicity: straightforward ingredients of the highest quality used in precise ways,” says New Waterloo Partner Delfo Trombetta. “Having grown up in Italy, Erind has a deep-rooted passion for the ingredients and techniques at the core of all Italian cuisine. We are lucky to have him join the Il Brutto team.”

Located in East Austin, Il Brutto will offer lunch, brunch and dinner in a 5,000-square-foot restaurant that features a large, open kitchen, a separate bar and lounge, a private dining room, and shaded patio seating surrounding a live oak tree. Helmed by Halilaj, Il Brutto will offer a menu of simple, well-executed Italian classics, including fresh antipasti, daily housemade pastas, and pizzas baked in the restaurant’s Neapolitan wood-burning oven.

“There’s always a story behind an Italian dish,” says Halilaj. “A meal is not just about the food, but about the whole experience. Il Brutto will be a high-quality Italian restaurant that’s casual, convivial and warm—just like East Austin.”

Il Brutto and the yet-to-be-named sandwich shop are slated to open in East Austin late summer 2017. They are the latest additions to New Waterloo’s diverse culinary portfolio, which includes La Condesa, Sway, Hotel Ella, South Congress Hotel and Pao.

For more information about Il Brutto, visit the restaurant’s website, www.ilbruttoaustin.com. For opening updates, follow Il Brutto on Facebook (/ilbruttoaustin) and Instagram (@ilbruttoaustin).

Ramen Tatsu-Ya Dishes Out Summer Chilled Ramen Special

As we head into the summer and temperatures continue to climb, Ramen Tatsu-Ya is dishing out a special that’s perfect for the Texas heat.

Spicy Chilled Ramen

Spicy Chilled Ramen

Available starting now through the summer, Ramen Tatsu-Ya is bringing back their spicy chilled ramen, a perfectly spicy and refreshing brothless ramen made with citrus soy dressing, ajitama, cucumber, pirikara ground pork, karashi mustard and chili oil.

Ramen Tatsu-Ya North

8557 Research Blvd #126

Austin, TX 78758

Open daily, 11 a.m. to 10 p.m.

Ramen Tatsu-Ya South

1234 S. Lamar Blvd

Austin, TX 78704

Open daily, 11 a.m. to 10 p.m.

About Ramen Tatsu-Ya:

In Fall 2012, Chef Tatsu Aikawa started Ramen Tatsu-Ya with chef Takuya Matsumoto and younger brother Shion Aikawa. The duo first met over 10 years ago as hip hop DJs and they remained friends as their lives followed a similar path as sushi chefs. After spending some time at the Michelin-starred kaiseki/sushi bar, Urasawa, in Los Angeles, Tatsu decided to return to Austin in the pursuit of introducing authentic Japanese ramen to Texas. With the help of friends and family, Ramen Tatsu-Ya became a reality and soon after opening, the shop quickly became a local sensation boasting national accolades, including Bon Appetit’s “Top 50 Best Restaurants.” Ramen Tatsu-Ya currently has three locations overall, with two in Austin and a Houston location that opened February 2017. For more information, please visit www.ramen-tatsuya.com. Follow on Facebook, Instagram and Twitter.

Uncle Billy’s May First Friday Firkin: 11th Anniversary Saison Firkins


Uncle Billy’s Head Brewer, Trevor Nearburg, with the special 11th Anniversary Belgian Saison Ale.

Uncle Billy’s Head Brewer, Trevor Nearburg, with the special 11th Anniversary Belgian Saison Ale.

On Friday, May 5 at 5 p.m., Uncle Billy’s will tap two firkins made with special 11th anniversary Belgian Saison ale. Head brewer, Trevor Nearburg, created a Saison that is refreshingly light, dry brew with fruity esters and spicy phenols from the Belgian yeast. Each of the two special firkins using the Belgian Saison. The first one mimics a barrel aged Saison by aging it with charred oak and dandelion greens. The oak gives it vanilla and oaky flavors, while the dandelion greens enhance the existing grassy farmhouse flavors to give it a hint bitterness and more funky farmhouse. Our second firkin is infused with dried apricots and blackberries. The light style beer will let the fruit flavors shine through with a gorgeous amethyst color from the blackberries. We will tap both casks at 5:00 pm on Friday, May 5.

  • 6% ABV
  • 35 IBUs

When: Friday, May 5 tapping at 5 p.m.

What: $3 Firkin Pints

Where: Uncle Billy’s Brewery + Smokehouse, 1530 Barton Springs Road, Austin, TX  78704

Spice Up Spring Cleaning

While you’re making this year’s spring cleaning chore list, remember that a true deep clean means decluttering your kitchen from inside the cabinets out.

“The idea of spring cleaning is especially relevant to the spice rack,” said Mark Garcia, chef at McCormickKitchens. “Many people keep the same herbs and spices in their cabinet for years, not realizing that flavor and aroma tend to fade over time.”

He offers the following tips for ensuring your herbs and spices are at their freshest and ready to complement the season’s signature flavors:

  • Sight: Check that the colors of your spices and herbs are bright and vibrant. If the color has faded, so has the flavor.
  • Aroma: Rub or crush the spice or herb in your hand. If the aroma is weak, it is time to replace it.
  • Taste: Give the herb or spice a taste test. If it lacks flavor, it is past its prime.

To ensure you’re cooking with the freshest flavor, check your spice’s “best by” date and keep these shelf life guidelines in mind:

  • Ground spices: 2-3 years
  • Whole spices: 3-4 years
  • Seasoning blends: 1-2 years
  • Herbs: 1-3 years

When you shop to replace discarded spices, keep these storage tips in mind:

  • Keep spices and herbs away from heat, moisture and direct sunlight.
  • Avoid storing spices and herbs over the stove, dishwasher or sink, or near a window.
  • Members of the red pepper family, including paprika and chili powder, will retain their color and remain fresher when stored in the refrigerator.

While putting your spices to use, follow these simple guidelines:

  • Try not to sprinkle spices and herbs directly from the bottle into a steaming pot. Repeated exposure to heat and moisture can hasten flavor loss and could result in caking. Instead, measure them into a cup, measuring spoon or bowl and then add them.
  • Be sure to use a completely dry measuring spoon when dipping it into a spice or herb.
  • Replace bottle lids tightly immediately after use.

While cleaning out the cupboards, you may encounter forgotten spices or those that are approaching their “best by” dates and need to be used. That’s the perfect excuse to experiment with new recipes or to reward your hard work with a sweet treat.

Find more recipes and tips for keeping your spice rack in tip-top shape at McCormick.com or look for McCormick Spice on Facebook and Pinterest. (FamilyFeatures)

Eberly Launches New Spring Menus and Cocktails

Photography courtesy of Julia Keim.

Eberlyrestaurant and bar situated on South Lamar, has launched new menus and cocktails for spring.

Braised Shortrib

Braised Shortrib

Chicken Paillard

Chicken Paillard

Alaskan Halibut

Alaskan Halibut

With an emphasis on freshness, seasonality and local availability, Eberly’s menu features Contemporary American cuisine with timeless favorites that incorporate a modern spin. New additions include, Alaskan Halibut with shishito pepper, cucumber yogurt, spring vegetable ceviche and garbanzo beans, Chicken Paillard with herbed haricot vert, capers and lemon beurre blanc, Braised Short Rib with cipollini onions, pea tendrils, sweet potato and carrot puree and radish salad, and more.


In addition to a new spring menu, Eberly introduces new desserts for the spring, like the Coconut Panna Cotta with blackberry limeade sorbet, lime pearls and blackberry port sauce, Banana Pudding with vanilla wafer cake, toffee cashews, malted dulce crumble and butterscotch ice cream, along with twists on old favorites, such as Natalie’s Basque Cake, now paired with Texas strawberries, parmesan ice cream and and vanilla bean pastry cream. Along with new desserts, cocktails from the Cedar Tavern are taking a seasonal spin, with selections like the Sgt. Pepper made with Ford’s Gin, cardamom pink pepper syrup, lemon and basil, The Innkeeper with Eberly Barrel Select Patrón Añejo, Rothman & Winter Crème de Violette, lemon and lavender expression and more.

See the full menu HERE.


615 S Lamar Blvd


Dining Room Hours:


Sunday through Thursday, 5 to 10 p.m.

Friday and Saturday, 5 to 11 p.m.


Saturday and Sunday, 10 a.m. to 2 p.m.

Cedar Tavern Hours: 

Monday through Friday, 5 p.m. to close

Saturday and Sunday, 12 p.m. to close

From the Vineyard: Managing Winegrape Growth in Unpredictable Spring Weather

By Penny S. Adams, winemaker and viticulturist for Wedding Oak Winery

You know that sickening feeling you get when a storm is barreling down on you, and your car is left out in the elements? You just know that it is going to be pummeled by hail, resulting in a costly trip to the body shop.

Now imagine how you would feel if your entire livelihood was in the path of that same storm? That is exactly the situation Texas winemakers face each spring when extreme weather threatens the fresh growth of grape vines left helpless to the elements in the vineyard. If not a late frost, it is hail, severe winds, or a deluge of flooding rain that threaten our vines.

2017 Spring Planting at Wildseed Farm Vineyard

2017 Spring Planting at Wildseed Farm Vineyard

To make matters a bit more precarious than usual, the warmer than average January temperatures led to the growing season starting out much earlier than normal in vineyards across the state. Having bud break this early always puts growers on edge. The delicate buds are exposed to the risk of late spring frost that can decimate a crop. Additionally, spring storms rife with hail can be particularly devastating in young vineyards where vine trunks and cordons are developing. The earlier in the season when a hail event occurs, the more catastrophic it can be, as the more exposed newly developing buds are likely to be damaged.

Most varieties in the Hill Country are at bloom in their phenological calendar now, and factors like extreme rainfall and wind during this time can impact fruit set, and ultimately yield. In most grape variety blocks, we are in growth phases that range from pre-bloom to just post fruit-set. We are now in mid-season, and the fruit is better protected by larger leaf area acting as umbrellas of sorts.

2017 Spring Growth in High Valley Vineyard

2017 Spring Growth in High Valley Vineyard

In spite of the risks, the growing season is going well so far. Several storms have moved through our Hill Country vineyards recently causing limited hail damage to upper canopies and wind damage to canes. I’ve seen limited damage to Viognier clusters that are just beyond fruit set, so I expect no impact on yield. The storms last week fell in line with our normal “Easter Freeze” events that often plague Texas winegrape production. Several contracted vineyards in the Texas High Plains suffered severe loss of fruit for this season, but fortunately most have been spared. 

Spring Planting and Vineyard Management

We continue to plant to vineyard acreage, and diligently maintain our existing vineyards. It’s a busy time in the vineyards.

We have completed spring planting of seventeen acres in our various contracted Hill Country vineyards with Viognier, Trebbiano, Cabernet Sauvignon, Carignan, Dolcetto, Graciano, Mourvèdre, Syrah and Tannat to bolster our production levels for our growing markets. I’m particularly excited about the Graciano and Carignan plantings because these varieties will contribute important complexities to our lineup, especially in our Rioja-style red wines. The nice spring rainfall created a little bit of a dance of sorts regarding getting into the vineyards to plant.

2017 Spring Growth in High Valley Vineyard

2017 Spring Growth in High Valley Vineyard

In vineyards planted last year, we are training young vines, which includes developing trunks, cordons and spurs, with frequent vineyard passes during the vines “grand period of growth.” During this approximately six-week period of rapid vine growth, they can grow more than an inch per day. As you can probably guess these tender new shoots are especially vulnerable to damage during this critical vine development stage. If damaged by weather, they may need to be retrained from the ground up: a devastating additional expense for vineyard owners.

In our older vineyards we are finishing up shoot removal along the cordons, opening up the canopies to more sunlight and allowing leaves to dry after spring rain. This also allows fungicide sprays to better penetrate the canopies and protect the fruit from the many fungal pressures we have here in the Hill Country during this critical time of the season.

With the early bud break, I predict we will have a slightly earlier harvest here in our Hill Country varieties, particularly Viognier. Despite the vines jumping out of their dormancy early this season, and the minor weather impacts on fruit crop, this 2017 vintage is looking better than ever!


Rosé, Derby Parties and More From Twin Liquors

We’re pleased to share news about a few events coming to Twin Liquors next month with respect to Derby Day.
Run For The Rosé – Wednesday, May 3 
5:30 p.m. – 8 p.m.
Twin Liquors gears up for Derby Day by celebrating with rosé, featuring up to 20 rosé wines and special guests Charles Bieler and Dina Mondavi.
Hancock Center Marketplace location
1000 E. 41st Street, Suite 810
Derby Preview Party – Thursday, May 4
5:30 p.m. to 7:30 p.m.
Twin Liquors is kicking off Derby Day in style with a Derby Day preview party at the Round Rock Marketplace location, featuring mint juleps and other whiskey cocktails, a best dressed awards and more derby fun.
Round Rock Marketplace location
210 University Blvd., Ste 120 


Austin Restauranteur Set to Launch “modern Milan market” Concept at ABIA

Annies’ founder Love Nance teams with Dick Clark + Associates Architecture and branding guru Brett Stiles to bring I VINI to Austin airport and beyond 

Austinites and visitors alike traveling through Austin-Bergstrom International Airport soon will have another fresh and local culinary option to enjoy while waiting for a flight or from which to grab a meal and dash.

Set to open in July, I VINI  – a sleek, 124-foot long “modern Milan” Italian market and wine bar island floating in the middle of the west concourse – is the latest collaboration of Annies Café & Bar founder Love Nance, Dick Clark + Associates Architecture and branding guru Brett Stiles, as well as airport concession developer Delaware North.

“The recipes have all been simmering on the back of my stove for years,” said Nance, who also heads Paseo Brands, which created Farm Aire and the Annies Café & Bar at ABIA in partnership with Delaware North in 2013, now the highest revenue generators at the airport. “The menu is based on the fresh Italian street food from my many trips to Italy visiting my goddaughter.  We were among the first to bring truly fresh food to an airport so we’re extending that approach to Italian.”

Much of I VINI’s food preparation will be done out in the open in the middle of the long, contemporary island structure spanning Gates 21-25. Fresh salumi platters will be prepared “while you watch” on a hand crank Italian charcuterie slicer. Bruschetta boxes to take on the plane and Italian coffee and pastry will also be among the offerings. Additionally, I VINI will boast a wine list curated by Jeremy Cohen, who is a past recipient of the Best Wine List in America award.

“Mark Vornberg and the rest of the Dick Clark + Associates team have really done an amazing job designing this space,” explained Nance. “There will be sleek, curvy bar, an espresso area, a walk up take away bar for beer and wine, 30 feet of prepared food, and a seated table service area – all under a floating, free-form, Calder-esque sculpture painted in abstract, vineyard-inspired motifs Brett Stiles developed for the I VINI brand.”

While Nance’s focus is squarely on the July launch of I VINI Italian market and wine bar at ABIA, she is also developing plans to take Paseo Brands’ fresh food concepts to airports across the country.

About Love Nance

Over the past 30 years, Nance has established, designed and operated multiple concepts ranging from fast-casual models to the oldest operating restaurant in downtown Austin, Annies Café & Bar. In 2008, Annies Café & Bar was designated by the City of Austin as an Iconic Business, and FOOD & WINE magazine has listed Annies as serving one of the 10 best dishes in America. Nance also founded Crumb Castle Foods, Inc., a contract food development and wholesale baking company that is one of the first developers of alternative grain baked goods in the United States. Its diverse products have been marketed nationally by large natural foods grocers, including sector leader Whole Foods Market, Inc.

About Paseo Brands

Paseo Brands is a minority, woman-owned company that is ACDBE-, HUB- and MWBE-certified. Paseo’s team consists of seasoned professionals in the culinary arts, design and food service management field. From cookbook authors, talented chefs and sommeliers to award-winning architects and branding specialists the Paseo Brands team collaborates to create seamless, successful concepts and dining experiences that are first in the industry.

About Dick Clark + Associates

Dick Clark + Associates is a full service architecture and interior design firm whose work covers a wide range of project types from master planning and site feasibility studies to custom single-family homes. Dick Clark + Associates originated in 1979 when the principal, Dick Clark, founded the office in Austin. For over 30 years, the office has been influenced by the creative environment and technology that have driven Austin. Dick is deeply engaged in the community, participating in the shaping of the city, central Texas, and beyond. His commitment to mentorship and collaboration has built a team that expresses hard work, creativity and great design in each and every project.

About Brett Stiles Design

Brett Stiles is a designer, art director, artist and strategist based in Austin, Texas. He works with clients all over the world to creatively solve business problems. Brett creates and designs everything from logos, posters, brochures, books and annual reports to identity systems, product packaging, websites and CD covers. 

About Delaware North

Delaware North is one of the world’s leading airport food service and retail companies, operating at more than 30 airports and travel centers in the United States, Great Britain and Australia. It manages more than 300 restaurants and retail stores, serving more than 350 million travelers each year.