Your Editor often walks the doggies along Shoal Creek to take in all the flora and fauna, especially when as today it is running strong after a nice rain. However, in passing under the bridges, save one, olfactory sensitivity is no asset. The sense of smell triggers memories like no other, and the Shoal Creek bridges powerfully evoke the threshold of a dank alley in downtown San Francisco. If you know what we mean.
The great exception, of course, is underneath the 10th Street bridge. There it is redolent of bacon, which overwhelms the ambient residue of humanity, and this is the view as one emerges on the north side, shimmering like an oasis calling a thirsty man:
Doing its best to knock Austin off that Vegan top-ten list, no doubt.
It being a glorious day in Austin — a top ten day for the year almost certainly — I road my mountain bike west out of Clarksville to the trail along Mopac south of Enfield, and then across the pedestrian bridge and along the south side of the lake all the way to the bridge over the Longhorn Dam at Pleasant Valley Road. At which point I had earned a powerful thirst that mere water could not slake.
A year or so ago I had attended a corporate micro-doggle at the just-opened Zilker Brewing Company on east 6th, and had enjoyed a nice IPA. This I remembered as I walked my bike along the narrow path above the dam, so I rolled west on Holly and north on Chicon to 1701 E 6th. There I found the tap room of Zilker Brewing, which is, according to “Forrest,” one of the owners, thriving. That is good, because Zilker Brewing’s product is excellent. If you are in the area and are, as I am, a hop head, check out the special anniversary India Pale Ale, “Onezie IPA.” It is delicious, even if not as flamboyant as the bar tender.
Last night your Editor and Mrs. Editor, who sometimes goes as “Modernista,” ate well at Hopfield’s and then rolled up Guadalupe to The Tigress, a cute neighborhood bar just east on North Loop. The Tigress has a low copper ceiling, a short and friendly bar, and a rather excellent selection of proprietary cocktails (if you like bourbon concoctions, try the Boulevardier). Your Editor had discovered The Tigress after a long evening of pouring colored water at the nearby Texas School of Bartending, and had been meaning to show it off to Modernista at the first opportunity. She approved.
This is an arty place. The TV above the bar runs Turner Classic Movies instead of whatever horrible sports are playing in the desolate months between March and football, and its customers as often as not have a book to read or a great willingness to declaim on their current project. It seems that everybody works in a museum, or wants to do, or has a plan to open a combination photography gallery and bar. Although we are sure that is an unwarranted extrapolation from a small sample size.
Regardless, nobody was talking about either Proposition 1 or the staged social justice atrocity at Whole Foods, which was a relief.
See you there.