SXSW: Lunchtime Roundup

Schlotzsky's (Congress at 6th) - 3/5 stars
Schlotzsky's is always a reasonable fallback choice for downtown events. Inexpensive, fast, and free Wi-Fii. It's a few blocks away, usually a reasonable distance, sometimes more than you'd like to walk. It's also a great place for facetime. Half the time I eat there, I'll run into somebody I know. Downsides are the space is uncomfortably packed full, and no easily accessible power outlets for laptop. (My theory is Schlotzsky's intentionally does that to keep people from camping out too long.)
Iron Works BBQ - 5/5 stars
Iron Works is one of the best damn BBQ places on the face of the planet. The fact that it sits in the shadow of the Convention Center makes it a no-brainer: you gotta go there at least once. Does it have free Wi-Fi? Damned if I know. I'm sure as hell not going to touch my keyboard after handling ribs or a chopped beef sandwich.
Moonshine Patio Bar and Grill - 1/5 stars
Ohhh, it's so cute. They serve their water in mason jars. And they give you a bucket of popcorn as an appetizer. It's so high concept it gives me vertigo. If you are on expense account ($8 sandwiches, $10-20 entrees) and want someplace stylish to impress a client, be my guest. This is another one of those annoying places that is architected to maximize noise levels. This is the sort of place that restaurant reviewers love and I can't stand. The only good thing I can say is that I think I saw Quentin Tarantino and his entourage there. Whoop-de-shit. Go to Iron Works instead.
Little City Espresso Bar & Cafe (916 Congress) - 4/5 stars
Bing! Bing! Bing! We have a winner! I had the most amazing lunch here. It was a roasted turkey sandwich, with apple mustard and slices of fresh apple. The sandwich was huge, and was served with a heaping pile of tortilla chips and salsa. I'd give it 6/5 stars, except it's a bit of a truck from the Convention Center. We hopped the bus, which made it easy. It looks like they have free Wi-Fi too. I already knew their coffee was awesome. I didn't realize the food was so good too.

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re: SXSW: Lunchtime Roundup

Little City rocks! And I'm not just saying that because our babysitter works there.

I totally agree with the Moonshine assessment even though a friend works there as well. We had our company holiday party there last year.

Ironworks is not my favorite BBQ place in town. I prefer Ruby's or Rudy's. Sam's is pretty good too. Of course, none of these are very close to the convention center. BBQ nirvana will always be Cooper's in Llano.

Schlotzsky's is ok in a pinch. I ate at the South Lamar location on Tuesday. That location and the Sixth Street location are always too damn crowded, as are the 183 and Anderson locations. The only one that I've ever seen somewhat comfortable at lunchtime is the one off of East Riverside. It's escaped the renovation that all of the other locations have undergone. Once again, the East Side gets dissed.

re: SXSW: Lunchtime Roundup

Next year I'm going to come find you. I ate the crappy food at the concession stand. I paid to much AND it made me sick. Never again.

Sheena

re: SXSW: Lunchtime Roundup

Oh hell, yeah. I've been doin' Little City since almost the day they opened and I've always loved their sandwiches. I'll go out of my way to go there, particularly when there's a more convenient Starfuck's that I can high-hat as I go past. Donna deserves lots of money and other good things from everybody. (I only wish she didn't allow smoking indoors because it makes the air always slightly stale, even with the good electrostatic precipitator she has installed.)

And yes, they do have free wi-fi.

re: SXSW: Lunchtime Roundup

Make my reservation at Little City. Can't wait to visit!!!