The Tavern is housed in a building on the corner of 12th and Lamar that has stood since 1916. Back then, as World War I waged somewhere, it was a grocery store and Austinites arrived on their horses to pick up their microwave dinners and bags of chips, or whatever they ate in 1916. In the 1930's, it became a bar and a restaurant and once proudly boasted of its air conditioning. Since Austin can reach temperatures of 110, and routinely hits 90 what seems like half the year, a place with air conditioning, in a world without it, was a popular place. Today, it still is. Standing right next to House Park, the home of high school sports in Austin, it remains a family place, a sports bar and an Austin institution. It was time to evaluate their burger.
This week's Odyssey was the first in three weeks as our favorite burger eaters took a little hiatus to cleanse their bodies, and arteries, of 20 weeks of hamburgers. We slimmed down for summer and added some energy, all of which was gained back and lost in one night at the Tavern. But it was worth it! The Odyssey was also joined by Papa and Mama Burger Flamant and they are hopefully guest blogging below. It was good to have them. They are true connoisseurs of fine living and are rarely without an opinion.
I ordered the BBQ Burger. It is topped with cheese and bacon. The meat was juicy and very tasty, but the bun was a little lacking. The Tavern boasts of its world famous kolachi bun, but you have to special request this. I did not know this new policy and got stuck with the substandard bun. Considering how nice and juicy the patty was, this must really be a delicious creation with the chewy and sweet kolachi. Sage said, "The burger is like the mineral wealth of South America. The deeper you dig, the more you find." I enjoyed the burger, but the Tavern has changed their burger recently (perhaps a little cutback in these tough economic times) and I wish they would go back. At least you have 52 TV's to watch to distract you from the taste of your food.
I did enjoy the fries. They were thick cut and tasted like a potato, always a good sign. I love the Tavern. The atmosphere and location is great and it is a good happy hour spot. I especially like the upstairs deck. But, my only complaint is that the Tavern can be a little inconsistent. I will go back because when it is good it is great.
Dr. Pepper: 92
What does a burger, a beer, multiple TVs, good friends and a National Championship have in common? We're back!!!!
The Tavern, and institution that has been recommended to us by a number of our readers, was the latest stop on the Odyssey's quest for the ultimate burger. As we settled in with the usual suspect and my parents in tow we got our mouths watering with the delicious description of their world famous Kolachi burgers. Among the choices were the Tex-Mex burger, with grilled jalapenos, the BBQ burger, the Blue Cheese burger and the Classic burger with or without cheese. I chose the latter the classic with cheese.
The burger was quite tasty, ordered medium rare it was cooked to perfection. The patty was seasoned really well and the juices flowing from the patty made you crave for another bite. I finished my burger in what seemed like a flash, and along with the thick cut fries that were seasoned just right it hit the spot on the return of the blog. Maybe I was really craving a burger after cleansing myself for two weeks and maybe the beer tainted my taste buds but this burger gets nods as the best burger at a sports bar.
In the end seeing the Rockstar, the Sage and FriedEd take money from both my parents and yours truly (damn Michigan State) the burger and beer made the night seem just fine to me. (I have never had the kolachi bun and therefore I will go back to try the world famous version.)
The blog has some great places that we will be visiting soon that come very highly recommended. The spring burger run looks to be a good one, stay tuned!!!
P.S. We are going to do some theme blogs. More to come!