Second Bar + Kitchen

I was so very excited to go to Austin for a few days. I couldn’t wait to catch up with a friend and of course check out the great restaurants and bars I always hear about!


You may still see a couple large painted guitars scattered around the city. Apparently they were used to raise money for charity and have since been sold to the city. A few of them are located at the baggage claim in the airport.2017-03-28_05-14-25-01

Painted Guitars

I got a great price at the Omni Austin Hotel Downtown. Located in the Financial District, it’s within walking distance to numerous bars and restaurants. It’s only a couple blocks away from lively 6th Street as well.

Omni Hotel

The front desk staff was very nice and I was able to check in early. I booked the Deluxe Room with a King bed. I had a corner room on a high floor. I also received little perks with the Omni Select Guest loyalty program – bottled water, a newspaper, juice and tea delivered to my room every morning, and complimentary wi-fi.

Deluxe King Room

Shortly after settling into my room, I walked around to find a place for lunch. My first meal in a new city always excites me! I came upon Second Bar + Kitchen located only a couple blocks from the hotel.


It was a nice and sophisticated setting. People were just about to get out of work, so there were only a few people when I walked in.


I grabbed a seat at the bar and was more than ready for a drink and bite to eat. All the beer currently on tap was written on the chalkboard above and Mall Rats was playing on the television. I liked this place already.


I looked over the cocktail menu and went with the Green River.

Cocktail Menu

The cocktail was made with vodka, green chartreuse, basil, grapefruit, and lime. It was light and refreshing.

Green River


The snacks and pizzas sounded good, but I just went straight for a full lunch menu item. The SBK French Dip sandwich had short rib, crispy onions, and gruyere cheese with a side of red wine au jus and horseradish aioli.

SBK French Dip

It came with a side of crispy gaufrette (wafer) potato chips and horseradish pickles.

Gaufrette Potato Chips

The shredded short rib was fairly tasty and the bread was soft. It was a bit drier than other French dips I’ve had before though. It may be due to the small shreds of meat instead of the large slices you usually get. I spread on some horseradish aioli and a dip in the red wine au jus helped – a bit messy, but good.

Short Rib, Crispy Onions, Gruyere

I couldn’t leave without trying a local beer, so I also had the Oasis Metamodern IPA. It’s brewed by Oasis Texas Brewing Company in Austin. You know how I love my IPAs!

Oasis Metamodern IPA

Lunch was good and filling. I walked back towards the hotel and stopped at the Royal Blue Grocery. The small grocery store offers freshly prepared sandwiches and snacks, as well as a variety of artisanal goodies, beer, juice, and ice cream.

Royal Blue Grocery
Artisanal Ice Cream
Topo Chico

Second Bar + Kitchen
200 Congress Ave
Austin, TX 78701
(512) 827-2750


Omni Austin Hotel Downtown
700 San Jacinto Blvd
Austin, TX 78701
(512) 476-3700


Royal Blue Grocery
609 Congress Ave
Austin, TX 78701
(512) 469-5888


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