When it comes to vacation spots at the top of my bucket list, France is by far the best. (And Camille’s Paris City Guide makes it all the more fascinating.) But every region of the country, from the French Alps to the sandy beaches of the Mediterranean Sea, is home to incredible history, architecture, art and beauty. And full of charm. But most importantly, as I am sure we can all agree, France boasts a beautifully diverse and unique culinary culture. It’s not a walk through the streets, but it’s not hard to find a French restaurant that stands out in Austin.
It’s no secret that Austin has some of the best restaurants. And of course, as foodies and journalists trying to uncover the tastiest food and most dreamy spots in our city, we’ve visited and tested them all. New restaurants are popping up all the time in the city. That’s why we always go out and do our due diligence to find restaurants, cafes, brunches and bars that will transport your taste buds right to Europe. Think of it as a little vacation.
featured image Hannah Huston.
Austin’s Best French Restaurants Europe 2020
When I first moved to Austin, I was amazed at how many places in Austin incorporate French culture into the overall atmosphere. It’s not the same as eating a croissant at the Louvre, but I’ll take whatever I can get my hands on until I take off on the trip of my dreams. Without further ado, let’s dive into our list of the best French restaurants in Austin.
Perfect for late nights: Justine’s Brasserie
There’s no better place for a French-inspired late-night meal than Justine’s Brasserie. A picturesque courtyard with bright red walls, dreamy lighting and disco balls., Escargot with parsley and a heart-pounding DJ set. It’s like instantly teleporting to a French brasserie without leaving the east side of town.
Best for pastries: Elizabeth Street Cafe
Elizabeth Street is famous for its banh mi sandwiches and noodles, but it also makes some of the best croissants in town. A colorful cafe with typical French cuisine. Patrons enjoy chatting over espresso and homemade French pastries in the sunny dining room or shaded garden patio. An afternoon of fun like no other.
Most Instagrammable Attraction: Epithree
Épicerie is a charming and delicious neighborhood café offering French Louisiana-inspired casual dining and takeaway gourmet treats. The ivy-covered cottages are often mistaken for residential bungalows, but step inside and you’re transported to a chic and friendly café serving a French-inspired menu.
Special Occasions: Lutie’s
A light bite at Lutie’s overlooking a breathtaking garden surrounded by cozy chic interiors is definitely worth the wait. Everything on the menu is intriguing and tempting. From creme caramel to confit his pork, these French-inspired haute cuisine will not disappoint.
The best farm-to-table: foreign and domestic
Foreign & Domestic is one of those restaurants that will always be on my list of favorite dining experiences. The menu changes seasonally and reflects the chef’s selection of dishes. Some of the best dishes with a beautiful French twist are the Parisian gnocchi and 44 Farms Bavette Steak.
Snack: Texas French Bread
Texas French Bread has been an Austin favorite since 1981, starting as a scratch bakery and expanding to include sandwiches and brunch classics. In 2022, their main location suffered a devastating fire, but the 1971 Airstream Hood his trailer business continues to boom. Whether it’s breakfast, lunch, or just a quick snack on the go, croissants are always the way to go.