La Condesa is my new " happy happy " spot in Austin. An addition to the shortlist which consists of the Hotel San Jose , the Ashtanga Austin YogaShala & the Thai Market Cafe' which we stumbled upon after a meeting next door ; with " farang " cooks to boot.
My definition of a " happy happy " spot is a place to take associates or clients to dinner with enough options for vegetarians like myself , a cool ambiance & a groovy local crowd ( in the event that conversation turns boring ).
La Condesa fits the bill as the chef used to work at La Esquina in Soho NYC , right around the corner from where I was staying last winter.
With its modernist vibe & old school Michael Jackson , Earth , Wind & Fire soundtrack , it put me in party mode without having to succumb to one of their top shelf tequilas or margaritas. The chips and guacamole , chile relleno with quinoa , sauteeed spinach & spicy Boca Negra are fantastic. Modern Mexican Cuisine as inspired by the Condesa District in Mexico City. Pricey but worth it.
If anyone tells you Guerros on So. Congress is the place for Mexican food in Austin , you are better off eating the overly salty chips at Chipotle.
I am heading to San Diego this week & am intending to practice with Manju Jois on Thursday morning.