What do the Complex editors do when they're not serving you with endless hours of entertainment? My Spot takes you inside some of their favorite destinations, both in the 'hood and around the globe.
People who only go to Austin during SXSW are like people who only know New York by way of freezing their balls off and needing to pee for six hours hanging out with a bajillion other drunk assholes in Times Square on New Year's Eve. It's just not nearly an accurate depiction of how awesome the city can be.
Way on the East Side, which is, admittedly, where the majority of Austin's considerable number of hipsters and cool kids live, is this French restaurant called Justine's. It's fairly new and there's tons of folklore about the namesake restaurateur and her husband and something about Brussels and the bond of gastro-love, but the only things that you need to know about this spot are that a) It's ridiculously delicious b) They make stiff-ass drinks (and a solid dirty vodka martini) c) That sometimes, if you're super lucky, a cast member from The Best Show Ever—Friday Night Lights—will swan in like it's no big deal and d) The kitchen doesn't close until 1:30 a.m. Oh, and it's Complex Senior Editor Mary H.K. Choi's (@choitotheworld) go-to Lone Star joint.
People have argued that Austin has gone the way of Seattle in terms of having seen its heyday and how they're so over it all and will only hang out in the bumblefuck of Marfa. But those people are wrong and need to be set on fire. There is nothing more rewarding than posting up outside of this eatery, getting faced and stuffed, and just people watching.
On that note, another thing about Justine's that merits mention is that the diners are impressively good looking. Like, weirdly good looking. To where it is completely distracting and makes up for the dessert offerings being just OK. You would be fully retarded to go here with a date because it will make bagging a way better looking random harder which you won't be able to pull off because you were stupid enough to bring a date here in the first place. Anyway, the food's good too.
WHAT TO EAT:
• Definitely get the onion soup. It's perfectly crusty, gooey, salty, guyere-y and exactly what you want when you've got a hankering for the stuff.
• The duck confit is super toothsome with a fantastically crispy skin and comes with their French fries which are an absolute must-get because they're fried perfectly (possibly twice) and dusted with herbs.
• The steak tartare is great if what you want is a gang of raw meat hacked into bits with a bunch of spices, Worcestershire, capers, and a raw egg yolk. If that sounds gross and e. coli-ish to you, um, don't get it. If you're bonkers for tartare, this is a contender.
• The charcuterie platter is stellar. The ramekin of paté is decadent, unctuous and slathering it all over fries is definitely the move if you don't plan on doing it every day because pretty soon you'll be 500 lbs and made of duck guts. It is served with pork rillette, olives, and cornichon as well.
4710 East 5th Street in a house built in 1937
Austin, TX 78702-5032
*Closed on Tuesdays
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