Some foods, like Franklin brisket and Ramen Tatsu-Ya’s ramen, deserve the hype. But others ride on reputation. Here are the eight most overrated dishes in Austin.
Cupcakes at Hey Cupcake
Why It’s an Icon: Nothing lit up our day like seeing that rotating cupcake on top of an Airstream back in 2007.
Why It’s Overrated: The cupcake trend has waned, and the cake part of this Austin favorite is usually a little dry. Sugar Mama’s, though, still has it going on.
(Photo courtesy Flickr user Alan Levine)
French Fries at Hyde Park Bar & Grill
Why It’s an Icon: Hyde Park is one of the first places new Austinites try. The most-ordered menu item? The famous fries, enough for the whole table.
Why It’s Overrated: We generally like thick, battered fries, but these are never as crisp as we’re hoping. Try Black Star Co-op’s impeccable steak fries instead.
Burger at P. Terry’s
Why It’s an Icon: The local fast-food chain uses hormone-free, antibiotic-free, vegetarian-fed beef and serves it out of retro Michael Hsu-designed spaces.
Why It’s Overrated: The thin patty means you need to order a double, and the small burger to large fries ratio is off. Of course, it still tastes delicious: You just might need more than one.
Jar Jar Duck at Uchiko
Why It’s an Icon: The dish has won awards right and left since 2011 for its duck done multiple ways, paired with candied citrus, endive and applewood smoke.
Why It’s Overrated: We don't love crowding around a jar and poking a fork into a fellow foodie’s hand while fighting for confit. Go for the dewbee chicken or one of the specials instead.
Black-Truffle Pommes Frites with Foie Gras at Second Bar and Kitchen
Why It’s an Icon: French fries. Truffle oil. Foie gras. Chef David Bull. Enough said.
Why It’s Overrated: The thick-cut fries by themselves are delightful, but the dish goes awry with overly pungent black-truffle mayo and — sacrilege, we know — the foie, which is chucked on top with a splat. Solution? Skip the foie; keep the fries.
Deep-Fried Deviled Eggs at Lucy’s Fried Chicken
Why It’s an Icon: Chef James Holmes’ fried chicken joint has character and crunch, and this over-the-top appetizer entices many.
Why It’s Overrated: All of the elements of genius are there: fresh eggs, spicy deviled yolks, and a golden crust. But something doesn’t translate…we think it’s the warm pocket of mayonnaise. Stick to the chicken and the mouthwatering pie.
Don Juan at Juan in a Million
Why It’s an Icon: An enormous pile of bacon, eggs, cheese and potato over flour tortillas for $3.95? Sounds like heaven for everyone in Austin.
Why It’s Overrated: The quality is lacking, and with so many amazing, cheap breakfast tacos around town (Veracruz, anyone?), this classic just doesn’t cut it anymore.
Steak Frites at Justine’s
Why It’s an Icon: Justine’s certainly wins for character. We love going there for a leisurely, classically French dinner, great-people watching and a romantic, throwback atmosphere.
Why It’s Overrated: The food can’t compete with the atmosphere, and the result is tough steak. If you’re looking for French, hit up newly opened laV and savor the roast chicken for two.