Foodies and art lovers gathered roof-side Thursday, July 12 to celebrate the accomplishments of the three finalists in the Texas Prize exhibition at downtown Austin’s AMOA-Arthouse.
The Texas Prize recognizes “innovation, talent and a marked contribution to a thriving artistic community” and one very talented artist receives a $30,000 prize based on votes cast by a highly qualified panel of judges. Hot Spots, Cool Drinks took this shindig to the next level, the roof, and placed the spotlight on a handful of the who’s-who among Austin chefs and mixologists.
In this friendly game of culinary warfare, each team’s mission was to create cool pairings from hot places and partygoers were faced with task of sampling the goods and voting for their favorites; I gladly accepted the challenge.
The teams were as follows:
• David Alan / Chef Aaron Franklin (Tipsy Texan & Franklin Barbecue)
• Bill Norris / Chef John Bullington (400 Rabbits & Alamo Drafthouse)
• Joyce Garrison / Chef Ben Hightower (TRACE at the W Hotel)
The waves of chatter from well-dressed art patrons and socialites drifted across the Austin skyline and I basked in the splendor of Joyce Garrison’s African rooibos infused rum concoction and my first ever bite of Franklin BBQ, made even more lovely by the fact that I didn’t have to wait in a two-hour line to get the BBQ.
All teams delivered fantastic fare, but the W Austin team took the cake with their African lamb and peanut curry and couscous salad paired with the rooibos rum tea refresher.