Wonder no more, savvy eater! My arduous journey through the length and breadth of Austin’s foodie scene revealed six spots you’re guaranteed to love. From legit Irish pubs to a tiny hole in the wall off Manchaca, these local restaurants are sure to satisfy your craving for all things crispy, flaky, and savory.
NOTE: As always, my list is in alphabetical order (because we love all these spots equally).
Many of the tastings below were offered at a discount or provided courtesy of the restaurant. All opinions are my own.
1/ B.D. Riley’s
A staple of the late night Sixth Street scene, B.D. Riley’s has been slinging world-class fish and chips for over 18 years. And at the eatery’s newer Mueller location, the tradition remains intact.
This fish breading is light and not overly greasy, giving the flaky cod a good base to pop from. Lightly seasoned steak fries join the party, along with a sweet, slightly tangy tarter sauce and crisp coleslaw to balance out the richness of the fish.
All served in as authentic of an Irish pub as you’ll find in Austin, and you have a tradition worth keeping.
1905 Aldrich St., Suite 130 – Website
2/ Black Star Co-op
Just off North Lamar by the Crestview Station MetroRail stop, Black Star Co-op is a mainstay of Austin breweries. While mostly known for delicious beer, the brewpub also has an exceptional menu.
The fish in this entree has a wonderful crunch and mellow flavor, allowing the tender Texas Gulf black drum to take center stage. Flat chips are a delicious delivery device for a tangy remoulade dipping sauce, all seasoned to perfection.
Pairing my dish with a crisp and refreshing Self Esteem blond ale, I was in fried fish heaven.
7020 Easy Wind Dr. – Website
3/ Full English
For those looking for a dainty high tea and delicious English breakfast in a quirky, vintage setting, Full English is a no-brainer. Only available Friday nights, the fish and chips are outstanding. Incredibly light and fluffy while still maintaining a satisfying crisp texture, the fish bursts with flavor and freshness.
The fries, tartar sauce, and lemon all beautifully complement the star ingredient. According to head chef and owner Aaron Smith, the entree is limited to Fridays due to demand. Consider this the start of my latest hashtag campaign, #eatmorefish.
2000 Southern Oaks Dr. – Website
4/ The League Kitchen & Tavern
Most nose-in-the-air foodie types wouldn’t think to look in a Lakeway strip mall for quality grub. Sadly, they would be missing out on The League Kitchen & Tavern, a neighborhood bar and grill with above-average cuisine in a flip-flops-approved environment. There are now locations in Avery Ranch and Dripping Springs, too.
The entree in question has extraordinary balance. Not too crunchy, not too flaky, with tenderness and a satisfying chew. Crisp, tasty fries provide a salty kick, while the housemade tarter sauce is smooth, rich, and satisfying.
According to general manager Adam Graves, these fish and chips have been a fan favorite since The League opened in 2012 (and it’s easy to see why).
1310 Ranch Road 620 S. – Website
➡️ Keep reading: Stylish Dining, No Pretension at The League Kitchen & Tavern
5/ Liberation Kitchen
No list of Austin culinary delights would be complete without a food truck mention. Liberation Kitchen is one of ATX’s finest. Possibly the most unique concept on this list, Liberation takes cured redfish and fries it in a gluten-free waffle batter. The result is a flaky, crusty texture that’s more tempura than fried fish.
Instead of traditional chips, twice fried smashed potatoes are invited to the party, lending depth and density to the light and airy fish. A jalapeño remoulade for dipping provides subtle heat, rounding out more flavor than one would expect from a standard chippy. And since Liberation Kitchen lives in Adelbert’s parking lot, pair your meal with a Buzzbait Blonde ale for maximum awesomeness.
2314 Rutland Dr. – Website
6/ School House Pub
Every neighborhood needs a local watering hole like School House Pub. Quality libations mix with tasty grub, served by people who treat you like a friend. The fish and chips plate here stands out from the pack with a satisfying crispness that gives way to a meaty, full-flavored cod. Garlic-laced fries add depth and a hint of sweetness to the fish, while a sensational goat cheese tarter sauce brings it all together.
And like the best neighborhood pubs, pricing is reasonable. A half portion of the pictured entree is available during happy hour for a measly $6. A plate of top notch fish and chips, and a beer for under $10? Sign me up!
2207 Manor Road – Website
@BillTuckerTSP wants to know:
Where do you go to get your fish and chips fix in Austin?