Everyone needs a neighborhood bar. A place that’s not just a convenient place you can walk to in the evening and stumble home from at night. But a social network inside walls. A place where people can meet, greet and become neighbors.
When East Austin grew out of its reputation as the wrong side of the tracks, local pubs became a necessity. Enter Hi Hat Public House, a laid back restaurant/watering hole that has quickly become the best place to eat, drink and be merry in East Austin.
As the cornerstone of the Villas on Sixth apartment complex, Hi Hat features a little bit of everything. Aside from having a respectable wine list, Hi Hat also sports an exceptional beer listing.
Exceptional Beer List
I visited at the tail end of Austin Beer Week and found some doozies on the board. My choice was an incredible Real Ale Coffee Porter on cask, fortified with extra coffee.
On normal days, whether you’re looking for the sweet and refreshing kick of a Revolver Blood and Honey or the over the top malt wallop of Independence’s 10th anniversary barley wine, you’ll find the perfect pour for your mood.
Hi Hat even had a few bottles of the famous Dogfish Head 120 minute IPA when I last visited. Finding this extremely rare brew is like locating Bigfoot or the Dead Sea Scrolls. Worth skipping work for. The list is constantly evolving, so check out their beer page for up to the day listings.
Stunning Food Menu
Hi Hat doesn’t stop with a powerful beer list. The food menu is downright stunning. I tried a savory lunch special: duck sausage on a freshly baked biscuit slathered in jack cheese and gravy with a poached egg on top. The egg was cooked to perfection, which gave a welcomed creaminess to the hearty meat and bread base. A mountain of stick to your ribs goodness.
My girlfriend had the Reuben and quickly proclaimed it was the best she ever had. As a long time New Yorker, that’s high praise.
From duck confit nachos on the small plates menu to a Texas cheesesteak worthy of the Lone Star State (it has real cactus on it), the menu is comfort food with an arty, culinary flair.
Events, Decor, Service Complete the Perfection
The Hi Hat also features a small stage which is home to some great live music. The afternoon we swung by, beer kegs were on display (as they should be for Austin Beer Week). The restaurant is home to a variety of special events.
All of this is enjoyed amidst laid back, ultra quirky décor featuring sparkling percussion and local art. Drum sets hang from the ceiling and the beer taps poke out of a reconditioned timpani drum.
The staff also delivers top notch service. They’re friendly, knowledgeable and eager to please.
With a fantastic menu, carefully curated beer selection and an atmosphere that’s uniquely Austin, Hi Hat Public House is the local bar for residents of the growing East Austin scene. When I write these reviews, my locations tend to be one and done. Even if I love the joint, there’s tons of new stuff to explore and I’ll occasionally forget about my new found favorite. Not so with Hi Hat. I’m going back next week. It’s on the calendar. Excellent food, great service and a guaranteed good time.
@BillTuckerTSP wants to know:
Has Hi Hat become your new local favorite? Tell us more!