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Lunch With Hobbits

Lunch With Hobbits

Lisa Eirene

About Lisa Eirene Lisa lost 110 pounds through calorie counting and exercise. She swims, bikes, runs, hikes and is enjoying life in Portland, Oregon. Her weight loss story has been featured in First Magazine, Yahoo Health, Woman's Day and Glamour.com.

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  1. Ingunn

    Heh, just this weekend a friend of mine described Austin as “the Portland of Texas”! πŸ˜€

    1. Lisa Eirene

      That’s what we’ve always heard too! I can see the resemblances. Michael and I both said that if we had to live in Texas, Austin would be the place…

  2. Roz@weightingfor50

    Hi Lisa. Wow…Austin looks great!!! And how exciting is that “star spy”!!! Actually, it was a DOUBLE star spy! Have a great week.

    1. Lisa Eirene

      Yeah it was a double sighting! It was quite exciting. πŸ™‚

  3. Merind

    I live about an hour north and I long to live closer. Salt Lick also has great bbq. The Texas state history museum is pretty cool, but it does cost money. And Mount Bonnell is the place to see the skyline from.

    You’re probably already gone but in Waco there’s the Dr. Pepper museum, the Texas Ranger musem and a pretty good Zoo [Cameron Park Zoo].

    oh and for more on Johnson, there’s Johnson City, which is near Austin and has the Johnson family homestead and farm.

    And I’m jealous of the hobbit siting. I’ve never seen any celebrities.

    1. Lisa Eirene

      The plan was to see the Dr. Pepper Museum on our way to the ranch but we ran out of time. Next time!

      My aunt and uncle also ate at Salt Lick and recommended it. They said it was fantastic!

  4. kathy

    It seems as if we traded places- you gave me some great tips for my visit to Portland a few months ago! I hope you got here after it started to cool off a bit!

    I agree with Merind- Mount Bonnell is a must-see and a pretty good workout too! Not much of a mountain if you’re used to real mountains but whatever. Barton Springs Pool, the hike and bike trail at Lady Bird Lake, Blanton museum at UT, the Greenbelt- so many good things to see! Also you can take a tour of the UT tower for something like $7- great view of campus and downtown. The Alamo Drafthouse is a fun movie/dining experience that has a fairly extensive beer menu and good food. We have great restaurants but the place to go for BBQ is our neighbor to the the southeast- Lockhart. Don’t let the Shiner get you down- Real Ale, Independence and 512 are just a few Texas breweries with some excellent beers!

    OK end commercial for “come to Austin”!

    1. Lisa Eirene

      The weather was nice–hot but not humid. Thanks for the Austin tips. Michael and I are going to Texas next year for his sister’s wedding. I think we’ll extend our trip so we can check out Austin on our own time.

  5. Carrie

    I haven’t tried at Austin and seems it’s a cool place. Thank you for sharing because maybe next year Austin would be our top destination with my husband. Austin looks great and how exciting is that star spy.

    1. Lisa Eirene

      I would definitely go back to Austin. It seemed like such a cool city!

  6. hlk

    I’m so glad you liked Franklin, in spite of the ordeal of eating there, and the lack of fatty brisket & ribs. Bon Appetit recently named it the best barbecue in the world, and there was already a pretty good wait to eat there before that, so you can imagine. It doesn’t help that Aaron Franklin (serving up meat in the red shirt in your photo) cuts and serves while making small-talk with his patrons. He’s super nice, but the line moves so slowly and I kind of wish he’d just let other people do it instead. We actually haven’t been there in several months since the hour-plus-long wait in an uncovered parking lot just seemed too unbearable in the heat we’ve had this summer. But I can’t wait to go back soon!

    Tourists usually love Salt Lick, but I would recommend a trip to Lockhart, about 45 minutes from Austin, should you return to the area. There are three famous barbecue joints there (Smitty’s, Black’s, & Kreuz), all close together, so you can do one or two or all three of them in an afternoon. Better food and a more authentic Texas barbecue experience than Salt Lick, in my opinion. (Now that we have Franklin drives to Lockhart seem to happen much less frequently, but you could build a whole road trip around eating great barbecue in Central Texas if you wanted to.)

    I hope you can come back sometime when the weather’s a bit nicer and it’s not so dry and dead outside. We love living here and would love to hang out and show you around. You’ll probably see Elijah Wood again, too.

    1. hlk


      So sorry you got a Shiner. Shiner and Lone Star are definitely the Bud Light and the…other Bud Light of Texas. I won’t touch them. We’ll get much better local beer when you come back.

      1. Lisa Eirene

        I am SUCH a beer snob. I want the fancy IPA’s like I usually get in Portland. So yeah…..Texas’s version of Bud Light was not quite what I wanted. I definitely want to try the better local beers next time!

        1. hlk

          We don’t have near the density of craft breweries that Portland does, but there are several respectable Austin beermakers. I’m an IPA girl, too!

          1. Lisa Eirene

            I know that I am way spoiled here in Portland. I’ve traveled other places and the beer selection is pitiful. I wish I wasn’t a snob and could drink the non-IPA types…. πŸ™‚

    2. Lisa Eirene

      Heather- it was not an ordeal at all (for me at least). I wasn’t famished when we got in the line so it was pleasant. I chatted with a local girl in line with us and it was a fun experience! Plus Elijah and Dominic were there. πŸ™‚ That made the wait worth it. We did think the line was ridiculously slow but I guess that’s how they keep the hype up?

      My parents and my aunt and uncle went to Salt Lick in Lockhart and said it was really good. I wish we’d had more time to see Austin. There was so much I wanted to do but we just didn’t have time.

      Michael and I definitely want to come back. I would love to take you up on your offer for a tour of the hot spots! I would love to eat my way through Texas. πŸ˜€

      1. hlk

        Salt Lick is in Driftwood, but same difference if you aren’t from here; both about a 45 minute drive from Austin proper. You can also grab some Salt Lick at the airport when you’re passing through.

        So glad Elijah and Dominic were at Franklin when you were there. Made me feel better about sending you!

        1. hlk

          Off topic, I wonder what I did to get it to keep linking to that article about tablets when I post. How embarrassing.

          1. Lisa Eirene

            I’m not sure but I think it pulls from your last post. If there’s something more recent it should use that link……

        2. Lisa Eirene

          I was told the airport Salt Lick wasn’t as good. Is that true?

          Do they live in Austin and visit there often?

          1. hlk

            Yeah, it’s a more limited menu of stuff like chopped beef sandwiches. But honestly, I think the main draw of the restaurant in Driftwood is the atmosphere anyway. It’s big, rustic, outdoors in the country, and there’s frequently a band playing. The meat pit is impressive looking. Their sauce is also distinctive, but you can buy that just about anywhere around here. I feel the barbecue itself (and the espresso sauce!) at Franklin is much better.

            Elijah visits a lot. They were both in town this time for a super fun genre film festival called Fantastic Fest, which we were also attending. I think I saw them there every day, or nearly every day. Including a public debate between them about World of Warcraft, followed by a boxing match. Dominic kind of pummeled Elijah. It was cute.

            I just realized I could uncheck the option to show that story I shared from Google Reader in August somehow.

          2. Lisa Eirene

            I heard that the other place had a cool vibe. I’d definitely check it out. Michael and I are going to Dallas next year for his step-sister’s wedding. We were talking about extending our trip, renting a car in Dallas and driving to Austin. At least for a few days to check it out on our own.

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