This month, we’re spotlighting the East Riverside-Oltorf Neighborhood of Austin, Texas. This week, we’ll sample some of the dining, entertainment, and shopping options in this neighborhood just south of Lady Bird Lake.
Emo’s, the iconic Austin music venue, recently shuttered its 6th Street Location and moved to Riverside Drive, taking over the old location of the Backroom, a defunct heavy metal club. Emo’s East, as this new location is called, is located at the corner of Riverside and Burton, and continues to rock with alternative acts both local and touring. Plus the occasional odd ball show like Geto Boys, the infamous 90’s rappers from Houston.
Antone’s, has been an iconic music venue since 1975. It just moved to East Riverside from 5th and Lavaca and occupies the space on the other end of the strip mall from Emo’s that was formerly home to the Beauty Ballroom. Antone’s is all ages and plays host to loads of great acts, from Marcia Ball and Lavelle White, to touring bands like Hanson.
Another new edition to Riverside’s amazing transformation from gritty hood rat to glittering hipster prom queen, is The Buzz Mill. This coffee house and bar is open 24 hours a day, 7 days a week, AND featusre a huge patio where you can buy pancakes and barbecue! Did you even know those foods went together? Well this is Texas, barbecue goes with everything! The Buzz Mill is right across Riverside from Emo’s, on Town Creek Drive, chilling in the shadow of the scores of brand new apartments going up.
If tacos are more your speed, well have you come to the right place! East Riverside and Oltorf are a taco-lover’s dream, with more taco trailers serving authentic, cheap Mexican food than you can shake a tamale at. Rico’s Tacos, located in the parking lot of the Oltorf Food Mart at the corner of East Oltorf and Douglas, serves delicious super cheap tacos with a smile. Check out their breakfast tacos for just $1.00 or $1.50 for you late risers (after 11am).
Looking for a grocery store shopping experience that’s a touch exotic? HEB Riverside has an aquas fresca stand in the store, a meat area that’s modeled on a Spanish carnicería (meat market), and of course all the usual stuff you’d expect from an HEB. It’s also an HEB Plus, so you can buy dog beds, baby clothes, furniture, and all kinds of assorted treasures you usually don’t find at your local grocery store.
To keep in shape, the East Riverside-Oltorf Neighborhood offers the Hike and Bike Trail along Lady Bird Lake, which will soon be connected to the west side of the trail without leaving the shore via the amazing boardwalk, currently being built. Paddle Zen is located behind Amli South Shore on Lake Bird Lake and offers stand up paddle boarding, so you can experience the beauty of the lake while keeping in shape!