Music Issue - Finding a Place in the Music

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Music often plays a supporting role in many people’s lives, standing in when life gets tough, being a cheerleader during celebrations, or simply an accompanying companion through the mundane moments. But for these four artists, music has played a central role in their lives. Discover how each of them has found independence, a strong voice, and a sense of self through their solo music careers.

Publisher’s Note


A Patchwork of Memories

East Austin’s Rhapsody mural colorfully reflects the rich musical history behind the East 11th district.


Art+Entertainment Segregated by Design

How one local artist is shining a light on the origination of segregation.

37 Go+Do

What's New in 2020

Visit some of the newest businesses to open their doors in East Austin.


Home+Away Like Magic

Architect Nicole Blair doesn’t shy away from creating imaginative spaces out of her clients’ wildest dreams.



Taste the Rainbow

A fusion of cultures and cuisine influence the bright dishes at Vixen’s Wedding. Read more at

Feature: Solo




Rosewood Avenue Austin, Texas 78702

Publisher Nillo Studios, LLC Creative Director Will Bowling



Contributing Photographers Shelby Bella, Ashley Haguewood, Casey Woods, Will Bowling, Amanda Hartfield

Publishing Editor Ashley Bowling

Contributing Writers Jess Hagemann, Jessi Devenyns, Photo Editor Samantha VanDale, Jinky Romero, Eric Morales Katy Chadwell, Gigi Hernandez, Business Development Justin & Kayla Butts Brenna Parthemore Distribution Copy Editor Brian Phillips, Will Bowling Pam Bowen Submissions

Social & Events Sam Lauron


Austin Austin / Texas / Texas


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Editorial Team Sam Lauron, Alison Bryce

Tag @eastsideatxmag in your favorite East Austin photos and use the hashtag #EASTsideATX to be featured!

CONNECT WITH US eastsideatx eastsideatxmag We promise we read every single comment! Copyright Š 2016 Nillo Studios, LLC. EASTside Magazine is published by Nillo Studios, LLC. No portion may be reproduced without express written consent. Editorial or advertising does not constitute advice, but is rather considered informative. Expressed opinions are those of the author and do not necessarily reflect the views of ownership.

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Justine’s Brasserie Sous Chef, Taylor Chambers: is playing with fire and sharing his recipes

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Going on Five


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eastside | publisher's letter

3317 Manor Road/

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ur Music issue is always a special one to us because it marks new beginnings in so many ways. It’s a new year! That means it’s time to press the reset button, to evaluate what went well (and not so well) last year. It’s a time to press pause on some things and replay others. It’s also a time to celebrate a milestone because ‘The Music Issue’ is the topic that kickstarted EASTside Magazine five years ago. Through those years, we have stuck with the topic of music to start each year, unlike other issues that we’ve changed up to refine our groove and find what really works. The idea is similar to the artists in this fun issue. Through the process of researching and listening to some amazing music, we found four great artists who are paving their way through the Austin music scene. And through hard work, self-discovery, and talent, they are making their way into the national spotlight. We’re delighted they allowed us to tell their story and help spread their music as far as we possibly can. It is exciting how music is evolving faster each year. Looking back at our first ‘Sounds of East Music Issue’ to this current one, the stories are similar, but the process and the sounds have changed. It’s a better version of itself. With the first issue, we set out to support the local arts, musicians, and businesses. Over the past five years, that is something that has not changed. We always try to up our game every issue, so you might notice some redesign coming into play this year as we are adding new sections and refining. We look forward to growing and doing everything in our power to captivate our readers with inspiring photography and writing that is raw and honest, without agendas. We are your magazine, and we want you to be a part of it. So we welcome the feedback because we are fully aware that without our readers and partners, we would not exist. We sincerely hope you can begin this new year, reflecting on the past five, and find you are a better version of yourself—your work is a better version of itself. Cheers to resets. Cheers to improving upon the past. Cheers to celebrating more milestones. Cheers to you! Thanks for reading, Will & Ashley Bowling

On the cover, Austin School of Film allowed us to use one of thier rooms, and we did our first studio set up with lights and props. It was nice to have a space where we controlled the environment. Big THANKS to Eric Morales who shot the cover and all the feature photos and to the beautiful musicians who made it really hard to select a cover photo.

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eastside | local

A Patchwork of Memories

East Austin’s Rhapsody Mosaic Mural WORDS BY

Jessi Devenyns Will Bowling


It is said that a picture is worth a thousand words. But how many words is a mural worth if it is made up of hundreds of photos?

12 EASTside | Feb/Mar2020


till shots of saxophonists, snaps of jazz singers belting into corded microphones, and portraits of Blues Boy Hubbard in loud blazers strumming his guitar patterned the background idea for the Rhapsody mural on East 11th Street. This collage of images was captured by John Yancey, professor of studio art at the University of Texas and a long-time Austin resident. By interpreting the scenes portrayed in dozens of historic Eastside photos, Yancey was able to capture the essence that created the vibrant music scene of the mid20th century and consolidate decades of history into one mosaic masterpiece.

Eventually, the Chitlin’ Circuit faded into memory. However, before it was lost, Professor Yancey brought these moments back by cementing them forever in time. In 2003, he was commissioned by the Austin Revitalization Authority to help revitalize the district with a colorful patchwork of mosaics. At 50 feet long, this large-scale piece proudly displays musicians giving their all to surrender the moment to music and melody. Two saxophonists lean into their notes, one man plays a trumpet using all the stamina his lungs can power, and another woman croons into a microphone as she saunters across the stage in an emerald gown.

Previously home to venues like Charlie’s Playhouse, Victory Grill, and Deluxe Hotel, East 11th district gave rise to a rich history of music and community identity. Then, it nearly disappeared.

The mural is appropriately placed in the Charles E. Urdy Plaza. Charles Urdy was a frequent guest at the jazz nightclubs of yesteryear and was also one of the first African Americans to earn a PhD from UT and later served as a City Council member for five terms.

This once segregated outpost for African American musicians and clientele morphed over the years in an echo of the changes ushered in by integration. Clubs that used to be filled with neighbors who came to listen to homegrown jazz and blues were replaced by Westsiders and Austin’s elite who came to listen to acts like Louis Armstrong, Etta James, James Brown, and Billie Holiday. find more at

With vibrant tiles, the mural creates a visual link between the past and present of East Austin, vibrantly reminding those who pass it to never forget the roots of the community that gave birth to the streetscape that Austinites know today.



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Art+ entertainment

February +March 2020

16 print art


18 event calendar


20 camp guide


22 entertainment


eastside | art

“Local tattoo art shops influence our creativity process a lot because something that looks bold on your skin is most likely going to look good on a shirt.”

The True Process

In Screen Printing WORDS BY Gigi

Hernandez Morales


Fine Southern Gentlemen not only mastered the art of turning their passion into a money-making idea but also sprinkled it with Westernmeets-retro vibes and then put their spiffy logo on it which displays their detailed, yet candid, design sense. 16 EASTside | Feb/Mar2020


hirteen years ago, during a hot summer day in Texas, two best friends, Justin Weems and Tony Sanchez, unintentionally turned a music booking agency into a screen printing business. In between designing t-shirts for local bands and selling them to fund their booking business, then moving to Austin and buying their first press machine (which they fully operated from a home garage), they gave life to one of Austin’s most unique screen printing businesses: Fine Southern Gentlemen. While Fine Southern Gentlemen might have originated more as a subset of their lifestyle rather than a business idea, today it is a full designer-run screen printing business with a retail

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storefront. Located in East Austin with more than 18 employees, Fine Southern Gentlemen’s services include everything from screen printing, live printing, embroidery, paper goods, and design services. Their clientele group consists of an interesting combination ranging from big-name tech companies, to local restaurants such as Terry Black’s BBQ, to music bands and even independent clothing lines. Walking inside their storefront, one can’t help but immediately notice the edgy Western-yet-hip vibes stemming from their selection of vintage tees and other curiosities like Palo Santo bundles, all perfectly reflecting the ethos of modern day Austin. Fine Southern Gentlemen’s storefront boutique carries items from both their original line

Did You Know? In partnership with Hotel Vegas and Barracuda owners, Fine Southern Gentlemen recently opened Feels So Good Records. According to Justin, this “pseudo-record-label type of thing” houses a variety of oldschool country and rock-and-roll records along with a selection of records from local bands. 609 E 7th St. (Next to Barracuda) Tues-Sun 2-8pm.

2701 S.LAMAR

AUSTIN, TX 78704


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and retailers across the country, such as Western Darlin. Although there are a lot of other screen printing shops in Austin, Fine Southern Gentlemen manages to put the rad in local business in a very unique way. The weight of the brand rests not only in screen printing tees, but also in the role it has created for itself in the local community. “The printing process is probably the same, but our culture is different from everyone else in town,” Justin explains and goes on to add, we’re “more than screen printing, we use this space as an event venue and retail store. We help local bands print records, sell vintage items, host galleries, and help the local community [and] friends while keeping it all fun.”

As their lease on East 6th soon comes to an end, Fine Southern Gentlemen’s new location is yet to be determined. Justin smiles,“Finding an available space in Austin is hard enough; finding an affordable space is damn near impossible.” Until then, they will continue to look for a new and bigger shop, where they can continue to grow their business, particularly their storefront, with retail items from designers in both the local area and across the country.


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eastside | events




only will participants learn how to create their own sugar cookie masterpieces with royal icing, but they will also leave with a box of eight decorated cookies and a packet with sugar cookie and royal icing recipes. Tickets are $60 per person. | 709 E 6th St.


February 22, 6-11pm

OUTsider Fest

February 19-23, times vary

A Night with Janis Joplin

January 29-March 8, times vary Featuring a rock-fueled score and a live band to give tribute to one of the most magnetic performers, this electrifying musical keeps the audience entertained for nearly two hours. ZACH Theatre’s A Night with Janis Joplin showcases the Texas musical marvel and shines a spotlight on the trailblazing female blues and soul vocalists who influenced her musical career. Tickets start at $25. | 202 S Lamar Blvd.

Witness creativity intersecting with powerful commentary at OUTsider’s annual festival and conference at various locations around Austin, including East Austin’s VORTEX. This community-hosted LGBTQ+ festival features performances, art, music, and much more from local artists and academics. Discounted festival badges are on sale now for $69, or $25 for students. |

locations vary

BBQ Austin

Forget the fancy dinner and head to the drive-in this Valentine’s Day. Blue Starlite is hosting their 10th annual Valentines at the Drive-In. The night includes a car slot and popcorn for two, a box of movie theater candy, Valentine’s chocolates, and a rose. Can't make it on Valentine's Day? No problem! The Valentine's Day package will be available February 1-15. Tickets are $45 per vehicle.

Get a sneak peak into what Rodeo Austin will have during BBQ Austin. The two-day event will include a carnival, petting zoo, fireworks, and, of course, the BBQ Cook-Off. The Cook-Off includes teams from across Texas with elaborate rigs to prepare for the blind tasting. Admission is $8 for adults and $5 for children. Parking is $10.

March 6-7, 4-11pm Friday, 11am-11pm Saturday | 2103 E M Franklin Ave. 18 EASTside | Feb/Mar2020

Galentine’s Cookie Decorating February 13, 6-8pm

Spend the evening with your best gal pals at Easy Tiger’s Galentine’s Cookie Decorating workshop. Not

1500 E 4th St.

VEGANCHILL Fest February 23, 11am-5pm

Valentines at the Drive-In

February 14, times vary

Join fuseBox in the Electric Jello Jungle, a night filled with interactive installations, electric treats and sweet beats. Emcee Erica Nix will guide the crowd through an evening packed with performances including dance collective Frank Wo/Men and the electrifying energy of the queens of the unexpected House of Kenzo. Tickets start at $250. Proceeds from the night will help keep the annual Fusebox Festival a free event for the community. | | 9100 Decker Lake Rd.

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The biggest adult vegan party has arrived! VEGANCHILL Fest will have a plethora of favorite vegan food trucks and vendors as well as DJs and cold drinks. VIP ticket holders will also have access to a yoga class starting at 11am. The festival is 18+, and tickets start at $10. veganchill.

com | 979 Springdale Rd.

It’s My Park Day March 7, all day

Team up with thousands of volunteers around Austin for a day of park clean up and beautification. Choose one of the 85 locations around the city to work on projects ranging in difficulty and interests. It is free to volunteer; however, registration needs to be completed before the day of the event. |

locations vary

SEE THE EXHIBITION from sponsors. Registration starts at $30. |

6014 Techni Center Dr.

Drifters & Seekers: SXSW March 21, 5-10pm

Wrap up SXSW at The Buzz Mill with strong vibes of the southwest. With craft beer, local vendors, vegan food trucks, music, and even more on the agenda, locals and festival goers will have plenty of options to choose from in the outdoor space.

1505 Town Creek Dr.

Beer Run

ABC Kite Fest

March 29, 10am- 5pm Imaginations will be taking flight at the 91st ABC Kite Fest. Grab a friend or take on the challenge individually to create and enter contests such as the most unusual kite or largest kite. The festival is free to attend, but there will be concessions available for purchase. Proceeds will benefit the Moss Pieratt Foundation.

| 2100 Barton Springs

March 28, 11am-1pm Join Southern Heights Brewery and Texas Brewery Running Series for a race through East Austin. The 5K takes runners (and walkers) through the area surrounding Southern Heights and ends with a beer waiting for each person at the finish line along with live music and giveaways

E + E Fitness: 1 Year Anniversary Week

February 29-March 8, class times vary Celebrate E + E Fitness's one year anniversary with a full week of special events! All week, you can enjoy FREE intro kickboxing and bootcamp workshops created for all fitness levels. There will also be fun vendors daily and membership specials. Check out their website for more info, and get your sweat on! | 2400 E 6th St.



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Students will be taking a trip to The Future and learn about Robotics, Space Exploration, Future Tech and much more! Coding will also be part of the summer fun! Furthermore, we are developing a series of activities to highlight the Summer Olympics in Tokyo, Japan. And last but not least, the children will embark on multiple exciting Field Journeys each week to fun and educational locations around Austin! 1910 Justin Lane | (512) 459-0258 |


Camp Champions has created a tradition of excellence since 1967. With the facility and staff expected from a premier camp, Champions is distinguished by its developmental focus on building strong kids. We can’t wait to see you this summer! | (830) 598-2571 |


Our award-winning summer camps lay the foundation for students ages 7-17 to learn, connect, and create within film, animation, and creative technology. Over the course of two weeks, campers will explore the following subjects: filmmaking, video editing, motion graphics, after effects, animation, prop building, set design, and more. | (512) 236-8877 |

NEURON GARAGE AT 12 AUSTIN LOCATIONS At this Hands-On Building Camp, kids build with recycled materials to solve fun, weekly engineering challenges such as building a marble roller-coaster or fortifying cardboard castles against invasion. Through the process, campers practice and build creative thinking, collaboration, resilience, and the foundation for a vibrant future. Ages 5 -12. June 1-Aug. 15. Inquire for costs. $20 deposit/wk. Flexible Cancellation. 12 Austin Locations: Downtown, Hyde Park/Mueller, plus more (512) 593-5393

It’s Your Community.

Registration is now open for 2020 Winter/Spring workshops for adults and kids

Be a Part Of It.

Flatbed Open house: February 8, 1pm - 5pm Valentine Family Printfest: February 8, 11am - 1pm


Latinitas camps are where art, expression, technology and advocacy intersect. For any girl 9-14, camps explore subjects like filmmaking, podcasting and virtual reality through themes of leadership, entrepreneurialism and health with field trips to the city’s most fun tech companies. Latinitas also has camps for high school girls focused on coding. Register online today!

Come join our Community Shop! New Membership opportunites available!

Get all that is in this issue and more every day at Redux Print Exhibition: Opening reception February 22, 6 - 8pm (512) 900-0304

3701 Drossett Drive, Suite 190 - Austin, Texas - 78744

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eastside | entertainment

Segregated by Design An animated glimpse into a crucial part of history WORDS BY Sam




One local artist, Mark Lopez of Silkworm Studio, is on a mission to bring more awareness to the history behind segregation through his motion design short film.


native Austinite, Mark Lopez, began his motion design career in New York City. Motion design, as Mark puts it, is the creation of animated graphics for anything from films to commercials to brand videos. “It’s a lot of different things, especially now that screens are everywhere,” he explains. After several years of working alongside some of the most talented designers in the industry, Mark and his wife decided to make the move back to Austin to raise their family. Once here, he continued to freelance for motion studios in New York and LA, eventually founding his own studio, Silkworm Studio. In 2017, he decided to embark on a personal film project, something he didn’t feel he had the opportunity to do until moving to Austin. Mark initially thought he would make a short film about the history of racism in America, “starting from Native Americans to slavery and

all the way to the housing crisis,” he describes. During his research, however, he stumbled upon an NPR interview with Richard Rothstein, author of the book, The Color of Law: A Forgotten History of How our Government Segregated America. While listening to the author speak about segregation policies created by the government, Mark immediately began “imagining all the things he was saying in my head and how they would be visually represented.” Struck by what he heard, he knew that this topic had to be the subject of his film. Mark reached out to see if Richard would be open to working with him on the film, and to Mark’s surprise, the author agreed. Based on the 250-page book and narrated by Richard himself, Segregated by Design uses animations to visually represent the history of residential segregation in America that began in the 1920s. The seventeen-minute film specifically shines a light on how the government discriminated against African-American

families and used unconstitutional laws and policies to segregate every major metropolitan area in the country, Austin included. The project not only made an impact on Mark’s motion design career—the film was longer than anything he had done before and took him 15 months to direct, design, and produce—but also impacted his awareness and perspective on America’s history. He hopes that by watching the film, others will be informed the same way. “If people understand the history,” he says, “then hopefully that will cause us to act.” Mark also believes that because his medium appeals to a younger audience, the film can spur change in a more impressionable demographic: students. He wants to encourage school boards to include this critical part of history in their curriculum. “I feel confident that if I can [screen] the film in schools,” says Mark, “then kids will learn about this and the next generation could eventually change what’s been done.”

Contact: @silkwormstudio

Attend the Screening: Silkworm Studio will be screening Segregated by Design on March 5 at the For the City Center on St. John’s Ave. Following the screening, there will be a Q&A with The Color of Law author Richard Rothstein and filmmaker Mark Lopez, moderated by Dr. Richard J Reddick. The event is free to attend, but donations are welcome. 22 EASTside | Feb/Mar2020

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oLo Finding a Place in the Music

During life’s trying times, joyous occasions, or the mundane moments in between, music—lyrics and beats—write a story and often aid in navigating the journey. This is something these local musicians understand far too well. For these four soul, hip-hop and pop artists, drawing from honest stories and rich emotion to share powerful messages on the stage and in the studio has proven that the most captivating music comes from the heart. WORDS BY Sam


Lauron Morales




Don’t give into perceptions. Keep working hard and keep doing what you can.” - Reggie DeVore


was a whirlwind of a year, career-wise, for Reggie DeVore of BlackLight Hip Hop. Last November, Reggie was invited to perform as a special guest at OnePlus Music Festival in Mumbai, where he opened for Dua Lipa and Katy Perry. Just weeks later, he released his first solo album, King Vibez Only, with the leading track appropriately called “Greatest.” While these recent milestones are enough to fuel anyone’s ego, Reggie is refreshingly grounded and authentic. His lyrics are more of a mantra than they are a reflection of his laid-back demeanor. “The album is very cocky, but I’m not normally a cocky person,” he says with a smile. Reggie’s music career originated in humble beginnings. From being introduced to R&B and neo-soul at a young age to joining his church choir, music has always been a constant thread in his life. “I remember being so young and mesmerized,” he recalls of his earliest memories of watching artists like Michael Jackson and Kriss Kross perform on MTV. After joining band in high school, the Texas native discovered rap through musicians like Busta Rhymes and DMX which set into motion his interest in hip hop. While he continued to write poetry and refine his style throughout the years, it wasn’t until he finished serving in the Air Force that he considered a professional career in music. Reggie went on to attend school at The Recording Conservatory of Austin, where he learned the ins and outs of audio engineering. What followed was an internship at Matchbox Studios where he worked with platinum-selling

producer, Dwight Baker. The invaluable twoyear internship provided a solid foundation for his current career as an audio engineer and self-producing artist. Having the ability to understand both the creative and technical sides of making music is something Reggie doesn’t take for granted. “I feel like it gives me an edge for sure.” He adds, “when you want to be a star and you can’t afford to get your album produced, you better go learn it yourself.” His tenacity and work ethic have proven fruitful throughout his musical journey. In addition to performing and making his own music, Reggie has built a solid career producing music for other artists and bands. He’s also connected with OnePlus, a major phone company overseas, not only for the music festival appearance but also for a commercial in which his music was synced. But despite his recent international success and his impressive production history, it’s his hometown where he wants to make his mark. “I think Austin is the perfect proving ground,” he says. “It’s so hard here and there’s so much talent, but I like the challenge.” While the rapper doesn’t shy away from the honest truth in his music, having referenced depression and racial injustices in the past, his recent album reflects the stage in his career he’s currently experiencing and takes a more lifeaffirming direction. After his major year, one of his biggest takeaways is “don’t give in to perceptions,” he encourages. “Keep working hard, and keep doing what you can.”

The Fast Track The program at The Recording Conservatory of Austin (TRCoA) sets students up for a successful career in the production and business side of the music industry. Alumni of the program have gone on to work with an impressive roster of artists like One Republic, Gary Clark Jr., and Vance Joy, to name a few.

Community Over Competition In addition to performing and producing, Reggie is on the board for the Austin Hip Hop Awards. The annual event showcases emerging and pioneering rappers and hip hop artists through awards and live performances. As an underground artist himself, Reggie is deeply committed to supporting and giving back to the hip hop community.





rowing up in a musical family in the West Texas panhandle, Sydney Wright was basically destined to become a professional musician. She and her three sisters all learned how to play piano at a young age, and when she was 15, Sydney took up guitar. She became fully enthralled with the singer-songwriter lifestyle in high school when she got a taste of writing breakup songs for her friends. “I felt like I was being useful [to them],” she describes. “Singing and writing was therapeutic.” While pop is the foundation for much of Sydney’s music—having evolved from the country style she grew up with—she often layers her songs with “whatever flavor” she’s into at the moment thanks, in part, to a technique she uses called looping. Looping entails using loop pedals to piece together different instrumental and vocal tracks, some pre-recorded and some live, to build upon a song while performing it. While one track is playing a drumbeat, another could simultaneously be playing strings or chorus vocals, all while Sydney performs live. This technique has allowed her to create her own unique style and makes for a dynamic and captivating performance. “Because I do live looping, it’s like I’m producing on the fly all the time,” she says. “It’s made me understand what I feel musically and what sounds I like.”


In addition to playing live shows, Sydney has also found her place in the studio. In 2018, she released her first solo album, Seiche, which is a culmination of everything she’s experienced throughout her music career. The album includes 11 songs, which all take Sydney’s powerful, yet relatable, lyrics and pairs them with a range of pop harmonies, some even reflecting the style of her creative looping technique. Releasing an album is something Sydney says she would not have had the opportunity to do if she had not moved to the Live Music Capital of the World just a few years earlier. “Austin fosters the creative community and offers such great support for artists,” she says. The pop musician credits organizations like Black Fret for playing a central role in her career. At the end of 2019, Sydney was one of ten artists who received a major grant from the music non-profit. She plans to use the grant toward making more music videos and taking her entertaining one-woman show on the road. “I think it’s fun to travel solo, and I really like showing off looping,” she admits. Sydney hopes that being on the road more will give her an opportunity to bridge the gap between people through in-person performances. “I want to be able to connect to everybody on a different level.”

In the summer of 2018, Sydney was involved in a scooter hit and run accident that landed her in the hospital with several severe injuries. The accident may have temporarily slowed her down, but it didn’t stop her from making music, thanks to support from the non-profit, Health Alliance for Austin Musicians (HAAM), which provides musicians access to affordable health insurance.

I want my message to be relatable and allow me to connect with everybody on a different level.” - Sydney Wright


[Soul music] is something that always made me feel comfortable in my skin and in the world.” - Brian Scartocci

30 EASTside | Feb/Mar2020


Night W hile most of the world struggles to muster up any energy on a Monday, it's the night when Skylark Lounge comes alive, thanks to one musician. Gracing the stage at the beginning of every week with his vibrant energy and retro soul tunes is Brian Scartocci, or Mr. Monday Night as he’s known at the lounge. “Mondays are my favorite night of the week,” he smiles. A New Jersey native, Brian remembers being captured by soul music as a kid. He was so drawn to the harmonic tunes and fervent notes of soul that he even broke his parent’s record player one time trying to play The Drifters’ Golden Hits. It wasn’t until middle school, however, that Brian realized his own ability to write and sing soul. During what he describes as a “tough move,” performing music was the only way he felt like he could fit in at a new school. “[Soul music] is something that always made me feel comfortable in my skin and in the world,” he recalls. He continued to lean on music as he got older, eventually moving to Austin to raise a family and legitimize his career. For nearly ten years, Brian performed with local bands at venues like Skylark and Antone’s, and even made an appearance on The Voice in 2012. But, behind his spirited music style, the reality was that he felt defeated. After losing two jobs, a car, and finding himself alone, life in Austin wasn’t

BRIAN SCARTOCCI proving to be the joyous ride he had hoped it would be. He decided to take a step back and leave the city, with no plans on returning. “I understood Austin,” he says, “but I just didn’t understand where my place was in Austin.” Looking back, he credits Johnny La Touf, owner of Skylark Lounge, as being a catalyst in helping to restart his career. During Brian’s indefinite hiatus, Johnny would check in and eventually persuaded him to come back and play a Monday night set, a typically slow night for the lounge. Not one to give up on something, Brian decided to give music another shot, this time as a solo artist. “If I was going to come back and try it again,” he remembers, “I was going to do it with less compromise.” The recurring Monday night set gave him an opportunity to discover who he was and what he wanted out of his career. With rekindled motivation, Brian used the obstacles he overcame to fuel his energetic and heartfelt performances. After playing at Skylark Lounge every Monday night for the past two years, he’s successfully found his place in Austin’s music scene. Stepping away from music and returning with a renewed sense of self proved to be just the thing Brian needed to find his groove and embrace his experiences. “They gave me a garbage night, and I've turned it into something beautiful,” he remarks, “which is basically the story of my life.”

Full Circle Brian plans to release his first full length album this spring, and he hopes to have it available on vinyl records. The vintage-style album will have many of the “same elements as the Golden Drifters’ record I listened to all those years ago,” says Brian.




usician Sheridan Reed describes his style as a cross between soul, R&B, and pop. But, had you asked the singer-songwriter to describe which genre he fit into just five years ago, the answer would’ve been much different. From a young age, Sheridan involved himself with music through jazz choir and playing classical instruments like the clarinet and standup bass. Starting in his high school years, he began to lean toward the alternative rock and folk genres and, at different points, joined a rock band and even a pop punk band. Moving to the Capital City four years ago to fully focus on his music is what ultimately became the turning point for his style. Sheridan’s first entry into Austin’s music scene was playing ‘90s R&B with a soul funk group, an eye-opening experience for the Californian. “It wasn’t until I came to Austin that I even listened to funk, soul or R&B at all,” he admits. “But once here, that genre started influencing how I was listening to music and ended up affecting my writing.” While his soulful lyrics have remained a reflection of his personal experiences, the song progressions, melodies, and beats have evolved in a way that aligns more closely with his newfound musical style, with some songs even including trap and hiphop beats layered underneath. He credits discovering soul music, along with the help of his producer, Moses

32 EASTside | Feb/Mar2020


Elias, for refining his voice and helping him break through musical limitations he felt he had when singing rock and folk. “The last dozen songs are some of the best stuff I’ve written because [soul] made me realize not every moment of a song has to be jam packed,” he explains. “It’s okay for there to be room for the music to breathe.” Sheridan didn’t stumble upon this discovery overnight, though. It took a lot of trial and error, help from a production team, and selfreflection to lead him in this direction. After playing live shows in Austin nearly six nights a week, every week, Sheridan hit a point of burnout and decided to take a step back. He retreated to the studio to write music, experiment with new sounds, and challenge himself vocally. After the much-needed break, Sheridan is ready to fully embrace his new music style. “The first EP we released last year was kind of a step into the new genre,” he explains. “With the new music I’m releasing, it’s kind of like I’m putting both feet in.” With new singles in the works and his first official South by Southwest showcase lined up, the new year is already proving to be a period of revelation for the singer-songwriter. “At the end of 2020,” he grins, “I’ll have a much better idea of where I fit into the music scene here.”

20/20 Vision Sheridan has a lot of releases in the works for 2020. He plans on releasing several new singles and a couple music videos every month or so in order to build momentum. For emerging artists, he believes “the market is much more friendly towards singles” so he’s holding off on recording a full-length album this year.

[Soul] made me’s okay for there to be room for the music to breathe.” - Sheridan Reed

MUELLER MARKETPLACE A go-to source for making your way around the Mueller retail area B3FITNESS At B3Fitness, we believe that a strong community is the heart of any premium workout program. By combining weights, cardio, and dynamic stretching, our mission is to help you meet your goals and improve overall mobility, health and mindset. No matter your current level of athleticism, our programming and inimitable community is sure to bring a new level of physical and mental wellness to your life! We are proud to boast Mueller Lake Park as our home and primary current location, with members of our fit family coming from many different areas of Austin. A consistent schedule of morning and evening options five days a week sets us apart from



Whether you’re a child or still a child at heart, we want you to feel welcome at Toy Dojo! We’re a local, owner-run toy shop specializing in toys and collectibles from all across pop culture. We focus on bringing in the best toys from around the world. From Dragon Ball to Transformers and superheroes like Iron Man, we have a variety of joy-inducing nostalgia to browse and purchase. Stop by our shop in the Mueller neighborhood, just minutes from Downtown Austin, or check us out online. We offer FREE shipping on all domestic orders $150 or more.

Mantis Massage is a woman-owned and operated deep tissue clinic specializing in corrective therapeutic massage. There’s no cookie-cutter options here. Our therapists listen to what you want to focus on and customize every session to suit your individual needs. Whoever you are and whatever you do, you can use a massage to alleviate those aches and pains or to just bring relaxation to a stressful week. Lucky for you, we have twenty badass massage therapists invested in their client's well-being who will rehabilitate your muscular system by any means necessary.

You are unique, so is your gift.

CONTACT 2036 Robert Browning St. (206) 569-5139

CONTACT 3823 Airport Blvd., Suite A (512) 540-5827

CONTACT 4541 Ruiz Street (512) 937-3466

other outdoor bootcamps, with ample opportunities to get the most out of an unlimited-visit monthly membership. Free Saturday community workouts are also our favorite way to encourage the whole family to participate in a healthy activity together. For new clients, we are offering two weeks free in February when you enroll for a monthly membership. No contracts, no pushy sales tactics. Contact us to sign up and together we’ll B3 FIT and B3 HAPPY in 2020. CONTACT 4209 Airport Blvd (512) 277-4222

INO SCARF BOUTIQUE Ino scarf: an ageless gift, and a universal symbol of classic elegance. These beautifully handcrafted, unique Ino scarves add a character and a splash of color to whatever you are wearing, be it for a formal night out or a casual daytrip. Ino’s signature luxe gift wrap is part of the whole experience. We would love you to visit and delight yourself with a timeless gift of softness and elegance.

OM ORGANIZING Meet Karie. OM Organizing was born from her passion for order and design. She loves helping people achieve their organizing goals and discover life uncluttered! Getting organized doesn’t have to cost a fortune, but it does take time to change habits of mind that can lead to clutter and disorganization. So whether your goal is to create a Pinterest-worthy pantry, a system to manage paper clutter or control the playroom chaos, Karie can help create a solution that is both beautiful and functional. CONTACT karie_winfree@ (512) 656-6766

Book Your FREE Pilates Intro Class Now! Contact the studio for membership specials and promotions.


Plaza Saltillo: 1011 E 5th Street, Suite 130 | (512) 878-3271 |

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{the lyrical side of austin}


Pure. Plant. Perfumes. Period. (say that fast three times)

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for more info visit us at visit the perfumery at 1023 springdale rd. suite 9f or call us at 512-905-1606

World Interiors Fine Furniture


8219 Burleson Road, Ste. 500, Austin, TX 78744 @worldinteriors 36 EASTside | Feb/Mar2020

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Go+ do

February +March 2020

38 what's new


40 go& create


42 go&


eastside | go&do



2 0 2

Texas Gamers Lounge NOW OPEN

New Must Try Spots WORDS BY Sam


There’s always something new popping up on the Eastside, from restaurants to cafés to shops. Whether you’re looking for a new spot to frequent or want to support the ventures of fellow Eastsiders, these businesses are some of the latest to open their doors.

sources their teas from all over the world and also serves coffee and locally-made snacks. 1700 E 2nd St., Ste A |

Based in San Marcos, Texas Gamers Lounge opened an Austin outpost this November in the Cherrywood neighborhood. For just $9.99, visitors have unlimited access to a wide range of vintage and modern arcade games, from Pac-Man to Super Smash Bros. The lounge also hosts gaming events and tournaments for those looking for a challenge. 3411 N I-35 |

Moontower Cider

Taco Bronco

Famed barbecue truck Micklethwait Craft Meats is extending its culinary offerings with a new concept for 2020. Taco Bronco combines Austin’s two favorite food groups, tacos and barbecue, and offers a menu of smoked meat tacos and housemade hot sauce. The new food truck opened in January and is located in the backyard at Batch. 3220 Manor Rd. |


The community lamented the closing of The Hightower last September, but there was little time to grieve as the East 7th Street space quickly re-opened with a new concept: Troublemaker. The Hightower owners partnered with longtime Austin record store, End of an Ear, to create a unique bar and record store that offers drinks, California-style burritos, and records, all under one roof. 1209 E 7th St. |

Cup & Leaf

What began as a tea-focused blog, Cup & Leaf quietly opened a brick and mortar café in November. The move to open the shop came from owners Nat and Cosette Eliason’s goal of creating a space in which they could share their knowledge on tea. The intimate tea shop 38 EASTside | Feb/Mar2020

find more at

Established in 2017, Moontower Cider recently opened their very own tasting room on Tillery Street in December. The canned ciders are now available on tap in the low-key space that includes indoor and outdoor seating. Patrons can visit the tasting room to try one of their staple ciders like the Semi-Dry, which is made with bittersweet apples, or the Miel, made with honey wine and lemon. 1916 Tillery St. |

Monarch Liquor

For those in the Chestnut and Rosewood neighborhoods, there’s a new boutique liquor store to pop into after work or on the weekends. Monarch Liquor opened this month next to JuiceLand on MLK Boulevard. The small, neighborhood shop offers all of the essentials like select wines, craft beers, hand rolled cigars, spirits, and custom engravings on bottles for special occasions. 1902 E MLK Jr. Blvd. | @MonarchLiquor




Jowa is a curated shop of goods from South Korea that carries women’s contemporary clothing, shoes, and accessories. A recent transplant from San Antonio, owner Eunhwa Jung Schriver decided to move her boutique to Austin after participating in several successful pop up events here. The shop has carved out a spot in the shared East 5th space that also houses ARO Jewelry and eleMINT Skin. 906 E 5th St. |

OMG Squee

East Austin welcomed another bakery into town with the open-

ing of OMG Squee last November. The bakery, which is known for its animated, playful designs that often depict characters or pop culture icons (ahem, Lizzo), serves up its signature macaroons, Japanese jiggly cheesecakes, and Taiyaki ice cream out of their Bolm Road space it shares with Old Rail Coffee Pub. 4607 Bolm Rd. |

New location now open At parlor room 88 Rainey Street (512) 790-0093 @pokemelongtime

W ho Does Your Hair? CUTS + TREATMENTS + COLOR

Julie Myrtille Bakery

Get a taste of Paris at Julie Myrtille Bakery, which officially opened shop at the end of 2019. Located in the Springdale General complex, the bakery serves up Parisian-style treats, baked goods, and coffee under the helm of award-winning chef Julie Myrtille. The bakery built a dedicated following from their local farmer’s market presence, so the long awaited brick and mortar is a welcomed addition to East Austin’s scrumptious culinary scene. 1023 Springdale Rd. |

CHERRYWOODHAIRCO.COM SALON HOURS Tues-Fri 10am-8pm Saturday 9am-5pm Sun-Mon closed CONTACT US (512) 297-2022 | 3011 N. I35 Frontage Road PHOTO BY

Amanda Hartfield

{the lyrical side of austin}


eastside | go&do

Art That Unites

Consuming and Crafting Austin’s Art Scene WORDS BY


Samantha VanDale


Shelby Bella

While the rest of the world spent 2011 hash tagging “winning” and overusing Instagram filters, Faiza Kracheni was touring with her band and showing her artwork in festivals around the country. What she discovered was a slew of collaborative spaces, specifically designed for creatives, popping up all over and realized that Austin was missing out on an opportunity to add to its already radical artist network.

aiza came back to Austin invigorated and inspired to establish a space where musicians, filmmakers, and creatives could not only have access to low-cost education but also to the tools and equipment it takes to continue their craft. As director at Austin School of Film, she set out with executive director, Anne Goetzmann Kelley, to establish an artist run creative coworking space and birthed Austin Cinemaker’s Space under the umbrella of the Motion Media Arts Center.

Situated in East Austin, a 14,000 square foot industrial warehouse has been redeveloped for filmmakers, musicians, graphic designers, and anyone who falls into the creative industry to work on their projects and further add their narrative to the Austin arts community. Faiza and fellow woman behind the project, film-producer and educator Carrie Cates, explain the magic behind the massive space. Faiza smiles, “It was our mission to really expand Austin School of Film and create some new classes, but also more importantly, with creative space being very scarce in Austin, we wanted to create a place that was multi-disciplinary within all creative sectors to work, learn, create, [and] consume the arts.” 40 EASTside | Feb/Mar2020

find more at

Got Pain? 512-758-3498 | 2823 E. MARTIN LUTHER KING, JR. BLVD, SUITE 115

STOP WAITING. START HEALING. Call (512) 758-3498 Today Filmmakers wanting to expand their skills or rent equipment that would normally be outside of their budget can pay $30 a month for the lowest tier coworking fee, which includes discounts on over 500 yearround classes ranging from art, film, and animation to web design, graphic design, and even augmented reality. All of their instructors are industry professionals working to educate students on industry standards, protocols, new software, cameras, and all new ways of making films and art. Faiza reiterates how important it is to keep their instructors up to date “because [both] art and media arts are everevolving." Additionally, the Motion Media Arts Center works as a fiscal sponsor for artists looking for ways to secure funding for their projects or becoming a nonprofit themselves. Carrie mentions, “It’s incredibly expensive to start your own space right off the bat, so they use the shared space and have their shows here. Financially, it might make more sense for them to pay their artists and spend less on space.” Both women reiterate how their programs are low cost and are readily available to all Austin artists, no matter what their financial background may be. Faiza emphasizes, “The more people who know that we’re here and [that] they can

have access to education no matter their financial background—we give scholarships to all ages—the more diverse voices there will be in media arts and in turn, I hope, the power of the arts will unite us.” The Motion Media Arts Center and the Austin School of Film continue to curate collective efforts that push the boundary of blending art and technology within the Austin community. Faiza and Carrie detail some past exhibits they were really proud of—including the showcase of a fully recyclable tree, created by artist Heather Olson, whose 136 leaves were individually video-mapped to each play a different video during the East Austin Studio Tour 2019. 2020 not only brings a new semester filled with exciting and innovative courses but also their SXSW showcase. As an official SXSW event, they will be showing 25 films ranging from experimental and documentary to animation. Each project has been created by students from their various classes, which captures the diverse backgrounds and voices of Austin’s art scene.



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Fun for the Whole Family {the lyrical side of austin}


eastside | go&do


Nathaniel’s Master Hat Maker

Renowned hat maker Nathaniel Funmaker’s creations are custom, classic, and made with the highest quality materials out there. His selections come alive with Traditional West, Old West, and East/West transition styles. His hands-on approach on all his hats makes every piece personal and meticulously crafted. With over twenty years of experience, Funmaker has been named “Best Living Hat Maker” and is credited as the only Native American Master Hatter.

111 E 7th St. (in Georgetown) |





Places to Accessorize With a Strong Hat Game WORDS BY

Jinky Romero


Will Bowling

No matter the weather, it’s truly hat season year round in Austin. However, as the regular programming of sunshine moves closer, it's even more reason to select a new favorite headwear to welcome those rays. With an abundance of boutiques and specialty stores made for the Austin lifestyle, Eastside has some of the most stylish and versatile pickings around.


La Ropa

La Ropa’s carefully curated selection is a dynamic mix of rustic, comfortable, and grunge styles. From returning to style newsboy caps straight from a ‘90s red carpet finds to wide brimmed straw hats to complement the Sunday morning Farmers’ Market getup or those lazy lake days, La Ropa has it covered. They also host 7th Street Flea, a market that features different local artists and shops, that happens every second Saturday of the month.

2404 E. 7th St. | 42 EASTside | Feb/Mar2020


Blackfeather Vintage Works

Blackfeather Vintage Works’ colorful and eccentric vibe makes for some of the most fun and vibrant hat finds. From felt hats adorned with sequins, suede newsboy caps, to printed sun hats, there’s no look Blackfeather’s one-of-a-kind collection can’t spruce up. Shop these good finds on Thursdays to Saturdays from 12-6pm or stop by on one of their market days. 979 Springdale Rd., Ste. 98 |

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No matter if Western is your go-to look, or if you just want to spruce up your outfit with a sleek cowboy hat, Callahan’s is bound to have something that fits the style you’re after. The family-owned general store’s western wear collection boasts a high quality hat selection that comes in a range of classic solid hues to prints and from leading brands such as Stetson and Resistol.

501 S Hwy 183 |


Duck Camp

Duck Camp is an answer to the scarcity of high quality hunting clothing in the market. With a full selection of stylish, but functional, hunting gear from outerwear to accessories, Duck Camp’s hat collection is no different. It comes alive with their signature game bird and fishing series, which are adjustable snapbacks in vibrant colors that feature an embroidered game bird or fish on the front, or camouflage hats for when you’re in action.

1301 East Cesar Chavez St. |


Prisma Vintage

Vintage designer garbs are Prisma Vintage’s bread and butter. Recreate your favorite looks from the ‘50s to the ‘90s with this store’s collection of chic, stylish, and timeless clothing and accessories – including classic designer hats to finish up the look. While you can purchase some of their collections online, the shop is also open Thursday to Saturday to try on the looks for size. 1008 E 6th St. |

Happy Hour 3-7 PM Everyday





Nachos, Queso, & Guacamole

1511 E 6th St, 78702



ELEVATE + EVOLVE YOUR FITNESS {the lyrical side of austin}



Indoor/Outdoor Climate-Controlled Kennels Eight Large Play Yards Experienced and Dedicated Staff 512-928-2583 Conveniently located close to Austin Bergstrom Int’l Airport 7509 FM 969 (East MLK Blvd.) Austin, Texas 78724 @skyblueaustin





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• Water Solubles • Tinctures • Clearomizers

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and many other CBD products

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Home + away

February +March 2020

46 home


48 away


eastside | home

Like Magic Home Owners’ Imagination Brought to Life WORDS BY Jess PHOTOS BY

46 EASTside | Feb/Mar2020

Hagemann Casey Woods

Nicole Blair, licensed architect and the creative mind behind Studio 512, likens the process of collaborating with clients on their dream homes to divination. She’s not reading tea leaves or tarot, but she’s definitely getting inside their heads.


make a point to get to know my clients and what their tastes are,” Blair says. “I try to imagine myself as them. If they were an architect, what would they be designing for themselves in their wildest imagination?” What she’s going for is that magic moment when someone asks the client if they designed it themselves. “It often happens,” notes Blair, “that a client will speak of the design as their own vision or comment that I have good taste. That means I’ve done a good job understanding their taste and involving them as a partner in the design process.”

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One perfect example of her crafty ways is the East Austin Bungalow, finished ten years ago now for homeowners Erin Curtis and Aaron Dubrow. An artist and a UT employee respectively, Curtis and Dubrow not only had a singular vision for their home’s aesthetic, but as young newlyweds, they were also working on the budget of two twenty-somethings. As Blair explains, they’d already bought the property, complete with a 1400 square foot bungalow, when they reached out to her about planning the necessary renovations. Apart from a new metal roof, underpinning, and a fresh coat of paint, the

Angles, Lines, and Layers Blair first realized her passion for design as a student at Kealing Middle School, when a job fair vendor described architecture as “math for people who liked the arts.” Recognizing herself in that vocation, she interned at an architect’s office in high school, then attended Cornell University for Textiles and Apparel Design, before earning a master’s degree in Architecture from Rice University. Blair founded her architecture firm in 2004. Today, her fashion influences her architectural style, “playing with geometry” to create looks that meet the visions of her clients.

exterior was in fairly good shape; the inside, however, was a different story. “The house had great bones, but the floor plan was outdated and didn’t address their needs,” Blair says. Her clients wanted an open floor plan, more storage, space for laundry, books, and sewing, and a guest bedroom that didn’t yet exist. Blair’s challenge? To maximize the home’s design, while minimizing costs. As for Curtis and Dubrow, they kept busy building, sourcing, and staging the funky blend of vintage, upcycled, and meaningful modern pieces. Dubrow contracted the project himself, hiring

woodworker-friend Mike Phalan to complete the woodwork and framing. At Blair’s suggestion, they reclaimed the longleaf pine from the walls they’d opted to remove and used it to line a new upstairs loft space for that coveted guest bed, as well as wall-towall shelving. The doors from the closets they took out became patchwork stairsteps and the back of the kitchen peninsula. Ingeniously, a hidden washer and dryer are tucked inside that built-in bookcase! Curtis, meanwhile, rescued lights from Habitat ReStore and found appliances and a brand-new bathtub on Craigslist. Her husband then won a marble slab at a UT auction, around which Blair designed a long, slim bath vanity top. The end result is a place that feels warm and well-suited to the client: a win for the owners and also for architect-sorceress Blair, who thrives on “compact design and coming up with creative ways to use every inch of space.”


(512) 474-9733 Studio 512 1902 E 11th St.

{the lyrical side of austin}


eastside | away

some world-renowned powder.


A Week In


Land of the Rising Sun WORDS & PHOTOS BY

Jessi Devenyns

Much in the way a beautifully wrapped silk kimono unravels to reveal layered nuance in pattern and texture, a trip to Japan is a slow unfurling of preconceptions that give way to an intricate mosaic of culture. The wild variations in food, people, and terrain are enough to keep a traveler occupied for a lifetime.

Monday After landing early in the morning, hop onto a bullet train and head up north to Yamanouchi. Here the barrier between human and animal

blurs at the Iwatayama Monkey Park where macaque monkeys bathe in natural hot springs and wind their way through visitor’s legs. Back in the village, warm up with a plunge in a public onsen where

48 EASTside | Feb/Mar2020

bathers of all ages enjoy the shock of hot water mingling with cold air amid the beauty of snowcapped peaks.

Tuesday Today there is plenty of time for relaxing in the hot springs and savoring homemade udon noodles. Otherwise, more adventurous spirits can head up the mountain to the Ryuoo Ski Park and spend a day on the slopes enjoying

Did you know?

Grab an early morning train to Kyoto to arrive by lunch time. Then spend some time wandering around to see classic Buddhist temples, lusciously tended gardens, Shinto shrines and imperial palaces. Don’t miss the bold orange pillars of the Fushimi Inari Shrine before finishing the day with a zen-inducing matcha tea ceremony.

Thursday Enjoy a morning at the Nishiki Market where barrels and stalls are bursting with uncommon colors and ingredients. Pick up a few tantalizing treats and maybe even try a ramen breakfast. It will be welcome on the three-hour train ride to Tokyo.

Tokyo will be hosting the XXXII Olympic Summer Games from July 24 through August 9, 2020.

Friday Make the most out of a day in Tokyo. Wake up with an early walk among the stone bridges, wooded walkways and meandering streams of the 18th century Rikugi-en gardens. From there, take the metro to the Akihabara district where electronics, anime and manga reign supreme. After refueling for the evening with some ramen, make a beeline for Golden Gai. This neighborhood is a collection of micro-bars that all have a distinctly eccentric personality and serve up cocktails that are as imaginative as their décor.

Saturday Stroll al fresco through Shibuya Crossing, the world’s busiest intersection, and keep going un-

Travelers who plan to be in Japan at that time and visit Tokyo should book hotel rooms well in advance.

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til Harajuku. This quirky neighborhood is a pulsing hub of color, youth fashion, and cosplay. Squeezing through the tiny, people-lined streets will eventually lead to the Watari Museum of Contemporary Art, where cutting edge takes on a more sophisticated meaning. This district is also an opportune chance to sample a Japanese bakery. Later, spend the evening immersed in neon light in the Shinjuku or Roppongi entertainment districts.

Sunday On the last day, indulge in a traditional, savory Japanese breakfast. The unfamiliar combination of fish, miso, rice, and soup will permanently imprint the distinctive, but fond, memories of the country before the flight back home.

How to get around:

To travel conveniently and cheaply, book a Japan Rail Pass online or at a train station kiosk.

Our Difference is Brilliant! • Nationally Recognized Advanced Pre-K Readiness Program • Early Brain Development/Empathy based Curriculum • 20 State-of-the-Art Campuses

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Austin Native, Ranch Owner. ♥s Austin’s dedication to greenspaces LOVES ♥ Evangeline Cafe & Jack Allen’s in Oak Hill ♥ Walking Lady Bird Lake trails ♥ Backyard BBQs

SP (512)452.9296 3305 Northland Drive • Suite #515 Austin, TX 78731

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Springdale Creek 4926 Springdale Road Austin Tx 78702 Price range: $480s-660s


Springdale Creek is an intimate community of urban farm houses located 15 minutes from downtown Austin. 10 Minutes from the Austin airport 15 Minutes from downtown Austin 8 Foot Doors • Bosch Appliances Google Fiber Internet Ready Open Floor Plans • Wood Floors 12 Foot Ceilings • Approximately 1 mile from Mueller HEB • Urban Farmhouse Designs

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Juan Pablo Hisse (512) 640-9985 Juan Pablo Hisse Sales Consultant

• 1 Mile from Mueller HEB • 3 Miles from Downtown

• 15 min from Bergstrom International Airport • Easy access to 183

• Dog Park and community green spaces • Short walk to Walnut Creek

512-640-9985 4926 Springdale Rd. Austin, 78723

• 10 min Uber drive to Downtown • Google fiber

• Metal roofs

1520 OLIVER STREET, HOUSTON, TX 77007 | 713-961-3877 | INTOWN-HOMES.COM

• Urban Farmhouse Designs • 1 Mile from Mueller HEB • 3 Miles from Downtown • 15 min from Bergstrom International Airport • Easy access to 183 • Dog Park and community green spaces • Short walk to Walnut Creek • 10 min Uber drive to Downtown • Google fiber • Metal roofs


50 EASTside | Feb/Mar2020

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Sip+ taste

February +March 2020

52 taste feature


54 taste expert


56 dining guide


58 sip



eastside | taste

Taste the Rainbow

Vixen’s Wedding ties together cultures with a twist. WORDS BY

Jessi Devenyns



Despite oft intertwined associations of countries and cuisine, there was a time when there were no tomatoes in Italy, no chilies in India, and no potatoes in Ireland. Then, half a millennia ago, a small country changed the modern conception of world cuisine.


ortugal has had outsized influence on cuisine, according to Chef Todd Duplechan of Vixen’s Wedding, and the recurring traces of the country’s travels that traversed hemispheres and latitudes piqued his curiosity. However, it took years of scrapped concepts and a change in climate before this native Texan was able to open the doors to Vixen’s Wedding where he offers dishes that serve as an anthropological exploration in the evolution of flavors. Todd explains that “[Northern India] was gifted to the British by the Portuguese, but they kept [Goa] … where they remained there for 500 years.” Centuries of interchanging cultures had lasting influence on what is today considered Indian fare. Case in point is vindaloo sauce. “‘Vindaloo is a Portuguese name that's been taken and turned into an Indian word,” says Todd. The root ‘vin’ comes from the Latin word for wine and describes the wine-based braising method that is integral to the now familiar curry sauce. The fusion of cultures is what first intrigued Todd about Goan cuisine. However, replication of an established culinary tradition was not enough, so the chef incorporated one final ingredient to create a truly Texan concept: local produce. “So, you're not going to go to Goa and find dishes like you find on the menu here,” he clarifies. Instead, the southern, subtropical style food and Iberian peninsula spice is reinterpreted for Texan palates, which are primed for spices and acidity. “Because these are the foods you should be eating in a hot climate,” reasons Todd. “Not a lot of cream, not a lot of butter, but spicy, acidic, and citrusy. That kind of stuff makes sense with their weather.”

52 EASTside | Feb/Mar2020

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What’s in a Name? The name Vixen’s Wedding was inspired by a Portuguese parable where a fox and a wolf are married under a sun shower to illustrate how a seemingly unnatural pairing can find beauty through its union. Sun showers often bring along rainbows.

Evidence of the happy marriage between these three cultures arrives in a savory cauldron of steamed mussels. The salty brine of shellfish laps alongside chorizo in a curry broth that begs to be sopped up by one of the airy, heritage grain breads. Seafood once again makes a splash with the dashing presentation of a whole roasted fish. The spicy smokiness of the green curry sauce is reminiscent of barbecue, while the flaky white fish that is dotted with fronds of cilantro and lardo is a bow to fish tacos. The combination is at once as comforting as it is engaging for the taste buds. Perhaps the most noteworthy is also the most humble dish. Much like Texan cuisine has elevated corn and flank steak to be a signature of its culinary makeup, Vixen’s Wedding reimagines beets as a centerpiece dish. Called tortured beets – according to Todd “they kind of go through hell” when they are boiled in vinegar, smoked, and charred – these red gems are scented with curry leaf aioli and accompanied by a lentil dosa bread. The medieval nomenclature used in the description of the dish belies the subtle result that touches all six taste sensations simultaneously. The array of ingredients at Vixen’s Wedding is meant to be both an invitation to a new culture and a reintroduction to the one that created Austin’s cuisine. The menu also includes vindaloo ribs and coconut salad which are in many ways reminiscent of the familiar ribs and coleslaw. Similarly, chaat fried green tomatoes are an elevated version of a summertime favorite. It all makes sense; it just takes that first bite.


(737) 242-7555 1813 A E 6th St. @vixensweddingatx {the lyrical side of austin}


eastside | taste expert

Don’t Lament, Ferment

Kimchi, Kombucha, & Yogurt WORDS BY

Justin Butts RECIPE BY Kayla Butts Benavides


Good Bacteria = Gut Health = Happiness It is critical to our health, and therefore happiness, to understand the role of good bacteria in gut health.


ver 70% of the cells responsible for our immune system reside in our gut. In the recent flu epidemic, many people learned first-hand the importance of gut health when antibiotics destroyed the good bacteria in their gut. These poor people suffered stomach misery on top of their flu. When taking antibiotics, it is especially important to maintain your gut health with infusions of good bacteria. Fortunately, you can build and sustain robust gut health with these simple, nutritious recipes, and here is the shocker of all shockers. These dishes are delicious! Yogurt, one of the miracle foods of human history, was discovered by accident around ten thousand years ago when a bowl of warm milk encountered a wild strain of Lactobacilli. The good bacteria transformed the lactose of milk into the lactic acid of yogurt, which made it possible for lactose intolerant humans to consume. It is also richer in protein than milk and can be stored longer. Yogurt was a step forward in the advancement of mankind.

Homemade yogurt is rich, creamy, and incredibly delicious. Our little girls love their yogurt sweetened with local honey, blueberries, dried fruit, and granola. We use raw milk from grass-fed cows because it contains a higher concentration of good bacteria, healthy linoleic acid, and a higher percentage of vitamins and minerals than pasteurized, grain-fed milk. Use a thermometer to monitor the temperature of the milk while it cooks. If the milk gets too hot, the yogurt will fail to set and, instead, will end up curds and whey. While the yogurt recipe is simple, this kimchi recipe is packed with colors and flavors. It is not too hot, not too sour, but well-balanced, crisp, and delightful. Kimchi is low in calories, fat, and sugar, but high in vitamins A and C, thiamine, riboflavin, iron, calcium, selenium, and fiber. Kimchi is also a good source of essential amino acids as well as capsaicin, chlorophyll, carotenoids, and flavonoids. Some studies have shown that fermented cabbage may even help prevent the growth of cancer. Last but not least, Kombucha, a fermented tea, will add an effervescent kick to your day. And it is the easiest and sweetest way to consume good bacteria. To make kombucha, find SCOBY (symbiotic culture of bacteria and yeast) from a local vendor who prepares kombucha in house or from Austin Homebrew Supply. Let’s face it, gut health is not an appetizing subject. But these recipes will not disappoint with their bold and healthy flavors. 54 EASTside | Feb/Mar2020

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Kimchi Prep time: 30 minutes Inactive prep time: 2-5 days Ingredients: 1 head (2-3lbs) Napa cabbage, cut into 1” chunks ½ c. salt ½ lb. radishes, cut into matchsticks 4 carrots, peeled and cut into matchsticks ¼ c. gochugaru (Asian chili) 1 bunch (about 4-6 whole) scallions, cut into 1” pieces 2 T. garlic, minced 1 T. ginger, grated 1 t. sugar Directions: Wash cabbage well and place in a large bowl. Add salt and enough water to submerge cabbage in bowl. Let sit for 1-2 hours. Then rinse cabbage and drain in colander. Return cabbage to bowl and add remaining ingredients. Stir well until ingredients are all well-incorporated. Spoon mixture into clean, sterile canning jars and pack kimchi down to remove air. Place lids on jars, and store in a cool, dry place for 2-5 days.

Kombucha Cook time: 20 minutes Prep time: <5 minutes Inactive prep time: about 7-10 days Ingredients: 1 gallon distilled, spring, or drinking water (free of added minerals) 1 ¼ c. white granulated sugar 10 bags black tea, green tea, oolong, or jasmine tea 2 c. fermented kombucha with live cultures SCOBY (symbiotic culture of bacteria and yeast) Optional Ingredients: 2 c. fresh fruit 2” thumb of ginger 2 pieces lemongrass {the lyrical side of austin}

Directions: Put water in a large pot over high heat until boiling. Remove from heat, and stir in sugar until dissolved. Place tea bags in sugar water and let steep for 3-5 hours, until water has cooled. Add kombucha to tea and stir. Pour tea into clean, sterile bottles and add optional flavorings (if desired). Cover bottles with cheese cloth, paper towel, or tea towel and secure with a rubber band. Let sit at room temperature for 7-10 days before opening. Once opened, store kombucha in the refrigerator. Warning: Do not shake kombucha to prevent spilling over.

Yogurt Cook time: 15 minutes Inactive prep time: 5-24 hours Ingredients: 1 quart high-quality whole milk (recommend raw milk from pastured, grass-fed cows) 5 grams yogurt starter, or 3 T. high-quality, plain yogurt with active cultures Directions: Pour a small amount (~1 tablespoon) of cold water into medium-sized pot. Add milk and heat over medium heat until about 180°F. Remove pot from heat and let cool to about 110°F-120°F. Add yogurt starter to warm milk, and stir gently until well incorporated. If using yogurt, stir yogurt into 1 cup milk and add to the rest. Pour into sterile jars and place into a yogurt maker, dehydrator, or in the oven at its lowest setting. Incubate for up to 24 hours, or until desired consistency is reached. Secure lid onto jars and refrigerate. Will keep refrigerated for two weeks.



Pick 20


eastside dining guide Hummus Amongus

Arriving via a twisted trajectory through Israel, Spain, and NYC, Berty Richter landed with an inkling that Austinites needed real hummus in their lives. With Turkish and Israeli roots, his fresh-to-order hummus is bold and daring with just the right amount of spice. 1906 E Cesar Chavez St.

Artessano Eden East

Under the wizened oak trees of a 4-acre farm is an unmarked trailer whose plain façade belies hyper-seasonal, farmto-table dishes. Whether it’s a farmfresh breakfast on market days or a sitdown prix fixe dinner under the stars, Eden East reinvents the idea of eating local. Be sure to visit during their a-la-carte nights on Thursday evenings. 755 Springdale Rd. |

S-H Donuts

This unassuming store-front houses an outstanding array of donuts, kolaches, and breakfast croissants. Even if the food wasn’t enough, owners Sochea and Sarong make the trip to S-H worth it every time. 5313 Manor Rd.

Disrupting the fast food industry one sandwich at a time, Flyrite is a drive-thru with all-natural, antibiotic-free chicken as well as gluten-free and vegetarian options. 2129 E 7th St. |

Hillside Farmacy Intero Restorante

Intero, meaning “whole,” is dedicated to the thoughtful use of every ingredient in their dishes. Homemade pastas, farm-totable plates, and artisan chocolates make up their bold, yet intimate, Italian menu. 2612 E Cesar Chavez St. |

A happy place where breakfast is served all day. Of course, you can also get lunch, but why would you when you can have chilaquiles, huevos rancheros, and authentic breakfast tacos at 8PM? 3124 Manor Rd. 56 EASTside | Feb/Mar2020

In an out-of-the-way shopping center is one of the freshest Asian food options around. Sip on one of their fine teas as you build your lunch – Nancy’s operates on a build your own bowl ethos. With no red meat or pork on the menu, it’s the perfect option for a lunch that is light but filling. 6448 Hwy. 290 E. #A100 |

The fresh tropical fruit juice and the arepas are why you need to visit Artessano. As a food trailer specializing in Colombian food, expect dance music and lots of friendly conversation when you visit. 1211 E 6th St.

Flyrite Chicken

La Fruta Feliz

Nancy’s Sky Garden

El Sunzal

El Sunzal is a quintessential hole-in-thewall that makes up for its bare-bones appearance with its exceptional El Salvadorian fare. Make sure to sample the fried yucca, seafood soup, and the pupusas. 642 Calles St.

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Something about Hillside Farmacy’s happy hour oysters, weekend brunches, and dinner cocktails just make you feel better. Perhaps that's due to its historical location in the lovingly renovated 1950s Hillside Drugstore. Or perhaps it’s because the fresh, carefully selected seasonal food that comes from local farms and onto your plate is just good medicine. 1209 E 11th St. |

eastside | dining guide

Mum Foods

This local shop serves up deli-style sandwiches and is most known for their pastrami. Be sure to try The Original, which is made with hot pastrami, house mustard and served on sourdough from Swedish Hill Bakery. 2113 Manor Rd. |

Xian Sushi & Noodle

Fresh, hand-pulled noodles are the star of the show at Xian. Enjoy a bowl of Chicken and Vegetable Stir Fry or the Dan Dan where noodles are pulled to guest’s preferred thickness then drenched in authentic Asian flavors. Visit for happy hour to enjoy their $5 menu. 1801 E 51st St., Ste. C370 |

Sour Duck Market

An offshoot of Odd Duck, Sour Duck Market is bringing the same custom approach to the fast-casual dining scene. With a menu packed with local flavors, Sour Duck so deliciously captures the spirit of Austin. 1814 E MLK Jr. Blvd. |

Come for brunch, come for happy hour, come for a good time. Whether you’re on the shaded patio or inside at the bar, the food is always good, and the drinks are always cold at Yellow Jacket Social Club. Plus, this is a pet-friendly establishment. 1704 E 5th St. |

Cherrywood Coffeehouse

With an expansive patio and a continual rotation of events, you’ll find yourself frequenting for the community as often as food, which is an inviting array of tacos, salads, sandwiches, burgers, and smoothies. 1400 E 38th 1/2 St. |

Micklethwait Craft Meats Oddwood Ales

Designed as a cozy neighborhood pub, Oddwood Ales provides a variety of flavorful ales, home-made pizzas, and Italian dishes in a relaxed atmosphere with arcade games and a pet-friendly patio. 3108 Manor Rd. | WORDS BY

This Southern-inspired menu features family-raised beef that comes directly from the Jacoby Ranch, served with heaping sides of veggies to match its freshness. Enjoy their signature chicken fried steak or a juicy burger on their cozy patio overlooking the Colorado River. 3235 E Cesar Chavez St. |

Yellow Jacket Social Club

Roland’s Soul Food & Fish The soul food cooked within this bright orange building is made with such heart that it is overflowing with flavor. Ask any soul food lover and they will tell you each piece of battered fish and every bite of your smothered pork chop are both a mouthful of comfort. Come hungry; Roland’s doesn’t skimp on portions. 1311 Chestnut Ave.


Vixen’s Wedding

The heady mixture of Portuguese and Goan flavors immerse diners in a cloud of spice and sensation at Vixen’s Wedding. Opened by the husband-and-wife team behind Lenoir, the intense flavors in each dish demand attention. Land and sea unfold amid the scents of tamarind, cilantro, aioli, curry, and coconut that intimately blend the flavors of East and West. 1813 E 6th St. |

Although known for their beef ribs and brisket, if you’re headed to Micklethwait’s, you can’t forget about the sides. Your meal won’t be the same without a scoop of the jalapeño cheese grits or lemon poppy seed coleslaw. 1309 Rosewood Ave. |

Jessica Devenyns {the lyrical side of austin}


eastside | sip

Mixing Flavors

“100% Science & 100% Magic” WORDS BY PHOTOS BY

Alison Bryce Shelby Bella

Inspiration for a business can come from anywhere. For Andrew Sabola, the details of Gelateria Gemelli started forming while visiting Italy with his best friend. What once started as a random idea during a friend's trip to Europe that then drifted into a gelato class in Bologna, Italy, has become a storefront on East 6th which will celebrate five years in March.


he name Gemelli was one of the first decisions the friends made when conceptualizing. Since they're both Geminis, the name seemed like a perfect fit. After completing a course on how to make gelato the old fashion way, Sabola returned to Austin where he proceeded to mix hundreds of drinks until he mastered flavor pallets and combinations the locals would enjoy. “Texas is not Italy,” Andrew emphasizes. “So the things that work [in Italy] don’t necessarily work here.” East Austin was an easy decision for the home of Gemelli because of its proximity to his community. Not only was living and doing business here important, but remembering the history and giving back to the community was also the desire as Andrew embarked on his endeavor. From the time the shop opened, Andrew has been fervent in donating to nearby schools and support-

You’re Invited!

One of Gemelli’s favorite ways to get to know the community is through special events.

58 EASTside | Feb/Mar2020

ing the local LGBTQ community. With the help of General Manager Josh Cates and Food Scientist AnneLise Emig, Andrew and his team have led Gemelli into more than just a place to grab dessert. They have created a full lineup of flavors so that everyone can find something that keeps them coming back for more. Gemelli’s menu was always intended to showcase more than just gelato, even though that’s where it started. Guests are able to enjoy a variety of cocktails and Amaro as well as choose from a variety of sorbets. Before any drink is added to the menu, the staff works to make each sip a perfect combination of flavors. The creation process is “really 100% science and 100% magic,” shares AnneLise. “It’s amazing when you finally find the perfect combination.” Sipping a White Negroni while enjoying a scoop of sorbet is the best pick-me-up after work. Not only

On February 14, they're hosting a Valentine’s Day party, Love and Bitterness. The night will consist of an Amaro tasting and dessert

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does it appeal to the senses with its beauty, topped with an orange peel, the fizzy drink also plays off a traditional Negroni by connecting the sweet and bitter flavors of Austin Gin and Lillet Blanc. With warm flavors easily enjoyed on a cooler night, Affogato is the go-to drink. Affogato means “drowned” in Italian. It consists of a scoop of gelato, traditionally served with espresso over the top. However, the team at Gemelli’s adds a boozy extra, taking it to the next level. Instead of just espresso and a scoop of creamy olive oil gelato, a shot of Braulio, a sprucey amaro from Northern Italy, is added. The espresso with a hint of vanilla plus an earthy liquor makes for an easy drink on chilly evenings or a perfect afternoon treat. Between the drinks, gelato, and the welcoming aesthetic, Gemelli has created a space in the middle of Austin where everyone is accepted, and flavors are layered and plentiful.

pairing where guests will learn about authentic flavors, specialty drinks, and scrumptious snacks that Gemelli makes from scratch.


(512) 535-2170 1009 E 6th St. @gelateriagemelli

Downtown Locations: (512) 981-MODS 1901 E 7th St. (512) 905-8472 513 E 6th St.

north Location: (512) 953-SKIN 9112 ANDErSON MIll rD. StE. A500


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May 2nd 2020 {the lyrical side of austin}