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Best Food Innovations in Austin for 2022 Into 2023

Towards the end of 2022, Eater asked a trusted group of friends, industry insiders and local bloggers to share their thoughts on last year’s culinary experience in Austin. All answers will be published before the year is over — cut and pasted, (mostly) unedited, in no particular order. Question number 9:

Were any new innovative ideas born this year that you hope will last until 2023?

Editor-in-Chief Chris Hughes austin monthly
A place that touches multiple passions, including Vintage Books and Wine Bar. A bookstore/wine shop? Give me more of such singular visions.

Melanie Haupt, food editor, austin chronicle
Although it’s been around since late 2020, Too Good To Go seems to be a fairly accessible way to get restaurant meals for cheap this year while also helping reduce food waste. It can be crap at times in terms of what food you get and in what form you get it, but I think it’s a great way to address two different issues at once.

Renee Dewi @eats_n_noods and Eater Contributing Writer
I will continue to use ideas we have tried to organize and help businesses and communities come together, such as non-profit fundraising efforts.

Jane Ko, Blogger, taste of coco
The rise of new food trucks serving really good food — La Santa Barbacha, Ensenada, Pinches Tacos, Oye Chico [Ed. note: Oye Chico has since closed]I’m looking forward to seeing more new food trucks in Austin.

Pat Sharpe, Executive Editor and Food Writer texas monthly
Nice to see restaurants charge a “health and wellness” fee and add a mandatory service charge in order to pay all their employees a reasonable wage and provide health insurance. Birdie’s is one of his exploring this option, and there are others. A restaurant is a place where we go to celebrate happy occasions in our lives. We should be willing to pay people to make it possible.

Darcie Duttweiler, Freelance Writer, Eater Contributing Writer
I appreciate a chef’s tasting menu that allows me to best enjoy what the chef wants to share with me (and not have to make too many decisions). It’s not necessarily new or innovative, but it’s great to see people in this town implement their ideas and make them their own.

Erin Russell, Deputy Editor of Eater Austin
Thank goodness for restaurants that put a lot of effort into making great mocktails—you can’t make a mocktail by mixing lots of fruit juices together!

Eater Austin editor Nadia Chowdhury
Chefs taking on challenges and doing their own thing is nothing new in Austin, but it’s been on the rise this year, and we’re hoping this continues in 2023.