Fonda San Miguel, an Old World Hacienda in Austin

It’s been a difficult month for us—having gone through the stress of dealing with some health issues, the shock of my father-in-law passing a few weeks ago while we were on vacation in New York, and for missing our older son, Joshua, terribly who is currently away for a Debate Camp at the University of Texas at Austin. With all that, I haven’t had enough time (or energy) to plan a party for Keith’s 50th birthday.

For the Fourth of July, Joshua had a free day from his Debate camp. We decided to drive to Austin to see him and also to start celebrating Keith’s birthday. Since time and (a ton of) money are two luxuries we don’t have at the moment, I came up with the idea of taking him “around the world” – that is, eating different cuisines at several restaurants. First stop is Mexico at Fonda San Miguel.

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This place is tucked away in a residential area in Austin. The restaurant is reminiscent of a Mexican hacienda- colorful and vibrant, with interesting artwork hung on the walls, definitely full of character and charm. Inside the main dining room is a center table that has a display of different terracota clay pots and Mexican potteries. (I also noticed that several of the waiters are very handsome. If only I could’ve taken a picture of ours 😄). Moving along, I would give the food a B. I had the Pescado Veracruzano, broiled fish filet in the traditional Vera Cruz tomato sauce with capers, onions, and Spanish olives. The fish was delicious but I didn’t see much of the capers and olives. Instead it was topped with a lot of onions (and I hate onions). Keith got the Cochinita Pibil, a Yucatan specialty baked in banana leaves. I tasted it and it was delicious. Perhaps the best Cochinita Pibil I have had so far.

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My plan for the second stop is Brazil (churrasco) but since we are still in Austin, and Joshua doesn’t like eating a lot of meat, so we may just opt for Thai food instead. Perhaps we will do Brazilian when we go back to Dallas. All I know is we will end up in Hawaii (Roy’s) on his actual birthday because he originally planned to spend his 50th in Hawaii. I’m hoping in spite of the lack of a grand trip for this special milestone, I can make it up to him through his palate and still make it a memorable birthday celebration.

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