This is where the true believers go to get real deal Mexican and Tex Mex food. There simply are not a lot of restaurants in Austin Texas that offer reputable versions of both styles. Apparently it’s hard to have accurate renditions of both cuisines coming from the same kitchen. We recognize a know nothing when they poor mouth our beloved Tex Mex. It’s fashionable to put the mean mouth on Tex Mex by people who mistake Old El Paso tv dinners for the luscious, carefully rendered style that sprang out of South Texas a hundred or so years ago.

We quote Robb Walsh in an exchange he had on a food forum.

“This is what I see Tex-Mex as – simplified Mexican peasant cooking. Not simplified as in ‘dumbed down’, but simplified as in using the ingredients available to you to try to approximate a simple meal you would have made back home…plus, as in most immigrant cultures, cooking is the one thing that somebody surely knows how to do that is marketable… their food becomes barter and these dishes later become “commercialized” – – that is, the ingredients are suited to fit the taste of the customers or reflect local availability…maybe in this way a cuisine is born.”

And a cuisine it is.

If you need a good example roll by Habanero Mexican Cafe and order a Zach Attack. While you sit back and wait for your deep fried 4 or so pound burrito, power through a bowl of queso and fiery salsa and cool the fire with a side of creamy, bright green guacamole.

The joint will most likely be hopping and the mood can veer towards joyous. If you’re a sourpuss you will not like Habanero.

This restaurant is a linear descendant of the old Austin icon; Dos Hermanos. It not only sits inside the old Dos Hermanos building but the owner shares the bloodline of the family that started Dos Hermanos decades ago.

All that’s well and good but we go to Habanero for the divine food. It’s one of the finest Mexican cafes in Austin Texas.

501 W Oltorf St

Austin, TX


(512) 416-0443

Mon-Sun 7 am – 3 pm

Tue-Thu 7 am – 5 pm

Fri-Sat 7 am – 9 pm

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