We love the Workhorse Bar, let’s get that out of the way right now. Just sitting in the space brings back many, many pleasant memories of being falling down drunk and watching Scott H. Biram tear down the joint at his Monday night residency a million or so years ago when the building housed The Parlor.

Workhorse must have some serious brain power backing up the concept too. They’ve shoehorned a maddening amount of beer taps on a wall the size of a typical kitchen cabinet. And they’re not your typical bullshit draws that pollute most tap walls in Austin either. They went heavy Texas on the selection with all the local brewers from Adelbert to Live Oak to Real Ale. Not a dud in the bunch. But the food could use some work. The bacon hamburger arrives and is an insult to the noble hog. Two little shriveled-up pieces of belly straddle the beef patty like tiny, dessicated pig commas. With the resurgence, and easy availability of plump, insanely delicious cured hog at markets all over Austin, it’s sad that the bar can’t be troubled with a more thoughtful use of local resources.

The burger, ordered medium rare, comes medium well and is dry as dust. The beef has come from a well-tended steer and is good quality, but the cook has wrung out every ounce of flavor from the sandwich. A side of fries are the same old freezer bag version that 99% of Austin burger joints favor in lieu of using real potatoes. They get a pass in this department as the kitchen is the size of a phone booth and we doubt they have room for even one box of genuine potatoes.

The beers {Adelbert’s Triple B, Live Oak Pilz and Real Ale Devil’s Backbone} are ice cold, dirt cheap and delicious. Just like we like ’em.

Service is always amiable. The bar is always busy but the barkeeps could not be nicer and vend their goods with a smile. A rare trait in Austin where a cold brew is often hurled at the drinker with a snarl.

We fantasized about the burger during the run-up to the meal. A fat patty dripping with juice and a couple slabs of salty hog meat crowning the affair. Sadly we were denied this pleasure and were left with naught but a belly of craft beer and thoughts of what might have been.

more from our series on where to eat burgers in Austin, Texas http://www.scrumptiouschef.com/food/Best-Hamburger-In-Austin

hours ll am to midnight


(512) 323-5700

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