Austin >Food & Dining > Texas Chili Parlor
1409 Lavaca St, Austin, TX | Directions 7870130.277088 -97.741963
Monday To Sunday From 11:00 AM To 02:00 AM
Whether for a pre-Longhorn football game warm up or post work libations, the legendary Texas Chili Parlor is one of my favorite stomping grounds in the Capitol City. The casual, raucous bar always attracts an eclectic crowd, thanks to its drinks that are heavy on the pour and light on the wallet. While the rum-rich ‘Magnums’ and citrusy margaritas are quite tasty, my money order is always a Drew Drink. Consisting of two shots of vodka, a little soda, splash of cranberry, squeeze of lime, and served tall over plenty of ice, a Drew Drink is guaranteed to ensure the happiest of happy hours.
If you're looking to live life Tarantino-style, then Texas Chili Parlor is a must! This sticky and crusty old-school joint was made famous by the ADD-riddled director's Death Proof, but continues to delight fans with their plethora of chili, cheap prices and colorful clientele. TCP always promises to showcase cowboys- political and not. Due to its proximity to the Texas Capitol, politicians and lawyers love to live out the glory days of Austin with some yummy XXX chili and whiskey. A great place to bring out-of-towners or to hang with the folks that make Austin so special. Anthony Bourdain made a stop here while filming No Reservations in Austin.
How is it that I am just now discovering Texas Chili Parlor? It seems to be a little Lockhart bar that somehow got dropped into downtown Austin, which is precisely why it's so charming. Black eyed peas here on New Year's Day are a tradition for many, and having sampled them myself, I can tell you that they are hot, soupy, and just salty enough.
The best Chili and Food and FUN – Yep, years ago before the new ownership, I ate here and was unimpressed with the XXX; I needed more peppers to spice it. Time passes, and for the last at least 8 years, the food is the most delicious food. There is a nice selection of American and Mexican food, and the servings are filling. BTW, the drinks are yum, too. Thank you, TCP
Best Chili in Austin! – Okay, we were directed to this place during Duck Tours - and OMG!!! Freaking YUM! This place ROCKS! After touring the city, you gotta stop on by kick up a seat and order some CHILI!!!! HELLZ YES!
Much better than last experience – I stopped going to the Chili Parlor years ago because the service had gotten so bad. I decided to give it another try recently and to my surprise, they have really straightened out the joint.
I found out that they hired a new manager about a year or so ago who really helped turn this place back to the great little dive it is. I'm so thrilled that I get to put the Texas Chili Parlor back on my good side!
Great Food and Friendly Folks – Really good food, great prices and weekend specials. Friendly waitstaff and good service. We walked by and didnt think twice about it, and then the wonderful smell of the food touched my nose and I was drawn back... walked inside and had a great meal. Mmmmmm Mmmmmm Good
Worst service ever! – The last time I was here, I remember having a very good lunch. But today, I was severely disappointed.
First of all, I walked across downtown Austin to get here, because I was in the mood for some decent chili. Second, it was almost a hundred degrees out. So, I was not in a fantastic mood.
The two guys working there were total stoners, which is to be expected in Austin... and I'm ok with it, as long as they are capable of doing their jobs! I got there, sat down, and waited five minutes until the first stoner boy came up to take my drink order (ice water). Ten minutes later, my water arrived. Within those ten minutes, 5 other customers entered (a total of 9 now). All of their orders were promptly taken and their lunches were brought out to them. At least 3 times I asked for someone to take my order, but the stoner-boy waiters never failed to get lost in la-la land right after I asked them.
Half an hour later, I was sitting there with a glass of ice... no order taken and no refills of water. This place freakin' bites and I'm never going there again. I'm not exactly one of the homeless vagrants that they are probably used to coping with... but then again, if I had been, maybe I would have actually gotten some service!
If you love Death Proof, you'll enjoy being in the Texas Chili parlor. – I'm a big fan of the movie Death Proof, yet I've never visited any of the Austin locations it was shot in. That all changed this weekend. I enjoyed my time at the Texas Chili parlor, and it was quite a rush being inside there. It was a really fun place. The food was great, the prices were cheap, the staff was very friendly and polite, and the atmosphere was awesome. I'm hoping to become a regular. I loved walking around there, then sitting at the bar in the exact seat Kurt Russell sat in, and then looking at myself in the mirror. I spoke to the owner and chatted with him a bit about Death Proof and he told me some cool stories.
In Death Proof, the Texas Chili Parlor is located out in the woods...but in real life, it is actually located in the city side of downtown Austin. In the movie, it was also shown having a jukebox, a parking lot and a back porch. In reality, the Texas Chili Parlor doesnt have any of that stuff. That was a special detail Quentin Tarantino added himself for his own fictional version of the restaraunt. The porch scenes were filmed at another Austin location and Warren's vintage AMI jukebox is owned by Quentin Tarantino.
There was also no nacho grande platter's, club soda's or virgin pina colda's on the menu. But there were nacho's. When I drop about 15 pounds, I'll go back and sit at the bar while eating nacho's for sure.
Anyway, the Texas Chili Parlor was fun, Austiny kinda place and the type of restaurant I'd highly recommend any out-of-towner check out, as well as anyone who loves the movie Death Proof.
Too fun to pass up! – I love this place. The atmosphere is great with the old signs and all the wood. The service is good even if the staff is not there to be your best friend. I kinda like that in a restaurant. The food comes out hot and fast. The guacamole appetizer is actually the best in town, beating ever Mexican Food restaurant that I frequent. I'm vegetarian and I really like the veggie chili and the salads as well. Those cheese enchiladas with the chili on top aren't bad either, if you need a cheese fix. The ice tea is consistent, too. What's not to like? If you don't want to eat lunch/dinner with Rollergirls, Capitol employees or tourists, then this is not the place for you. At lunch they get busy, so don't be surprised, you've been warned.
The only thing worse than the food was the service. – My husband and I just went for dinner and despite much anticipation, we were both VERY disappointed in our meal. The chili, which it is "famous" for was as appetizing as Alpo. A bowl of queso brought to the table so congealed that a fork would stand upright. After giving up, we waited endlessly while our intoxicated waitress was no where to be found.
While the atmosphere is great, the food isn't - go for a beer and have dinner somewhere else.
Fun place. Great old building. MIGAS were real yummy! – After reading the funny review that made me laugh for 10 minutes or so about the bartender I just had to go and check this place out. They have a great menu. Migas on the weekend, and they are spicey and delicious. The guac. burger is really good too. The bloody mary wasn't fantastic and kinda spicey. Great bar and fun signs on the wall to read. I didn't try the chili but maybe next time. You gotta try this place if you like rustic type places with old floors and swinging doors on the bathroom stalls.
Got doused with water spray from bar and were mooned by employee! – I hate to write such a damaging review on what was one our favorite Austin food joints, but here goes. Sometime between June 18th and 20th (I think it was the 19th), my husband and I went to Texas Chili Parlor, one of our favorite hangouts, for great, reasonably-priced food and cold beer. There was nothing wrong with the food - it was the behavior of the bartender (male) and what I'm guessing was one of the servers (male). We were waiting for our food and the bartender and server were cutting up and having fun - no big deal. Suddenly, the server jumped up on a barstool and faced the bar, while the bartender held up one of those bartending hoses that dispenses water, cokes, etc. The bartender aimed right at the server's crotch, but of course missed somewhat, so my husband and the window next to him got doused (we were sitting across the room). So the bartender comes over, wipes the window down, apologizes profusely, and buys us a couple beers. Okay, situation over. We thought. All during the time we were sitting there, this bartender and server kept up the roughhousing - paying an amazing amount of attention to each other. As my husband was paying our bill, the server (apparently whipped into a frenzy of acting silly and crazy) decides it would be amusing to yank down his pants and moon everyone unfortunate enough to be in the line of sight (he was a few feet from the bar, close to the door). I was totally shocked at this point, told my husband (who had his back to the server), and I got up and walked out. My husband spoke to someone (not sure who) and the bartender tried to apologize to us as we were already out the door, but it was way too late. The water dousing was one thing, but to get mooned? Right after you eat? Disgusting. (I could have - and should have - hurled my dinner onto the offending server.) We have experienced occasionally slow service at TCP and we were willing to put up with it, but this pretty much wraps it up for us. We're very disappointed.
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