Food and Drink

Nicole Cobler
13 hours ago - Business

Fierce Whiskers Distillery brings visitors into whiskey aging process

The outside of Fierce Whiskers distillery
Photo: Nicole Cobler/Axios

Patience is a virtue at Fierce Whiskers, a new Austin bourbon distillery that aims to take visitors on the journey of aging its Straight Rye and premium Straight Bourbon, which is aged for four years.

State of play: Co-founders Tri Vo and Tim Penney built the distillery with the years-long aging process in mind, inviting visitors to taste their new-make whiskey (the latest blend was aged for about nine months), and check out behind-the-scenes tours of their rickhouse and aging warehouse behind the tasting room.

Sober October: Austin company aims to transform how we drink

A close up of beer and foam
Photo Illustration: Lorenzo Di Cola/NurPhoto via Getty Images

A Fresh Sip, an Austin-based, alcohol-free beverage platform, aims to revolutionize the way consumers find non-alcoholic beverage options.

Details: Co-founders Aishwarya Balaji and Payal Thaker joined forces to create A Fresh Sip in December, launching a site to discover non-alcoholic beers, wines, spirits and other beverages. The group also offers menu curation at events and collaborates with hotels and other businesses.

Mando Rayo fights taco misinformation

Mando Rayo, right, digs into some grub at Cruzteca
Mando Rayo, right, prepares to dig into some grub at Cruzteca. Photo: Asher Price/Axios

The incisive and easy-to-laugh Austin taco correspondent, podcaster, book publisher and producer Mando Rayo is fond of saying that "tacos taste better when you know their story."

What's happening: Asher caught up with him and his self-described homie and bodyguard Samuel Franco at Southwest Austin's Cruzteca. The unassuming strip mall spot is operated by Tony Galindo, who named the place for his grandfather, the local restaurateur Cruz Galindo.

Austin's Strip mall delights

Mana Restaurant overlooks a small parking lot.
Manna Korean Restauarant overlooks a small parking lot. Photo: Asher Price/Axios

Restaurants slotted into strip malls have long been the backbone of Austin dining: unassuming outposts that overlook sun-bleached parking lots, sharing a low-slung patch of roadside property with a little supermarket, an accountant's office or a Pentecostal church.

Why it matters: Food trucks now supply a lot of the great culinary action, but strip mall joints take us back a decade or two, when Austin was more slacker, less hipster. Relatively cheap rents make them an available rung for immigrants on the ladder to the American dream.

Pumpkin spice, everything nice: Must-do fall activities near Austin

Two boys run through a pumpkin patch
Photo: Cindy Yamanaka/MediaNews Group/The Riverside Press-Enterprise via Getty Images

Sure, it's still 90 degrees, but it's also October. Here are some ideas to celebrate the season around Central Texas:

🎃 Pick a pumpkin, hop on a hayride or run through a corn maze at a local farm.

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