The Oasis on Lake Travis

Some of my college friends came down to Austin this weekend to visit me, and I knew there was a lot of pressure to come up with the perfect itinerary. They only had a little less than 48 hours here, so making good use of our time was crucial. Our dinner stop, the first item on the itinerary, had to be super great to set the tone for the rest of the trip.

After some deliberation, I decided we would go to The Oasis on Lake Travis. This multi-tiered restaurant is nestled high in the hills of Austin, overlooking Lake Travis. The altitude and western-facing disposition lends itself perfectly to beautiful sunset photos as you eat dinner on one of its many outdoor patios. My friends hadn’t looked up our destination before we headed out, so they were pretty shocked by the grandeur of it all as we pulled up.

We were seated immediately, since we were willing to sit outside despite the heat. I got a classic frozen margarita, perfect for keeping me cool on the hot summer evening!

As I’ve mentioned before, I’m a notorious picky eater. When menus are somewhat limited, sometimes I have to get creative with my ordering. I chose fajitas, with just the fillings. My waitress was nice enough to put all the ingredients in separately to save me some money! (They ended up being less like fajitas and more like DIY soft tacos. No complaints, though. Everything was super good, especially the cheese!)

By the time we finished eating, we were able to wander around the different levels and take in the breathtaking sunset. Golden hour came in clutch for our mandatory “horns down” photo. Boomer!

As we left the Oasis, we drove back down the mountain just as the sunset was hitting its peak. Since it is pretty secluded, we were able to put our hazards on and slow down for a second to soak in the view one last time. Just as we were about to round the corner and put Lake Travis out of sight, the sun sank down behind the horizon entirely and the sky went dark. We truly timed our drive perfectly!

Overall, this is a perfect tourist destination for people visiting Austin! It’s a bit of a drive, but it’s worth it. Being able to spend time with my friends with the bonus of an incredible view made it the perfect start to our girls’ weekend!

-K

The Aussie Grind

I’ve never had the chance to go to Australia, but I got to taste a little bit of it this weekend at The Aussie Grind in Frisco! My dad and I are always looking for new quirky breakfast spots to try, so when we found out about a new Australian-style brunch place that had just opened near our house, we knew we needed to check it out.

My dad and I both like coffee, so we decided to try a flat white– a style of coffee that originated in Australia. Since The Aussie Grind is authentically Australian (the owners moved to Texas from Australia in 2018), we knew that this was the perfect place to put flat white coffee to the test.

Verdict: it was so tasty! The presentation was beautiful and it tasted good, too. Since I’m used to sweet coffee, I made it about halfway through before adding sugar packets in. (Oops!)

I soon found out that Australian food is similar to American food, but with a twist. Being who I am, I decided to get the Avo Smash– a proclaimed “staple” on their menu. I thought it was super interesting that they served the avocado toast on sourdough bread. I’m used to eating my avocado toast on plain white bread, so the sourdough definitely elevated it a bit. I might have to get some sourdough at Trader Joe’s once I get back to Austin and try to make Avo Smash at home! Also, I’m not sure what they did to those scrambled eggs, but they were amazing– seriously some of the best eggs I’ve ever had.

By the time we left, I was riding a super strong caffeine/sugar high from that flat white coffee. The Aussie Grind has tons of other interesting options on their menu, so I want to come back next time I’m in town and see what else they have to offer! I tried my dad’s Breakfast Gnocchi, and that was top-tier as well. The Hotcakes intrigue me, but might be best saved for a day when dessert-for-breakfast sounds appealing (it’s pancakes served with cotton candy and vanilla ice cream!)

If you’re in the Frisco area looking for a fresh take on American brunch food, I highly recommend The Aussie Grind. They’re only open for breakfast and lunch, though, so plan to go early!

-K

JuiceLand

I’ve never really been much of a smoothie person. Other people in my life have loved them and sworn by them- my sister is a big fan of classic strawberry-banana smoothies and my dad can’t live without his green veggie mix. But I never really had the urge to buy one or try a new one- until I started seeing JuiceLands all over town during my summer in Austin.

Their Barton Springs location piqued my interest first. (Coincidentally, this is also their flagship store.) I see it when I drive home from work that way, and it always looked busy. I was intrigued, and looked them up. Turns out, there was a JuiceLand location only 2 minutes away from my barre and pilates studio. Score!

After class on Thursday, I decided to stop in. For what it’s worth, smoothies are supposed to be pretty healthy (at least compared to something like a milkshake,) so I didn’t feel guilty treating myself after an especially grueling pilates class.

As some of you know, I’m a creature of habit and very rarely branch out and try different foods. I decided to challenge that, and order something I wouldn’t usually try (but still looked tasty.) Enter: the Raspberry Hooray! Made with pineapple, banana, and raspberry, it wasn’t too far from the norm for my conservative palate, but was still different enough for me to be proud of my adventurous spirit.

Spoiler alert: It was so good. I slurped it down in under 5 minutes, and felt completely refreshed. With the small clocking in at only 293 calories, it made me feel good, too.

JuiceLand has around 25 locations in Austin, and 3 each in the Dallas and Houston areas. Can they come to Norman next, please? I’m feeling like I might get addicted to these this summer.

-K

Hopdoddy Burger Bar

This past weekend, my dad came to visit me in Austin and we spent all day Saturday eating good food and doing the quintessential Austin activities. (If you missed the Father’s Day recap, click here to read all about it!) One of our outings (and quite frankly, one of my favorite parts of the day) was dinner on South Congress at Hopdoddy Burger Bar. I enjoyed my experience there so much that I didn’t think it deserved to be thrown in with the rest of the Father’s Day roundup, and instead deserved its own review. So, let’s get right into it!

Hopdoddy came as a recommendation from my aunt. Beyond knowing that it was a gourmet burger place, I didn’t have many more expectations other than what she told me. She gave me two pieces advice before we went:

  1. The ordering system is a little different, but you’ll figure it out quick.
  2. Go before 5:30, or make sure you don’t come hungry, because after 5:30 the line will be out the door and wrapped around the building.

This was a lot of hype for a burger joint, but we listened to her advice and went around 5:00. When we arrived, the line was (luckily) inside, and we got to peruse the menu in the comfort of their AC. I also found out what she meant about the ordering system being different than an average restaurant: they don’t take your order until there is a table available for you. My guess is that this is to ensure that everyone has a place to sit when their food comes out shortly after ordering. All their tables are numbered and marked with signs that say “Reserved for Customers Waiting in Line.” When a table is available, they take your order, assign you a table number, and then you can go sit down. I can see how this system ends with a line stretching around the building, as they probably could take orders much faster than people could eat their food.

Speaking of the food, I got garlic parmesan truffle fries! Anything truffle is my weakness, so when I saw this on the menu, I knew I had to have it. It’s meant to be shared as an appetizer, but I decided to forego a burger and eat the fries as a main course.

My dad and I also decided to split a shake! I almost never get shakes when I go out to eat (I just don’t think the calories are worth it,) but I decided to #treatmyself that day. I’m glad I did, because the s’mores shake my dad and I had was incredible. It could be that I just hadn’t had a milkshake in a hot second that made it taste so dang good, but my dad is somewhat of a milkshake connoisseur and even he said it was awesome. It mostly tasted like chocolate, but the marshmallow was just the extra flavor it needed to send it over the edge. 10/10, would definitely recommend to a friend.

Overall, Hopdoddy is definitely a fun South Congress destination! There’s a parking garage right next door, so that’s very useful since downtown is notorious for a lack of parking. Just make sure you go early, because otherwise you’ll be stuck out in the elements as you wait for the early birds to finish their meals!

-K

Las Palomas Restaurant

I’m a huge fan of Mexican food, so I knew being in Austin for the summer would allow me to eat a lot of it. Although I didn’t eat any for the first few weeks of my stay, I recently ventured out to Las Palomas Restaurant on Bee Cave, conveniently located only a few miles from my house.

I chose to sit outside because the evening had cooled down significantly, and I’m so glad I did! The outdoor patio is beautiful, and paired with a gentle breeze and a frozen margarita, I wasn’t hot at all.

It was just past 6 when I arrived, so I ordered a happy hour $5 frozen margarita. I usually prefer my margaritas to have a fruity flavoring (like strawberry,) but the classic one was great, too! The food came out super fast, they had barely set the chips and salsa out before the food came out, as well. I had high hopes for Austin Mexican cuisine, and Las Palomas exceeded them. My tacos were so good (the had queso INSIDE of them!)

To finish up, I indulged in a sopaipilla. I haven’t had one in so long, and it was so tasty. The ice cream and cinnamon on top made it absolutely to die for! I should definitely splurge and get dessert at Mexican restaurants more often.

Overall, Las Palomas was a really nice and authentic Mexican restaurant, perfect for a nice dinner out! Also, I found out that las palomas is Spanish for “the pigeons,” which I love. If I wasn’t planning on coming back before, I definitely will now that I know it’s named after one of my favorite birds!

I’m having so much fun trying new places in Austin. Stay tuned for more restaurant visits as the summer continues!

-K

Tacodeli Grand Opening

If you followed along with my Instagram story on Monday, then you saw that downtown Austin recently had a Tacodeli grand opening! Since Tacodeli is one of bread & Butter‘s clients, I got to join in on the fun and finally experience these supposedly magnificent tacos for the first time.

I’ve always been a Torchy’s fan, so the bar was set pretty high. Would Tacodeli be able to measure up?

Short answer: Yes.

Long answer: Oh. My. God. These were seriously the best breakfast tacos I’ve ever had. I’m seriously in love with breakfast food and like to eat it whenever I get the chance, so that’s pretty high praise coming from me. I seriously can’t recommend these enough! The only downer is that they only serve their breakfast tacos until 11 a.m. on weekdays, and I would probably rather have them for lunch. Well, that and that the closest Tacodeli to Norman is in Plano!

The fun didn’t end with free tacos! As part of the PR team, I was recruited to be a model for Tacodeli’s social media. They gave me a Tacodeli shirt (which I was allowed to keep) and guided me through posing with a plate of delicious tacos. The smile on my face is genuine, I kept giggling because they had me hold and alter this pose so long!

Click here to see Tacodeli’s Instagram post, AKA what was basically my modeling debut.

Overall, it was such a fun morning! I’m craving some more breakfast tacos just writing this, so I know I’ll be back soon. If you missed my Instagram story on Monday, you can catch up with the highlight in my bio called “b&b life”!

-K

Fluff Meringues and More

By this point, you’re probably aware that I pretty much have the best summer internship ever (and if you’re new, you can read about our casual chic dress code and our pet-friendly policy and catch up!) But beyond getting to expand my wardrobe and see furry friends at work every day, we also have another company-wide tradition that I’m so excited to share: Wine Wednesdays!

It’s pretty self explanatory. On Wednesdays at the office (I’m blessed with that M/W/F life) someone brings in sips and sweets for the whole crew. It’s a great time to bond with your team and get those creative juices flowing with a quick sugar rush. This week, we had Fluff Meringues & More! (Thanks, Victoria!)

I’ve actually been super into meringues lately (I don’t want to tell you how many Trader Joe’s vanilla meringues I’ve eaten in the past 2 weeks… or even the past 24 hours) so I was super excited when Victoria showed up with these! The box came with an assortment of flavors of meringues and French macarons, two of my favorite desserts.

The assortment box Victoria bought came with a variety pack of flavors, but luckily I was able to guesstimate which one was which so I could get a flavor I liked. Based on my powers of deductive reasoning, I was able to end up with a caramel meringue and a chocolate caramel macaron. Score!

Having eaten the Trader Joe’s variety of meringues and macarons most recently, the freshly baked versions were like a little slice of heaven. Both were light and airy, but packed with flavor. I’ll definitely be bringing some home sometime soon! Although next time, I’ll make sure to order just the flavors I enjoy and take the guesswork out. The assortment pack sure made for a pretty picture, but I’m really not much of a passionfruit or pineapple kind of girl.

-K

My Trader Joe’s Favorites

Do you have a Trader Joe’s near your house? If not, you’re seriously missing out- just like I was before I moved to Austin for the summer! Trader Joe’s is a grocery store that carries their own brand of products almost exclusively. I was wondering what all the hype was about, but after a few visits since I moved in down the street, I’m definitely hooked! After a few visits, here are my first impressions and initial favorites from TJ’s.

When you walk in TJ’s, the first thing you see are tons of fresh flowers. There’s a ton of variety and they’re all so fresh and vibrant that it puts me in a great mood before I’ve even made it to the grocery section! I bought a succulent on my last trip, and it’s super adorable. If I can get my hands on a vase, I might start buying some of the fresh flowers to keep in my room, too.

Once you’re past the flower garden at the front entrance, it’s right into the produce. It’s all super reasonably priced, and just seeing all the variety makes me want to try new things. My favorite is the bananas (one of my favorite fruits!)

If you know only one thing about Trader Joe’s, it’s probably about the legendary cookie butter. I bought a jar on my first trip, eager to see if it lived up to the hype. It did- and more. Clocking in at a whopping 90 calories per tablespoon, it’s definitely not my go-to dessert, but I still sneak a spoonful every now and then. It’s super addicting, and a must-try for any TJ’s newbie!

Something I noticed about TJ’s entrées pretty quickly is that a lot of them lean towards the healthier side. I’m all about clean eating, but I definitely have a sweet tooth, too. TJ’s frozen desserts blew me away! My personal favorite has been the macarons imported straight from France, but I also fell in love with the vanilla meringues as well.

I am going to be so sad when I go back to Norman in August, when the closest Trader Joe’s is in Edmond! I’ll definitely have to stock up on my favorite non-frozen items before I make the trip back to Oklahoma.

I’m finding new items at TJ’s every time I go, so watch my Instagram story for more favorites as I discover them!

-K

Black Walnut Café

I’m back in Frisco for a few days before I make the move to Austin for the summer, and I knew something I needed to do while I was home was pay a visit to the Black Walnut Café! When I’m in Frisco and craving brunch food, this is where I go. While not exclusively a brunch restaurant, they do have an impressive breakfast menu that I like to take advantage of while I’m there. Breakfast food is probably my favorite food group, and the meal I most look forward to eating every day!

I’m a creature of habit, so today (like most days) I gravitated towards the “Breakfast Migas.” It comes with four scrambled eggs, fried tortilla strips, bacon, feta, salsa, and cilantro on top. My second favorite food genre is definitely Mexican, so this dish combines the flavors I love in both breakfast and Mexican food. Yum!

Another reason I like to visit Black Walnut is it’s atmosphere. It’s very rustic yet modern, and the combination makes it super welcoming and a great place to come to chill with friends. This morning, I went with my sister to get some sibling bonding time in before I leave for the summer.

Luckily, Black Walnut has locations all across Texas (including 2 in Austin!) so I won’t have to go without my Breakfast Migas fix for the entire summer. It’s comforting to know that I’ll be able to get a taste of home, even if I’m 4 hours away.

My move is coming up soon. I leave Frisco and make the trek down to Austin on Friday, and I’m so excited! Stay tuned to see more of this summer’s adventures.

-K

My Go-To Starbucks Drinks

I’m a morning person by nature, so I wouldn’t say I need coffee to function. But every morning, without fail, I make my breakfast that always includes an iced coffee from my roommate’s Keurig machine. When I’m wanting to treat myself (or just needing an extra boost a caffeine,) I hit up a campus Starbucks on my way to class.

Full disclaimer: I drink coffee for the taste, which means that my drinks need to taste like 80% sugar and 20% coffee. Black coffee or dark roasts are not my thing, so when you notice that my favorite drinks all stray from the genre of “traditional” coffee, that’s why.

1. Iced Caramel Macchiato

I am definitely an iced coffee type of girl. Unless the temperature outside dips below 20, you’ll probably only see me with an iced coffee in hand. My go-to drink at Starbucks is an iced caramel macchiato, since the milk and caramel sauce disguise the espresso when mixed properly. If I’m going to be up late studying at the library, this is usually the drink I pick.

2. ICED CARAMEL Cloud MACCHIATO

This Starbucks x Ariana Grande collab had me skeptical at first, but I quickly got addicted to these fluffy beverages once I tried one for the first time. (Yep, I said fluffy.) The iced caramel cloud macchiato is similar to a regular iced caramel macchiato, except it comes with layers of foam instead of milk. Personally, I think the foam is the best part and would easily order a whole cup of it if I thought I could escape without judgement from the baristas.

3. caramel frappuccino

This was my first introduction to coffee, so it’ll always hold a special place in my heart. When I was in middle school, the “cool” thing to do on a Friday night was to go to the mall with your friends. It was during one of those escapades where I tried a caramel frappuccino for the first time. To this day, I’ll still order a caramel frappuccino if I’m on campus and my sweet tooth decides to show up in full force.

4. vanilla bean frappuccino

I warned y’all, I don’t actually like the taste of coffee all that much, and this one is a perfect example of that. The vanilla bean frappuccino doesn’t actually contain coffee, so I like to order this one when I want a sweet treat without the caffeine. It’s also something I discovered in my pre-teen years, so it’s a great nostalgia bomb as well!

5. hot CARAMEL MACCHIATO

Remember how I said I was an iced coffee gal? Well, on the rare occasion where it dips below 20 degrees, the hot caramel macchiato is my drink of choice. Like its iced counterpart, it also masks the espresso taste very well, which I greatly appreciate. If I’m wanting a caffeinated beverage before making a walk across OU’s freezing campus, I think about the well being of my fingers and opt for a hot drink instead.

In other news, this is my 50th post on Selfies & OOTDs! That’s crazy to me because I feel like I started this blog not that long ago. Thanks for reading, and I can’t wait to keep sharing my fashion and lifestyle content with y’all!

-K