I don’t do many restaurant reviews. Usually I’m the one doing the cooking! However, this restaurant is such a gem that I really wanted to share it with you. I travel to Austin pretty frequently these days for work. While strolling Congress avenue with a co-worker looking for a place to grab dinner, we spot this alluring outdoor patio with big, lit up trees emerging from the structure. It looked like the perfect place to have a cocktail!
Hailing from Florida, I was a little skeptical of a seafood and oyster bar in the heart of Texas, but Perla’s flys their catch in fresh everyday. Their Oyster bar boasts Oysters from Rhode Island, Maine, British Columbia and California. I tried the Kumamoto Oyster from California, which is evidently “The Cadillac of Oysters” known for their mouthfeel and nutty flavor, an umami-like experience for true oyster lovers.
The restaurant is refreshingly relaxed yet upscale with its sprawling outdoor patio, good looking waiters, saltwater tank, shuffleboard table and impressive looking oyster bar. I ordered the boullibaise, always my favorite, and was impressed with very large prawns and pieces of seafood- they do not skimp on their seafood. A diehard brussel sprout fan, I ordered a side and was impressed that they were served skewered, straight from the grill with a nice char.
I washed all of this down with a “Passenger” cocktail, a refreshing gin drink infused with lime juice, mint and St Germain liqueur.
While dining, my friends and I noticed Bill Murray dining at a table nearby! Evidently Perla’s is no stranger to celebrities, as Austin is a hotspot for them, known for it’s great music and local flavor.
While I’m not a celebrity, I certainly do know good food and I’ve added Perla’s to one of my new favorite restaurants. On my next trip to Austin, I look forward to trying the owner’s other restaurant, Lambert’s Barbecue. Now you are speaking my language. The food is the silver lining to these work trips!