August 26, 2012 by aliputnam
It has to be tough to run a Mexican restaurant in Texas, especially in Austin where there seems to be more of those on every corner than there are McDonald’s. One of my new favorites is El Alma on Barton Springs. Since I’ve lived here I think this place has been at least two different Mexican restaurants, none of which have been very good. I’m hoping El Alma makes it!
We went for brunch, which is probably my favorite meal of the day. I ordered an omelette with spinach, mushrooms and jack cheese with a side of “papitas,” or fried breakfast potatoes. The two different salsas are great too. The green tomatillo is pretty spicy while the red is more smoky and mild. I did notice the chip bowl size was definitely smaller than the usual “fill yourself up on our chips and salsa even though you just ordered cheese enchiladas” portions at Mexican restaurants.
Sorry, I couldn’t wait to take a bite. 🙂 The smoky salsa on the omelette was the best part of the whole meal. The potatoes are great too- a little sweet and a little spicy. I didn’t want to be completely useless on a Saturday, so I didn’t have anything to drink but the drinks here are great as well. Once it gets a little cooler we will definitely be taking advantage of the rooftop patio. Tons of people were sitting up there despite the heat. The inside has a great atmosphere as well. The stone walls and staircase inside make it feel really quaint- almost like you’re sitting in an outdoor garden.
They also have banana bread pudding on the brunch menu. I haven’t stopped thinking about it so I have a feeling I’ll be back at El Alma soon!