It’s Saturday night. Like most weeks, my days were spent more in front of a computer screen than in front of anything or anyone else. My old stand-by Saturday night routine of watching 2-3 hours of re-runs on Netflix until I fall asleep with the laptop dangerously close to overheating on my lap (hey, so warm and so cozy, right?), was not going to suffice any longer. No. Not tonight. Some nights, the want to get dressed up, go out, grab a drink, and enjoy the night is too strong to deny.
If you’re in the mood for a “downtown” or 6th street experience, the calmer lake scene might not do it for you. Even the most busy and crowded bars in Lake Travis are still not even a fraction of how intense a downtown party crowd would be. In other words, it’s quiet out here, but you still have your options for weekend evening entertainment around these parts. A special dinner, movie night, or conversation with friends over some nice cocktails—here are a few places to enjoy nightlife in the Lake Travis area.
Hudson’s on the Bend– Walls and walls of wine to choose from and delicious chef tasting menus to consider, this Lake Travis eatery has a little bit of everything. From pumpkin seed crusted lamb loin to blackened crawfish cakes, from pecan smoked duck to Espresso-Chocolate-Chili rubbed smoked elk, locals have known about this cozy spot for years and it never seems to disappoint. Executive chef, Kelly Casey carefully handcrafts the recipes, focusing on ingredients from local farmers and ranchers. Their happy hour, Monday-Friday 5-7 pm, boasts of diamondback rattlesnake cakes, blackened shrimp enchiladas, and much more. So next time you’re around the Bend, try my favorite dish, the sesame and almond crusted crab cake.
Moviehouse & Eatery– If you haven’t yet visited the new cinema, you’re really in for a treat. With dine-in seating, a 3-story screen called “The Big House”, immersive motion seats, and a full bar, there’s a little bit of everything for the casual moviegoer. Try the hand-breaded Lollipop Chicken or the Cheeseburger Pie pizza if you have food on the brain. With blockbuster movies opening weekly, don’t beat yourself up too much if you can’t choose what to watch this Saturday night. I always let myself come back for a matinee.
Iguana Grill– You might know Iguana Grill for their great views and good times, but their evenings can get pretty packed, too. This pleasant patio often has live music, making for an even better time. Their premium lake view and margaritas make for a great wrap up to a stressful week at work. If you have classic Tex-Mex on the mind, try the tacos and a Golden Iguana margarita.
The Grove– Fans of The Grove off Bee Caves Rd. will undoubtedly be thrilled with the new Lakeway location. A great place to gather with friends and enjoy a glass (or bottle) of wine in the large bar area or outdoors on the patio. Both areas offer an excellent view of the hill country that stretches back towards Steiner Ranch. If you are in the mood for a bite to eat, try the seared jumbo scallops or the Popeye and Olive Oil Pizza, which are some of my past faves.
The League– You may have visited The League at some point in the past to try the Truffle Mac & Cheese, but have you checked out one of the best cocktail menus in the area? Choose a Moscow Mule from the Vintage side or go Modern with a Cucumber Lavender Sour…can you say mmm? Happy hour is Monday through Friday 3-7 pm, which is when the bar is known to get a little fuller, but the more the merrier at The League. In fact, call up your buddies that live down the street, because with over 7 beers on draught including local beers such as Infamous Brewing Company, this bar never disappoints.
Don’t see your favorite spot for nightlife in the Lake Travis area on this list? Please let us know what you love in the comments.