An Austin Tex-Mex Restaurant Was Used as a ‘Jeopardy’ Clue (2024)

Austin Tex-Mex mini-chain Polvos was used as a clue in game show Jeopardy last week. During the Friday, June 21 episode, the clue read: “The tacos and chili con queso at Polvos on South First Street make it a staple of this city’s ‘Mexican mile.’” The answer was obviously Austin, and the clue is referring to a supposed nickname for that stretch of South First that had been jam-packed with Mexican restaurants.

The Austin Tex-Mex chain started off with this original Bouldin Creek location in 1997. It expanded with a Wells Branch location in 2012 (which closed in 2021), downtown in 2018, and a Barton Creek Square Mall one in 2023.

This isn’t the first time an Austin restaurant was used as a Jeopardy clue. Torchy’s Tacos was a hint during a 2018 episode.

South Texas taco chain opens in Austin proper

South Texas chain Taco Palenque’s Austin-area presence grows even more with the opening of its first Austin proper location this month, as reported by Community Impact. The new 4607 West Braker Lane restaurant in the Gateway neighborhood opened on June 24. The other two Austin-area restaurants are in Round Rock and Cedar Park, plus the ghost kitchen location in McKinney.

Shutters and replacements

Beloved bright orange walk-up window restaurant Taco-Mex appears to have closed sometime this summer at 2611 Manor Road in Cherrywood. Per Reddit, a new restaurant, Pepperazzy took over the space starting in early June. It serves a very wide-ranging menu including, yes, breakfast and lunch tacos as well as croissant sandwiches, subs, burgers, pizza, fried seafood, and a lot more.

Chinese restaurant Chen Z apparently has closed its Oak Hill location at some point this year at 6705 US-290. Taking over the address is a forthcoming Vietnamese restaurant called Pho Wok, per Reddit. The Chen’s Noodle House up in Spicewood Springs is still open.

Food truck relocations

Spanish food truck Austhentico moved into downtown Austin this month. The Menchaca Road truck closed on May 18, and then it relocated into Belgian beer bar Mort Subtite at 308 Congress Avenue as of May 31.

The food menu includes tapas like croquettes, tortillas espanola, and patatas bravas; alongside Spanish-style sandwiches bocadillos; paellas, and fideuà (paella but with noodles instead of rice). And, to complement its host site, it’s serving a short Belgian food menu with fries (with sauce or with mussels) and a Belgian-style beef sandwich. Co-owners and co-chefs Luis Felez and Sarai Salazar started Austhentico as a catering company in 2019, and turned it into a truck in 2023, as reported by Community Impact.

French sandwich and roast chicken spot Austin Rotisserie moved its food truck from far South Austin bar the Far Out into its own stand-alone trailer space in the Zilker neighborhood as of June 20. It’s now parked at 1700 South Lamar with its own outdoor dine-in area.

Downtown food hall restaurant opening

Austin Mediterranean restaurant Shawarma Point expanded with a third city location this summer. The newest spot is found within downtown food hall Fareground at 111 Congress Avenue as of June 8. This is part of Fareground’s oft food stall switcheroos. Shawarma took over the space that had previously housed a location of JewBoy Sliders, Israeli restaurant TLV, and an Easy Tiger.

Restaurant shutters

Lebanese restaurant Tarbouch appears to have closed in April, per Yelp, at 534 East Oltorf Street in Travis Heights. It opened in 2009.

Tracking Austin food and drink events

Texas, Louisiana, and Cajun-style smoked meats pop-up Parish Barbecue is hosting its next event today. The menu includes meat plates with mains such as pork ribs, pulled duck with crispy duck cracklins, and pimento cheese smoked boudin; with sides like remoulade vinegar slaw, crawfish cornbread dressing, and pickled okra. There will also also be smoked-fried pork cracklins, and Meyer lemon-strawberry icebox pie slices. It takes place on Tuesday, June 25 from 6 to 9 p.m. at just-north-of-Anderson-Mill brewery Slackers Brewing Co. at 12233 Ranch Road 620 North, Suite 204. It’s also offering 20 percent off for people who are working in the hospitality industry. Preorders can be placed now.

Downtown co*cktail bar the Roosevelt Room is celebrating its ninth birthday with a happy hour this week. The menu will feature nine co*cktails for $9 each available from 4 p.m. to 1 a.m. on Wednesday, June 26.

As part of Los Angeles restaurant Kismet’s new namesake cookbook, co-authors and chefs Sarah Hymanson and Sara Kramer will be in Austin for two related events. First, there will be a book conversation at Hyde Park store First Light Books with Austin chef Tracy Malechek-Ezekiel of Birdie’s. This takes place on Wednesday, June 26 at 7 p.m.; it’s free to attend, and there are $35 tickets which includes a seat and the book. Then, all three chefs will collaborate on a two-night menu at Birdie’s at 2944 East 12th Street in the Chestnut neighborhood on Friday and Saturday, June 28 and 29. Per Birdie’s service style, the restaurant will only be open for walk-ins.

Chen Z Noodle House

6705 U.S. 290, , TX 78735 (512) 892-8888 Visit Website

Taco Palenque [Round Rock]

130 Louis Henna Boulevard, Round Rock, Texas 78664 Visit Website


2944 East 12th Street, , TX 78702 Visit Website

Mort Subite

308 Congress Avenue, Austin, Texas 78701 Visit Website

Tarbouch Lebanese Grill

534 E Oltorf St, Austin, TX 78704 (512) 326-2001 Visit Website

Shawarma Point

, , (512) 373-3636 Visit Website

The Roosevelt Room

307 West 5th Street, , TX 78701 (512) 494-4094 Visit Website


111 Congress Avenue, , TX 78701 Visit Website

Austin Rotisserie

111 Congress Avenue, , TX 78701 (512) 358-4009 Visit Website


2004 South 1st Street, , TX 78704 (512) 441-5446 Visit Website

First Light Books

4300 Speedway, Austin, Texas 78751 Visit Website

An Austin Tex-Mex Restaurant Was Used as a ‘Jeopardy’ Clue (2024)
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