Restaurants tucked into malls have long been the backbone of Austin’s dining: unassuming outposts that overlook sun-washed parking lots, sharing a low-slung roadside plot of property with a small supermarket. , an accountant’s office, or a Pentecostal church.
Why is this important: Food trucks now provide much of the culinary action, but mall joints take us back a decade or two, when Austin was more lazy, less hipster. Relatively cheap rents make it an available step for immigrants on the American Dream Ladder.
Asher had lunch this week at Manna, a Korean restaurant on North Lamar and ordered:
- The bibimbap was scrumptious: a bowl of kimchi, a fried egg, marinated beef, grated cucumbers and carrots on a bed of rice.
- Vegetarian Japchae – glassy noodles speckled with chewy and succulent mushrooms – a tasty and hearty partner.
For groups wanting some fun raw marinated pork, beef and chicken and also on the menu for a table barbecue.
If you are going to: Manna is open from 11 am to 10 pm Monday and Wednesday to Saturday; On Sundays, it is open from noon to 10 p.m.
Pro tip: If you’re feeling inspired, hop next to Han Yang Market to stock up on bibimbap ingredients, as well as banana milk drinks and honey cookies.