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Gardner: An Artfully Intimate Dining Experience in Austin

gardner, best restaurant in austin, romantic austin restaurant, unique austin restaurant, best food in austin, vegetarian austin, fine dining austin, best date places austinLocated in a quiet nook on the infamous 6th street, rests a dimly lit, wood-decked eatery known as “Gardner.”

gardner, best restaurant in austin, romantic austin restaurant, unique austin restaurant, best food in austin, vegetarian austin, fine dining austin, best date places austinNatural and classy, finished with fine lines and touches of light, everything about this environment told us that our lives would be better off after having come here.

gardner, best restaurant in austin, romantic austin restaurant, unique austin restaurant, best food in austin, vegetarian austin, fine dining austin, best date places austinAfter settling in, we were visited by an array of polished and personable waiters and waitresses who set the pace for our timeless evening from beginning to end.

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gardner, best restaurant in austin, romantic austin restaurant, unique austin restaurant, best food in austin, vegetarian austin, fine dining austin, best date places austin, gardner menu, gardner drink menuAfter perusing the selection of fine menu options, we started off with 3 “Bites.” We each ordered a Cauliflower, which is one of two items that has been on the menu since the restaurant’s debut, and Drew ordered a serving of the Raw Beef.

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gardner, best restaurant in austin, romantic austin restaurant, unique austin restaurant, best food in austin, vegetarian austin, fine dining austin, best date places austin, gardner menu, gardner raw beef biteOur tastebuds were dancing with the innovative use of vegetables and flavors packed into such delicate looking creations, this seemed to be the trend for the rest of the night. Followed by the “Bites” we enjoyed the almond, miso and garlic brussel sprouts, alongside the garlic, walnut and lemon broccoli.

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gardner, best restaurant in austin, romantic austin restaurant, unique austin restaurant, best food in austin, vegetarian austin, fine dining austin, best date places austin, gardner menu, gardner broccoli Everything was perfectly cooked, lightly crisp on the edges, with hints of garlic and moments of almond and walnut crunch. The high-quality ingredients, along with the portion size of a few incredible forkfuls, made it easy for us to enjoy a variety of dishes and flavors without feeling overwhelmed. A few sweet moments later and we were blessed with these made-from-scratch beauties:

gardner, best restaurant in austin, romantic austin restaurant, unique austin restaurant, best food in austin, vegetarian austin, fine dining austin, best date places austin, gardner menu, what to order at gardner austinAs we reveled in the heavenly bliss created by our dinner rolls, we looked over the menu to select our “Second” dishes. As our waiter brought out the third set of dinner ware, we knew we were just moments away from another incredible culinary experience…

gardner, best restaurant in austin, romantic austin restaurant, unique austin restaurant, best food in austin, vegetarian austin, fine dining austin, best date places austin, gardner menu, what to order at gardner austinI ordered the Dry Aged Beef served with sweet potatoes and other wonderfulness, and Drew ordered the evening’s special, Short Ribs with a roasted artichoke crown. We ordered the recommended Gnudi to share and together everything created one the most unique and well executed dining experiences we have ever had the pleasure of enjoying.

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gardner, best restaurant in austin, romantic austin restaurant, unique austin restaurant, best food in austin, vegetarian austin, fine dining austin, best date places austin, gardner menu, what to order at gardner austin, short ribs at gardnerGnudi can be described as a type of gnocchi made from ricotta cheese and a touch of flour resulting in a light, fluffy and creamy dumpling. Gardner takes it up a notch by placing these warm and pillowy gems on a bed of arugula, surrounded by an incredible collection of smoked mushrooms, onions and a sauce that we can’t even begin to describe. This is definitely a dish worth trying… over and over again.

gardner, best restaurant in austin, romantic austin restaurant, unique austin restaurant, best food in austin, vegetarian austin, fine dining austin, best date places austin, gardner menu, what to order at gardner austin, gnudi at gardnerOnce our palettes had the chance to process all of the tastes that were swirling around, we sat back, took in a deep breath and let out a sigh as a giant smile formed on each of our faces. We knew we still had dessert to look forward to:

gardner, best restaurant in austin, romantic austin restaurant, unique austin restaurant, best food in austin, vegetarian austin, fine dining austin, best date places austinUsing the best vegetables and local produce to make magic, we ordered the Apple and Milk Chocolate to share… this marked the beginning of a truly climactic ending..

gardner, best restaurant in austin, romantic austin restaurant, unique austin restaurant, best food in austin, vegetarian austin, fine dining austin, best date places austin, dessert at the gardner, best dessert in austin, unique dessert in austin, vegetable dessert autsin, americas best dessertTo describe what happened next is like trying to smell the color 9. The Apple was a unique lineup of dehydrated granny smith slices intermixed with savory, brownie-like cubes topped with a dollop of hay ice cream… yes, HAY ice cream. Earthy and creamy, with just the right amount of tart, Drew’s eyes were the size of saucers after his first bite:

gardner, best restaurant in austin, romantic austin restaurant, unique austin restaurant, best food in austin, vegetarian austin, fine dining austin, best date places austin, dessert at the gardner, best dessert in austin, unique dessert in austin, vegetable dessert autsin, americas best dessert, hay ice creamThe Milk Chocolate resembled a red velvet cake, except it was made with beets and rose (OMG), topped with a naturally fuchsia colored dollop of smooth and tangy beet ice cream, all adorned with a finely shaved beet ribbon.

gardner, best restaurant in austin, romantic austin restaurant, unique austin restaurant, best food in austin, vegetarian austin, fine dining austin, best date places austin, dessert at the gardner, best dessert in austin, unique dessert in austin, vegetable dessert autsin, americas best dessert, beet cake, beet ice creamThe beet ribbon literally tasted like rose petals and hidden beneath it was a world of light and airy dehydrated chocolate bits and pomegranate seeds. It was decadent, refreshing and absolutely unparalleled.

gardner, best restaurant in austin, romantic austin restaurant, unique austin restaurant, best food in austin, vegetarian austin, fine dining austin, best date places austin, dessert at the gardner, best dessert in austin, unique dessert in austin, vegetable dessert autsin, americas best dessert, beet cake, beet ice creamFrom the very first bite to the very last, our meal at Gardner reminded us of the importance of taking the time to savor all of life’s moments, especially the small.

gardner, best restaurant in austin, romantic austin restaurant, unique austin restaurant, best food in austin, vegetarian austin, fine dining austin, best date places austin, dessert at the gardner, best dessert in austin, unique dessert in austin, vegetable dessert autsin, americas best dessert, dining expereince americaInsights:

What would we celebrate here? An anniversary/anything life changing and special.

What was our favorite bite? It’s a tie, we both say the cauliflower… though that Milk Chocolate bite above comes in close second!

What was most unique? The innovative use of vegetables, something we’ve never seen (or tasted) done so artfully well!

Extra tidbit: Check out the awesome framed roots on display throughout the restaurant and near the restrooms!

 

3 Comments

  1. Reply

    maddiemadalynne

    April 7, 2015

    When are you coming to Philly?!?

    • Reply

      mrandmrsadventure

      April 8, 2015

      Maddie, our next stop is Boston to catch our flights to Iceland! We were hoping to spend more time around here but our flights snuck up on us and the cold weather kept us South longer than expected. We may swoop back and down though!

  2. Reply

    Beth

    April 7, 2015

    WOW… Be still my beating heart! I can’t wait to go to Gardner! Thank you for this awesome post!

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