Food, films and fun at Top Notch old fashioned drive in

classic car

You know the old fashioned drive in burger places you see in 1950’s movies? The ones with trays and great big burgers and piles of fries on trays? I always wondered what it would be like to go to one of those places with a date on a Saturday night. Guess what?  My partner-in-crime and I got to do exactly that — and it was here in Austin!

Tucked in among the businesses on a busy stretch of Burnett Road we found Top Notch.

Top Notch sign

This is the real thing, classic cars and all. Burgers, chicken and veggie burgers cooked over an open flame.

Open flame cookingShakes and fries, too, from 11 am to 10 pm every day of the week.

Top Notch menuAnd once a month, they add another classic touch. Drive in movies on their very own classic-television-screen on the side of the building. Local car enthusiasts come out with their classic cars and trucks. Families come out with lawn chairs. There’s live music until it’s dark enough for the movie to start, but no one is checking their watch. It’s too much fun sitting out there eating and checking out the cars. There’s even a photo op!

7-20140516_202913Oh, and the food. My veggie burger was cooked perfectly, and the fries were crisp and super hot. Lance’s fried chicken was the kind you usually find in a favorite grandmother’s kitchen, and his order of fried okra was crisp and tasty without a bit of mushiness.

This is a great choice for a date night or a family night out. Upcoming car and movie nights are listed on their Facebook page, so you can add them to your calendar.

The Specs

7525 Burnett Road
Austin TX 78757

Mon-Fri 11 am -10 pm
Sat-Sun 11 am – 10 pm


Top Notch on Urbanspoon

Dogs run free at Cedar Bark Park

06-DSC04608Austin is one of the most dog friendly cities in the country. We bring our pup to patio restaurants, festivals, parks and on hikes. But sometimes, a dog just needs to run around with other dogs and leave the leashes behind.

dog in lakeBut letting her run off-leash in an unfenced area is just a little to scary for my taste especially with her favorite distraction, squirrels, everywhere!

So I was so happy when we found the Cedar Bark Park, just north of Austin in Veterans Memorial Park. This is a BIG dog park! Five entire acres of fenced in, off-leash fun.

Cedar Bark ParkComplete with separate play sections for big and little dogs…

Large dog section Cedar Bark ParkAnd a lake for swimming and ball-chasing…

04-DSC04602There’s even a bathing area to clean up muddy pups before they go back in the car. (Trust me, we NEED this part! My dog loves to get wet and then roll!)

The park is free to use, and doesn’t require membership or registration. Everyone is great about keep their dogs under control and heading out if their pet gets grumpy or nervous.

Dogs playing at parkThe space is really big, so there’s plenty of room for games of fetch or puppy Frisbee. Benches provide seating for those of us who aren’t four-legged and a few are covered for shade. But they can get muddy, so come dressed to get dirty.

Owners are responsible for cleaning up pet waste, and bags are provided. Puppies under age four months aren’t allowed in the park.

The Specs

Cedar Bark Park
Veteran’s Memorial Park
2525 W. New Hope Drive
Cedar Park, TX  78613

Dawn to dusk except Tuesday (closed 7 am to 4 pm Tuesday)

An abundance of Bluebonnets on Wordfree Wednesday

It’s that time of year. Every field, highway divider and roadside is covered with Texas’ favorite flower, the Bluebonnet.

I’ve headed out myself this year, camera in hand, and I found some great blooms. So here, with no need for more words, are the Bluebonnets of 2014

Bluebonnets Bluebonnets Bluebonnets Bluebonnets Bluebonnets Bluebonnets Bluebonnets Bluebonnets Bluebonnets Bluebonnets