Odd Duck

Bryce Gilmore’s fabled trailer (which was shuttered a year after he opened Barley Swine) is back. Version 2.0 occupies swanky new digs, with an open kitchen surrounded by a reclaimed-wood bar, to keep things casual. Mix-and-match plates and platters hold predictably delicious dishes (roasted-fennel-and-turnip salad in a metal bowl, pickled shrimp on coarse-ground grits in a canning jar). Cow’s tongue, simultaneously tender and crispy, was brightened by arcs of beets.

When Writers Write About Writers

In 1985, when the novelist and playwright James Magnuson first accepted a job teaching creative writing at the University of Texas at Austin, he harbored a fair amount of skepticism toward the academic world. In the past, he had taken what he called “an outsider’s pride” in being able to support himself as a writer without having to teach. He wondered too if both the teachers and the students in creative writing programs were prone to taking themselves too seriously.

A Room With a Brew

Menger Bar, Menger Hotel, San Antonio

If anyone deserves a drink, it’s the traveler. Which is why the hotel bar is such an important amenity. It’s the place where, weary from her journey, a wandering soul marks the end of her drive/flight/walk from the office and toasts her impending vacation/sabbatical/happy hour. At a hotel bar anything can happen.

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