August 2003


Las Vegas, Nevada

Jul 31, 2003 By Paul Burka

GOLF IS NOT NORMALLY THE first thing that comes to mind when you think of Las Vegas. Casino owners have invested billions of dollars to keep you playing indoor games; they want you thinking about slots, not shots. Despite these odds, Las Vegas is becoming one of the top golfing…

San Diego Destination Information

Jul 31, 2003 By Texas Monthly

Getting There There are nonstop or direct (one stop) flights to San Diego from Austin (American, Southwest), DFW (American, Delta, Frontier), El Paso (Southwest), Houston Bush Intercontinental (Continental), and Houston Hobby (Southwest). Eating and Sleeping AL’S IN-THE-VILLAGE CAFE 795 Carlsbad Village Dr., Carlsbad 760-729-5448 entrées $4.95-$8.95…

San Diego, California

Jul 31, 2003 By Evan Smith

AFTER WHAT MY DAUGHTER STERNLY reminds me are almost but not quite six and a half years of parenting, I have a few rules for taking the family away for the weekend: First, fly direct (because, these days, having to make a connection is an agita-inducing proposition). Second, spend no…

New Orleans Destination Information

Jul 31, 2003 By Texas Monthly

Getting There There are nonstop or direct (one stop) flights to New Orleans from Austin (American, Southwest), Dallas’ Love Field (Southwest), DFW (American, Delta), Houston Bush Intercontinental (Continental), Houston Hobby (Southwest), and San Antonio (Southwest). Eating and Sleeping BRIGTSEN’S 723 Dante 504-861-7610 dinner entrées $17-$26 CAFE…

Get Outta Here!

Jul 31, 2003 By Texas Monthly

It's August in Texas. The dog days of summer are barking which means it's time to grab your loved ones and hop the first plane out of state. And you shouldn't go just anyplace. We're thinking of five weekend destinations in particular. Bag packed already?

New Orleans, Louisiana

Jul 31, 2003 By Patricia Sharpe

WHEN IT COMES TO CONDITIONED responses, Pavlov’s dog has nothing on me. All you have to do is whisper the names of New Orleans’ fabled restaurants—Brennan’s, Galatoire’s, Commander’s Palace, K Paul’s, Bayona, Antoine’s, Emeril’s—and I’ll be salivating at the thought of snowy white crabmeat simmering in an ocean of butter…

Colorado Destination Information

Jul 31, 2003 By Texas Monthly

Getting There First, reserve a site for the weekend at the West Chicago Creek Campground (877-444-6777,; toilets, no showers; each site $11 a night); sites 5, 7, and 9 have the most privacy and the best views. There are nonstop or direct (one stop) flights to Denver…

Mount Evans Wilderness Area, Colorado

Jul 31, 2003 By Christopher Keyes

A FRIEND OF MINE FROM Colorado gives the following instructions for choosing a weekend camping destination in his nature-rich home state: Place a map of Colorado on a bulletin board, close your eyes, and throw a dart. Wherever it lands, he says, is bound to offer some of the best…

New Mexico Destination Information

Jul 31, 2003 By Texas Monthly

Getting There There are nonstop or direct (one stop) flights to Albuquerque from Austin (Southwest), Dallas’ Love Field (Southwest), DFW (American, Delta), El Paso (Frontier, Southwest), Houston Bush Intercontinental (Continental), Houston Hobby (Southwest), and San Antonio (Delta, Southwest). Ojo Caliente is a two-and-a-half-hour drive from the airport via Interstate…

About a Girl

Jul 31, 2003 By Karen Olsson

Audra Thomas can't read these words and, in a few months, wouldn't remember them anyway. Nevertheless, she has an extraodinary sense of the world around her—and of herself.

Little Shop of Horrors

Jul 31, 2003 By Katy Vine

If you've ever thought of donating your body to science, read what happened at the University of Texas Medical Branch at Galveston—and then ask yourself if a good, old-fashioned burial might not be a better idea.

Making Waves

Jul 31, 2003 By Katy Vine

Photographer Kenny Braun has been surfing the Gulf Coast for about thirty years. So naturally, when the water's just right, he grabs his . . . camera.

Running for His Life

Jul 31, 2003 By Michael Hall

Ten years ago, on a mountaintop in Africa, about to be burned alive by tribal warriors, a teenager saved himself the only way he knew how. Even today, he wonders why he survived.

Ojo Caliente, New Mexico

Jul 31, 2003 By Suzy Banks

I THINK MY AIRLINE CONSPIRED TO heighten my appreciation of Ojo Caliente Mineral Springs, a venerable resort between Taos and Santa Fe. After a roller-coaster flight through turbulence east of Albuquerque, the loss of my baggage, and the always-ego-boosting search for an emergency swimsuit, I was more than ready to…

Las Vegas Destination Information

Jul 31, 2003 By Texas Monthly

Getting There There are nonstop or direct (one stop) flights to Las Vegas from Austin (Southwest), DFW (America West, American, Delta), El Paso (Southwest), Houston Bush Intercontinental (Continental), Houston Hobby (Southwest), and San Antonio (Southwest). Eating and Sleeping HUGO’S CELLAR 202 Fremont (in the Four Queens Casino)…


Rain of Error

Jul 31, 2003 By S. C. Gwynne

For as long as there has been a Texas, there have been dry spells when people wished it would rain. One huckster actually tried to make it happen—with the financial backing of Congress.


Word of Mouth

Jul 31, 2003 By Stacy Hollister

NO BULLFood & Wine recently named David Bull, the 28-year-old executive chef at Austin’s Driskill Hotel, one of its ten best new American chefs of 2003. (Next month we’ll talk to Scott Tycer, of Aries in Houston, the other Texas chef to make the list.) Was there ever a moment…

Tex-Mex Restaurants

Jul 31, 2003 By Texas Monthly

AUSTIN El Patio. 2938 Guadalupe, 512-476-5955. Open Mon-Sat 11 a.m. – 9:45 p.m.. Closed Sun. Juan in a Million. 2300 E. Cesar Chavez, 512-472-3872. Open Sun-Wed 7 a.m. – 3 p.m., Thur-Sat 7 a.m. – 8 p.m.. Matt’s El Rancho. 2613 S. Lamar Boulevard, 512-462-9333.

Primary Flavors

Jul 31, 2003 By Patricia McConnico

LEAN AND GREEN You can find the slim, distinctive chiles called long greens or Anaheims growing in areas throughout the Southwest United States, but by almost universal assent, the ones cultivated around Hatch, New Mexico, are the best. Supposedly the local soil, altitude, and rainfall provide conditions that make these…


Jul 31, 2003 By Patricia Sharpe

NOT MY BACK YARD What’s in a name—or, rather, a slogan? To me, the “gourmet backyard cuisine” at Jasper’s in Plano is about 90 percent gourmet and 10 percent backyard (not that there’s anything wrong with that). What’s more, curtains made of bronze mesh and arty room dividers of pencil-thin…

Books That Cook

Jul 31, 2003 By Anne Stover

Believe it or not, wine growing in Texas began in the mid-1600’s, when Spanish Franciscan monks planted the Spanish black grape in El Paso. Today, there are more than forty wineries in five grape-growing regions across the Lone Star State. In Touring Texas Wineries, the Cieslas present seven trails to…

Fire Roasted Salsa

Jul 31, 2003 By Texas Monthly

This salsa gets its smoky flavor and rich color from blistering the vegetables on the mesquite grill. The vegetables may be skewered and blackened over a gas range at home, but you’ll be missing out on the mesquite flavor. A closer alternative is to use soaked mesquite wood chips…

Maytag Blue Potato Chips

Jul 31, 2003 By Texas Monthly

Potato Chips 2 1/2 large Yukon Gold potatoes 1 quart canola oil (for fryer) 1/4 teaspoon kosher salt On a Japanese mandoline, slice the potatoes (skin on) at twice the thickness of a sheet of paper. Have a container of running warm to hot water for…


Bad Air Days

Jul 31, 2003 By Jim Atkinson

Historically, Southeast Texas and cancer have gone together like, well, pollution and disease. I wish I could say things were different today.

Tex-Mex 101

Jul 31, 2003 By Patricia Sharpe

Why yellow-cheese enchiladas, chile con carne, and puffy tacos aren't Mexican food: A short course on the cuisine that was fusion before fusion was hip.

Killing Time

Jul 31, 2003 By Mike Shea

Stephen Graham Jones's All the Beautiful Sinners is a wild-eyed thriller; Amanda Eyre Ward's Sleep Toward Heaven is a tale of grief, forgiveness, and the death penalty.



Jul 31, 2003 By Patricia McConnico

BACK TO THE FUTURE For those of you mid-thirtysomethings and early-fortysomethings who think you’re still cool, I’ve got news: Not. But this month, you can relive your glory days—the eighties. First, rent a few flicks (Sixteen Candles, Fast Times at Ridgemont High, and Valley Girl) to set the mood. Then,…


Jul 31, 2003 By Katharyn Rodemann

SHAKE, RATTLE, AND ROLL When summertime playlists begin to sound like good elevator music and Paradise Hotel seems like quality TV programming, you know it’s time for a change. And there’s no better way to get rid of a funk than with some live tunes—rocking or otherwise. Check out the…

Straight Talk

Jul 31, 2003 By Katy Vine

FOR THE GOOD TIMES Singer-songwriter Kris Kristofferson will be inducted by Willie Nelson into the Texas Country Music Hall of Fame in Carthage on August 16. I’ve always thought that Hawaii has a lot in common with Texas. My old friends always say I’ve gone back home.


Jul 31, 2003 By Stacy Hollister

COWBOY JUNKIES If you’re anything like the city slicker I am, then the closest you’ve come to experiencing the West is through books and movies —not all of us have that urge to visit a working ranch à la Billy Crystal. But this month we can get even closer to…