Wednesday, February 12, 2020

First Look: The Meteor

The Meteor on South Congress Austin
The Meteor on South Congress Avenue

New on South Congress, just a few blocks past the hip and trendy stuff is a new spot called The Meteor. But what would you call it? Is it:
  •  a) a coffee shop
  •  b) an eating establishment
  •  c) a wine bar
  •  d) a bicycle repair spot
  •  e) all of the above
If you guessed "e" you are correct and win a chain lube along with your morning coffee!  (Just kidding, no prizes being offered, but thanks for playing!) The Meteor's beautiful outdoor sign says "Espresso Champagne and Chain Lube" to which I might update to say "Breakfast Booze Bikes". It's not an identity crisis, but to me, a kind of an odd pairing of food/drink with bike services, and yet it appears to be working.

When I arrived for a solo late lunch on a recent weekday, the place was at least half full, mostly with people on their laptops or reading. There were a couple people in the bike area, (the far back in the photo below) but I didn't really pay attention to what was going on in there. I love the big windows and sunlight pouring in.
The Meteor on South Congress Austin

I initially was going to get a grains bowl, but I saw a freshly made quiche cooling on the counter, and opted for a piece, plus a piece of their za'atar focaccia which I intended to save for later.
The Meteor quiche
Quiche of the day
The Meteor focaccia
Za'atar focaccia
Both were amazing. Hats off to whomever the chef or pastry chef is, because they know what they are doing! The crust on the quiche was actually crisp on the bottom, which tells me they are probably blind baking the crust before adding the egg filling to it. Plus it's a super-tall piece. This had a couple of cherry tomatoes in it but an almost entirely egg filling, and perfectly cooked at that.

If you're not familiar with za'atar, it's a Middle Eastern spice blend (like a curry powder, every grandma has a different recipe) usually consisting of sesame seeds, thyme, oregano, sumac powder, and salt. I've always loved the flavor, and have used it with meats before, but also it's just good in olive oil for dipping. You can buy some from the spice jars in the Bulk Department at Central Market. Anyhow, this focaccia was dense but still had that airness and holes you expect in a well-risen focaccia. I ate more of this than I intended with the quiche, but did save the rest to go with a salad I had for dinner.
The Meteor pastries
Pastry offerings
The Meteor pizza
Pizza offerings 
There was also a nice selection of pastries on the counter, and they sell their pizza by weight rather than by slice.  While I am trying to watch my carbs, I am coveting all the baked goods I saw at Meteor! Unfortunately, not a place that's gluten-friendly at least for the baked items. Also the service at the counter was super friendly!

Other than being very pleasantly surprised about the quality of the items I had, The Meteor is not far from me, on the edge of the Bouldin Creek neighborhood, so I look forward to future visits. I should think about buying a bicycle so I can work off the carbs and get the bike serviced while I eat more of them!
The Meteor logo