Somebody Help This Poor Girl: Austria Meets Dallas

What would you do if the following scenario was your life?

My Austrian foreign exchange student’s parents are coming here at the end of May.  I want to have a going away party for the student and combine it with a welcome to Texas party for the parents. I can’t decide what to do.  A taco truck would be fun, but don’t have the names of any.  Or should I do BBQ, is that more quintessentially Texas? I can’t spend a bunch of money. I am amenable to having it catered at my house or at a restaurant.  Any suggestions?

I am no longer a caterer and my heart rate doubles when I read this, so you guys help her.


  • Willard Spiegelman

    Take a cue from the late Stanley Marcus. It never fails: when entertaining people from out of town, especially people from Europe, whether royals or commoners, do NOT serve fancy European food. Give them barbecue, and beans, and pecan pie, and cold beer. It ALWAYS works. I have done this myself. Everyone goes away happy, and there’s always enough of the side dishes for adamant vegetarians. Sonny Bryan does a very reasonable package, and you can either pick it up yourself or ask them to deliver.

  • I am a private chef and caterer. I live in Austin, but my daughter lives in Flower Mound, so a visit with her could easily coincide with your event. I would have to use your kitchen/grill, whatever is available (I’ve made mean ribs in ovens, by the way). I’d suggest barbecue, perhaps ribs and brisket with the usual Texas sides. If you’re interested, please let me know! I’d be happy to help.

  • air

    Call Meshack’s or Pecan Lodge or something and make a big order of BBQ.

  • I’ve purchased whole briskets from Pecan Lodge for camping trips and they heat up perfectly. I’ve also ordered online from Black’s in Lockhart – they ship up frozen but they also reheat perfectly. I’ve stopped wasting time standing over a smoker for 14 hours.

  • For a taco truck, check out Taco Taxi Company at I haven’t used them yet, but have heard only wonderful things about them!

  • Jessica Lowry

    Cattleack BBQ is amazing! Great Prices, Yummy Food, Friendly People…I would hightly recommend them.

  • Jessica Lowry

    oops…highly…VERY highly 🙂

  • nicole

    I would highly recommend Xcess Catering Company. Their BBQ meal is reasonably priced and is TERRIFIC! I have used them for my events for nearly 10 years and never been disappointed. The chef does something to brisket and their side of mac and cheese that is UNBELIEVABLE!!!!

  • nicole
  • DGirl

    Does it matter that the event is going to be on May 28, the Saturday of Memorial Day weekend? Will a caterer hate me for making them work that weekend? Will anyone show up? Will I be stuck with 12 briskets,5 cases of beer and disappointed Austrians?

  • City Street Grille Food Truck!/CityStreetGrille is awesome. They have anything from unique burritos to fried chicken waffle wrap to light sandwiches. Perfect for a party. Also, Scott Townend is Exec. Corp. Chef at Spice of Life Catering 214-697-3516

  • maryofdallas

    Good 2 Go Taco all the way! Those ladies are awesome and I think they are pretty affordably priced.

  • aria

    Hard 8 BBQ in Coppell. Their outdoor patio is great for out of town (country!) guests visiting Texas.

  • There is no doubt. Austrian cuisine (trust me, I know, I cooked in Salzburg for a year) is mostly pork based. If you want to make them happy, serve something that is not like home but sends your friends back home with good memories, BBQ never fails.

    In fact, I have friends from Vienna come to Dallas for a trip to Austin’s BBQ temples once a year after I took them to Louie Mueller as a farewell the first time they came over. It’s something you don’t get even in world-aware Austria, and it’s a great drive down south to say goodbye to the Great State of Texas 🙂

  • Jason

    Can’t go wrong with either but if it was me and I did BBQ I would just do pick up at OFF THE BONE in Dallas.

    Now for Mexican food just go to the local Mexican grocery. You can buy pre-marinated meat for taco’s and fajitas. Prepared guacomole and fixings + fresh tortillas. The meat won’t take long to grill and besides it’s Memorial day and grilling is part of the tradition. Plus buying from a Mexican Grocer like Mihocana is super cheap and usually pretty great product.

    Or if you want to really blow it out….take ’em to FW do the stockyards and see the longhorns and cowboys, eat at COOPER’s which is in the parking lot of Billy Bob’s and go see some country music. Now that is a lasting impression of TEXAS.

  • Leanne

    Gilley’s would be a fun place to take them.