79 & 81 Rainey St
Austin, TX 78701
The first monthly happy hour of 2016 with Austin Food Bloggers Alliance happened last week. We started the year with a bang at Banger’s Sausage House and Beer Garden. Chef Ted Prater and owner Ben Seigel offered up their time and space and hosted an educational and delicious evening. The happy hour started with Chef Ted and Ben demonstrating how pickles and sausages were made. Then they threw the sausages on the open fire grill and showcased some of their signature sides (hello Poutine and fried cheese curds!). We ended the evening eating and chatting under the night sky.
I’ve been to Banger’s many times but it has been some time since I’ve been. It’s the perfect place to convene with friends when you want an easy, relaxed place that caters to all, dogs and vegetarians too. (They have a fenced mini dog park in their patio area!) I hate to admit that I had started to take Banger’s for granted. Isn’t it human nature to take for granted the ever reliable people and things in your life? We forget to appreciate all that they offer. I was humbly reminded what all Banger’s has to offer to Austin after listening to Chef Ted talk about making sausage. He is so passionate about his craft; it was palpable in his energy.
It’s hard to pick a highlight of the evening but if I had to, it would be when Chef Ted let me stand by him and get my (gloved) hands dirty. I tried my hand at twisting sausage links, putting the slippery casing on the machine, and cranking out sausage. I was delighted!
Another way to remedy taking things for granted is to see it more curiously and experience it from different perspectives. And that’s exactly what my evening with AFBA and Banger’s did. I got to hear two voices behind the establishment express their love for their work. I saw my fellow food writers engrossed and then happily tucking into sausages. I tried two items I never tried before there and can’t wait to go back and order them again. The fried chicken sausage when I’m feeling naughty and the vegetarian BLT sausage when I’m feeling virtuous.
I left with a renewed appreciation for Banger’s and a resolution to come back more often.
The photo of me and Chef Ted is credited to fellow AFBA board member and friend, South Austin Foodie.
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