AUSTIN (KXAN) — Inside the kitchen at Central Austin’s Texas French Bread, Chef Derek Zampacorta oversees the chorus of chopping, rolling, mixing and baking, like a conductor leading his orchestra during the final rehearsal before the big show.
“We’re doing a three-course menu, one of the courses being a handmade pasta,” said Zampacorta as he rolls out the dough from scratch.
His goal is to have the feel of a European bistro with a dash of Austin flavor. For every $50 dinner, Texas French Bread will donate $8 to the Central Texas Food Bank.
Other restaurants are offering a similar deal, with meals priced at $20, $35 and $50.
Texas French Bread Owner Murph Willcott said the Austin Restaurant Weeks fundraiser is a win-win. He’s able to fill more tables with diners interested in the promotion, while also helping those in need.
“Sometimes you get your nose and your eyes pointed down and you don’t have time to really think about, well, ‘What can we do in a wider sense?’ And this is a really easy way for us to do it,” Willcott said.
This year’s event runs from Friday, Oct. 1 through Sunday, Oct. 10.
In 2019, more than 100 restaurants participated in the fundraiser and helped raise $150,000 for the food bank. While the lineup of 56 restaurants is smaller coming off of a canceled year due to the pandemic, the money they’ll raise is needed.
The Central Texas Food Bank feeds nearly 75,000 people in 21 counties every week.
“If you go out for dinner with two people through Austin Restaurant Weeks, the menu that your purchase, a portion of the sales will go back to the Central Texas Food Bank,” said Amelia Long, the Central Texas Food Bank’s Director of Community Engagement. “So eating two dinners can turn into 50 meals for people who are in need of food in our community.”
For Zampacorta, it’s a chance to impress new diners eager to participate.
“Trying to accomplish a real eclectic authentic, traditional cuisine. It’s what we do here,” Zampacorta said.
The Austin Restaurant Weeks website lets you sort each restaurant by type of menu and indoor or outdoor dining. It also featured more details about each one’s special.
- 1886 Cafe & Bakery: 604 Brazos St.
- 4th Tap Brewing Co-op: 10615 Metric Blvd.
- ALC Steaks: 1205 N Lamar Blvd.
- Ah Sing Den: 1100 E. Sixth St.
- Alices Restaurant: 16604 Fitzhugh Road, Dripping Springs
- Amy’s Ice Creams: All Locations
- Arlo Grey: 111 E Cesar Chavez St.
- Bar Peached: 1315 W 6th St.
- Black Star Co-op: 7020 Easy Wind Dr.
- Buenos Aires Cafe: 1201 E 6th St.
- Café No Sé: 1603 S Congress Ave.
- Capital City Gastro: 5610 N Interstate Highway 35
- Caroline: 621 Congress Ave Suite 101
- CARVE American Grille: 7415 Southwest Pkwy Suite 2-200
- Chinatown North: 3407 Greystone Dr.
- Craft Pride: 61 Rainey St.
- Culinary Dropout: 11721 Rock Rose Ave. Suite #100
- Devil May Care: 500 W 6th St. Suite 100
- El Alma Cafe: 1025 Barton Springs Road
- El Chile Cafe: 1809 Manor Road
- Foreign & Domestic: 306 E 53rd St.
- Goodall’s: 1900 Rio Grande St.
- Gusto Italian Kitchen + Wine Bar: 4800 Burnet Road
- Hotel Vegas Concession Stand: 1500 E 6th St.
- Il Brutto: 1601 E 6th St.
- Intero: 2612 E Cesar Chavez St. Suite 105
- It’s Italian Cucina: 1500 S Lamar Blvd. Unit 110
- Jack Allen’s Kitchen (360): 3600 N Capital of Texas Highway Building D
- Jack Allen’s Kitchen (Anderson Lane): 3010 W Anderson Lane Suite D
- Jack Allen’s Kitchen (Oak Hill): 7720 State Highway 71 West
- Jack Allen’s Kitchen (Round Rock): 2500 Hoppe Trail
- Julie Myrtille Bakery: 1023 Springdale Road Building 1D
- Juniper: 12400 E Cesar Chavez Suite 204
- Kale Me Crazy: 8300 N FM 620
- L’Oca d’Oro: 1900 Simond Ave.
- La Condesa: 400 W 2nd St. A
- Little Ola’s Biscuits: 14735 Bratton Lane #310
- Olive & June: 3411 Glenview Ave.
- P6: 111 E Cesar Chavez St.
- Paul Martin’s American Grill: 3120 Palm Way #130
- Perry’s Steakhouse & Grille (Domain): 11801 Domain Blvd.
- Perry’s Steakhouse & Grille (Downtown): 114 W 7th St.
- Sala & Betty: 5201 Airport Blvd.
- Salt Traders Coastal Cooking (Round Rock): 2850 N Interstate Highway 35
- Salt Traders Coastal Cooking (Zilker): 1101 S MoPac Expressway
- Second Bar + Kitchen Domain NORTHSIDE: 3121 Palm Way #101
- Siena Ristorante: 6203 N Capital of Texas Highway
- Sweet Paris Creperie & Cafe: 11410 Century Oaks Terrace 112
- TenTen: 501 W 6th St.
- Texas French Bread: 2900 Rio Grande St.
- Thai Fresh: 909 W Mary St.
- The Cavalier: 2400 Webberville Road Suite A
- The Front Page: 1023 Springdale Road, Building 1 Suite F
- The Peached Tortilla: 5520 Burnet Road #100
- The Well: 440 W 2nd St.
- Trudy’s Tex Mex (North Star): 8820 Burnet Road
- Trudy’s Tex Mex (South Star): 901 Little Texas Lane C
- Wicky’s Walkup: 2400 Webberville Road