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The Tavern

4.7 74 votes

922 W. 12th Street

(512) 320-8377

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Jane Mesa Last updated on Aug 15, 2022 by

The Tavern on Lamar is Austin's Best Pub Scene


Nested between the hustle and bustle of campus and the ever changing landscape of downtown Austin sits a quirky little German looking building that seems almost out of place, yet somehow perfect for its surroundings.

The story of The Tavern starts back in 1916 when it was known as The Enfield Grocery Store. Its iconic German style exterior is thanks to architect Hugo Kuehne, who also designed what is now The Austin History Center. During prohibition this location became a front for an illegal bar and brothel housed on the second floor. There are many dark tales of The Tavern’s past, including everyone’s favorite resident ghost kid, Emily. You can even get some adorable Emily themed swag from The Tavern’s website.  To learn more about her, book a ghost tour with our friends at Haunted ATX or just ask one of the bartenders!

The Tavern is an Austin legend!


Let’s get into how much the living absolutely love this bar. It’s so beloved by locals that nearly everyone from Austin has a story that starts off “Ya’ll, this one night at The Tavern…”.  As much as the exterior stands out among the polished businesses of the area, the interior of this bar takes you back to a time when Austin was a bit smaller, a little slower, and your neighborhood bar was more than just a local watering hole. There’s an old wooden bar with carvings from past patrons and large Edison style bulbs hanging. The perfectly positioned seating and TV configurations ensure you can see every moment of your favorite game. Upstairs, there’s more seating and TVs, a second bar, some very rad retro machine games, and two outdoor patios. 

"Y'all, one time at The Tavern..."


For me, there’s nothing like an afternoon spent on the small outdoor patio, an order of the White Wings (bacon wrapped, jalapeño stuffed, boneless chicken wings tossed in sauce) accompanied with an order of Mahomes Fries (Fries topped with queso, chopped smoked BBQ brisket, house made pico, and jalapeños).  All of their cocktails are amazing, but there is a local rumor that The Tavern is the home of the Lemondrop Shot.  Feel free to let your bartender know that Jane told you this fun fact.

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