Is the Austin Grill in the D.C. Metro Area True to Texas Style?

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The United States is quite literally a melting pot of regional cultures and traditions that aren’t quite the same in every location. That’s why the Austin Grill caught our attention.

With four locations around the Washington D.C. metro area, which includes both Maryland and Virginia, the Austin Grill prides itself on being the best option for Tex-Mex in the mid-Atlantic.

The menu at Austin Grill is fairly Tex-Mex, with names like Tex-Mex Crispy Rolls and Long Horn Nachos. They offer tacos, fajitas, enchiladas, burritos, and quesadillas of all kinds, and even go as far as to offer a half rack of dry rubbed ribs.

Their ‘about’ page is simple, “At Austin Grill, you’ll find the food that generations of Texans have come to expect – with an Austin twist: fresh, made-from-scratch Tex-Mex.” There’s one thing that doesn’t seem quite right, though, and it’s that pesky Austin twist phrase.

Don’t all Texans pride themselves in way or another in being able to at least make one of their favorite Tex-Mex dishes from scratch? How is this only an Austin thing? Now, it could just be an excellent sales phrase, playing off Austin’s rich history as the hotbed of culture in the Hill Country, but it also means something for the way the rest of the country looks at Texas.

We saw this question being asked over breakfast tacos with San Antonio vs. Austin. When did something being Texan become a race to declare a city that created it? Austin sure didn’t create Tex-Mex, and to say something is homemade specifically is an Austin twist isn’t very fair to all the other Texan and Mexican cities that developed the insanely delicious flavors of Tex-Mex.