Retail Roundup: Granada Hills Area Shopping, Dining and Entertainment

Within minutes, Granada Hills residents can reach the beautiful and innovative Escarpment Village Shopping Center. The center collects rainwater in large cisterns, has solar panels for heating and electricity, and a literally green roof planted with native vegetation for insulation. The center also hosts more than 30 shops and restaurants. Residents have stores and dining for their daily needs as well as physicians and spas. Neighborhood grocery shopping is commonly done at the center’s upscale HEB.

The opulent Barton Creek Square Mall is only a short drive away, and Granada Hills residents visit the stores there for most of their fashion favorites. With over 180 stores and restaurants, residents enjoy easy access to Austin’s only Nordstrom. AMC Barton Creek cinema is frequented by the movie mavens that want to see the latest blockbusters; other entertainment can be found in downtown Austin, the music capital of the world, only 15 minutes away.

Hill Country Galleria, Village at Westlake, Sunset Valley Market Fair, Arbor Trails shopping centers are also all within about a 15-minute drive, and together offer more than 250 shops and restaurants.

Mouth-Watering Burgers and Santa Rita Frozen Margaritas

The Waterloo Ice House in Escarpment Village is popular for both lunch and dinner. Local foodies recommend the 38th Street Combo, which includes delicious chicken quesadillas, stuffed jalapeños, queso blanco, and chips and salsa — plenty to share for at least 3 people. The salads are fresh and the soups are divine. Best known for their burgers, residents favor the mouth–watering guacamole, bacon, and Swiss Burger, served with hand-cut french fries that are out of this world.

For true Tex-Mex dining, Santa Rita Tex-Mex Cantina is also located in Escarpment Village. Residents enjoy relaxing with a Santa Rita Frozen Margarita or a House Mexican Martini along with an order of Santa Rita Shrimp. Santa Rita Shrimp are tortilla encrusted Gulf shrimp served with pico de gallo and spicy avocado dipping sauce. Also popular, steak tampiqueno is the grilled Black Angus flat iron steak served with grilled onions and peppers, cheese enchiladas and topped with a secret sauce.

Delicious Interior Mexican Cuisine

Less than 10 minutes away, Hecho en Mexico serves some seriously delicious interior Mexican cuisine. The owners assert they’ve blended the street food, restaurant fare, and home cooking from their hometown of San Miguel de Allende with tastes from each distinct region of Mexico to create an authentic Interior Mexican menu that is like no other.

The dinner menu is extensive, and features a number of appetizers, soups and salads, taco/burrito options, specialties of the house, enchiladas, and desserts. And each section has tempting and adventurous sounding items that you don’t see everyday, even in the Mexican-food rich environment of Austin. For instance, one of the salads features marinated rabbit in chipotle peanut sauce with onion served on a bed of lettuce and garnished with sour cream.

Desserts are a beloved part of the meal for many patrons of Hecho en Mexico. The only problem is deciding! Desserts include nieve de mole (vanilla ice cream topped with a special dessert mole sauce), crepas de limon con salsa de zarzamora (crepes with a raspberry-lemon filling), and flan de cajeta (flan with caramelized goat milk), or Oaxacan Tres Leches cake served with a coffee-chocolate sauce.

Flavorful Pad Thai and Sticky Rice with Mango

When the mood hits for Asian food, locals often head to modest-looking Thai Taste for inexpensive but addictively delicious Thai food. Regulars recommend the Tom Kha Gai Soup — coconut milk soup with chicken flavored with galangal, lemon grass, and kaffir lime leaves and spiked with spicy hot chilies.

Traditional Thai curries are also very popular, as is Pad Thai. Specialties of the house include intriguing and delicious dishes such as Gang Phed Pen Yang — grilled duck breast with coconut milk, fresh tomato, pineapple, and Thai basil. It’s easy to fill up on the delicious appetizers, soups, and entrees, but it’s worth saving a little room for the virtually irresistible desserts such as sticky rice with mango or fried bananas with honey.