Moonshine founders Chuck Smith and Larry Perdido opened the original location in 2003 in a historic building that dates back to the 1850s. Moonshine Director of Operations Joseph Nguyen said the atmosphere and food reminds people of “going to their grandmother’s house.” Since it was not possible to recreate the same historical feel in Avery Ranch, the northern location, at 10525 W. Parmer Lane, reflects a modern interpretation of Southern comfort, Nguyen said.
“It’s like going to your mom’s house now instead of your grandma’s house,” Nguyen said.
The menu includes many of the same items as the downtown location’s, such as chicken-fried steak covered in chipotle cream gravy, chicken and waffles, St. Louis-style ribs with apple barbecue sauce and cathead biscuits equipped with all the fixings: honey butter and sweet preserves. An all-you-care-to-eat brunch buffet takes place on Sundays. The restaurant’s drink menu contains wine; beer; and a number of cocktails, such as the Southern Belle Martini and a bourbon slush.
The restaurant has a bar featuring a wall of carefully selected whiskeys and bourbons. Nguyen said over the last five years, Moonshine has been working to expand its whiskey and bourbon list. While five years ago it contained fewer than 20 bourbons and whiskeys, the list now has more than 140. Nguyen and other members of the team travel around the U.S. to pick out quality liquors to serve at Moonshine.
“We’ll go to Kentucky, or we’ll go to Virginia, and we’ll actually go to the distilleries and work with the master distilleries on hand-selecting a single barrel of bourbon or whiskey to bring back to Austin,” Nguyen said.