Restaurateurs Michael Fojtasek and Ben Fordham opened Redbud Ice House on March 19 in the former Contigo spot in East Austin near the former Robert Mueller Municipal Airport​​​​​​.

The inspiration

The "bud" in Redbud Ice House refers to the pub's intent to provide a space where locals want to mingle with their friends, or buds, and maybe meet a few new ones, according to a news release.

“We have focused throughout on bringing Austin a place where we would want to hang out, bring our families and friends, and feel welcome," Fordham said in the news release.

What's on the menu?

Menu items include locally sourced Wagyu cheeseburgers and soft-serve ice cream, as well as fried pork chop sandwiches with okra and collard greens, an eggplant chip sandwich with Alabama barbecue sauce, fried chicken salad with housemade ranch, and other fried snacks—most notably, fried green beans using the recipe from Contigo.

Cocktails, wines and local draft beers are available for those who wish to imbibe. Served in a frosted schooner glass, the house beer is made at nearby Batch Craft Beer & Kolaches.

What else?

In addition to long wooden tables and locally made booths, Redbud Ice House offers a large outdoor seating area for hosting community events and shows, as well as a playground for children.

“Redbud Ice House brings together the things that my family is looking for these days,” Fojtasek said in the news release. "A restaurant where kids want to go, a great outdoor space and simple delicious food. It helps that the music and decor feel like our house."