The Little Darlin’ aims to bring the ‘weird’ back to South Austin

From left: Owners Mike Sanchez, Mimi Rose, Brian Buscemi and Karinne Sanchez sit outside at The Little Darlinu2019.

From left: Owners Mike Sanchez, Mimi Rose, Brian Buscemi and Karinne Sanchez sit outside at The Little Darlinu2019.

Image description
The Little Darlin’
Image description
The Little Darlin’
Image description
The Little Darlin’
Image description
The Little Darlin’
Image description
The Little Darlin’
Image description
The Little Darlin’

Nestled in a pocket between South Congress Avenue and William Cannon Drive, The Little Darlin’ bar and restaurant was designed to bring a little bit of South Austin back to South Austin, co-owner Brian Buscemi said.


“There was a lot of ‘Keep Austin Weird’ in the ’90s, and to me, at that time things were really weird,” Buscemi said. “Sometime over the past 20 years or so the whole idea of keeping Austin weird [became] manufactured and almost commercial in a way. We felt like if we were gonna open a spot it would be the kind of place we grew up hanging out in.”


Buscemi opened The Little Darlin’ in 2016 with co-owners and longtime friends Mimi Rose, Mike Sanchez and Karinne Sanchez. The group met in Austin in the 1990s, Buscemi said. 


“For the four of us it was just time to do it,” Buscemi said of opening the restaurant. “We didn’t have any real plan other than we knew we wanted to create a space where the four of us would want to spend our time.”


One of The Little Darlin’s biggest draws is its dog-friendly patio and outdoor area, which has capacity for 500 and includes covered seating, lawn games and a stage for live music, Buscemi said. The venue also features local beers on tap, house-infused liquor, a menu focused around local and organic ingredients, pool tables and dart games.


Rose said one of the biggest honors is seeing a wide range of area residents enjoying The Little Darlin’s menu, beverages and atmosphere.


“Everyone is represented,” she said. “I feel like we are a staple of the South Austin community.”


The menu is just as eclectic as its clientele, with offerings including soups and salads, burgers and fried steak, vegan options and a full brunch menu.


“We wanted to have simple food that fit in well with nightlife, but we didn’t want to have crummy bar food,” Buscemi said. “We wanted to have high-quality, simple food; local ingredients; [and] as much organic and local stuff as possible.”


The restaurant celebrates its third anniversary in April.


“It seems like we keep having our busiest day ever. It just keeps happening,” he said. “I know that South Austin desperately needed this place.”



The Little Darlin’


6507 Circle South Road, Austin
512-814-0999
www.thelittledarlin.com
Hours: 11 a.m.-2 a.m. daily


MOST RECENT

Brandon Cardwell, the district's executive director of facilities and construction, addressed the PfISD board during an Oct. 21 meeting. (Brian Rash/Community Impact Newspaper)
Bohls Middle School within PfISD slated for late December completion

Brandon Cardwell, the district's executive director of facilities and construction, said during the district's Oct. 21 board meeting that much work is still needed on the campus, but he is encouraged by the pace at which crews are operating.

Cumby Group is planning development for three adjacent multifamily projects on Manor Road in East Austin, including The Emma apartments. (Courtesy Cumby Group)
3 years in, Austin is falling behind on goals in affordable housing plan

From 2018-20, the city only reached 12% of its 10-year goal to build thousands of new homes and rental units.

Taco Palenque is now open as drive-thru only in Round Rock. (Brooke Sjoberg/Community Impact Newspaper)
CI NATION ROUNDUP: Taco Palenque opens in Round Rock; Plano ISD considering two draft calendars for 2022-23 school year and more top news

Take a look at the top five trending stories across all of Community Impact Newspaper’s coverage areas as of Oct. 21.

The Austin Transit Partnership is exploring above- and below-ground options for a transit center at the East Riverside Drive and South Pleasant Valley intersection. (Courtesy Austin Transit Partnership)
Project Connect plans to explore above-, below-ground options for East Riverside/Pleasant Valley Transit Center

After hosting a community design workshop, the group overseeing Project Connect designs is moving forward with options for both an underground and above-ground station at the intersection.

A calculator created by the Rocky Mountain Institute looks at the environmental impact of TxDOT's proposed designs for I-35 in Central Austin, one of the most congested roadways in the country. (Benton Graham/Community Impact Newspaper)
Nonprofit's tool says TxDOT I-35 expansion proposals would have profound environmental consequences

The tool says that the proposal would create between 255 and 382 million additional vehicle miles traveled per year.

Photo of the Travis County administration building and sign
Travis County hears update on process to reassess master plan for aging correctional facilities

The process comes after county commissioners opted to pause all activities of the master plan over the summer.

A sold lot in the Cortaro development in Dripping Springs is under construction. (Maggie Quinlan/Community Impact Newspaper)
Housing market shows signs of stabilizing, but median prices in Southwest Austin area remain high

Hays County is growing fast and selling houses for more and more money, though the number of sales is down year over year, data show.

Rodeo stock image
Inaugural Williamson County Fair and Rodeo ready to open gates Oct. 21 after coronavirus delay

After the inaugural Williamson County Fair and Rodeo was postponed in 2020, county and fair officials said they are excited to kick off the agricultural celebration.

Renderings of the conceptual tower were shown depicting a roughly 100-foot tower, but the intent is to build a smaller tower. A total of $2.43 million was given as an estimated cost for a 100-foot gravity tower, but presenters said the cost would scale down with a smaller tower. (Courtesy city of Frisco)
CI NATION ROUNDUP: Early concept for Frisco’s Northwest Community Park includes biking tower for ‘gravity riding’; Perky Beans Cafe now open in Leander, and more top news

Take a look at the top five trending stories across all of Community Impact Newspaper’s coverage areas as of Oct. 20.

The future of West Austin's Lions Municipal Golf Course depends on the outcome of a city rezoning process and its landowner, The University of Texas. (Ben Thompson/Community Impact Newspaper)
As Austin's rezoning of UT lands continues, time could be running out for Muny course preservation

The historic golf course's future remains unclear amid a city zoning process that could ease the land's redevelopment.

Austin Cultural Arts Division staff provided an update on several funding opportunities for the creative sector Oct. 18. (Screenshot via city of Austin)
Austin's arts community could be in line for millions more in relief dollars this year

Additional relief for artists may be available in the coming months, while a broader review of the city's cultural funding opportunities continues.