by Alexandra Richmond - 69 Reviews - 27 List
To some, it's a small stretch of blink-and-you'll-miss-it tiny storefronts, but others find these few blocks vital to Austin's underground culture and commerce in several regards: live music and records, coffee and sustenance, and very specifically niched boutiques and shops. Take a tour of these musts in the North Loop. (Photo: Epoch Coffee courtesy of epochcoffeedotcom)
Updated: October 21, 2009
Punk rock pizza is a family affair; respect is paid to past generations' contributions in the form of murals of Roky Erickson, Alice Cooper and Motorhead. Live shows are always free and all ages; those over 21 can still enjoy a beer with their 'za.
The quintessential 24-hour coffee shop and hangout complete with lovely overstuffed thrift-store couches and tables, many outlets for laptop use and free wi-fi, and many treats ranging from sweet to savory to smoky. Indie coffee at its finest.
Austin, while hilly, is bike-friendly--being slightly sweaty and winded way beats traffic and parking. For the bike-less newbie to the gear-obsessed frame-builder, this haunt will serve all two-wheeled (or tandem or unicycle) needs.
Peruse their exhaustively updated website to see which most recently released (or re-released) records are in stock or just pop in and flip through the racks. Shows here are free and BYOB. If a noisy Austin band's album is hard to find, stop in; it's probably here.
This retailer of classic punk clothing slings bullet belts and stove-pipe jeans (non-stretch to be really authentic) to people that prefer vinyl to CDs and independent boutiques to malls. Please note that malls are losing occupants, this rebel lives on.
Since 1981, this North Loop fixture has been updating looks with old-school vintage home furnishing finds to a town known for embracing an eclectic aesthetic. From tiny additions like a kooky glass ashtray from a 60s motel to a boomerang coffee table to an estate sale's ornate velvet love seat, items found here can go a long way to banishing the Ikea-modern-sameness plaguing many living spaces.