Austin >Food & Dining > Woodland
1716 S Congress Ave, Austin, TX | Directions 7870430.246445 -97.751059
Sat-Sun 10am-3pm, 5pm-11pm
Neighborhoods: South River City, Greater South River City
great brunch / breakfast spot in a cute, forest themed restaurant. Even the waiters wear lumberjack shirts. Get the salmon eggs benedict or the "morning wood" breakfast platter.
Southern soul food inside a hobbit house: The Woodland serves up buttery, from-scratch shrimp n' grits and chicken pot pies in a thoughtfully-decorated space, like a little house co-habited by a Zen doshi and Bilbo Baggins.
Great for modern American food. Steaks never miss. Shrimp and grits standout. Good sides. Worth a trip for peanut butter pie! Awesome decor.
Substandard Ownership – This place has lost it's appeal. The last two times I went to have dinner (Wed. 4pm) and (Sat. 5pm) they were out of multiple things on the menu. The waitress and waiter both times admitted that it happens all the time. I complained to the manager the first time and he gave my friend a gift card to come back and also took 20% off the bill that night. The next time I ask for the owners email address and just got the run around. Later, I went on the website only to find the event managers email address. I contacted him and he said he was not able to give me this information. I ask him if anyone at the Woodland's really cares what their customers think or should I just blog on the internet? Surprisingly he told me to blog!
What is going on with this place? I predict that if this continues they will be out of business with in 6months.
Substandard BLT – My partner and I order in at least five nights a week. We generally patronize Threadgill's, Magnolia, Kerbey, etc. on "comfort food night."
On occasion, we like to splurge on something better. Last night, we decided to get a couple of sandwiches from The Woodland.
(We have had their burgers and a few of their entrees in the past and have been pleased at times.)
When we phoned, we were asked to hold. Understandable for a Friday night, and I'm glad local businesses do well. But after five minutes, we were still on hold.
Still...not a big deal. I just went and ordered in person.
My biggest problem this time was with the BLT. At first it looked great. Big sandwich; the bread was good. But for ten dollars, I would expect more than four super-thin slices of bacon.
This paltry amount did not even cover the surface area of the sandwich. Not. Even. Close.
I would not even be writing this review if this weren't the latest of several disappointing experiences. We have seen a steady decline of both service and food quality at The Woodland.
The staff sometimes seems either startled by or displeased with the fact that there are people in their restaurant. I happen to think that a "cool detachment" from one's clientele is anything but.
We are not in Paris and this is not haute cuisine. A little warmth goes a long way toward making up for an underwhelming experience.
I'm afraid it's a trend that does not bode well for what has at times been -- and could be -- a good restaurant.
how the heck? – how is this place open? is Austin's tourism really keeping this place open? or is it the over priced EVERYTHING..is it buying produce and ingredients from Wal-Mart and selling them as if they are organic? Im a cook at a place with a very similar menu but its ALL ORGANIC and high quality and 1/4 of the price, so its not like they have to charge that much.....this place was so horrible after eating there my girlfriend and i broke up......
American Food – The Woodland does not offer a large variety of choices on the menu. My assumption was that with the limited menu, everything would be exceptional. The kitchen would focus on only a few things and excel at each dish.
Breakfast: You can order two eggs any style and have 4 items with the eggs. The eggs do not have any seasoning when they are served. Yes, the Woodlands is known for down home food, but I thought they would at least reach for some seasoning. I mean you are paying $11 for eggs and 4 items. The bacon and sausage are above average.
If you are looking for plain, the Woodland should be your destination.
Service was not bad. We were served another party's food first, then had to ask for service at each stage (to order, for check,). The service was responsive after we asked.
My recommendation is for the kitchen to take some sage advice. Take more thyme in the development of the recipes. Maybe even consider turning over a new leaf (of almost any kind) and add the leaf to a dish to accentuate flavor.
Terrible slow service. – We had lunch at Wooland today. Can't say I'll be going back anytime soon. We were sat facing the open part of the kitchen and the cooks were full of attitude and bad comments to wait staff like 'ask for something off menu again and I'll take you outside and sort you out' Not enjoyable background to our lunch.
Our food took an hour to arrive and when it did, it wasn't really worth the wait. The turkey sandwich had clearly been sitting there for a while and the Mac & Cheese was really just penne pasta in a cheese sauce. Our waitress didn't appear to know what she was doing and seemed in a daze and our water wasn't replenished the entire time we were there. We had to chase up our meals twice - both times being assured that the food would arrive in under 5 minutes...10 minutes later, we were STILL waiting. When it finally arrived, the waitress simply exclaimed that they were a little rushed today, no apology nothing. Funny as I could spot at least five/six empty tables and a lot of seemingly unhappy, hungry faces..
I really wanted to like this place but the long wait, bad service and pretty average food means that I'll take my money elsewhere.
Teated like Trash.. – Went in after a movie Sat, May 16 for pie. With a $13.53 tab, they brought back $6. To add insult, they threw the chocolate cream pie in a go-box UPSIDE DOWN.
Thats What Happens When You Hire a Bunch of Hipsters – The quality of service and food have slipped drastically.... while the Quality of vintage wear and tattoos have markedly improved.
I'm the last person to judge people on their appearance... but Woodland has simply gone past the point of no return in the hipster department. The staff must feel as though they are occupying Beauty Bar or manning the door at Emo's... and serving up American Apparel with a side of fixed gear instead of food.
Most of the people there are really nice, and yes.. there's some really outstanding, beautiful tattoos. But come on already.... people want good food and good service. That's really all that matters.
Good bar, noisy – The place has a really nice vibe, it does have a full bar and the side with the bar on it is extremely loud, which is where we got seated. When we left we saw there was seating on the other side of the restaurant which was probably much quieter. The menu isn't too extensive, it's your classic American with a modern twist kind of food. They served warm rolls with butter before out food came. I ordered the Woodland salad with chicken added (for $6). It was small for a dinner salad. It had cooked beets, ricotta salata, mixed greens, sunflower sprouts and seeds. All over it was nothing special. The chicken was just plain grilled with no flavor of it's own. I wouldn't go back there for the food, maybe for the bar and atmosphere. Amy had the reuben, it was better than the one from 34th Street Cafe and even gave the one from New World Deli a run for its money but I didn't like the bread, had a licorice flavor to it which I think is due to... fennel seed? Not 100% sure but if it weren't for the bread it would've been amazing. Amy loved it. It came with a side of really delicious potato salad. She also ordered a drink call the Eudora. It tasted very strongly of bourbon which I don't like so just the smell of it made me cringe. The cocktail menu is very different with flavors like cucumber, elderflower and grapefruit. But like I said they have a full bar so I'm sure they can make any drink upon request.
Disappointing experience – We had dinner here with friends yesterday evening. Two of us ordered the chicken with mashers and spinach. The spinach was so salty we could not eat it. The potatoes were overcooked and dry. The chicken was bland, but juicy and OK to eat. Another had the duck. Very small portion of meat, certainly not worth the price. We ordered pie for desert. The coconut cream pie tasted entirely like whipped cream with a little coconut mixed in. The wait person apologized because they had RUN OUT OF DECAF COFFEE by 8:30 PM. We were shocked at how disorganized the place seemed to be. Two people recomended the pork chop, so one of us ordered it. Said it was nothing special. Very disappointing overall. We would not return to give this place a second chance.
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