The unpretentious Gourmands Neighborhood Pub is representative of changes happening in East Austin. Operating out of an old Tejano nightclub, this restaurant bar specializes in excellent sandwiches and a good beer selection. The dark bluish light, jukebox, and black and white linoleum floors give the space a distinct dive bar feel. The recently opened patio area shaded by a beautiful old live oak tree is an option for those looking for a different atmosphere.
The large menu also includes appetizers, salads, and soups. With over 15 tempting sandwich choices, it was hard to make a decision. I settled on The Last Supper ($9), a giant hoagie roll filled with housemade roast beef, bacon, sliced tomato, shaved onion, shredded lettuce, and queso. The glistening melted cheese, drizzled over the lettuce, made for an impressive presentation, but the sandwich was a bit unwieldy. The juicy roast beef, thinly sliced and served warm, was the star of the meal. The generous helping of crispy bacon was the runner-up. Crunchy housemade potato chips and spicy pickled vegetables were served on the side. Gourmands is a good choice for a casual and affordable meal made with care.