Hoover’s Cooking: Stylish Soul Food in Austin

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My father, brother and I clearly didn’t need any more food, after eating four barbecue meals and stopping for pie, but I remembered the food being especially good at Hoover’s Cooking. Since we’re only in Texas once a year, might as well make it count, no matter how much damage we do to our stomachs.

Hoover Alexander is a native Texan who credits his mother Dorothy and his classmates at Our Lady of Guadalupe Catholic School as influences. He also seems to have a sense of humor. On the restaurant’s colorful sign, the apostrophe in Hoover’s is a green chile pepper, and he wears a sausage link necklace.

To start, we received a complimentary basket of dry cornbread muffins and fluffy sweet potato biscuits, which were really more like rolls.

Southern Food Austin
Glazed and charbroiled ham steak ($10.49) was succulent and smoky. It came with a dish of Jezebel sauce, a mixture of horseradish, orange marmalade and pineapple. Hoover’s always offers a top-flight list of sides, plus blackboard specials. I opted for jalapeno creamed spinach and buttered cabbage. The former had some heat, and the latter was nice and simple.

Southern Food Austin
My father ordered meatloaf ($9.99) – a half-pound blend of Premium chuck, onions, bell peppers and spices. For his sides, he selected fried okra and cinnamon-tinged candied yams.

Southern Food Austin
My brother also ordered the meatloaf, but stuck with old school sides: mashed potatoes and gravy, and smoky green beans seasoned with pork.

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I literally drank a pitcher of lemonade ($2.95), the perfect balance of sweet and tart.

Was the dinner at Hoover’s Cooking worth the additional damage to our stomachs? Absolutely.

Hoover’s Cooking: Stylish Soul Food in Austin


Joshua Lurie

Joshua Lurie founded FoodGPS in 2005. Read about him here.

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