Travel & Day Trips

When Life Gives You Lemons, Make a Scientific Muffin: A Unique Austin Treat

I recently visited Austin, Texas for an event related to the South by Southwest Festival. I often think of Austin as a bit like a San Francisco in Texas, and a lot of San Francisco residents who leave the Bay Area end up in Austin.

There are definitely similarities in terms of the two region’s music scenes, culture, and also food. Case in point: Austin appears to like strange food experiments just as much as the Bay Area.

One of the coolest treats I encountered in Austin was something that I’d describe as a scientific muffin. Here’s a video that I made of it:

Basically, it’s a little muffin with a lemon flavor and a bit of glaze on top. But what makes it special is that it’s served with a laboratory pipette filled with a thick and powerfully-flavored lemon sauce.

When you receive the muffin, you yank out the pipette and squeeze it over the muffin, dousing the thing in tasty and tangy lemon goodness. It feels a bit like you’re injecting the muffin with flavor.

I got the “scientific” muffin at the Westin Austin Downtown hotel, but I believe it came from an outside bakery. I have no idea which one.

Overall, it was a cool and unique experience–and the powerful lemon flavor of the injected sauce was fantastic. One of my colleagues made a suggestion, though–maybe the pipette should be filled with something that has a bit more “kick”, like limoncello liquor, next time!

Thomas Smith

Thomas Smith is a food and travel photographer and writer based in the San Francisco Bay Area. His photographic work routinely appears in publications including Food and Wine, Conde Nast Traveler, and the New York Times and his writing appears in IEEE Spectrum, SFGate, the Bold Italic and more. Smith holds a degree in Cognitive Science (Neuroscience) and Anthropology from the Johns Hopkins University.
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