Celebrating France’s National Holiday in Austin
Words by Jessica Devenyns
It’s a summer evening in Austin, and if you’ve lived here for long, you know that there is no shortage of festivities on any given evening. However, this evening is something special.
It’s a summer evening in Austin, and if you’ve lived here for long, you know that there is no shortage of festivities on any given evening. However, this evening is something special. On July 14, Austin is celebrating Bastille Day. This French holiday is not something to miss. With fireworks flaming and French-flair flowing, you’ll want to head over to east Austin to see what the fun is all about.
Why Bastille Day?
Bastille Day, also known as La fête Nationale, is a national holiday in France commemorating the storming of the Bastille on July 14, 1789, that turned the tide of the revolution. However, the real question is, why is this celebrated in Austin?
Surprisingly, Austin has a strong French community. You can see its influence walking on the streets, embroidering itself into fashion, flowing through conversations, and mixing itself into food.
It’s no wonder then that La fête Nationale of France is celebrated in Austin with such gusto. Here on the east side especially, things are kicked off with a bang. Are you ready? Let’s celebrate la France!
Stop by Whisler’s for a Parisian-inspired cocktail that’s been specially crafted in honor of Bastille Day. Besides craft cocktails, Whistler’s will feature a French flavored DJ set by Crsto and a performance by the Boss Street Brass Band.
Always a classic, Justine’s Brasserie is open late to help you celebrate Bastille Day with French flair. Full of art, fine food, and creative spirits, Justine’s will draw you into the festivities like it’s Paris in the 20s, when those who lived on the east side were a chic set with names like Hemingway.
Owned by a lovely French couple, Blue Dahlia bistro is an Austin brunch staple. However, they do also serve a deliciously simple menu inspired by the European countryside that is perfect if you want a fresh twist of France in your celebratory meal.
Try their happy hour. It lasts until 6:30 and is great if you want to sample one of their novel French wines.
For those who want to celebrate in a quieter setting, check out Salt and Time. As a butcher who doubles as a restaurant, this shop has some of the best charcuterie in town, and what could be more French than that?
Inspired by their French heritage, husband and wife team Holly and Craig opened L’estelle. Open late night, you can find traditional Parisian fare paired with southern specialties. A perfect combination for Texans celebrating a French national holiday!
So come out to celebrate Bastille Day and add a little joie de vivre to your Thursday. After all, summertime in Austin is about celebration.