While the Roaring Fork in Austin, Texas had mixed reviews but mostly favorable from what we could find prior to our visit, we would say overall it was just OK. Not super great but not horrible. The ambiance was refined western style luxury with low lighting, lots of dark paneled walls and antler chandeliers the padded leather chairs were very comfortable. We found a mix of attendees in every kind of attire from formal/semi formal down to t-shirts and shorts, which is I guess to be expected from a venue that serves a burger actually named "the big a** burger" (which was in fact pretty large) along with gourmet items. We arrived in casual attire and were worried we would feel uncomfortable when we saw the front staff in very nice dress and the manager in a full suit, but we realized we were middle of the road in attire once we were seated.
The menu was very limited on entrees and yet over full on wines, we don't drink but love to eat great tasting food so the fewer menu choices were a bit disappointing. Our daughter and her friend split a big a** burger and I ended up having the same as I was just not interested in the other choices (well really I am always ready for salmon but the preparation style listed did not seem appetizing to me that day - I understand the menu does change often to keep up with the freshest accompaniments available so you never know what will be served) My husband got the grilled 1/2 chicken served over a cornbread stuffing of sorts with grilled Brussels sprouts. The 2 burgers were ordered cooked medium well yet one came out perfect while the other was basically rare in the center/off center (quite a bit of blood dripped out when my daughter cut it in half to share with her friend) but the outer edges were fine - how they managed that we were not sure. Rather than waiting for our waiter to return we swapped 1/2 of my burger and i ate around the center of the rare burger. The burger is served without condiments but was pretty flavorful that way. The fries were crispy, hot and tasty. My husband enjoyed his 1/2 chicken and said the dressing was very good, it took him a few bites to realize the grilled Brussels sprouts were actually incorporated in the dressing as individual leaves from the sprout peeled then grilled and added to the mix. I tried a few bites and was pleasantly surprised as well although I love Brussels sprouts anyway.
The Roaring Fork does take reservations, which makes arrival nicer than waiting around for a table, although they were either expecting large numbers that night Saturday August 11, 2012 or they have grown in popularity such that they have increased the number of tables to where it is very tight quarters. Once guests were seated at the tables around us it was very difficult for wait staff to navigate around them all, causing our waiter and the extras who refilled our water glasses and removed the empty plates to reach over our table. In all we have decided there are so many other restaurants in Austin to try that we will probably not give the Roaring Fork a 2nd chance to impress us.
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.