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good eatin’

Bess Bistro

Southern comfort food with a French bistro twist is what they serve up at this Sandra Bullock-owned culinary gem. Here, the fries don’t disappoint. Order them classic French-style with a side of Dijon mustard and a generous bowl of their savory mussels. Ooh la la!

Bess Bistro is located in the basement of the historic Stratford Arms building, which has been lovingly restored over the past four years. The original columns, arches, iron railings, and old timber have been carefully preserved. They are enhanced by etched glass, antique mirrors, custom tiles, and an impressive pewter bar, custom-made in France. Ms. Bullock herself (Sandy, to her staff) is responsible for the design and decor of the space, and it should be a great source of pride. She has created a beautifully appointed restaurant that is cozy and intimate without being kitschy or pretentious. And rather than placing the focus on herself, she wants to make sure that everyone knows Bess Bistro’s success belongs to Executive Chef Brenton Childs and sous chef Chris Howard, both with ample experience in some of Austin’s best fine-dining restaurants.