Industry restaurant in downtown San Marcos is instantly appealing. The look of the place is modern, yet casual, with exposed ducts and girders, garage doors, a large patio, and a shiny, silver bar top. It even has a ping pong table inside.
Industry is new to the San Marcos food scene, having opened in early fall 2018. You may be thinking, “That’s all well and good, but how’s the food?” The best news is that the menu’s extensive, and the food is delicious.
What to Eat at Industry
The menu reflects Texas Hill Country style, with several menu items cooked in a Texas Live Oak smoker. But don’t confuse it with barbecue because it’s a whole different thing.
For example, the spicy chicken sandwich is made from a smoked, then fried chicken thigh and comes with hot sauce and a vinegary slaw. The CFC (chicken fried chicken) with queso is also smoked, fried, then slathered in poblano queso.
Industry makes a mean brisket, served in taco form, bringing the best of Texas together on one plate. The kitchen even makes a version of fish & chips with Texas catfish, and kicks the flavors up with pepita pesto and chipotle aioli. Industry specializes in familiar Texas fare with an original, modern spin.
If you are looking for lighter fare, then Industry has healthy options, too. Try the tasty smoked sweet potato hummus appetizer, topped with chimichurri, and served with naan bread and olives. Other healthy-ish starters include crispy Brussels sprouts and smoked edamame.
For healthy main dishes, try a Mediterranean bowl, similar to a Greek salad but with the addition of quinoa. The kale and beet salad with goat cheese will please the palate, but be warned the bacon and candied pecans make it a tad less healthy. The smoked half chicken is another solid option.
You’ll find an impressive vegetarian menu. Chef Havers obviously put careful thought into expanding vegetarian options beyond salads and sides. The cauli tacos, made with beer-battered cauliflower and avocado yogurt, are a house favorite. The veggie gyro made with black beans and the veggie burger are two other satisfying vegetarian dishes.
What to Drink at Industry
The beer selection alone is worth a visit, if you’re a fan of the frothy potion. The taps at Industry include Texas craft beers and “basic beers” (national brands). They have another section dedicated solely to neighbor Hops & Grain’s beers, and a handful of rotating taps.
Industry has a full bar and playful bar menu, as would be expected in a youthful town like San Marcos. Nestled next to the train tracks, they even sell $3.50 shots whenever a train rolls by. In addition to the train shots, they make cocktails with names like Misspent Youth, Hipster Holiday, and The Closer.
Industry has cold brew coffee, real sugar sodas, and a daily agua fresca for those not in the mood for alcohol. Try a handmade milkshake if you dare.
What to Expect When You Arrive
Industry lays out the process for ease:
- Open Up: Order at the counter near the kitchen and open a tab.
- Post Up: Grab a seat at one of the wooden communal tables, at a hightop, or at the bar. The servers will bring your food and drink, and serve you from there.
- Hang Out: No explanation needed.
- Walk Out: This gives customers the option of waiting to close their tab or not. Note that walked tabs aren’t frowned on at all, but the restaurant will add an 18% tip, as per industry standard.
What’s the Story?
Texas State alumni Cody Taylor and Chef Todd Havers teamed up with restaurant consultant Harlan Scott, to bring a cool ambience and unique menu to San Marcos. Taylor and Havers come from a restaurant background. Taylor is the owner and Havers the chef at Austin’s Cafe Josie.
The restaurant intends to celebrate the service industry, thus the name. They also give a 15% discount at all times for service industry workers. The decor also reflects the theme. Instead of having the 86 board in the kitchen announcing sold out items, for example, Industry put it in the main dining room for all to see.
Industry is a welcome addition to the San Marcos roster of eateries. It checks off several boxes, from brisket to bratwurst to beets to brews (craft beer AND cold brew coffee). Industry’s laid-back vibe makes it easy to enjoy.
110 E. Martin Luther King Dr. Ste 126 – Website
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