My new favorite coffee house is Sodade at Gracy Farms and Burnet. I've only really had their chai, but it offers a nice, quiet place to get a whole lot of work done. I'm pretty sure that they make their chai from a powdered mix, but it's really good and their soymilk is actually pretty tasty. I highly recommend it if you're in the north Austin area, though avoid the pumpkin tea bread. It's a bit dry and not very flavorful. It sits right next to Tacodeli and they were nice enough to let me eat my Tacodeli goodies in the coffee shop.
Tacos+iced chai = awesome.
Or at least, it has the potential to be awesome if the tacos are good. I've been going to Sodade because it's by Colby's work, so I picked up tacos for lunch for us a couple times. So far I've tried the Heather, the guacasabi tuna taco, the veggie taco, and a potato breakfast taco. I've also tried the ceviche yucatan with chips and their guacamole. So far, I have been unimpressed.
The Heather is a vegetarian taco with black beans, guacamole, lettuce, tomato, and queso fresco. It sounds like it would be delicious, except for the fact that their black beans are basically baby food and the queso fresco is fried into an unappetizing disk of cheesy grease. The guacamole was fine in this application, but it gets lost in the mushy mess of black beans. Their breakfast taco (at least the one with potatoes) suffers the same baby food fate. It's pretty unappetizing. I mean, don't get me wrong, I *love* mashed potatoes, but I don't love mashed potato tacos.
The veggie taco was basically unremarkable, but edible and the Guacasabi tuna taco was weird. I don't think that i was ever going to like it because I can't really get behind fish tacos, but it was a Friday during Lent and I felt obligated to eat !meat. (! == not, for all you non computer programmers).
The ceviche yucatan and the guacamole were both served with chips. I don't really like ceviche and this was no exception. The piles of cilantro certainly didn't help and it was kind of a weird thing to get from a place that calls itself Tacodeli. The guacamole was waaaay overprocessed. It turns out that I have teeth and I enjoy using them when I eat. The texture just wasn't there and it was too limey to begin with and after awhile it was all too spicy (and trust me, I can handle heat).
I would say that my favorite item from Tacodeli is their (free) green salsa, but I'm a sucker for tomatillos.