Tucked away in the hills off HWY 360 & 2222 on City Park Road, Ski Shores Cafe is a laid back cafe on Lake Austin, ideal for enjoying with other families or groups of friends. This is not a quick-stop joint–you’ll want to stay a while.


Live music is likely to greet you from the moment you step out of your car. In my case, the sound of Bluegrass country music ushered us through the parking lot to the hostess stand. By the time we were seated–near the playscape per the hostess’ suggestion when she saw our son in tow–the two-man live band was playing Marvin Gaye’s “What’s Goin’ On”, followed by more country and later a couple of popular songs by Bob Marley. Kids were busy on the playscape as well as on the shore feeding the turtles and fish in the lake. Clearly the vibe at Ski Shores Cafe is quintessentially Austin, as is the menu.


We ordered nachos to start and they were perfectly Tex-Mexy and appropriately served with forks. I paired mine with a customized Texas Sippy, a cocktail featuring Deep Eddy’s Ruby Red vodka, Grenadine and general goodness. My family was in a burger kind of mood and we were not disappointed. There was no trace of my husband’s Mushroom & Swiss Burger, my son was happy with his patty and fries (they accommodated his food allergy and left the bun off) and my Spicy Black Bean Veggie Burger with fresh avocado add-on was absolute awesomesauce. We ended our waterfront meal appropriately with a Flavor Ice popsicle, green flavor, yes they’re on the menu. Ski Shores Cafe’s menu also includes breakfast, fish tacos, specialty pizzas–all the fare you probably expect as well as a good selection of beer, wine cocktails and shots.

There is a fire pit on the lawn, perfect for roasting free s’mores on movie nights held there every Friday. It is perfectly situated across from the bar where older kids and nostalgic parents can play Ms. Pac Man among other family-friendly arcade games, or keep up with the scores of whatever televised game happens to be airing on the flat-screens behind the bar.


Weekly Specials:

  • Thursday is Steak Night- Get a 15oz fresh hand cut NY Angus strip steak and your choice of salad or potatoes for $15.
  • Friday is Family Movie Night. It starts at sundown with extended playscape hours and free s’mores! Check Ski Shores Facebook page for movie updates every Friday.


If your family likes the outdoors and you’re in the mood to dine at a new spot with an old Austin vibe, put Ski Shores Cafe at the top of your list this weekend.

Now, wouldn’t you like to win a $25 gift card to Ski Shores Cafe? Enter your email address for a chance to take your family to this unique restaurant. This giveaway is now closed. Thanks to everyone who entered!

– Quel

Quel is a marketing research professional, turned stay-at-home mom, turned temporary homeschooler and all around crafty broad. She has blogged about her adventures in Austin since moving here in 2005 and loves exploring Austin fun with her 5-year-old son. Find her at