Thursday, June 22, 2006


Brian, purveyor of many a keg and sixer of Icehouse tallboys, recently struck me dumb with the news that Bongo Bar-b-q, which has always existed in my memory and on the tongues of those answering the phone there as Bongo's Bar-B-Q, would be soon closing. His explanation left much unclear in my grief-stricken mind, but the general idea was an inability to renew their lease (How could such a successful business not own?) was going to take Bongo's away from me, and I guess other people, in a matter of days. So, I humbly request a moment of silence during the death knell of an institution that supplied all I really grew to love or need in college:

Photobucket - Video and Image Hosting

Photobucket - Video and Image Hosting

As Gizmo once told me, this fine establishment was at the forefront of, if not solely responsible for, the Bill Food trend that would characterize my freshman and sophomore years. Unfortunately, the place later fell out of favor with the distinguished alumnus and almost all trips there were later done out of pocket, but as a brotherhood we continued our patronage, cursing only their decision to close on Sundays and ruin the chance for post-chapter gluttony. Though the barn half will remain open until its stores are exhausted, the restaurant will be closing within a fortnight, I believe.

If you have any, I will take requests for menu items you would have me consume in proxy during my daily, death-bed visitations. So far I have consumed two burgers (one with grilled onions) and two order of fries. If requests overwhelm me, I'll enlist Donut.

EDIT: Closing date is actually June 30th. Deluxe Brisket burrito covered. My God, was it good.

Labels: ,


At 7:13 AM, June 23, 2006, Blogger Arun said...

You have to eat a Deluxe brisket burrito before they close. And tacos.

At 7:28 AM, June 23, 2006, Blogger GIZMO said...

This really really blows ass. I have spent more money there....I might cry. Now this may seem an odd request, but feel free to buy 5 or so brisket sandwiches, with fries, and sauce, and freeze them. I will be back at some point this summer/fall, and I will most definitely consume them. Alton Brown will have some good freezing tips. I can't express how much I will miss Bongo's, and Brian, and the awesome counter girls there. My Christ. This may be the most discouraging post I have ever read.

At 8:40 AM, June 23, 2006, Blogger Tito said...

Life is over...

At 9:34 AM, June 23, 2006, Blogger CD said...

Absolutely terrible. Just terrible. One of the last remaining vestiges of all that is meet and right about West Campus.

At 10:06 AM, June 23, 2006, Blogger Tito said...

If this was an 80's movie we would have some kind of fund-rasier or competition where we defeat the evil landlord or city council by training or working hard which would of course would be shown through a series of montages with 80's music, possible by Survivor or Journey (Don't stop believing anyone???). Then we would win the hearts and the minds of all of Austin, be hoisted away on the townsfolk shoulders while bypassing the hot girl (who we just wished would pay attention to us at the beginning) and kissing the moderatly attactive nerdy girl saving the day.

Yea, we win.

At 10:13 AM, June 23, 2006, Blogger GIZMO said...

It sounds like a plan. I would fly down for that.

At 3:06 PM, June 23, 2006, Blogger CD said...

Plus there would definitely be a gratuitous boob shot or two. And wouldn't it be perfect if it was the evil "Dean" of UT who was trying to shut down Bongo's so he could build his multi-million dollar mansion on the property?

Or better yet, in a Revenge of the Nerds-type scenario, the Chi Phi's stand up to the big fraternity who's trying to shut down Bongo's so they can build their ski ramp/motocycle ramp/volleyball court on the property. (Tito's fund-raising montage ensues)

At 4:15 PM, June 23, 2006, Blogger Vince said...

This is the worst news ever. Richard, you have to save me 25 chopped beef sandwiches, or eat that many for me.

I think I might kill myself.

At 7:42 PM, June 25, 2006, Anonymous frankiefirefox said...

I also am debating suicide over this horrific news

At 10:52 AM, June 26, 2006, Anonymous mango said...

i still have a third of a deluxe burrito from my trip this weekend. it pains me to think it will be the last one i'll ever eat. now that i think of it, the chapter should dump all its funds into buying and freezing deluxe burritos to sell on ebay, or to alumni.

At 2:23 PM, June 29, 2006, Anonymous bass said...

fuck it, im re-enlisting, im not sure i can come back to austin sans bongos.

At 3:48 AM, June 30, 2006, Anonymous Brian TBN said...

Hello all,
This is Brian aka "The Beer Nazi" himself speaking.
A little websearch came up with this blog, and I was kinda touched to see some people talking about it. I've been there for 13 years, a substantial portion of my life, and it will be a little hard to see it go away.
As to the reasons Bongo's is going's not a straightforward story.
First, the landlords (the Nau family, who own Nau's Drugstore next door) have had Bongo's on a month-to-month lease for the last 2 years. With West-Campus property values going through the roof since the zoning change, the possibility of being told in any given month to take a hike was an ever-present one.
Second, the simple fact is that Bongo's has always just gotten by from a money standpoint. People (understandably) think that we must be making bank there, but we just get along. That has always been true and was never going to change.
Third, after 10 years the owners (Mike and Jayne) were simply tired of the grind and the pressures of running such a business without the kind of return they wanted. My opinion is that this factor was really the deciding one in determining that this went down when and as it did.
Word has really gotten aroung because we've been getting our asses kicked for the last week! Laura, the counter girl who has worked there with me for 8 years, has told me that people have driven in from Houston and Dallas to eat here one last time.
I've only got two days left at Bongo's. Tomorrow (Friday) will be the last day of the restaurant, and Saturday I will be working only the Beer Barn. Thanks for thinking of us and what, in my opinion, is the last vestige of the old West Campus.

Brian, TBN

At 6:51 PM, July 03, 2006, Anonymous Cody McGuire said...

Brian, Its been good knowing you since '98. I've even sat with your dad at a UT football game. You and Bongo's will be missed.

At 11:06 AM, September 15, 2007, Blogger GIZMO said...

UPDATE: I have a boner. And Bongo's is still there, just empty. It's a little frustrating.


Post a Comment

<< Home