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The Tailor Shop Bar & Foodery Brings Beloved Favorites Together Under One Roof

The pizzeria, sandwich shop and taqueria are serving up their diverse, delicious foods in the new South Lamar space

We love options. Options for what to do, what to wear and — of course — what to eat. Diego Batista, Austin native and owner of BelaCor Hospitality, a private investment group here in Austin, understands that. That’s why he invests in a variety of restaurants catering to different tastes and occasions.

In November 2019, Diego opened Pizzeria Grata, which came from a passion for making pizza from scratch using high-quality ingredients. The recipes were curated by Executive Chef Benjamin Garwood, including the sauce, based on a 100-year-old recipe from Naples. They offer a unique spin on traditional Italian dishes with wood-fired pizzas and puccia sandwiches. The name comes from the Italian word “grate,” meaning grateful, and they have an authentic gratitude for serving their community that can be tasted in the freshness and flavor of their food.

In March 2022, Diego opened 1836 Tacos & Salsa, which serves up authentic Latin street food, including birria, carnitas, ceviche, tacos and tortas. Executive Chef Crystal Campos has built an incredible menu of comfort foods that celebrate Latin American cuisine. Passionate about celebrating diversity and community impact, 1836 donates time and food to support those in need at Sunrise Community Church.

Lastly came Coast 2 Coast Subs in October 2022, the realization of Diego’s lifelong dream that began in Lubbock, where he worked in a
local sub shop while going to school at Texas Tech. During his time there, his dream of business ownership and love for subs both continued to grow. After college, Diego found himself in Philadelphia, where he moved to learn from local butchers, bakers and established names in the cheesesteak business. Bringing some of these learnings and tastes back to his hometown, Coast 2 Coast features authentic Philly cheesesteaks and delicious hoagies made with fresh ingredients and served on bread from Luscio’s Bakery, a family-run bakery near Philadelphia.

For a time, all three restaurants operated within the Valero gas station (along with Beatniks Market & Cafe) on Menchaca Road, just south of Ben White Boulevard. Diego and his team originally wanted to launch the tailor shop-themed bar downtown in 2020,
but then, the pandemic hit, so they didn’t make any moves. Right when their lease at the Menchaca Road gas station was ending at the end of 2022, the Gordough’s pub house location opened up. So they decided to relocate the three restaurants to that location on South Lamar, together called The Tailor Shop Bar & Foodery.

“The Lamar location landing in our lap was pure luck, and genuinely an ideal location, as it allowed us to stay close to our existing customer base,” says Diego. “We would not be where we are today without their loyalty, and it just made sense for us when the opportunity presented itself. To say the location is perfect for us is an understatement, and we couldn’t have been more excited about what we have built so far, and what we are working to bring to fruition.”

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The pizzeria, sandwich shop and taqueria are serving up their diverse, delicious foods in the new space. The location has ample seating, including two patios that have live music from Thursday through Sunday. “We showcase multiple menu options under one roof without the food court feel,” says Diego.

The current location will eventually be developed into apartment complexes, but Diego plans to transition The Tailor Shop from the current building to a space within the new complex. There are also plans to expand operations to a second tailor shop-themed location by the end of the year, most likely in downtown Austin like they had originally planned.

“BelaCor will continue to invest in Austin as well as its entrepreneurs, something we’re very passionate about,” says Diego. He attributes their success and growth to their loyal customers, who inspire and support all of the restaurants. “Our customers came first with this move and expansion; they planted the seed for a sit-down space when we started in a corner store kitchen. To offer them the space with not one but multiple menu options is truly a blessing, and even better for us because we get to build stronger relationships with our customers.”

They donate a percentage of monthly sales to Lifted Spirits, a nonprofit organization that provides emergency relief for hospitality industry professionals in the Austin area. “We encourage nonprofits to reach out to us to host fundraisers at our locations,” says Diego. “We’re Austin natives that have spent most of our lives in the hospitality business serving our lovely city of Austin, and we’d love to meet everyone new and old to our city.”

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In writing this piece, I decided to check out the place for myself. So I gathered up four of my best girlfriends on a rainy Friday night to check out what all the hype was about. We got there around seven, and Diego was on the floor — greeting customers and helping out at the bar. There was a decent crowd there, split between the indoor tables and bar, many of which you could tell were also checking it out for the first time. In line with the tailor-shop theme, there were mannequins lining the restaurant.

We ordered using a QR code, which led you to all the menus and drinks. One of my friends ordered tacos, which she was delighted to find out could be modified to be made with plant-based cheese (she has a lactose intolerance). The rest of us ordered pizzas. I chose the “Balsamica” with whipped ricotta, goat cheese, balsamic mushrooms, garlic confit and arugula. Everything was delicious, including the housemade meatballs, drowned in the time-tested sauce, which we all shared. We sipped on wine and agua frescas (some spiked with tequila).

The whole experience was cozy and nostalgic. With the dim lights, doughy pizza and friendly staff, we felt like we were back in high school hanging out at our favorite hometown pizza joint. After a couple of hours, we left with full bellies and tasty leftovers.

Don’t wait to check out The Tailor Shop Bar & Foodery on South Lamar. Perfect for happy hour or dinner with friends, with several full menus, everyone can find something they’ll enjoy.

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Read More From the Neighborhoods Issue | June 2023