Mt. Bonnell and Mozart’s Coffee House

In my Austin A to Z Challenge, M stumped me more than any other letter, not because I didn’t what to write about, but because I couldn’t decide between two special places: Mt. Bonnell and Mozart’s Coffee House. So, I am writing about both. They are physically close together, and I find it hard to visit Mt. Bonnell and not visit Mozart’s afterwards. (I hear there are some who can it, but I’ve yet to master that maneuver myself.)

When you visit Austin, you must visit Mr. Bonnell. I suggest going on a weekday if you can. Avoid the crowds. Sit and take in the view. For as long as Austin has been a city, Mt. Bonnell has been a place for picnics with the family and romantic meetings for lovers. A well tended and often rough trail leads you high above the river. The vistas allow you to immerse into a landscape that captured early pioneers and led them to what would become the capital of Texas.

Yes, you need to pretend that the grand homes bordering the river are not right below you. Yes, you need to imagine what it would be like without the growing, modern skyline of Austin before you. Be imaginative. I blinded myself to those things and saw, at least in my mind, what this land was.

After the climb to the top of Mt. Bonnell (don’t worry, easy stairs guide you up), it’s time for a trip to Mozart’s. Mozart’s is situated on the water’s edge a short drive or boat ride from Mt. Bonnel. The huge patio flanked and centered by massive trees, provides the ideal place to sit, sip, and admire. On the hottest of days, the shade and watery breeze provides comfort. On cool, rainy days, sit inside the glassed in patios and become hypnotized by the trickle of drops bounding off the calm waters of the river.

I like the Mozart’s Special Mocha, but then I will always add chocolate when given the opportunity.

It’s the central location of Mozart’s, just blocks from downtown, its festive and quiet atmosphere, and the rich, delicious coffee (and desserts) that makes Mozart’s one of my favorite downtown spots. I suppose that’s why many scenes in Midnight in Line and Form take place there.

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