L'estelle is named after our very own Patron Saint of the Kitchen: 

Estele D. Rainey - our mom.

Estele D. Rainey, circa 1950's

Estele D. Rainey, circa 1950's

 

The "personna" of the house embodies the archtype of the giver, the cook, the host, the mother, the sisterhood, and the joi d vivre found in procuring, sourcing, preparing and sharing with others. She is of French and European descent but raised with Southern style and sense, which she fragrances in her cooking and enjoyment in the yard among friends.  She favors French cuisine with touches of Texas comfort, these are her roots.  Her name, Estelle, has early references implying “Goddess of the Feast”.

The Architect

The architect of L'Estelle has roots to Rainey Street. After he returned to Austin following architecture school in 1994, he discovered a vacant “half-lot” that was for sale on this little known Rainey Street.  The fact that this lot was on a street named Rainey was especially of interest since his mother’s maiden name is Estele Rainey.  The architect designed a live-work office and planted every tree and bush over the course of 20 years - enjoying this little spot of chill Austin life - waiting to design a front house when he could design it with a wife if he got married one day. 

The architect eventually got married, but during that period Rainey Street changed from a residential historic neighborhood into a bustling nightlife district.  Instead, he designed and built a front house with his wife which would serve as a kitchen and he converted his office into a quaint beer and wine bar – now the Drafting Room. 

Together, they open their yard and their hospitality to all who enter, offering a real and authentic connection to the district, its history, and the comfortable, casual style of gathering under the stars with good food and folks.  

L’Estelle pays respect to their mother, Estele Rainey, the best cook in the family, who serves as the advisor of many homestyle recipes to be offered in the kitchen. 

The entire experience of the place nods even more to the past of the owners’ roots and experiences steeped in Southern European cuisine and culture – enjoying the good life in small, intimate settings, savoring fresh-made food and casual drinks under the stars.

Holly, founder of L'Estelle, and her architect husband, Craig, founder of The Drafting Room. Photo credit: Tribeza

Holly, founder of L'Estelle, and her architect husband, Craig, founder of The Drafting Room. Photo credit: Tribeza