From laV’s website:
The Story Behind laV
Ralph and Lisa Eads, the founders of laV, have long dreamt of opening a sophisticated dining destination in order to share their love of food, wine and hospitality with others. laV expresses the Eads family’s desire to do just that.
The Eads’ love affair with cooking and wine making dates way back. It is a passion that is shared through many generations of the Eads family, starting with Sara Jane Eads who, in the late 1960s, brought French wine to Texas as a boutique wine merchant. Sara Jane, an accomplished cookbook author, traveled throughout France with her family searching out the best food inspiration and wine experiences. Sara Jane was also a dedicated organic farmer, who helped promulgate the original organic food standards for Texas over twenty years ago. As a member of the Garde de St. Emilion, Sara Jane passed on a particular affinity for French wine, noting that “the French have made more great wine for more years than anyone else”.
Sara Jane’s grandson, David, had the original idea for “a great Eastside wine venue.” An accomplished sommelier, David perceived that there was real interest in Austin for a robust wine program, appealing to casual wine drinkers as well as committed oenophiles. The initial concept of a wine bar evolved into a restaurant once the Eads enlisted Vilma Mazaite and Allison Jenkins to their cause. Having seen Vilma and Allison in action in Aspen, the family realized that the “dynamic duo” had the skill, passion and dedication to create a special dining experience in Austin.
To house the venture, the Eads turned to Bobby McAlpine and his colleague, David Baker. The concept was to design a series of “rooms” at laV. Each room provides a distinct but intimate ambiance: casual outdoor dining, energetic wine bar, sophisticated lounge, welcoming dining room and an elegant private wine room. To complement the neo-industrial building, Bobby’s longtime interior design partner, Susan Ferrier, created a warm, captivating interior intended to host exceptional food, wine and service.
Ralph, a true lover of French wine, is working with Vilma to create one of the great wine programs in America. He is a member of the Commanderie du Bordeaux, Conferie des Chevaliers du Tastevin and the Garde de St. Emilion and brings deep experience in tasting and acquiring fine wine. The wine program is rooted in the idea that we serve a broad range of wines – from compelling value to uncompromising quality, with an emphasis on offering multiple wines and vintages from our favorite producers.
The entire Eads family look forward to welcoming you to laV.
We heartily raise a glass to the Eads family for allowing us to be one of the “cooks in the kitchen” for their latest venture. If you find yourself in Austin, pay a visit. Your appetite and eye will not be disappointed.
We’re also honored that laV was recently featured in the May issue of Architectural Digest!
Greg Tankersley for McAlpine Tankersley
Interior photographs by Buff Strickland and food photographs by Jody Horton.
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