One of Austin’s most popular brunch spots – not to mention one of the few female-run kitchens – is closing. On October 18th, Chef Callie Speer announced that Holy Roller will be closing after three years in business. The last business day was Sunday October 18, but the all day brunch restaurant promises “one last badass brunch” this coming weekend.
“When I opened Holy Roller in the summer of 2017, I wanted to preserve a piece of the soul of this city that I love so much and give you something against the grain. Well … and I wanted to sell some cookies,” wrote Speer.
When Holy Roller launched on Rio Grande Street in 2017, it was one of the most anticipated restaurant openings of the year, thanks in part to Speer’s reputation as a cross-border pastry chef at places like Swift’s Attic and Geraldine’s. At Holy Roller, Speer showed off her culinary skills, offering a decadent and delicious selection of comfort classics like meatloaf and fried chicken sandwiches, as well as innovative Tex-Mex dishes like Migas Kolaches.
The Instagram-worthy, rock and roll-inspired interior made it a favorite with tourists and locals alike, while Speer’s kitchen landed on best-of lists, giving her a place among Austin’s top chefs – one of the few women in the elite circle .
In an interview with Austin360, Speer said Holy Roller could not find a financial basis given the ongoing pandemic. Between the COVID-19 restrictions and the lack of tourism, sales were down 50 percent from the same period last year.
Despite Holy Roller closing, Speer wrote that she was optimistic about the future. “That was an amazing ride. And now you all know that I always have a fun surprise up my sleeve,” she said.
Until then, say goodbye to Holy Roller from October 24th to 25th from 10am to 3pm for one last goodbye. Details are yet to be announced, but be sure to follow the restaurant’s social media channels for more information later this week.