Schweiss Counter Sway Thai Restaurant | Schweiss Must See Photos
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Schweiss Doors adds style to spicy new
Sway Thai restaurant in Austin, Texas

Schweiss Doors

When the Schweiss door is in the up position it's barely noticeable but as an
added benefit it provides a small roof for Sway patrons to gather under.

Schweiss Restaurant Door

Two years of planning went into the new Sway Thai restaurant in Austin, Texas. The unique communal tables encourage family-style dining and sharing. Diners can also sit with an overview of the entirely open theater-style kitchen and watch the chefs prepare an array of different entrees and appetizers.

Traditional Thai food has a reputation of being very spicy and hot enough to satisfy anyones taste for heat. A newly opened restaurant in Austin, Texas does that and more. Austin is a city of big flavors, but interestingly enough there are few that specialize in Thai food. That's where the long-awaited Thai Restaurant called "Sway," (meaning elevated, delicious) tops the bill.

Owners, Jesse Herman and Delfo Trombetta describe their menu as drawing from Chinese, Malaysian, Indonesian and Vietnamese influences. Herman, Trombetta and Executive Chef Rene Ortiz got their taste for Thai food while living in Sydney, Australia where Thai food is wildly popular. The large Sway menu is inspired by the modern Australian style of Thai cooking, which means it's more of a contemporary restaurant than a typical traditional family-run Thai restaurant. Apparently it has been very well received as Sway was voted Best Restaurant of the Year & Best Restaurant Design/ Interior in the Austin Chronicle's Best Of Poll 2013.

Their beverage program includes Asian beers, drinking vinegars, wines, curated teas, Thai and Vietnamese coffees, but it is the menu that speaks volumes and so do people who have dined there. Sway customer comments like this testify to that:

  1. "Loved the Jungle Curry so much I almost licked the dish clean."
  2. "The service was fantastic and it's a fun place to be. I loved the open kitchen."
  3. "The aroma and visual appeal were amazing and the consumption backed those two senses up for a 5-star main course."
  4. "The sleek interior reflects an upscale, trendy restaurant."
  5. "It's hands down my current favorite restaurant in Austin. I'm looking for reasons to return."

This isn't your typical meat and potato-lovers restaurant. A small list of what you can expect to see on the menu includes: Po-Pea Jay, Shu Mai, General Chong's Quail, Nashi Pear Chicken, Grilled Meats, Thai-inspired Noodles, Whole Market Fish and Blue Crab. Several dishes can be prepared gluten-free or vegetarian.

"We love the door. It's great and we get a lot of comments. When it's closed, people don't even realize it's a door because aesthetically, it speaks so well to the interior design."

- Jesse Herman

Restaurant Owner

"The Prawn Miange, Son In Law, Tiger Cry, and anything from the salt and pepper menu are our signature dishes with the Son In Law being our crowd favorite," said Herman.

Sway Thai outdoor patio

Thai restaurants are few in the Austin, Texas area. Sway (meaning elevated, delicious) fills that void with its large, modern upscale but trendy Australian-style spicy menu.

Sway compliments the menu with a full array of appetizers, soups, salads, stir-fries, curries, noodles, charcoal grilled and crispy fried entrees, market seafood and rice dishes.

Pastry chef, Laura Sawicki, also keeps Southeast Asian flavors in mind when creating the dessert menu. She uses ingredients like black sesame, toasted rice and Tai iced tea in her ice creams and panna cotta. One restaurant goer noted that she makes the most intense banana split you will ever experience.

Designer doors are nothing new for Schweiss Doors. You can see them all over the United States on specialized projects for notables such as Under Armour, Red Bull Headquarters and Old Navy to name a few. Schweiss Doors can also take credit for Sway's designer style glass door located near the bar at the restaurant which opens up to the outdoor Spirit Garden patio dining area. The 11' 7.38"x 7' 11" custom-made hydraulic one piece door is segmented with numerous attractive glazed windows. The frames were ordered without a primer coat of paint so the raw steel gives off more of a rustic look. It comes with two remote controls and photo eye sensors for easy and safe operation.

"We love the door. It's great and we get a lot of comments. When it's closed, people don't even realize it's a door because aesthetically, it speaks so well to the interior design," said Herman.

Family-style dining and patio seating

Two years of planning went into Sway's interior design to give it a seating capacity of 130 and to make it modern, clean, and simple with an entirely open theater-style kitchen. Unique communal tables encourage family-style dining and sharing. Additional seating is available at counters that open to an outside garden, bar seating and chef's counter seating, where diners have a front row view of Chef Ortiz and his crew in the kitchen. Sway also offers patio seating with three large communal tables in the outdoor "Spirit Garden," which is overlooked by a traditional mahogany Thai spirit house imported from Thailand.

Open patio connects to the inside via Schweiss Hydruailc door

The outdoor Spirit garden at the Sway Thai restaurant provides additional seating in nice weather. A portion of the spirit house imported from Thailand can be seen in the foreground.

A lot of the design and architectural credits go to Franklin Alan, LLC, an Austin-based construction firm that specializes in high-end commercial construction who worked closely with Michall Hsu Office of Architecture. Remodeling the 4,000 sq. ft. building itself was an adaptive reuse of an old tobacco store and they built an addition on it using the same original materials.

"It exceeded our expectations," said Herman, who noted that in a typical day 400-plus meals are served. "I think we will expand in Austin and then outside of Texas in the near future."

Franklin Alan LLC specializes in high-end commercial construction

The Sway Thai restaurant is just one of many exclusive projects that Franklin Alan construction firm has taken on over the years. Specializing in high-end commercial construction, their accomplishments run the gamut of notable new and remodeling building projects including restaurants and bars, schools, churches, retail and office buildings within and surrounding the vibrant and growing Austin, Texas area.

"We focus on local projects that value a team approach to the construction process, joining architect, client and builder to ensure design and budget are married while maintaining efficient time lines," notes the Franklin Alan website.

Sway Thai Restaurant

Sway serves lunch and dinner seven days a week from 11 a.m. to 10 p.m. Sunday through Wednesday and 11 a.m. to 11 p.m. Thursday through Saturday. Reservations for large parties, eight or more, can be made by calling 512-326-1999. There are two "Chef's Tasting Menu" options each night, with seasonal specials, in addition to a reserved ahead of time "Moo Sway" whole roasted pork shoulder, a house special off-the-menu family-style feast of whole roast pork butt and oysters on the half shell, additional entrees and sides can also be ordered. Most items on the menu are under $20. Location is 1417 South First Street location in Austin. For more information and to see the complete menu visit their website at www.swaythai.com

Schweiss hydraulic door cylinder

Two strong Schweiss hydraulic cylinders lift the 11'7" x 7' 11" glass designer door. The door is also equipped with electric photo eye sensors for safety and a remote openers for ease of operation.

Schweiss Door open to patio area

The Schweiss Hydraulic glass designer door which opens up to the outdoor patio portion of the Sway Thai restaurant blends into the decor of the rest of the restaurant.

Franklin Alan LLC

Franklin Alan Construction firm has been specializing in high-end commercial construction since 2005. Its founders, John Atwater and Ken Burger are University of Texas graduates who pride themselves on professional construction management services. They are located at 1209 West 49th Street in Austin, Texas and can be reached by calling 512-323-5358. To view numerous features photos of much of their work, visit their website at www.franklinalan.com

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