This past weekend in the Texas capital, the Austin Food and Wine Festival returned for its third straight year, and by most accounts it was the strongest event so far. Maybe that's because the emphasis was less on nationally known celebrity chefs and more on Texas' dazzling display of culinary talents. The Friday night event, A Taste of Texas, showcased this class of young, emerging superstars, many of whom are featured in the photos below. Check back over the next few weeks for much more from the Austin Food and Wine Festival, including videos from the Food Republic Interview Lounge.

Justin Yu of Houston’s Oxheart.

Terrence Gallivan of Houston’s The Pass & Provisions.

Blaine Staniford of Grace in Ft. Worth.

Matt McCallister of FT33 in Dallas.

Diego Galicia and Rico Torres of Mixtli in San Antonio.

Andre Natera from The Common Table in Dallas.

San Antonio restaurateur and chef Jason Dady.

Wayne Mueller of Louie Miller Barbecue in Taylor.

Presented by our friends at the W Hotel Austin.