I love spending the day exploring San Antonio. You can head out in almost any direction and find plenty of places to pique your interest and satisfy your cravings.
The sunny weather Saturday made it a natural to leave the house early and just go. Friends were visiting from out of town and a large group of us wanted to get together for breakfast, so we started the day at Il Sogno in the Pearl Brewery, where Andrew Weissman and his crew were dealing with a full house.
The daily frittata, loaded with pork, roasted red peppers and spinach; muesli with yogurt and fruit; French toast with plenty of syrup; organic oatmeal; and omelets with goat cheese or cured salmon made everyone at the table happy and ready to hit the farmers market afterward.
On the way out the door, I ran into Jason Dady, sitting at the end of the counter and looking completely relaxed. He had finished cleaning his last items out of the Lodge and look refreshed and ready to get on with the next phase of his culinary career while managing Bin 555, two Tres, Two Bros. and three kids.
The market was filled with plenty of winter favorites, including a fine array of radishes for me, as well as mushrooms, robust green and purple kohlrabi and greens of all sizes and styles. Linda Perez of L&M was selling grass-fed beef, perfect for a wintery stew, though the sun was anything but January-like.
After loading my treasures into the car, I met up with my cohort in culinary adventures, Bonnie Walker, at Gaucho Gourmet on Isom Road. You have to make an appointment to visit the food warehouse, which has a little bit of everything from incredible olives and olive oils from Europe to prosciutto made from duck or lamb. Another load of goodies made it into the car, before we made it to the site of the future food truck park on U.S. 281 near Summerglen.
There was a lone trailer there today from Smokin’ Joe’s with plenty of barbecue options to whet your appetite.
Bonnie wanted a sausage taco, which she got with a touch of coleslaw and some sauce as well as a pulled pork taco that was so good, she kept most of it to herself. I did likewise with the tender, moist brisket that had a hard, almost crackly crust around the outside.
The real surprise was the deep-fried Moon Pie, a treat that should not have been anywhere near as good as it was. Take your pick of chocolate, vanilla (my choice) or banana pie, batter it and then deep-fry it. Top with whipped cream and chocolate or caramel (again, my choice). Insert face and inhale. Something that artificial has no business being that good.
The owner, Kyle Yuchinski, told us that more trucks would be moving in soon, so expect more treats in the near future. He’s also changing his own truck around, to feature ‘cue on one end and cupcakes on the other. Look for his truck in front of the fireworks stand along 281 North.
We went from there to Boardwalk on Bulverde for the first anniversary party of that trailer park. Free beer, plenty of sun and enough shade made it just right for the families that brought their kids out to play in the sandbox or on the slide. An Oh So Gouda Burger, with bacon and avocado, from Toastie Buns arrived with a spicy hot and temperature hot corn salad, while Sabor Colombiano’s plantain tostada topped with shredded pork proved to be a great combination.
Heavy turnout caused several sold-out signs to appear on certain items early in the day at Rickshaw Stop. In fact, they sold the last piece of baklava to the customer ahead of us, which meant we had to settle for a cup of kheer, a divine rice pudding with a touch of rose water and pistachios. The cup was empty within moments of receiving it.
A few minutes after leaving the food truck park, we encountered the Smoke Shack BBQ truck in front of the Ranger Creek Brewing & Distilling. Instead of yet another snack, we joined the dozens of people in line and the hundreds of people inside and out in back who were there for the first open house of the year.
For $5, you could buy a glass with a Ranger Creek logo on it and you received three tickets to try some of their various beers. Or you could take part in the bourbon tasting, in which you’d learn how to sample bourbons, such as the one Ranger Creek makes.
We opted for the beer and more of the sunshine, before downing a pint of UNO, the oatmeal pale ale that Ranger Creek created to mark its first anniversary. It was a fun first visit, and we plan on returning, perhaps for one of the tours. For more events at Ranger Creek, click here.
As you can imagine, I was fairly tired after that. So, I plan on a nap. But only a short one. I’m planning on heading off to the Ballroom Dance Annex for my first night of dancing in months.
Who knows what next Saturday will bring? Any suggestions?