Culinaria wound up five days of celebrating the finest in San Antonio food and spirits scene with an event that is tailored made for Texan tastes: Burgers, BBQ and Beer.
Sure, some wine and alcohol were thrown for good measure, but the highlights for the hundreds who thronged to the Pearl Brewery were treats such as the Wagyu beef burgers and lobster rolls that John Brand’s team from Las Canarias and Ostra served up.
Chef Jesse Perez of the upcoming Arcade restaurant offered up a chorizo burger, while Steve Warner of Two Step Restaurant served pulled pork with slaw on a buttery bun. Chef Michael Flores from Sur la Table offered pulled pork, too, but he complemented his with pulled shrimp.
Jeff Balfour of Citrus won fans with a decidedly different rabbit burger with cheese and Dijon mustard; the bottles of Shiner Wild Hare Pale Ale that he and his staff used to fight off the heat were not chosen because of the meat, Balfour said with a laugh. Shere Henrici of the Rolling Pig had an Asian-influenced sweet and sour pork dish with peanuts adding crunch to the sauce.
Michael Alvarez was part of the Grand Hyatt team, which served up three-day braised beef with house-made giardinara and a raspberry gelatin shooter that had a touch of chocolate in it.
The array of burgers included patties made of sausage, venison and other meats came from the likes of Magnolia Pancake Haus, the Esquire Tavern and EZ’s, while barbecue came from Ben E. Keith and Q on the Riverwalk among others.
For those who partied a little too much the previous night at the Grand Tasting or wherever the party may have been, Jason Dady offered Bloody Mary’s with a smoky barbecue flavor.
Bakery Lorraine and Flour Power were among those offering sweets, with macarons in several flavors, brownies, cookies and cake bites drawing snackers of all ages.
For those in search of something a little different, Kameron Bean of Wild Times Edutainment brought a possum, a hedgehog and a non-fragrant skunk for people to pet. The shaded area drew plenty of interested visitors, as did the mister area, which helped take an edge off the warm day.
The sun made an icy beer all the more welcome, as Culinaria closed out its festival season on a high note.