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Culinaria’s Winter Restaurant Week Is Coming Up Quickly


If you made a New Year’s resolution to eat better in the new year, your chance is coming up.

Southerleigh is taking part in the upcoming Restaurant Week.

Southerleigh is taking part in the upcoming Restaurant Week.

Restaurant Week is only a few weeks away, and Culinaria is excited to continue their mission of celebrating, educating and collaborating with chefs, winemakers and bartenders supporting the Alamo City’s food and drink culture.

Beginning Monday, Jan. 18, and going through Saturday, Jan. 23, guests will be able to dine at participating restaurants and experience the quality, variety and hospitality that embody the San Antonio dining experience. This citywide event will highlight many of the best local chefs and restaurants, including both new additions to San Antonio’s culinary scene and beloved mainstays. All participating restaurants will donate a portion of their proceeds to benefit Culinaria’s Urban Farm. With each meal ordered for San Antonio Restaurant Week, participating restaurants will donate $1 from each lunch menu and $2 from each dinner menu ordered.
 
Participating restaurants will offer an array of prix-fixe menus – encompassing three-course lunch and/or dinner menus within two different pricing tiers:

*Tier 1 establishments will offer a three-course menu and will cost $15 for lunch and $35 for dinner
*Tier 2 establishments will offer a three-course menu and will cost $10 for lunch and $25 for dinner

Check out Nectar Wine Bar and Ale House during Restaurant Week.

Check out Nectar Wine Bar and Ale House during Restaurant Week.

Reservations are encouraged, and you can contact each establishment directly. For an up-to-date list of participating restaurants, click here.
 
All proceeds of Restaurant Week will support The Culinaria Urban Farm:  Coming to life in Spring of 2016, the Urban Farm is a strategic extension of Culinaria in the form of education and the homegrown effort of many passionate chefs, food professionals, farmers, volunteers, sponsors and a very passionate staff.  The Urban Farm will become a place to learn where your food comes from, while chefs play a starring role in showing you how to create the best flavors from the food you can grow at home.

For more information, email info@culinariasa.org on how you can become a sponsor, volunteer or help build and work on the farm.

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Griffin to Go: Restaurant Week Brings a Welcome Mix of Old and New


Kirby's Angus New York strip

Kirby’s Angus New York strip

Culinaria’s Restaurant Week, which is actually two weeks this summer, offers the chance to see what some old friends are up to while introducing us to new places on the city’s dining scene.

Kirby's braised lamb shank

Kirby’s braised lamb shank

And so it was with visits to the new Alberico Fine Wine and the reliable Kirby’s Steakhouse on Saturday and Sunday evenings.

Let’s start with Kirby’s, which has long gotten into the spirit of Restaurant Week by offering a varied menu and by being the first to extend the special an additional week.

This year’s special menu, available for $35, begins with an extra appetizer, available for $7 — and it’s worth every penny. It’s a chorizo-stuffed quail atop a bed of smoky jalapeno coleslaw, both of which are as fine as you can imagine. The spicy sausage offered a nice contrast to the moist fowl while the slaw had the right balance of heat and creaminess to make each of want more.

The menu begins with starters that included your choice of two bacon-wrapped scallops with spinach, fried artichokes or a baked Caprese, a kind of Napoleon of tomato slices topped with a Boursin-stuffed portobello mushroom. All disappeared quickly.

Kirby's baked Caprese

Kirby’s baked Caprese

Then arrived the real star of the evening: a rustic braised lamb shank in a meaty rosemary thyme au jus that was pure comfort food, tender perfection in every bite. A 10-ounce Angus New York strip lacked the velvety nature of prime, but the beef flavor won out. Glazed salmon topped with pecans was a little sweet for my tastes, but one of my friends enjoyed it as well as the red bell pepper risotto that came with it. There’s also a prosciutto-wrapped filet that might call us back for a second visit.

Dessert options included butterscotch chocoflan, which was a little on the dry side, and a strawberry mojito sundae that hit all the right buttons on a sweltering August evening, thanks to a lively combination of berries, whipped cream, mint and a touch of rum.

We forgot that Sunday was half-off wine night at Kirby’s, so imagine our surprise when we got the bill and noticed that our bottle of 2008 Ridge Lytton Springs was listed at $27.50, instead of the usual $55. It was just the right note to end the evening on.

Special mention must be made of the excellent service, which made the visit all the more special.

Alberico Fine Wine's tuna

Alberico Fine Wine’s tuna

We were looking forward to our first visit to Alberico Fine Wine, and we were impressed with the wine program as well as the help we received from the sommelier. The restaurant and wine bar, located in the Yard next to Olmos Perk, offers all of its wines by the glass and at a good price. Plus, you can enjoy it in your choice of environs: a light and cozy bar area; a cool, spacious dining area; or in the inviting wine room.

It’s too bad that the food largely failed to match the wine experience. Dad’s Salad was a single leaf of romaine lettuce topped with diced unripe tomato, a few paltry cubes of avocado and strands of red onion. The watermelon and feta salad with arugula was far better, in fact the refreshing combination was the best dish of the evening.

Duck medallions were served in a sauce that was far too sweet, throwing off the pleasantness of the dry Barolo we’d ordered. Just-seared tuna with grilled vegetables were good, but they were served atop a mound of risotto that was gummy and cold.

Alberico's watermelon and feta salad

Alberico’s watermelon and feta salad

A salt grilled peach struck the right note, but it was atop a nearly flavorless sorbet while a pair of creme brulees were a little too gritty when they should have been silken and creamy.

It didn’t help matters that our waiter was indifferent to his job duties and seemed to avoid our table, one of only three or four occupied in the place.

In the end, it was all a part of what makes Restaurant Week special. Here’s to more adventures in eating.

Kirby’s Steakhouse
123 N. Loop 1604 E.
(210) 404-2221
kirbyssteakhouse.com

Alberico Fine Wine
5221 McCullough Ave.
(210) 320-VINO (8466)
albericofinewine.com

 

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Is Your Appetite Ready for Restaurant Week?


Culinaria’s summer version of Restaurant Week begins Saturday, but unlike year’s past, this year’s celebration goes on for two weeks.

Bliss.

Bliss.

That’s good news because the list of participating restaurants is greater than ever. It comes in two tiers, the first features lunches for $15 and dinners for $35 while the second tier restaurants are presenting $10 lunches and $25 dinners.

If you buy the Restaurant Week special menu, a portion goes to benefit Culinaria’s urban garden, which will be breaking ground on Jan. 1, 2016, according to Suzanne Etheredge, Culinaria’s president and CEO.

Below are the restaurants participating this year, though more were being added as the beginning of the event approached.

TIER 1 RESTAURANTS:

Acenar
146 E Houston Street
210-222-2362
http://acenar.com/mexican/
Acenar Lunch Menu
Acenar Dinner Menu

Boiler House

Boiler House

Alberico Fine Wine
5221 McCullough Ave
210-320-8466
http://www.albericofinewine.com/
Alberico Lunch and Dinner Menu

Bella on the River
106 River Walk
210-404-2355
http://www.bellaontheriver.com/
Bella on the River Dinner Menu

Biga on the Banks
203 S. St. Mary’s St., Suite 100
210-225-0722
http://biga.com/

Bite
1012 S. Presa Street
(210) 532-2551
http://www.biterestaurantsa.com/
Bite Dinner Menu

Bliss
926 S. Presa Street
http://www.foodisbliss.com/

Biga on the Banks

Biga on the Banks

Boardwalk Bistro
4011 Broadway
210-824-0100
http://www.boardwalkbistro.net/

Bob’s Steak and Chop House
5851 Rim Pass Drive
210-222-2627
http://www.bobs-steakandchop.com
Bob’s Dinner Menu

Boiler House Texas Grill & Wine Garden
312 Pearl Pkwy, Building 3
210-354-4644
www.boilerhousesa.com
Boiler House Lunch Menu
Boiler House Dinner Menu
Lunch: Mon-Fri only; Dinner: 5P to close

Boudro’s Texas Bistro
421 E. Commerce St.
210-224-8484
http://www.boudros.com/

Charlie Wants A Burger
223 Losoya Street
210-227-0864
http://charliewantsaburger.com/
Charlie Wants a Burger Menu

Chart House
739 E. Cesar E. Chavez Blvd
210-223-3101
http://www.chart-house.com/

Chez Vatel Bistro
218 E Olmos
210-828-3141
bistrovatel.com
Chez Vatel Bistro Dinner Menu

Cover 3
1806 North Loop 1604 W
210-479-9700
http://cover-3.com/
Cover 3 Lunch Menu
Cover 3 Dinner Menu

Sustenio

Sustenio

Cured at Pearl
306 Pearl Parkway, Suite 101
210-314-3929
https://curedatpearl.com/
Cured Lunch and Dinner Menu

Eilan Hotel – Sustenio
18603 La Cantera Terrace
210-598-2950
http://sustenio.restaurant/
Sustenio Lunch and Dinner

El Machito
7300 Jones Maltsberger
210-314-3971
http://chefjohnnyhernandez.com/elmachito/
El Machito Lunch and Dinner Menu

Esquire Tavern
155 E Commerce Street
210-222-2521
http://www.esquiretavern-sa.com/menu/
Esquire Tavern Dinner Only Menu

Fig Tree
515 Villita Street
210-224-1976
http://dine.figtreerestaurant.com/

Zocca on the River Walk

Zocca on the River Walk

Grey Moss Inn
19010 Scenic Loop Road
210-695-8301
http://www.grey-moss-inn.com
Dinner Menu

Hotel Contessa – Las Ramblas
306 W Market Street
210-298-8040
http://thehotelcontessa.com/
Las Ramblas Dinner Only Menu

Hotel Valenica – Citrus
150 E Houston Street
http://hotelvalencia-riverwalk.com/
Citrus Lunch Menu
Citrus Dinner Menu

Houlihans
938 North Loop 1604 W
http://houlihans.com/

Houlihans
14601 IH 35 N
210- 651-4744
http://houlihans.com/

Hyatt Hill Country Resort – Antlers Lodge
9800 Hyatt Resort Drive
210-520-4001
www.antlerslodgerestaurant.com
Antlers Lodge Dinner Menu

Kimura Ramen Shop
152 E Pecan Street, Suite 150
210-444-0702
KimuraSA.com

Kirby’s Steakhouse
123 N. Loop 1604 E.
210-404-2221
http://kirbyssteakhouse.com/locations/san-antonio/
Kirby’s Dinner Menu

La Cantera Resort – Primero
16641 La Cantera Parkway
210-558-6500
https://www.destinationhotels.com/la-cantera-resort-and-spa
Primero Lunch and Dinner Menu

La Cantera Resort – SweetFire
16641 La Cantera Parkway
https://www.destinationhotels.com/la-cantera-resort-and-spa
SweetFire Lunch and Dinner Menu

La Frite Belgian Bistro
728 S Alamo St
210-224-7555
http://www.lafritesa.com/

La Gloria's

La Gloria’s

La Gloria
100 E Grayson Street
210-267-9040
http://chefjohnnyhernandez.com/lagloria/
La Gloria Lunch and Dinner Menu

Landry’s Seafood
517 N Presa St
210-229-1010
http://www.landrysseafood.com/

Liberty Bar
1111 S Alamo
210-227-1187
http://liberty-bar.com/

Luke San Antonio
125 E. Houston Street
210-227-5853
http://www.lukesanantonio.com/
Luke Menu

Mariposa at Neiman Marcus
15900 La Cantera Parkway
210-694-3550
http://neimanmarcus.com/

Market on Houston – Sheraton Gunter
205 E Houston St
210-554-1721
http://www.marketonhouston.com/

Max’s Wine Dive
340 E Basse Road, Suite 101
210-444-9547
http://maxswinedive.com/
Lunch: 11A – 3P Mon-Fri only; Dinner: 4P – close, daily

Morton’s Steakhouse
300 E Crockett
210-228-0700
http://mortons.com/
Morton’s Dinner Only Menu

Nao

Nao

Nao at the Culinary Institute of America, San Antonio
312 Pearl Parkway
210-554-6484
http://www.naorestaurant.com/
Nao Dinner Menu

Omni Colonnade – Bolo’s Rotisserie Grille
9821 Colonnade Blvd
210-699-5864
http://www.omnihotels.com/
Bolo’s Lunch Menu
Bolo’s Dinner Menu

Omni La Mansion del Rio – Las Canarias
112 College St.
210-518-1063
http://www.omnihotels.com/hotels/san-antonio-la-mansion-del-rio/dining/las-canarias
Las Canarias Lunch and Dinner Menu

Ostra at Mokara
212 W Crockett Street
210-396-5817
dining.html
Ostra Lunch and Dinner Menu

Paesanos Riverwalk
111 W Crockett St
210-227-2782
http://paesanosriverwalk.com/
Paesanos Lunch and Dinner Menu
Paesanos Riverwalk Location Only

Palm Restaurant
233 E Houston Street
210-226-7256
http://thepalm.com/san-antonio
Palm Restaurant Dinner Menu

Perry's

Perry’s

Perry’s Steak House
15900 La Cantera Pkwy #2200
210-558-6161
la-cantera
Perry’s Dinner Menu

Restaurant Gwendolyn
152 E Pecan Street, #100
210-222-1849
http://restaurantgwendolyn.com/

Ruth’s Chris Steak House, Jones Maltsberger
7720 Jones Maltsberger
210- 821-5051
http://ruthchris.com/
Ruth’s Chris Dinner Only Menu

Ruth’s Chris Steak House, Riverwalk
1170 East Commerce St
210 227-8847
http://www.ruthschris.com/
Ruth’s Chris Lunch Menu
Ruth’s Chris Dinner Menu

Shuck Shack

Shuck Shack

Shuck Shack
520 E. Grayson Street
210-236-7422

Southerleigh
136 E. Grayson, Suite 120
210-455-5701
http://southerleigh.com/

Stella Public House
1414 S Alamo Street #103
210-277-7047
www.stellapublichouse.com

Tacos and Tequila
1915 Broadway St
210-314-8226
http://tacos-and-tequila.com/
Tacos and Tequila Lunch and Dinner Menu

Texas de Brazil
313 E Houston
210-299-1600
http://www.texasdebrazil.com/
Dinner Menu

The Granary

The Granary

The Granary Cue & Brew
302 Avenue A
210-228-0124
http://thegranarysa.com/

The Hoppy Monk
1010 N Loop 1604 E
210-545-3330
http://www.thehoppymonk.com/
The Hoppy Monk Dinner Menu

Tiu Steppi’s Osteria
9910 W Loop 1604 N
210-688-9885
http://www.tiusteppis.com/
Tiu Steppis Lunch and Dinner Menu

Tre Enoteca
555 W Bitters Road
210-496-0555

Tre Trattoria
4003 Broadway
210-805-0333
http://tretrattoria.com/

Tribeca

Tribeca

Tribeca di Olmos
4331 McCullough Ave
210-320-0698
http://www.tribecadiolmos.com/

Two Step Restaurant & Cantina
9840 West Loop 1604 N
210-688-2686
http://www.twosteprestaurant.com/
Two Step Lunch and Dinner Menu

Werner’s Prime Steak & Seafood
16111 San Pedro Ave., Suite 119
210-490-2295
http://www.wernersprime.com/
Werner’s Dinner Menu

Westin Riverwalk – Zocca Cusine de Italia
420 W. Market St.
210-444-6070
http://www.zoccariverwalk.com/

WildFish Seafood Grille
1834 N. Loop 1604 W.
210-493-1600
https://www.wildfishseafoodgrille.com/

Zinc
207 N. Presa
210-224-2900
http://zincwine.com/

TIER 2 RESTAURANTS:

Bavarian Brauhaus
300 W. Bitters Road
210-396-7170
http://www.bavarianbrauhaus.com/
Bavarian Brauhaus Lunch and Dinner Menu

Thai Topaz

Thai Topaz

La Botanica
2911 N. St. Mary’s
http://vivalabotanica.com
La Botanica Dinner Only Menu

Orderup
999 E. Basse Road
210-824-9600
http://orderup-sa.com/

Paloma Blanca
5800 Broadway
210-822-6151
http://www.palomablanca.net/

Smoke: The Restaurant
700 E. Sonterra Blvd.
210-417-0175
http://smoketherestaurant.com/

Thai Topaz
2177 N.W. Military Hwy.
210-290-9833
http://thaitopaz-sat.com/

Urban Taco
290 E. Basse Road, Ste 105
210-332-5149
http://dinedsrg.com/ut/quarry.html
Urban Taco Lunch and Dinner Menu

 

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Restaurant Week Returns in January


Culinaria’s Restaurant Week has become so popular that it’s spawning a second week, which is set for Jan. 19-24.

Culinaria Restaurant Week 2013The plan didn’t originate with the non-profit, which promotes San Antonio as a food and wine destination. “The restaurants came to us with those dates,” says Suzanne Taranto Etheredge, Culinaria’s president and CEO.

There will be two tiers of prices during the January week. The first tier will include $15 lunches and $35 dinners, while the second tier features $10 lunches and $25 dinners.

Menus will be posted on culinariasa.org as we get closer to the event. “You should start looking about a month out,” Etheredge says. “I’ll be interested to see what the chefs come up with for winter: warm soups, warm everything.”

Restaurant Week has proven such a hit for Culinaria and for the participating restaurants that you can expect to see it expanded to two weeks this August, she says. And plans are in place for two weeks in January 2016 as well.

One dollar from each Restaurant Week plate sold goes to benefit Culinaria’s programs, which include scholarships and Chefs for Chefs, which raises money for kitchen workers and their families in need.

 

 

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Culinaria Invites You to Experience Agave Oct. 24-25


If you live in San Antonio, you probably have more than a passing acquaintance with tequila, thanks to our unofficial cocktail, the margarita.

Experience Agave runs Oct. 24-25.

Experience Agave runs Oct. 24-25.

But how much do you really know about tequila and the plant that it comes from, the agave?

The folks at Culinaria are hoping to broaden your education Oct. 24-25 as they present the first Experience Agave celebration.

The fun begins with the Essence of Mexico, which runs 6:30-8:30 p.m. at Mana House, 1160 E. Commerce St.

The event is presented by the Tequila Interchange Project, a non-profit advocacy group that promotes agave-distilled spirits. Explore the origins and trajectory of tequila and the burgeoning spirits category, mezcal. Learn about the Denominations of Origin in Mexico, what types of tequila exist and how they are produced. Get acquainted with mezcal, a broader category of agave distillates. Examine the cultivation of agave, which dates back 10,000 years and the history of human use. The rise of tequila as a globally recognized spirit category and the recent rise of mezcal will be discussed.

Tickets are $35 apiece.

The Oct. 25 lineup begins with Maestros of Mexico from 1:30-3:30 p.m. at Mana House, 1160 E. Commerce St.

Discuss the range of challenges faced by the tequila industry. Explore the social, economic and environmental impact of these industries. Discuss strategies for responsible growth with a heartfelt appreciation of these spirits and their cultural heritage. Discuss the opportunities the mezcal industry has to be different. Discover ways to lead the industry we love into a sustainable future based on human relationships.

What if distillation technology was in Meso-America before Spanish conquest? Hear from the world’s leading expert of the history of fermented and distilled beverages, Dr. Patrick E. McGovern, and learn about his work with the Instituto Nacional de Antropología e Historia in Colima, Mexico.

Tickets are $35 apiece.

Tequila makes margaritas and more.

Tequila makes margaritas and more.

After all that information, it’s time to party. So, Pachanga ¡Party! is set for 6-9 p.m. at Mana House, 1160 E. Commerce St.

Take a stroll around and sample the bountiful varieties of agave spirits and food pairings as some of San Antonio’s best bartenders shake their creative agave-infused cocktails just for you. With San Antonio’s culinary geniuses in tow, you’re bound to find your ultimate dish to complement the agave – whether it’s a fountain of queso you crave or a more modern and sophisticated fare, we’ll have it there to help you find your happiness.

Tickets are $60 a person.

To get tickets for these events, click here.

And don’t forget to drive responsibly.

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Experience Agave: Culinaria Celebrates Tequila and More in Oct.


This fall, Culinaria invites lovers of tequila to share in an all-about-agave event at Experience Agave, beginning on Thurs. Oct. 23 and running through Sunday, Oct. 26.

The agave plant is the basis of tequila.

The agave plant is revered by tequila lovers the world over.

Culinaria joins forces with agave and tequila professionals from around the country to host this weekend of tequila, mezcal and much more.

It’s a great way to celebrate agave and increase awareness through education and of course, sampling the craft of agave cocktails.

It wouldn’t be a Culinaria event, however, without incredible food, too.  This event line-up includes a dinner and other tasty offerings to accompany your tequila exploration. We will be pouring out some incredible opportunities as we Eat, Drink and Give towards all things agave.

(For updated information on ticketing and more, go to Culinaria’s website here.) Also see Facebook, at facebook.com/CulinariaSanAntonio;  Twitter, @culinariasa;  and Instagram: @culinariasa.


Thursday, Oct. 23

The Tequila Dinner at Casa Hernan
6-9 p.m.

The food, the booze and the company all have one thing in common.  Love of agave.  Sample all the tequila winners and enjoy a journey through Mexico one course at a time with San Antonio favorite, chef and restaurateur Johnny Hernandez. See www.culinariasa.org for more information.

Culinaria is an independent, not-for-profit organization committed to promoting San Antonio as a premier wine and food destination while fostering community growth and enrichment. Culinaria is a registered 501 c (3) tax-exempt organization. There is a valued volunteer board of directors who represent the community and guide the organization in its mission.

Venue (To be announced)
6:30 p.m. to 8:30 p.m. $35 (trade pricing available)

Introductory seminar.

Friday, Oct. 24
Agave Late Night (Various Locations)

At this point, you might have realized that this weekend is overflowing with all things tequila. Warm up for a weekend all about agave with a stop at your favorite local watering hole or try out one of Culinaria’s reverse happy hour picks. All participating bars are rolling out their best tequila cocktails catered especially to the dedicated tequila lover.

Saturday, October 25
The Essence of Mexico

Venue is TBA
1:30 – 3:30 p.m. $35 (trade pricing available)

Advanced seminar, see Culinaria website (above)


Saturday, Oct. 25
Agave Cocktails
6-9 p.m. Venue TBA

Experience Agave our way. Take a stroll around and sample the bountiful varieties of agave spirits and food pairings as some of San Antonio’s best bartenders shake their inspiringly creative agave-influenced cocktails just for you. With San Antonio’s culinary geniuses in tow, you’re bound to find your ultimate dish to complement the agave – whether it’s a fountain of queso you crave or a more modern and sophisticated fare, we’ll have it there to help you find your happiness.

The After Party
10:00 – 1 a.m.

You’ll need an all-access pass for entry into this exclusive after party. The Broolynite hosts only the most committed and sophisticated agave drinkers. And only the coolest cocktail host will do as Jeret Peña welcomes you to Experience Agave After Hours.

 

Tequilas set for judging.

Tequilas set for judging.

 

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Tiu Steppi’s Steps Up for Restaurant Week


Who doesn’t love a bowl of handmade noodles, all eggy and rich, covered with a sauce made out of mushrooms or plenty of cream and cheese?

tiu steppis

The patio at Tiu Steppi’s

Steve Warner knows their appeal. His Restaurant Week menu for Tiu Steppi’s Osteria features several entree options, which you can get served over handmade fettucine, if you like. Mashed Yukon gold potatoes is another option, if you prefer.

Caesar Salad

Caesar Salad

Those noodles were a welcome nest for Prosciutto-Wrapped Chicken Florentine. At the center of the chicken breast meat, kept moist by the prosciutto, was a scoop of warm sauteed spinach, all of which melted together over in a cheesy sauce made with Parmesan, asiago and mozzarella. But even better were the oven-dried tomatoes that added a bright touch that cut through all that velvety sauciness.

Yellow and green pasta were the base chosen for the 8-ounce beef tenderloin, which was topped with gorgonzola, garlic and chives. The meat could have used a little more marbling for flavor, but it worked well with the rest of the ingredients in the dish, including a porcini mushroom sauce. That sauce had full mushroom flavor, but we wondered if powdered porcini had been used to achieve that, because the slices in the sauce looked more like cremini or button cap.

If you’ve ever been to Tiu Steppi’s on a Saturday night, Restaurant Week notwithstanding, you likely have faced a wait. When my colleague Bonnie Walker and I arrived, we were informed that it would be 30 minutes before we got an inside seat, but we were also told that we could start our meal on the patio. Thanks to a giant fan that kept the air moving, sitting on the patio wasn’t unpleasant, but we actually got our table before our first course arrived.

Smoked Salmon Carpaccio

Smoked Salmon Carpaccio

So we settled down in the air conditioned comfort of the cozy dining room just as our order of smoked salmon carpaccio arrived with plenty of welcome, salty capers on top.  It disappeared so quickly that it might not seem possible for us to have noticed how carefully layered the flavors were, but we did enjoy the tang of the lemon dressing along with the peppery arugula and bitter radicchio.

Our other start was a lively Caesar salad with plenty of anchovy flavor — thanks go to our waitress for pointing that out — along with fresh garlic, tangy grape tomatoes and salty Parmesan cheese.

Dessert brought the lone misstep of the evening. A dish listed as Coffee and Doughnuts featured cappuccino semi-freddo and house-made doughnuts dusted in cinnamon sugar. It certainly looked impressive when it arrived, but the semi-freddo, which is supposed to be soft, had frozen rock hard, and that forced the texture off balance, leaving each bite slick and overly unctuous. The doughnuts may have been made in house, but they had also been made a long time before they were served and had partially dried out.

The dark chocolate torte was an unqualified success, silky and rich yet light enough after that filling dinner.

A fine meal, pleasant service and steady air conditioning, so bracing after a day of manual labor, certainly made for an enjoyable  evening. But the intimacy of Tiu Steppi’s carried our fun Saturday one step further. The people around us were really enjoying themselves. A family next to us were visiting for the first time, and they raved about their meat-laden pizza, while enjoying the looks of the dishes that arrived at ours. That easy-going give-and-take made us really feel at home.

Tiu Steppi’s Osteria
9910 West Loop 1604 North #123
210-688-9885
www.tiusteppis.com

Coffee and Doughnuts

Coffee and Doughnuts

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Restaurant Week Begins, and Safe Rides Are Available


Culinaria’s Restaurant Week begins Aug. 16, and that’s a cause for celebration, especially given the large list of participants this year.

Kirby's  Prime Steakhouse

Kirby’s

If you celebrate too much, you don’t need to drive home, though.

Culinaria has teamed up with Uber to provide safe and convenient rides for patrons enjoying dinner at any of the participating restaurants.

What’s Uber?

Uber is a technology company that created an app that seamlessly connects users with a personal driver at the tap of a button via their smartphone. Transactions are frictionless, ETAs are transparent, and route tracking is a breeze. It’s simply the easiest, cheapest, and most efficient way to move around town.

Click here to access a new user promo code good for $20 off your first ride during San Antonio Restaurant Week. The code is: SARW14.

Below are a list of the restaurants taking part in this year’s Restaurant Week:

18 Oaks
Acenar
Antler’s Lodge

Arcade Midtown Kitchen

Arcade Midtown Kitchen

Arcade Midtown Kitchen
Azuca
Bella on the River
Biga on the Banks
Bite
Bliss
Boardwalk Bistro
Bob’s Steak & Chop House
Boiler House Texas Grill & Wine Garden
Bolo’s
Boudro’s

Brio Tuscan Grille

Brio Tuscan Grille

Brio
Canyon Café
Chez Vatel & Bistro
Cibolo Moon
Citrus at Hotel Valencia
Cocina Heritage
Cured
El Jarro de Arturo
El Machito
Esquire Tavern
FEAST
Fig Tree Restaurant
Grey Moss Inn
Habanero’s Grill
High Velocity
Kirby’s Prime Steakhouse

La Frite Belgian Bristro
Landry’s Seafood
Las Canarias
La Paloma Riverwalk
Little Rhein Steak House
Luke – A Chef John Besh Restaurant
Myrons Steak House logoMariposa
Market on Houston
Max’s Wine Dive
Mellow Mushroom
Mid-Point Grill
Morton’s The Steakhouse
Myron’s Prime Steak House
NAO
Oaks Crossing Bistro & Bar
Ostra
Paesanos – Riverwalk
Paloma Blanca
Perry’s Steakhouse and Grille
Piatti – Eilan

NAO

NAO

Piatti – The Quarry
Q on the Riverwalk
Restaurant Gwendolyn
Ruth’s Chris Steak House Concord Plaza
Ruth’s Chris Steak House Riverwalk
Scuzzi’s
Speisen
Starfish
Stella Public House
Sustenio
Texas de Brazil
The Granary
The Fruteria
The Melting Pot
The River’s Edge Café and Patio Bar
Tre Alamo Heights

Tre Alamo Heights

Tre Alamo Heights

Tre Trattoria Alamo Heights
Tre Trattoria Downtown
Tui Steppi’s Osteria
Tribeca di Olmos
Tuk Tuk Tap Room
Two Step Restaurant & Cantina
Umai Mi
Va Bene
Wildfish Seafood Grille
Zedric’s – Colonnade
Zedric’s – Broadway Commons
Zinc Bistro & Bar
Zocca Cuisine D’Italia

For addresses, phone numbers and some menus, click here.

Restaurant Week on The Move
On Tuesday, Aug. 19, Travis Park will be the location of a Restaurant Week food truck event from 11 a.m. to 2 p.m. Participants include:

Cheesy Jane’s
Crazy Carl’s
Saweet Cupcakes
South Texas Grilling & Catering
Spice Sea Gourmet
Tailgate Bistro
The Duk Truck
Teka Molino

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Griffin to Go: Get Your Pink On


This coming Saturday is one of my favorite days of the year.

rosewine

Think pink on Saturday.

That’s when Culinaria presents Rambling Rosé at Becker Vineyards, 464 Becker Farms Road, Stonewall.

During the two panels, set for 1 and 3 p.m., a roomful of wine lovers get together to discuss one of the most maligned yet resilient wines produced.

When the event began more than 10 years ago, rosé was not taken seriously by too many American wine writers, at least the pompous overgrown boys who drink only Cabernet no matter what the temperature is outside. Back then, pink wine was also thought to be white Zinfandel, that cloyingly sweet concoction that tastes more like soda than wine.

We would ask the audience how many people drank rosé, which is dry, not sweet, and very few outside of the panelists answered yes.

But something funny happened on the way to the winery. Year after year, the number of people who drank rosé began to grow. The number of wineries in America making serious pink wine took off. Wine shops began devoting more shelf space to these beauties, and sales increased steadily.

Rosé comes in many shades of pink.

Rosé comes in many shades of pink.

Most importantly, people began to realize how enjoyable a dry rosé can be. It’s the perfect summer wine, fresh and refreshing, youthful and vibrant. It’s great with a whole array of foods or just by itself. And that may be why it’s now my go-to style of wine for the 10 months of the year when the thermometer shows a bit of red.

Plus, they’re often affordable, though Chateau d’Esclans from Provence makes a rosé that sells for more than $100 a bottle.

So, come join us to learn more about all of the styles, flavors and colors that can be considered a rosé. Winery owner Richard Becker, sommelier Steven Kreuger, Bonnie Walker and I will all be part of the panel, which has also included winemakers, wine educators and rosé aficionados. We’ll taste a number of pink wines from around the world along with food from chef John Brand of the upcoming Hotel Emma at the Pearl.

The price is $25, which includes the wines, the food and some summer fun at Becker Vineyards. For tickets, click here.

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Culinaria’s Restaurant Week Steps Up Its Game!


Culinaria’s Restaurant Week is fast approaching, and this year’s event, Aug 16-23,  not only highlights many of the best local chefs and restaurants but now also food trucks. They’ll be offering their fare at a designated location at Travis Park on Aug. 19.

As an all-encompassing citywide event, all participating restaurants will donate partial proceeds to benefit Culinaria and its continued outreach initiatives.

Participating restaurants will offer an array of prix-fixe menus— encompassing both three-course lunch menus and four-course dinner menus within three different pricing tiers.

* Tier 1 establishments will offer $15 for a three-course lunch menu, and $35 for a four-course dinner menu.

* Tier 2 establishments will off $10 for a three-course lunch menu, and $25 for a four-course for dinner menu.

An island bar will be a first for Perry's.

The Island Bar at Perry’s Steakhouse, one of the participants in this year’s Restaurant Week.

Culinaria’s Restaurant Week benefits all of Culinaria’s community outreach programs, making each dining experience a charitable one.

This culinary adventure leads you to try new restaurants and also lets you support many of your local favorites.

With each meal ordered specifically for San Antonio Restaurant Week, participating restaurants will donate $1 from each lunch menu and $2 from each dinner menu ordered to benefit Culinaria.

San Antonio Restaurant Week highlights a wide array of dining establishments. Places such as Arcade Midtown Kitchen, Biga on The Banks, Bite, Bliss, Boiler House Texas Grill & Wine Garden, Boudro’s, BRIO, The Esquire Tavern, La Gloria, The Fruteria, Liberty Bar, Luke San Antonio, MAX’s Wine Dive, NAO, Palm Restaurant, Stella Public House,  and many more. Reservations are encouraged and you can contact each establishment directly. See the complete list here!

Restaurant Week on the Move!

This year’s  Restaurant Week on The Move will showcase the city’s best food trucks and mobile kitchens with the special pricing of $8 for a lunch special and $15 for a dinner special. You can find them in Travis Park, at a designated location, on Aug. 19 from 11 a.m. to 2 p.m.

 

Culinaria is an independent, not-for-profit organization committed to promoting San Antonio as a premier wine and food destination while fostering community growth and enrichment. Read more about Culinaria here

 

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