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Restaurant Notes & Quotes: Chefs’ Coop Dinner and More


Z Tejas skillet pan cropped

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Z Tejas Southwestern Grill’s Cool New Summer Items

Z Tejas announces a few new temptations on their menu. These include four new entrees, along with Two Berry Delicious Skinny Cocktails and a twist on a dessert classic, S’mores Cake with a Root Beer Float.  Z Tejas is at the Shops at La Cantera. (210) 690-3334.

 

Fig Tree Dining RoomFig Tree welcomes new chef, Laurent Rea

“I’ve known Laurent for some time now, since he worked at L’Etoile. I’ve been very interested in him and his talent, and we are all very glad to have him here, now, at the Fig Tree.”  — Moe Lazri, general manager, Little Rhein and Fig Tree. See more on the Fig Tree Bastille Day celebration this week here.

 

Enjoy a taste of Italy at Crumpet’s Vintner Dinner Friday

Fine dining and wine tasting will come together on Friday, July 12, at 7 p.m. Crumpets Restaurant & Bakery will be hosting a wine dinner featuring five Italian wines for guests to enjoy along with a specially prepared Italian inspired gourmet menu by chef/owner Francois Maeder.

The cost of this event is $70 per person, plus tax and tip. Seating is limited and reservations are required. For more information and to make reservations, call (210) 821-5600. Crumpets is at 3920 Harry Wurzbach.

The menu (wines listed first, per course):  Ca De Meo Gavi, Gamberetti con Salsa Crema d’anglio;  Tenuta del Buonamico Bianco-Montecarlo, Indiva Brasato con Proscuitto Mozzarella; Macato La Giareta Cabernet Franc, Raviolo Frito de Carne;  David Sterza Valpollcella Superiore Ripasso, Vitella del Piemonte; Villa de Filicaja Vin Santo Del Riserva, Meringa con gelato e lampone freschi.

Johnny Hernandez addresses CIA SA grads

Johnny Hernandez chef

Johnny Hernandez

Ten students at the Culinary Institute of America, San Antonio, received their associate in applied science diplomas during commencement ceremonies at the Pearl complex last week.

San Antonio native Johnny Hernandez, a 1989 graduate of the CIA at the college’s main campus in Hyde Park, N.Y., was the keynote speaker at the ceremony. He is executive chef and owner of La Gloria Ice House, Casa Hernán, Frutería Botanero, and True Flavors Catering. He’s also working on his first cookbook and memoir, México Mi Gloria. He was named one of the Five Top Latino Chefs in the United States by Siempre Mujer magazine in 2011.

Hernandez has also opened a La Gloria restaurant at the San Antonio International Restaurant earlier this week.

This was just the second AAS in culinary arts graduation at the San Antonio campus, with the first having been in April. The 10 graduates join the ranks of accomplished CIA alumni, which number more than 45,000 since the college’s founding in 1946.

Chefs’ Cooperative, Peeler Farms Dinner

Peeler Farms and the Chefs’ Cooperative invite you to a once-in-a -lifetime event to showcase all that is Texas and to “give back” to the farm. This event is on Aug. 10 at The Emily Morgan Hotel, 705 E. Houston St. It begins with a 5 p.m. reception and dinner following at 6.  The price is $75 per person, plus tax and tip. All proceeds go directly to Peeler Farms.

For reservations, call  (210) 225-5100. Also available are free valet parking and reduced rates on hotel rooms.

Here’s the menu the chefs have planned:

Reception:  Jeff White presents Charcuterie — Head cheese with porcini aioli, Smoked lamb belly rillette with candied green apple, Suckling porchetta with grain mustard and sweetbread; Pistachio mortadella with rocket emulsion

First: Stephen Paprocki presents Cheese: Farmhouse white cheddar;  Texas lavender and honey montasio; Alamo Ale; mozzarella quick cheese with pickled Texas citrus. This course features products from Alamo Beer, Duff Distributing and Fall Creek Vineyards.

Second: Alex Altamirano presents: Texas sweet white shrimp tempura, cucumber jicama escabeche, and cilantro ginger aioli.

Third: Tyler Horstmann presents Peeler Farms “golden egg.”

Fourth: Laurent Rea presents Broken Arrow Ranch venison tartar, Sun choke hummus, peach mostarda.

Fifth: Chris Cook presents Peeler Farms Young Chicken Confit, minted squash and watermelon water.

Sixth: Jeret Peña presents “Pinky Swear” with rye whiskey, grapefruit, Texas honey and pink peppercorns.

Seventh: Isaac Cantu presents Texas mushroom-crusted Hill Country Beef with honey-carrot puree, watercress and iconic Cabernet jus.

Eighth: Melissa Beverage presents Country bread pudding and peach ginger compote with a blackberry goat’s milk ice cream.

The Settlement is a new Don Strange catering venture

The Barn at The Settlement will be completed soon.

The Barn at The Settlement will be completed soon.

Renowned caterer Don Strange of Texas has launched a new destination venue called The Settlement, which is nestled in the foothills of the Texas Hill Country near Highway 281. It offers the beauty of the countryside and the convenience of easy travel from San Antonio as well as a variety of venue settings, from intimate to large scale.

Situated on 78 acres on Bulverde Road, The Settlement dates to 1850 but has all of the conveniences of a modern event facility, making it ideal for people who want to give their event a touch of Texas charm and the natural beauty that can only be found in the Texas Hill Country.

For more information, call (210) 434-2331 or email info@donstrange.com.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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Celebrate Bastille Day; Welcome Chef Rea to Fig Tree


Fig tree logoCome and indulge in French-inspired dishes at the Fig Tree this week, leading up to Bastille Day on Sunday.

Fig Tree has another reason to celebrate, as Laurent Rea takes over the reins at the Fig Tree kitchen as chef de cuisine. Make reservations for this week with Pat (210-224-1976). The price is $42 per person, excluding tax and tip.  Wine pairings are available per course at an added cost.

The menu follows:

Appetizer
Artichokes “En Barigoule,” Chèvre Chaud or North Atlantic Salmon Tartare and Rillettes,
Frisée Lettuce

Entree
Sautéed Redfish “Sauce Dieppoise”
Parisian Potatoes, Spinach Flan, Fleuron

Lamb “Navarin”
Flageolet Beans, Glazed Baby Turnips, Fingerling Potatoes

Desserts
Strawberry and Rhubarb Soup,
Toasted Brioche, Vanilla Ice cream

or

Dark Chocolate and Pear “Charlotte”

 

 

 

 

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Ready or Not, New Year’s Is Around the Corner


Happy New Year's!

San Antonians love to party on New Year’s Eve. Well, we love to party almost any day of the year, but New Year’s Eve is special. The following restaurants are offering special meals or special hours to ring out the old and ring in the new. Reservations are required at ease. Prices do not include tax and tip.

And Happy New Year’s!

Achiote at the Grand Hyatt, 600 E. Market St.,  210-224-1234 — The New Year’s Eve dining hours are 5 p.m.-midnight. The buffet will include the Achiote Salad Bar, a Seafood and Ceviche Raw Bar with fresh oysters, shrimp, crab claws and Peruvian Red Snapper Cilantro Ceviche,  Antipasto and Cheese Station with Lobster Bisque and Roasted Carrot Kabocha and Ginger Soup, and an  Assorted Dessert Bar. Entrees will be served tableside, and choices include:  Naturalwell New York Steak with Roasted Shallot Sauce, Miso Glazed Salmon with Char Sui Bar BBQ Sauce,   Stuffed Wild Rice Cornish Game with Cherry Port Sauce,  and Petite Filet and Chile Glazed Shrimp. All entrees served with local baby vegetables and choice of either Roasted Garlic Peruvian Mashers or Herb and Texas Blue Cheese Polenta.  Cost is $60 a person, plus tax and 18 percent tip.

Barriba Cantina, 111 Crockett St., 210-228-9876 — The restaurant and bar will be open regular hours, 11 a.m.-2 a.m. on both New Year’s Eve and New Year’s Day. There will be live music with no cover charge. And reservations are not needed.

Biga on the Banks, 203 S. St. Mary’s St., 210-225-0722 — Biga has two options:

  • The New Year’s Eve early menu will be served 5:30-7:30 p.m.  The menu includes an amuse bouche of Duck rillete with cumberland sauce, followed by choice of appetizer: two Pork and Mushroom Spring Rolls with cilantro and ginger dipping sauces (add spring roll for $6 extra); Grilled Natural Scallop with lobster risotto and truffled butter; Hong Kong Crab Congee with scallion chile oil; Cuzco Ceviche, Gulf fish and shrimp, sweet potato, avocado, chile and crunchy corn; Chicken-Fried Oysters with squid ink linguini, Swiss chard, pancetta and mustard hollandaise; 10 ounces of Farm Raised American Transmontanous caviar ($85 supplement); or 10 ounces of Wild American Hackleback Caviar ($50 supplement). Soup and salad choices include  Hong Kong crab congee with scallion chile oil; Chardonnay Braised Leeks, smoked salmon, capers, organic egg, an dlemon dill vinaigrette (add caviar for extra $12 ); Grapefruit, Watercress and Endive Salad with hard cheese, toasted almonds, honey vinaigrette (add seared foie gras for extra $12);  romaine Leaves with red pepper Caesar dressing, tiny croutons and Parmesan tuile (add chicken-fried oysters for extra $8); Spinach salad with tart apples, brie, spiced pecans, bacon, trumpet royal mushrooms, gaufrettes and warm sherry garlic vinaigrette (add grilled quail for extra $8). Entree choices include two fishes of the day; Roasted Australian Lamb Rack with wild rice mushroom strudel, soft fennel, date chutney and balsamic mint sauce; Slow Cooked Veal Cheeks, pappardella pasta, asparagus, herbs and porcini jus; Grilled Beef Tenderloin, smashed purple potatoes, asparagus, portabella mushrooms, blue cheese béarnaise, and port veal demi glaze (add two shrimp for extra $7); and Beef Bourguignon in Puff Pastry, fingerling potatoes, broccolini, mushrooms, bacon, baby carrots, pearl onions.  Dessert options: Pistachio Dacquoise, with dark chocolate mousse, raspberry crush and orange dust; trio of panna cottas — strawberry, coffee and cajeta, and Dulce de Leche and Banana Crepe, coconut anglaise, dulce de leche ice cream and caramelized banana. Cost is $65 a person.
  • The later dinner will be served 8 p.m.-midnight. The menu includes an amuse bouche of Duck rillete with cumberland sauce, followed by choice of appetizer: foie gras terrine with cherry-Grand Marnier marmalade, two Pork and Mushroom Spring Rolls with cilantro and ginger dipping sauces (add spring roll for $6 extra); Grilled Natural Scallop with lobster risotto and truffled butter; Hong Kong Crab Congee with scallion chile oil; Cuzco Ceviche, Gulf fish and shrimp, sweet potato, avocado, chile and crunchy corn; Chicken- Fried Oysters with squid ink linguini, Swiss chard, pancetta and mustard hollandaise; 10 ounces of Farm Raised American Transmontanous caviar ($85 supplement); or 10 ounces of Wild American Hackleback Caviar ($50 supplement). Soup and salad choices include  Hong Kong crab congee with scallion chile oil; Chardonnay Braised Leeks, smoked salmon, capers, organic egg, an dlemon dill vinaigrette (add caviar for extra $12 ); Grapefruit, Watercress and Endive Salad with hard cheese, toasted almonds, honey vinaigrette (add seared foie gras for extra $12); Emile’s hydroponic greens, Rebecca Creek Goat feta and lemon maple vinaigrette;  romaine Leaves with red pepper Caesar dressing, tiny croutons and Parmesan tuile (add chicken-fried oysters for extra $8); Spinach salad with tart apples, brie, spiced pecans, bacon, trumpet royal mushrooms, gaufrettes and warm sherry garlic vinaigrette (add grilled quail for extra $8). Entree choices include three fishes of the day; Hill Country Axis Venison and Bandera Quail; Roasted Australian Lamb Rack with wild rice mushroom strudel, soft fennel, date chutney and balsamic mint sauce; Slow Cooked Veal Cheeks, pappardella pasta, asparagus, herbs and porcini jus; Grilled Beef Tenderloin, smashed purple potatoes, asparagus, portabella mushrooms, blue cheese béarnaise, and port veal demi glaze (add two shrimp for extra $7); and Beef Bourguignon in Puff Pastry, fingerling potatoes, broccolini, mushrooms, bacon, baby carrots, pearl onions.  Dessert options: Pistachio Dacquoise, with dark chocolate mousse, raspberry crush and orange dust; trio of panna cottas — strawberry, coffee and cajeta, and Dulce de Leche and Banana Crepe, coconut anglaise, dulce de leche ice cream and caramelized banana. Cost is $100 a person. Music by Bett Butler and Joel Dilley.

Boudro’s on the Riverwalk,  421 E. Commerce St., 210-224-8484 — Boudro’s will be open New Year’s Eve and New Year’s Day from 11 a.m. to midnight. The New Year’s Eve special will include a starter of Texas Blue Crabcake with Avocado Frisée Salad, Tangled Onion Rings and Cilantro Lime Vinaigrette. The Entrée will be a combination plate with Grilled Black Angus Tenderloin, Bordelaise and Potato Galette along with a Baby Lobster Tail Etoufee, Choron Sauce and Wild Mushroom Spinach Flan. Dessert will be a Frangipan and Apple Tart with Champagne, Vanilla Sabayon. The cost is $45 aperson, plus tax and gratuity, or $70 a person with wine pairings. Regular A La Carte Dinner Menu available. Credit card number required for reservations, call (210)-224-8484. www.boudros.com

Ring out the old at your favorite restaurant.

Fig Tree Restaurant, 515 Villita St., 210-225-2111 — The New Year’s Eve menu begins with a little something special: 30 grams of  Osetra caviar for a $150 supplement. The prix fixe includes Duck Terrine with Apple Cider Poached Quince, Mache Salad, Cider Vinaigrette;  Sunchokes Ravioli with Season’s First White Truffle and Truffle Scented Honey; Butter Poached Lobster with Saffron Risotto, English Peas, Pequillo Peppers, and Spanish Chorizo; Roasted Veal Tenderloin with Poached Veal Cheeks, Creamy Polenta and Chanterelles; and your choice of Pineapple Tatin with Almonds Crumble and Passion Fruit Sorbet or Chocolate Fondant with Fiore de Latte Gelato.  The cost is $98 a person plus tax and 18 percent top.

Las Ramblas at the Hotel Contessa, 306 W. Market St., 210-229-9222 — Enjoy a four-course wine-paired dinner with a midnight Champagne toast on the rooftop. Seating is at 10 p.m.  The menu includes Duck Bacon “BLT” amuse bouche with Volvetti Prosecco, followed by Carpaccio Melange with Shrimp, Lobster, Scallop and Octopus with 2009 White Haven Sauvignon Blanc from New Zealand. Smoked Oyster and Salsify Soup with Foie Gras Torchon will be paired with 2009 La Crema Pinot Noir, followed by Certified Angus Beef with Honeycomb Potato, Cabrales, Pancetta and White Truffle Dust with 2008 Navarro Correas Malbec Gran Reserva. Dessert is Frozen Strawberry Terrine with Champagne Gelee, Dark Chocolate Torte, Marcona Almond Butter and Cookie Crumb iwth Neige Apple Ice Wine. The cost is $125 a person plus tax and tip.

Little Rhein Steak House, 231 S. Alamo St.,  210-225-2111 — Little Rhein has two New Year’s Eve options.

  • The early bird menu, served from 6 to 6:30 p.m., begins with a choice of Shrimp Cocktail or Quail Legs, followed by a choice of Beefsteak Tomatoes with Roquefort Cheese or Field Greens with Cranberries, Walnuts, Goat Cheese and Basil Vinaigrette.  Prime Rib-Eye,  Prime Strip Loin,  Filet Mignon, Wild Salmon or  Filet and Lobster are the entrée choices. Entrées served with Au Gratin Potatoes, Sautéed Wild Mushrooms and Buttered Asparagus. Dessert choices: Sticky Toffee Pudding with Vanilla Ice Cream or  New York Cheesecake with Strawberries. A glass of Champagne is included. Cost:  $70 a person plus tax and 18 percent tip.
  • The later menu is offered at seastings set for 6:30-9 p.m. or 9 p.m.-midnight. The menu includes choice of Shrimp Cocktail  or Quail Legs, followed by Lobster Bisque. A choice of Field Greens with Cranberries, Walnuts, Goat Cheese and Basil Vinaigrette or Beefsteak Tomatoes with Roquefort Cheese precedes choice of Prime Rib-Eye, Prime Strip Loin, Filet Mignon, Wild Salmon or Filet and Lobster. Entrées served with Au Gratin Potatoes, Sautéed Wild Mushrooms and Buttered Asparagus. Dessert choices: Sticky Toffee Pudding with Vanilla Ice Cream or  New York Cheesecake with Strawberries. A glass of Champagne is included. Cost is $79 a person plus tax and 18 percent tip.

Lüke, 125 E. Houston St., 210-227-5853 — A New Year’s Eve dining event featuring a prix fixe five-course dinner with wine pairings will be offered. Seating begins at 8 p.m. in Lüke’s upstairs private dining space overlooking the River Walk. Cost is $150 per couple, plus tax and tip. Prepaid reservations are required for event. Lüke will also offer its full menu from 11 a.m. until midnight on New Year’s Eve. lukesanantonio.com.

Mike’s in the Village, 2355-3 Bulverde Road, Bulverde, 830-438-2747 —  Mike’s will be serving its regular menu along with some specials from 5 to 9 p.m.

Ocho at the Havana Hotel, 1015 Navarro St., 210-222-2008 — New Year’s Eve at the Hotel Havana will include live music by Son y No Son from 9 p.m. to 12:30  a.m. Cost is $100 a person and includes wine, Champagne and passed hors d’oeuvres. The menu features Fried Quail and Waffle, Truffled Egg Rolls, Shishito Pepper Bites, Fried Avocado Lollipops with cilantro lime crema, Cornflake-crusted Shrimp and Tinga Tostadas. Special room rates may also be available over the holidays.

Oro at the Emily Morgan, 705 E. Houston St., 210-225-5100 —Oro is having a three-course Champagne dinner and fireworks showing from 5 to 11 p.m.  the evening begins with a chef’s offering to stimulate your palate, followed by your choice of smoked oyster and corn chowder with caviar crème fraiche; Oro mixed lettuce, marinated tomatoes, goat cheese and white balsamic vinaigrette; or sweet potato gnocchi, truffle, shaved Parmesan and veal jus. Main course choices are pan-seared filet, roasted pepper potato dauphinoise, asparagus and clove demi; natural grilled chicken, caramelized onion sweet potato puree, wilted spinach, and chile hollandaise; or herb-seared farm-raised trout, borracho black eyed peas, and tomato cucumber escabeche. Dessert choices:  Tahitian vanilla bean and cherry crème brûlée, snicker doodle cookie and seasonal berries; selection of Da Vinci sorbets — mango, lemon, or pomegranate; or Oro trifle, seasonal berries, crème anglaise and chantilly cream. A Champagne toast and fireworks showing on the rooftop included. Price is $65 a person.http://www.savorsa.com/wp-admin/post.php?post=31244&action=edit&message=10

It's party time, San Antonio.

Q on the Riverwalk, Hyatt, 123 Losoya St., 210-382-6325 —The New Year’s dinner will be served from 5 to 10 p.m. The menu includes house-smoked standing rib roast of Angus beef, fire-grilled Arctic char, fillet of salmon, Korabuta pork loin with grilled Korabuta pork chops and roasted breast chicken with fresh oregano. The salad display will feature winter greens tossed with spiced pecans, bay shrimp, marinated mushroms and amphissa olives. Selections from the dessert display include vanilla bean crème brulee, chocolate mousse shooters and cappuccino tarts.

Texas de Brazil, 313 E. Houston St., 210-299-1600 — The Brazilian steakhouse will be serving its regular menu of meats as well as the varied salad bar and desserts. Dining hours will be until late in the evening.

Tost Bistro & Bar, 14415 Blanco Road, 210-408-2670 — The New Year’s Eve menu begins with Lobster and Crab Croquette, blood orange béarnaise sauce and micro greens, followed by a choice of Wild Mushroom Bisque with herb crème fraiche and shiitake “bacon” or Arugula, Brie and Fig Salad with crispy prosciutto, shaved red onions and balsamic Dijon vinaigrette. The entree choices are Pan Roasted Sea Bass with butternut squash puree, grilled broccolini and Champagne beurre blanc; Braised Veal Osso Bucco with creamy Yukon goat cheese masher and tomato, onion and olive ragout; or Seared Beef Tenderloin with truffle hollandaise, bleu cheese mash potato and grilled asparagus. Dessert is the Tost Trio with Crème Anglaise. Cost: $55 per person or $90 with the midnight celebration. Tax and tip not included. An open bar will be from 10:30 p.m. to 2 a.m.

The Westin La Cantera,16641 La Cantera Parkway, 210-558-2253 — If the Mayan calendar brings everything to an end in 2012, then it’s time to party down on New Year’s Eve at the Westin La Cantera where the last supper is the party theme of the evening. Wear your toga if you’d like and enjoy a Mayan-themed menu that includes Various Mayan Flavors, such as Blue Corn and Sikil Pak Cannelloni, Tamale Negro, Xni-Pek and Sour Cruda Xcatic Salsa. Whetstone Valley Goose with Black-Eyed Pea and Confit Hash, Pulverized Corn, Red Pipian, Salt-Brined Hen Yolkand Celery Root Puree will percede Ossabaw Pork Tenderloin, Brushed Anchiote, Sylvetta, Bacon, Mashed Plantain, Golden Corn Puree and Huitlacoche Coulis. Lobster with Avocado, Chanterelle Puree, Sweet Potato, Carrot, Sweet Corn Granola and Foie Gras Sauce will be served before  Chayote Mousse, Vanilla Cornbread, Cocoa Nib, Crunchy Beet, Horchata, “Gold,” and a Pine Nut Praline. Mayan cocktails, Pol Roger Champagne and more will be available. The cost is $125 a person.

Zinc Bistro and Wine Bar, 207 N. Presa St., 210-224-1313 — Celebrate the New Year in the wine cellar at Zinc with a five-course dinner that begins at 8 p.m. Matching wines and Champagnes will be paired with the dinner courses. The menu starts with appetizers of Oregon mushroom duxelle in a sour cream tartlet, gorgonzola and tobacco onions on lavosh squares and brandy-cured salmon on crisp flatbread with poblano cream cheese and daikon sprouts paired with Canals and Munne Rosé Cava. Shiitake mushroom and arugula consommé with shaved serrano ham will preced pomegranate marinated duck confit salad with spicy walnuts and orange vinaigrette and 2009 Louis Tete “Le Pot”,Beaujolais. After mango basil granite, there is a choice of filet of black Angus beef tenderloin with shallot-cabernet demi glace or poached halibut with shrimp, crawfish and clam stock. Both will be paired with 2007 Orogeny Pinot Noir. Zinc profiteroles and Moet et Chandon Imperial Epernay will close out the meal. A Champagne toast at midnight is included. Cost is $100 a person, plus tax and gratuity. All reservations must be prepaid.

Restaurateurs, if your restaurant is not on this list, please email details of your party to griffin@savorsa.com or walker@savorsa.com.

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Restaurant Notes & Quotes: Fig Tree Tasting Menu, Barriba Cantina to Open


Chef John Besh, right, of Lüke New Orleans and Lüke San Antonio.

Notable Quote
“When I speak of one of our chefs doing good acts through food it’s not about Besh, but it’s about what we can all do each day.”

— Chef John Besh,on Twitter, talking about Lüke San Antonio chef Steven McHugh cooking jambalaya for those involved in the Bastrop area fire.

 Z’Tejas Chile Fest to benefit San Antonio youths

Between  now and Sept 25,  Z’Tejas offers dishes featuring the popular Hatch green chiles. One dollar of every entrée sold from the Chile Fest menu will benefit the Boys & Girls Clubs of San Antonio. This is the first year for Z’Tejas’ new location at The Shops of La Cantera to participate in the annual event.

Barriba Cantina coming soon on the River Walk

Serving Mexican street food and offering catering and live music, Barriba Cantina, from The County Line Bar-B-Q restaurant, will open Sept. 12 on the River Walk, 111 Crockett St.

Barriba Cantina will be on the second and third floors of the same building that houses The County Line. It will have balconies and patios overlooking the river, while the second floor will offer large meeting spaces, also with river and San Antonio skyline views.

Open from 11 a.m. to 2 a.m. Sunday – Saturday, Barriba will serve food such as Mango Pork Carnitas (slow-cooked lean pork with a blend of traditional Mexican seasonings, garnished and served on corn tortillas; Baja Pescado (tilapia seasoned with a mild ancho chile rub, served on corn tortillas); and Tacos Del Rey (beef marinated with mild chipotle chiles and a blend of Mexican spices).  The Tacos del Rey were created in honor of Randy Goss, the late owner of The County Line.

On the drinks menu: Bango Mango Martini (pineapple infused Sauza Tequila, mango, lime juice and Dulce Vida Organic Agave Nectar) and Berriba (Bacardi, Triple Sec, pineapple juice, blueberries and raspberries).  A to-go menu will eventually be added.

Barriba will also offer live acoustical music everyday from 10 p.m. – 2 a.m., with a cover charge after 10 p.m. (cover charge will vary based on musicians).  Music schedules will be updated regularly on Barriba Cantina’s Facebook page.

Fig Tree tasting menus through September

The Fig Tree Restaurant is offering its popular tasting menu through September. The prix fixe price is $39, and there is complimentary parking at the restaurant, in La Villita. The menus will change weekly. To see what is being served, check this website. To make reservations, call 210-224-1976.

Fishland Fish Market to move next door

Fried fish at Fishland.

Fried fish at Fishland Fish Market, 4941 Walzem Road, is closing for a few days while the owners pack up and move to a larger space next door. The move will give them more room for customers to dine in and enjoy the fried fish, shrimp and oysters on the menu.

The new place will open Thursday (Sept. 15), so be patient while waiting for some of that drum, tilapia or sole.

The phone will still be 210-655-3232.

SavorSA reviewed this gem close to two years ago, on Sept. 10, 2009, and the praise still holds true.)

Take tour of Northern Italy at Tre Trattoria downtown

Italian red wine on the pairing menu

Chef Jason Dady takes you on a tour of the flavors of Northern Italy paired with wines from that region, on Sept. 16. Priced at $40 per person, this four-course wine pairing dinner begins with a cocktail reception and seasonal hors d’oeuvres at 6:30 p.m. Dinner begins at 7 p.m. at 401 S. Alamo St., at The Fairmount Hotel. For reservations: 210- 223-0401 or email downtown@tretrattoria.com.

On the menu: first Course, Baby Arugula, toasted walnuts, gorgonzola, roasted grapes with NV Tervisol Prosecco; second course, Risotto Milanese with ‘08 Pieropan Soave Classico; third course,  Bistecca alla Fiorentina, sweet corn crema, roasted mushrooms, goat cheese polenta and radicchio marmelatta with ’06 Sanguineti Nessum Dorma. For dessert,  Lemon Panna Cotta, blueberry and thyme shortbread with  ’06 Ceretto Moscato D’Asti

Country French Wine Dinner at Crumpets Restaurant & Bakery

Crumpets, at 3920 Harry Wurzbach, offers this wine dinner featuring premier French vineyards matched with French fare. 7 p.m. Sept. 16, $70 per person. Make reservations at 210-821-5600. Or send email to crumpets@aol.com. Seating is limited, so make reservations soon.

Wine and food pairing: Macon Lugny “Les Charmes” with Vol au Vent St. Jacques; Ragotiere Muscadet with Paté Mousseline aux Truffles; Georges Duboeuf Beaujolais Villages with Escalope de Veau aux Cognac; Chateau Larose Trintaudon Bordeaux with Filet de Bœuf aux Poivres; Les Clos de Paulilles Banyuls with Mille Feuille de Deux Crèmes for dessert.

Frances Strange to be guest on KCWX cable channel 4

Don Strange of Texas: His Life and Recipes

What do Paula Abdul, Kim Kardashian, Ivanka Trump and Frances Strange have in common? They all have the distinction of being celebrity guests on the national syndicated lifestyle show from “Better Homes and Gardens Magazine,” titled simply, “Better.”

Now, San Antonio author Frances Strange will head to New York City to tape her “Better” segment, which is scheduled to air in San Antonio Sept. 23 at 7 a.m. on KCWX, local cable channel 4.

Tune in to catch Strange dishing about her famous cookbook “Don Strange of Texas: His Life and Recipes,” sharing her secrets for entertaining and preparing her best Texas-style recipes including Shrimp and Crab Corn Cakes, Pan de Campo, and the cool Café Mystique iced beverage.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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Wine Dinners Coming Soon at Fig Tree, Myron’s, Copa


Three wine dinners worth your consideration are coming this weekend and next week.

Myron’s Prime Steak House Wine Dinner featuring Rowland Cellars Wines

7 p.m. June 25, Myron’s Prime Steak House,136 North Castell Ave., New Braunfels. $79 per person. Reservations required; call 830-624-1024.

Start with chilled coconut and crab soup with cilantro, basil, melon and citrus fruit paired with Ramspeck Pinot Grigio, followed by an open-faced slider of savory bread pudding, braised rosemary ham, Swiss and blackberry reduction with Ramspeck Pinot Noir. Apple-brined pork tenderloin over carrot and ginger spaetzel with plum-infused balsamic reduction and Ramspeck Merlot precedes seared filet with a warm red lentil and brie salad with over a red wine and espresso reduction served with Ramspeck Cabernet and Cenay Blue Tooth Cabernet. Dessert and coffee round out the evening.

Fig Tree and Dashiell House offer a Craggy Range Winemaker’s Dinner with Steve Smith, MW

June 30, 6:30 p.m. Craggy Range Winemakers Dinner, Fig Tree, Dashiell House. Talk to Craggy Range’s Steve Smith, a winemaker and Master of Wine, while enjoying some of the spectacular wines from this New Zealand winery. $85 per person plus tax and service charge. Reservations required; call 210-225-2111.

Reception: Te Muna Road Vineyard Sauvignon Blanc, Martinborough 2009 with Smoked Duck, watercress, candied kumquats; Te Muna Road Vineyard Pinot Noir, Martinborough 2009, with Poached Lobster, compressed papaya and coconut crème fraîche; Fletcher Family Vineyard Riesling, Marlborough 2009, Monkfish Bourride with toast and aïoli; Kidnappers Vineyard Chardonnay, Hawkes Bay 2010 with Confit of Suckling Pig, plum chutney, braised spring onions. Sophia, Gimblett Gravels Vineyard, Hawkes Bay 2004 with Colorado Lamb Chop with ratatouille, socca niçoise; Le Sol, Gimblett Gravels Vineyard, Hawkes Bay 2007 with dessert, Macedoine de Fruits Tropicaux, sorbet, tea and coffee.

Copa Wine Dinner

7  p.m. June 30:  Copa Wine Bar, 19141 Stone Oak Parkway. Take a culinary tour through Texas by going to a Copa Wine Dinner where food is matched with wine or beer. $40 per person (all inclusive). Call for reservations at 210-495-2572.

On the Texas-flavored menu are Smoked Jalapeño Peppers, Frito Pie with Cuero Turkey Chili, Dry-Rubbed Barbecued Brisket, Dad’s Favorite Banana Pudding, all with carefully chosen wines or beer to go along with the food.

 

 


 

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Restaurant Notes & Quotes: Brasserie Pavil Closes


Hot and hotter. Good thing some cool specials are happening indoors.

Brasserie Pavil

The restaurant, at Huebner Road and Loop 1604, closed its doors on Tuesday.  A sister restaurant, Watermark Grill, closed in February. Both restaurants were owned by Watermark Hotel Co. Inc.

Sangria and more at Azuca this summer

Azuca is offering sangria as a way to battle the heat.

Head over to Azuca’s website for a coupon, and then go to the actual restaurant for two of Spain’s most delicious treats: sangria and tapas (savory little snacks).

Azuca is at 713 S. Alamo St. Call 210-225-5550 for information.

Tejas Steakhouse to open this week

Tejas Rodeo Company is opening the Tejas Steakhouse and Saloon on its property at 401 Obst Road, Bulverde. (Just take Blanco Road north to Specht Road, about 10 miles from Blanco and 1604, and turn right. Follow the road for two miles and you’ll see Tejas Steakhouse and Tejas Rodeo on your left.)

Opening night is set for Friday.

Steaks are obviously a part of the menu, with a 20-ounce bone-in rib steak the star attraction. But it also offers burgers, catfish, chicken, salads, tacos and more. There’s also a kids’ menu.

The steakhouse will be open for dinner Thursday-Sunday as well as lunch on Saturdays and Sundays.

Open Thursday-Sunday for Dinner; plus lunch on Saturdays and Sundays. Details at www.tejassteakhouse.com.

In addition to dinner, the Tejas Rodeo Company offers live music plus open mic night under the stars.

Call 830-980-2226 for more information.

The kitchen at the Esquire is offering lunch specials.

Now at the Esquire Tavern

Check out the lunch specials offered 11 a.m.-3 p.m.  Monday-Thursday at the Esquire, 155 E. Commerce St. Select entrée and side are available for $12, served with iced tea and daily ice cream.

Fridays are for martinis: Have the house martini along with steak and frites and the daily ice cream for $18. And yes, we llike the sounds of the daily ice cream as much as you do.

Also, happy hours are 3-7 p.m. Monday-Friday. Select local draft beer is priced at $3.50; select cocktails at $4.50.

Yes, it’s cool inside, but the small balcony overlooking the River Walk is pretty, too, and might even be breezy.

This week at Fig Tree Restaurant

The Fig Tree’s Tuesday and Wednesday dinner specials are among the best deals in town. It’s a great chance for we who live here to get down to the River Walk and enjoy one of the best destination restaurants in town.

The three-course prix fixe menu is $39 per person; if paired with wine, it’s $49. Selected wines are $29 per bottle. (The regular menu is available, as well.) Valet parking is for free. The Fig Tree is located at 515 Villita Street on the San Antonio River Walk. For reservations call 210-224-1976.

Here is the menu for today and Wednesday:  Escargot Ravioli with tomatoes, olives and garlic butter, or, Summer Rolls with Thai prawns and peanut sauce: optional wine is Chateau D’Esclan “Whispering Angel” Cotes de Provence 2010.  Lamb Noisettes with  raspberry demi, Potatoes Borex, upland cress: wine is Main Street Merlot, Sonoma 2006; or, Grilled Sturgeon with yazu butter, carrot mousse and thyme jus served with St. Francis Chardonnay, Sonoma 2008. For dessert, a choice of Passion Fruit Mousse or Molten Chocolate Cake.

Fig Tree is at 515 Villita St. Call 210-224-1976.

Burger lovers, make way for a Chicken Club

Whataburger is about more than burgers. That’s why it has introduced its Honey Mustard Chicken Club.

The folks who work hard to make you want to try these limited-time options — the folks in the marketing department, that is — have described the new sandwich as follows: “It’s your choice of a grilled or crispy chicken breast with bacon, fresh tomatoes, lettuce and Swiss American cheese topped with sweet Honey Mustard sauce.”

 

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Weekend Calendar: Hurricane Alex Won’t Dampen the Fourth


“When I get a chance to play golf or go on a boat with good people, take the boat out and put some lobsters on the grill, get the ice-cold beer and the cigars – that’s heaven here on earth.
~ Bernie Mac

This holiday, don’t let a little rain ruin your parties.  Enjoy cooler temperatures and cold beer!

Christmas in July Sangria & Salsa Kitchen Party
Thursday, July 1, 4–6:30 p.m.
Melissa Guerra – Tienda de Cocina
Full Goods Building, Pearl Brewery
200 E. Grayson St., Suite 122
The event benefits Roy Maas Youth Alternatives, a nonprofit that cares for more than 600 children per year.  During the month of July, shoppers who donate at least $25 to RMYA will get a  20-percent discount on personal orders.

Cooking Demonstrations at the Pearl
Pearl Farmers Market
Saturday, July 3, 9 a.m.-1 p.m.
200 East Grayson St.
In addition to fresh produce, cooking demonstrations by The Cove’s Drew Morros and musical entertainment are on the agenda.  Demonstrations start at 9:30 a.m.   The market also features a changing chef’s table lunch menu by chef Johnny Hernandez, “representing what is seasonal and regional in our cuisine.” Hernandez serves the meal family-style and discusses each vendor and their seasonal ingredients. For information or reservations, go to www.mesalegre.com.

“Peach Fest”
Saturday, July 3, noon–2 p.m. Free
Whole Foods Market – Quarry
255 E. Basse Road
The store will be offering samples of peach smoothies and grilled peaches with balsamic reduction and blue cheese.

Chili Cook-off
Sunday, July 4, noon. $5
Becker Vineyards
464 Becker Farms Road
Stonewall, Texas 78671
Contestants will be breaking out their best chili recipe for this event that benefits Greater Fredericksburg’s Habitat for Humanity.

All-night Happy Hour
Sunday, July 4, 4 p.m.-close
Wildfish Seafood Grille, 1834 N. Loop 1604 W.
Roaring Fork, 1806 N. Loop 1604 W.
Both restaurants are offering happy hour specials all night.  With one entrée purchase, a second of equal or lesser value is free.  The specials are available in the bar and dining room.

“A Taste of Provence” Tasting Menu
Through July 31, $48 plus tax and gratuity, $12 additional for wine pairings
Fig Tree Restaurant

515 Villita
This French-inspired meal starts with your choice of Zucchini Blossom Beignets or Terrine de Légumes.  Next, select either Blue Prawns Provençal or Grilled Mediterranean Sea Bass.  The main course options are Pan-seared Herb Marinated Lamb Tenderloing or Grilled Lamb Chops with Roasted Garlic Créme.  Dessert choices are Hill Country Peach Croustade or Poached Fruit of the Day a la mode.  The optional wine pairing includes Chateau Routas, Rosé Var 2008; Mas de la Dame, Rose du Mas 2009; and Mas de la Dame, Rouge 2006.  For reservations, call 210-224-1976.

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Chefs’ Corner: Fig Tree’s Pâté-stuffed Quail


FigTreeQuail2This is a special-event dish with real autumn appeal, as it pairs a game bird with tender, simmered apples and a buttery apple sauce. The pâté is the surprise in the middle. The recipe comes from Byron Bergeron at Fig Tree Restaurant.

Pâté-stuffed Quail

1 quart (4 cups) apple cider
4 Granny Smith apples (peeled and cored, but kept whole)
5 tablespoons butter, divided use
10 (4-5-ounce) boned quail
Sea salt, for seasoning
1 pound black truffle mousse pâ

For sauce:  In a saucepan large enough to hold a quart of liquid and 4 apples, put the apple cider and bring to a simmer. Add apples. Cover pan and poach over low heat for about 20 minutes, or until apples are done but still firm. Remove apples and reduce liquid to syrup (about a cup). Whisk 3 tablespoons of the butter into reduced liquid 1 tablespoon at the time.  Reduce heat and keep sauce warm.

Preheat oven to 400 degrees. Place quail on a baking sheet lightly sprayed with oil and season birds with salt. Insert a portion of the pâté into the cavity of each quail. Melt 2 tablespoons of butter and brush the quail with it. Roast the quail for 10-12 minutes or until done at 160 degrees internal temperature. Lightly cover with foil and set aside to rest.

Slice cooked apples  into thin rings. Place 3 or 4 rings in the middle of each plate. Place the roasted quail on top of apples and drizzle sauce around the plate and over the quail.

Makes 5-10 servings.

From Byron Bergeron/Fig Tree, 515 Villita St.

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WalkerSpeak: Rich, Savory Delights at Chefs & Cellars


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Sierra Segura, lead cook at Brasserie Pavil, talks with patrons Chris and Amanda Claiborne at this year's Chefs & Cellars, one of the early events of the New World Wine & Food Festival.

The kitchen at the Culinary Institute of America at the Pearl Brewery was transformed into an extensive “chef’s table” late Sunday afternoon at one of the early events of the New World Wine & Food Festival.

Popping corks were heard around the room as bottles of Champagne opened to kick off Chefs & Cellars. This annual wine and food bash features great wines donated from private wine cellars paired with food made on site by some of San Antonio’s best chefs and their crews.

With guests seated along the stainless steel work tables in the large kitchen, wine was poured and passed for sampling and a party atmosphere prevailed. I was seated at the Brasserie Pavil area, overseen by chef Scott Cohen.

For the chefs, though, it was all in a day’s work. Jason Dady, owner of several San Antonio restaurants, including The Lodge at Castle Hills and Tre Trattoria, hunched over a dozen or more plates of foie gras garnished with finely minced fresh plums.

ChefsandCellars3Moe Lazri, general manager for the River Walk restaurants, Fig Tree Restaurant and Little Rhein Steak House, offered the wine for cuisine prepared by Fig Tree chef Byron Bergeron.  Lazri and I share a passion for rosé wines, still or sparkling, and he shared a taste of his aperitif wine, Taittinger Comtes de Champagne Brut Rosé, Reims, 2002.

I was seated in Scott Cohen’s section of the kitchen. The chef at Brasserie Pavil, along with his talented staff,  presented a feast of mushrooms, beginning with a seductive Double Shrimp Risotto with shaved black truffles from Umbria, Italy. It was  served with a silky Domaine William Fèvre, Chablis 1er Cru: Montée de Tonnerre, Burgundy, 2004.  All the wines in our section that evening were from Dr. Scott Duncan.

“You gotta have some of this —  grouse pastrami,” Cohen told me soon after I arrived. Taking me back to a cutting table he sliced off a piece. It was salty, smoky and as satisfying as a conventional pastrami, though with a little firmer texture.  Later in the evening, the pastrami was served on a warm goat cheese crouton with pickled chanterelle mushrooms, and paired with a Château Leovill Poyferre (2nd Grand Cru Classe), Saint-Estephe; Haut-Medoc, Medoc, Bordeaux, 2001.

Richard and Bunny Becker, with Dady and his crew, served their great wines.  “This is a rare day in San Antonio for food and wine — it’s the best of food, with the best of wine —and that’s rare anywhere on the planet,” said Richard Becker, owner of Becker Vineyards in Stonewall.

ChefsandCellars1

Scott Cohen, left, and his crew from Brasserie Pavil, served rich, mushroom-themed dishes at Sunday's Chef's & Cellars, part of the New World Wine & Food Festival. With Cohen, from left, are Sierra Segura, Isaac Cantu, Tyler Horstman and Chris Cook.

Cohen also mentioned the progress that San Antonio has made in the dozen or so years he has been here. “Twelve years ago, when I came here and ordered a piece of tuna, it was pink, not red. I said, ‘Wow, we have to move the market along here. Now, we are getting great fish and beef from all over the world,” he said.

Many (tastes) of wine later, my table companion of the evening, Steven Krueger, was equally proud of what San Antonio has attained. Krueger is the  sommelier at Francesca’s at Sunset in the Westin La Cantera Hotel and performed double duty that evening pouring wines for Becker.

“This is the best thing, this kind of venue,” he told me, as he took a break to sample some of the food at our table. “These are wines from private cellars that we’d only get at an event like this, with the added benefit of the food being prepared to go with them.”

I didn’t have to be convinced — not after sampling the rich, red wine rabbit stew with matsutake mushrooms alongside a beautiful Domaine Robert Ampeau & Fils, Pommard; Cote de Beaune, Cote-d’Or, Burgundy, 1991.  A real stunner, this Burgundy had sleek, subtle  cherry flavors, hints of earth and a ample finish. It showed the best of a well-cellared Burgundy, perfect to drink now but also to keep cellared for more than a few more years.

The New World Wine & Food Festival is Nov. 10-15.  For more information go to www.nwwff.org.

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