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Drink and Eat Your Fill at a Walk Through Mexico


Agave plants growing in Mexico. (Photo: David Suro)

Agave plants growing in Mexico. (Photo: David Suro)

The San Antonio Cocktail Conference is offering you the change to talk a Walk Through Mexico on Sept. 26.

Walk Through Mexico cover imageThe lineup includes mezcal and tequila paired with authentic Mexican street food with a highlight on the regions of Jalisco, Michoacan and Oaxaca. Participating restaurants include The Monterey, Toro Taco Bar, El Mirador, Hot Joy, Los Barrios and Mixtli.

The mezcal and tequila will be poured by the people who grow the plants and produce the spirits. Featured spirits will include Tequila Ocho, Siembra Valles, Tequila Fortaleza, Tequila Artenom, Del Maguey Mezcal, Don Amado Mezcal, De terra Collection Sotol (Texas), Rey Camero Mezcal, Milagro, Mezcal Vago, Real Minero Mezcal and Tequila Cabeza.

The fun is 6:30 to 9 p.m. Sept. 26 and will take place at 1119 S. St. Mary’s, behind the Monterey.

The price is $68 a person. Sign up online at www.saccevents.org. Tickets cost $68 per person. All proceeds of this event will benefit Houston Street Charities, which supports children’s charities.

Tequiladores at work. (Photo: David Suro)

Tequiladores at work. (Photo: David Suro)

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Hot Joy Makes Bon Appetit Top 10 List


Congrats to one of San Antonio’s newer restaurants, the all-over-the-plate inventive Hot Joy at 1014 S. Alamo St.

Hot Joy logoBon Appetit released its Top 10 Best New Restaurants — and right at No. 7 is Hot Joy.  It edges out an Austin food truck called Thai-Kun, at No. 8. (This is something we’d like to see become a trend!)

Described by writer Andrew Knowlton as a pan-Asian stoner-food temple in San Antonio, the slide show starts with Hot Joy chicken wings and meanders through the menu by chef Quealy Watson. Chad Carey is one of the restaurant owners.

Watson may not have ever been to Asia, but the food of this restaurant is described as a “new sub-genre” which, “when executed with passion and skill, rewards the pleasure center of the brain just as much as some preciously foraged $100 tasting menu.”

Before choosing their top 10 best, Bon Appetit also placed San Antonio’s Cured, at the Pearl and owned by chef Steven McHugh, to the top 50 best new restaurants in the country.

The other 10 restaurants can be seen here, with slideshows, at this link.

 

Hot reds and cool stone welcome guests to San Antonio's Hot Joy.

Hot reds and cool stone welcome guests to San Antonio’s Hot Joy.

 

 

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Hot Joy Opening Thursday


Hot Joy, the restaurant, from chef Quealy Watson and the Empty Stomach restaurant group, will open its doors to the public Thursday (April 3).

After nine months of serving patrons on Sundays and Mondays at The Monterey, where Watson was also executive chef, the Hot Joy team is excited to debut a new space with a full menu and cocktail program.

When Watson and Empty Stomach partner Chad Carey saw the multiplying crowds at the weekly pop-up, the pair decided they needed to find a way to bring Hot Joy to the people, every day. Watson came on as the official executive chef/partner in Hot Joy and he and Carey began the search for a space Hot Joy could call a permanent home. The result is a 120-seat space restaurant in the historic King William neighborhood of San Antonio that will be open for lunch, dinner and late night.

Hot Joy logo

Hot Joy is located at 1014 S. Alamo Street, the restaurant will be open Thursday-Monday for lunch, dinner and late night (closed Tuesdays and Wednesdays). Lunch: 11 a.m.-3 p.m.; Dinner 5 p.m. -11 p.m. Late Night Menu: 11 p.m. -2 a.m.

The new location’s expansive menu encompasses favorites from previous pop-up dinners, as well as some new creations. Undeniably Pan-Asian, the menu not only includes Japanese, Thai and Chinese cuisine but also Indian and Malaysian flavors. The most unique dishes are influenced by Hot Joy’s Texas location, including a Frito Pie made with Szechuan beef and a Dirty Fried Rice made with Cajun dirty rice topped with jalapeño, shrimp, Mongolian spice and egg.

As with The Monterey, and Empty Stomach’s second venture, Barbaro, Hot Joy will have a focus on quality drinks to accompany the food. Hot Joy’s bar will be helmed by James Beard nominated Jeret Pena, as well as last year’s Texas Speed Rack winner Karah Carmack. Hot Joy also aims to have the coolest Riesling list in Texas – because what pairs better with some spicy Asian kick?

For further information, visit www.hotjoysa.com. ‘Like’ on Facebook at Facebook.com/HotJoySanAntonio. Follow on Twitter at @HotJoySA and on Instagram at instagram.com/hotjoysa. For information on Empty Stomach’s sister restaurants please visit www.themontereysa.com and www.barbarosanantonio.com.

 

 

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Spring Warm-up: Openings, Events, Tastings, Fun


Rosario's new Panela cheese, grilled and topped with two salsas.

Rosario’s new queso Panela, grilled and topped with two salsas.

Three much-anticipated restaurants open soon.

First, Rosario’s, at 3715 San Pedro Ave., will open Monday (March 31) for lunch and dinner. Enjoy the dishes and drinks you love at the downtown Rosario’s on Alamo Street, plus some new items. We sampled some favorites and the new grilled panela cheese with two salsas, seviche, a Rosario’s burger (complete with chalupa inside and some real good fries) and more at a soft opening Thursday night.

Hot Joy, opening at the former location of China Latina, will open April 3. The restaurant is at 1014 S. Alamo St.

Aldaco’s Dominion will also be opening in April, but toward the end of the month.

Conger’s Smoke Shack food truck announced they will move to a brick-and-mortar location. This will be at 3714 Broadway. A skip and a jump near the Pearl, and across the street from the Witte Museum. Will they still be setting up shop at Quarry Farmers and Ranchers Market?  No, says Heather Hunter, but they will be there this coming Saturday for one last round of great barbecue.  Chela’s Tacos, which has been there the past couple of weeks, will be taking over that post.

Travis Park and St. Anthony Hotel

St. Anthony Hotel garden.

St. Anthony Hotel garden.

Join The St. Anthony Hotel Monday (March 31) to celebrate the Grand Reopening of the historic Travis Park. The vibrant greens of spring and the new visions and plans for Travis Park will be honored for a full day.  At 9:30 a.m. the hotel participates with Southwest Airlines President and CEO Gary Kelly and other contributors to restore the park and invite you to join them.

This will be followed in the evening (6 p.m.) by farm-fresh foods crafted by  St. Anthony chef, Mike Mata, paired with wines from Becker Vineyards, and the soft sounds of Brent Watkins’ live jazz for Twilight on the Plaza.

Crawfish at Lüke

Celebrate crawfish season in true style this Sunday (March 30) at Lüke San Antonio downtown. From  3 p.m to 6 p.m at the restaurant at 125 E. Houston St., it will be not just lots of crawfish crawfish1but also savory sides such as crawfish boil potato salad, boiled “corn in a cup,” and Poteet strawberry shortcake for dessert. St. Arnold Brewery will be the featured beer for washing down those crawfish.

The event is all you can eat and drink, for $48 per person.  Call them at (210) 227-5853. See their event page at  https://www.facebook.com/events/776505119029244/?context=create&source=49

 

King and Queen Anchovy Poker Run

Michael Westheimer and Elaine Wolffe have a party planned and you’re invited. Saturday, April 5, is the King and Queen Anchovy Poker Run.

Poker handHere are the attractions: Five restaurants, five bites, five drinks and (most important) five cards.

The best hands will win prizes, including tickets to Cornyation and gift certificates to the participating restaurants: Bite, The Monterey, The Brooklynite, Cured and Minnie’s.

The fun starts at  1 p.m. at Bite. The cost is $50; chefs are donating their hospitality so proceeds go to support Fiesta Cornyation.

Check out the Facebook page here and make reservations soon.  https://www.facebook.com/events/474137272715017/

Baby grapesSummer events coming up at Becker Vineyards

The new outdoor pavillion is open now at Becker Vineyards, in the Texas Hill Country. The pavillion oversees the lavender field, plus new outdoor restroom facilities are available, too. Don’t forget the winery’s 16th annual Lavender Festival, with lavender luncheons, vendors selling lavender and gardening-related items, lavender cooking demos and more. Plus there will be, of course, wine tastings. The event is May 3 and 4. Go to their website here for more information.

April means Hornitos tequila at La Fogata

Aldaco MargaritaLa Fogata knows tequila — and mixes no fewer than 300 gallons of their tequila concoctions each week. La Fogata features monthly tequila tastings to allow its guests to explore different tequila flavors and enjoy special cocktails crafted by their experienced bar staff.

April’s featured tequila is Hornitos. On Saturday, April 19,  before you head to your table, stop by the tequila tasting table to learn more about Hornitos tequila. The free tasting table will feature the tequila served both straight up and mixed in margaritas. The tasting table will be open on La Fogata’s main patio from 6-8 p.m. La Fogata is at 2427 Vance Jackson Road.

If you can’t make the tequila tasting, don’t worry:  La Fogata is featuring Hornitos throughout the month of April, so you have the opportunity to try the tequila by ordering it in your favorite drink at La Fogata.

 

 

 

 

 

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BBQ in Southtown and Specht’s Store; More Restaurant News


The Two Bros., Jason and Jake Dady, are teaming up with Steve Newman of the Friendly Spot Ice House and Alamo Street Eat Bar to open B&D Ice BBQ and Draft at 1004 S. Alamo St. The spot is across the street from the Friendly Spot in an old ice house that Bruno D’Zanski operated for decades.

Crowds line up for a beer at the Friendly Spot.

Friendly Spot’s Steve Newman, Dady brothers will open a BBQ, draft beer spot on South Alamo.

The B refers to Newman’s signature beard, while the D refers to Dady as well as barbecue and draft beer. (If you thought otherwise, burn your copy of “Fifty Shades of Gray” right now. Burn it, for good measure, in any case.)

According to the new spot’s website, the place is expected to open in the spring with plenty of Texas craft beer, Texas wine and Texas pit barbecue.

“We are super stoked to make it to Southtown,” Jason Dady says on the site. “Great Texas pit barbecue and the emerging Texas craft beer movement is a perfect fit. We couldn’t be more excited to be a part of such a great neighborhood and restaurant scene.”

Ready for a lobster omelet for brunch? Saveurs 209 has it.

Saveurs 209, 209 Broadway, will now be serving brunch on Sundays.

The menu includes omelets with your choice of sun-dried tomatoes, bacon, lobster, mushrooms and house-cured salmon as well as Croque Monsieur or Madame, duck leg confit with fingerling potatoes, charcuterie, and shrimp with coconut and curry rice.

Viennese pastries and croissants, desserts, coffees and wine cocktails are also available.

Sunday hours are 11 a.m. to 2 p.m.

Saveurs 209 has changed its hours, too. It is now open for lunch Wednesday to Friday from 11:30 a.m. to 2 p.m. and dinner  Tuesday to Friday from 6:30 to 9:30 p.m. as well as Saturday from 6 to 9:30 p.m. For reservations, call (210) 223-0209.

pearl market vegetablesOrganic Farmers conference coming to SA

The Texas Organic Farmers and Gardeners Association is having its 2015 conference in San Antonio. No dates or location have been announced yet, bt this is great news for lovers of organic food grown nearby.

Specht’s Store changes hands

Specht’s Store, 112 W. Specht Road, has a new owner, new hours and more music, according to Facebook. But the big news is that it is now offering Texas barbecue.

The new owners are Truman Love, who was once owner of the Water Street Oyster Bar in San Antonio, and Dave Dickson.

New hours are 10 a.m. – 10 p.m. Wednesday-Sunday. Call (830) 438-1888 for information.

“We are serving the best in time honored: Barbecue, Bands, and Beer,” they posted. “We cook exclusively on post oak. We serve only Certified Angus Beef: Choice to Prime. We prepare everything on premises daily. We make our own sausage. Brisket, Spare Ribs, Sausage, Sides, Sauce and Dessert served daily. Specialty items of Turkey Breast, Brined Pork Chop, Prime Rib, Chicken and Salmon change daily.”

Hot Joy finds home

Expect Hot Joy to open in its own home some time after Valentine”s Day, chef Quealy Watson said during the recent San Antonio Cocktail Conference, where he was serving Tater Tot Chat to the throngs.

The restaurant, which had been a popup feature at the Monterey, will be in the spot that once housed China Latina, 1014 S. Alamo St. Look for more Asian fusion dishes filtered through Watson’s sense of fun.

SoHo gets into food

SoHo Wine & Martini Bar, 214 W. Crockett St., will soon be offering Akaushi beef sliders, duck fat fries, chicken and waffles, and more.

Brandon McKelvey of Say.She.Ate will be serving up his treats from a kitchen that’s being added to the bar known for its great cocktails and more.

Expect the kitchen to be open in the next few weeks.

Call (210) 444-1000.

 

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