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Restaurant Notes: Fattboy Burgers & Dogs Opens


A Fattboy burger and fries

Fattboy Burgers & Dogs has opened at 2345 Vance Jackson Road.

As you can tell by the name, burgers and hot dogs are the game here. In fact, they’re the only items on the menu outside the fries and drinks.

But you can get a Slimburger (a quarter pound of beef) or a Fattburger (1/2 pound) with cheese, with bacon or which bacon and cheese.

All burgers come with your choice of mayo, ketchup, mustard, lettuce, tomatoes, pickles, grilled onions, grilled mushrooms, relish, raw onions, grilled jalapeños, grilled bell peppers, A1 or barbecue sauce.

The hot dogs are made by Hebrew National.

Frank Torrez is the Fattboy of the name and he started out with Tio Frankie’s Mexican Restaurant before opening the burger joint, where his slogan is “Shut up and eat.”

Hours are 11 a.m.-10 p.m. Monday-Saturday. Visit www.fattboyburgers.com or call 210-377-3288 (FATT).

In other restaurant news, The Friendly Spot at 943 S. Alamo St. is now open daily from 11 a.m. to midnight. The open-air Southtown joint, which serves up interior Mexican food, is now boasting a beer list with 150 different craft bottlings.

Movie nights are every Wednesday.

Call 210-224-2337 (BEER) or visit thefriendlyspot.com for information.

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Restaurant Openings and Other News


Los Agaves Cocina Mexicana has opened near Blanco and Loop 410 in the spot that formerly housed Bianco Pasta Vino.  It has a full bar and starting next week, will offer happy hour specials.  The restaurant serves traditional Mexican favorites, as well as San Antonio classics.  Some menu items include mole, crispy tacos, gorditas, and enchiladas verdes.  On the weekends, breakfast will be served starting at  8 a.m.

Philly’s Phamous Italian Ice has expanded its menu to include chicken and beef Philly Cheesesteaks.  The recipe is from Malik Rose’s former restaurant, Malik’s Philly’s Phamous.  The small orange stand is located across from Churchill High School and also serves more than 20 flavors of Italian ice.

Texas Pride Barbecue announced that it won two awards at this year’s Texas Folklife Festival.  The restaurant took home the blue ribbon for its booth, which served brisket sandwiches.  Its peach cobbler also won a second place ribbon.  The restaurant, located east of the city in Adkins, has an extensive covered outdoor dining area and frequent live music.

Los Agaves Cocina Mexicana
7115 Blanco Road, Suite 110
San Antonio, TX 78216
210-524-2416
www.losagavessa.com
Hours: Monday – Thursday, 11 a.m. – 10 p.m.; Friday, 11 a.m. – 11 p.m.; Saturday, 8 a.m. – 11 p.m.; Sunday 8 a.m. – 9 p.m.

Philly’s Phamous Italian Ice
12054 Blanco Road
San Antonio, TX 78216
210-340-2270
www.phillyphamous.com

Hours: Monday – Saturday, 11 a.m. – 7 p.m.; Closed Sunday.

Texas Pride
2980 E. Loop 1604 S.
Adkins, TX, 78101
210-649-3730
www.texaspridebbq.net
Hours: Tuesday – Wednesday, 11 a.m. – 8:30 p.m.; Thursday, 11 a.m. – 9 p.m.; Friday – Saturday, 11 a.m. – 9:30 p.m.; Sunday, 12 p.m. – 7 p.m.; Closed Monday.

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Montealban Offers Full Flavors at Reasonable Prices


The al pastor plate at Montealban

When you sit down at Montealban Mexican Restaurant, the breakfast and lunch spot on Nacogdoches Road, you’re greeted with chips and three separate salsas, each a gorgeous color. The fresh salsa is a bright red with flecks of green chile and plenty of black pepper to give it an extra kick. The green salsa packs its heat in bold, unapologetic splendor. The roasted red chile salsa is slick mix of heat and oil that adds smoky depth to whatever you spread it on.

Caldo de res at Montealban

One bite of each made me glad to have found the place.

Sure, the menu is packed with old favorites, from a vegetable-packed caldo to a chile relleno, but you might be surprised as how bold and pristine the flavors are.

Let’s start with the breakfast tacos, which are much fatter than I generally find at area taquerias. That means you get a lot of egg flavor in each bite. I prefer them rolled in corn tortillas, perfectly pressed, thick and steaming hot to the touch. The bacon is plentiful, too; the chorizo is well drained; and the country sausage managed to maintain its sizzle. At a cost of $2.31 for three, they really can’t be beat.

Food: 3.5
Service: 3.0
Value: 4.5

Rating scale:
5: Extraordinary
4: Excellent
3: Good
2: Fair
1: Poor

At lunch, the $4.99 daily specials are a fine place to start, whether it’s the chopped beef in the Steak a la Mexicana plate on Friday or Thursday’s al pastor plate with nopalitos and plenty of onions and cilantro on top.

The caldo de res was chock full of vegetables, including a sweet amount of cabbage, my favorite, plus carrots, potato and zucchini as well as a healthy amount of the beef that flavored the stock.

Every visit I’ve tried something new and have not been disappointed with any dish. I just wish the dice of the potato in the picadillo mix stuffed inside that filling chile relleno were a little smaller — and if that’s all I have to complain about, that’s saying something.

Steak a la Mexicana at Montealban

The place is bright and friendly, if a bit nondescript in decor. What the owners saved on design, they seem to pass along in prices, such as $4.99 for all the menudo you can eat on a Saturday.  But it’s the care with the food, not the price, that will have you returning for more.

Montealban Mexican Restaurant
3261 Nacogdoches Road
210-650-3388
Breakfast, lunch Monday-Saturday
www.MontealbanMexicanRestaurant.com

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Mi Pueblo: Mexican Home-Cooking


MiPueblo2Readers and friends can be the best sources for restaurant recommendations. There are countless places I’ve passed by without a second thought until someone has raved about a particular dish or a two. Such was the case with Mi Pueblo Mexican Restaurant, a family-owned place on Nacogdoches Road near O’Connor.

A fellow member of my bell choir insisted it was the real deal, and he kept talking in terms I could understand. When he said it was like having Patty’s Tacos on the northeast side, I was sold.

So, I ventured in. And I went back. And I went back again and again. On most of those trips, the timing was a little off. I wanted a snack in mid-afternoon or I wanted dinner after 8 p.m.

Food: 3.5
Service: 3.0
Value: 4.5

Rating scale:
5: Extraordinary
4: Excellent
3: Good
2: Fair
1: Poor

I’m saying this because the traffic was light each time – certainly nothing as busy as the swarms at Patty’s – and the service quick and efficient. Who knows what a rush of people could do, but I urge you to rush there.

That’s because the food tastes like something out of a family kitchen. The handmade corn tortillas, just a little thicker than those pressed flat, have a freshness about them that makes you want to squeeze a touch of lime on them. The salsa has its own distinctive edge from a touch of cilantro that keeps you reaching for more chips.

The taco al pastor, with a definite pineapple tang, was so good that I couldn’t set it down after the first bite. In fact, I had most of it eaten before the waiter could bring around the cilantro and onion meant to garnish it. No problem; I just used it to crown the vibrant, crunchy chalupa and to garnish the pork-filled red tamal.

MiPueblo1The caldo de res arrived with a pile of bones in the bowl. That may seem odd to some, but each was filled with so much marrow that I found myself obsessively picking every last one clean. (I’m glad no one else was there to watch me). The soup itself had a hearty stock made bright with a squeeze of lime juice while the vegetables were soft without being overcooked.

Perhaps my favorite dish sampled so far, and the one that keeps me returning for more, was the plate of shrimp enchiladas. Again, the corn tortillas were handmade. The shrimp inside tasted freshly cooked and just-peeled, firm, not mealy or soggy. The tomatillo salsa on top was zesty and rich in both acidity and flavor.

Mi Pueblo’s interior is colorful and spacious with several flat screen TVs broadcasting the news. (I remember on my first visit being somewhat distracted by coverage of the Fort Hood shootings. Most of which later turned out to be false, but there was something reassuring in the comfort of those shrimp enchiladas.)

Now you know about Mi Pueblo.  Now, it’s your turn to tell someone else.

Mi Pueblo Mexican Restaurant Bar & Grill
13860 Nacogdoches Road
(210) 967-6700
Breakfast: Saturday-Sunday; lunch-dinner: Tuesday-Sunday
$-$$

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