Best of the City 2022: Eat + Drink – San Antonio Magazine

Photo by JoMando Cruz.
Put together outstanding Italian-ish sandwiches and terrific wines, and you have your next craving. It’s GiGi’s Deli, the newest long-term residency at wine bar/shop/hangout Little Death. GiGi’s chef/co-owner Matt Garcia and business partner Harrison Civick create changing menus that use East Coast Italian-American sandwiches as their canvas. Whether the GiGi’s crew is simply slingin’ sandos or riffing on a delightfully absurd theme event, there’s always a reason to come and enjoy some terrific bites and a glass—or bottle—of something equally delicious.
Rogelio and Michael Sanchez’s HASH (Heal and Spread Healing) Vegan Eats celebrates the commitment they made nine years ago to sobriety plus the vegan lifestyle that grew from their decision to live healthier. Try a zero-proof cocktail (we recommend the No-Jito or spicy jalapeño zero-proof margarita) alongside vegan elote, mixed berry waffles and more, and don’t miss the ways in which the brothers are impacting the neighborhood around them while bringing flavorful vegan eats to the South Side. They stock a free vegan pantry by Harlandale Sunshine Pantry and provide hot food to those who are unhoused whenever they ask. “At HASH, we want to be a positive space that is not only in the community but a part of it,” Rogelio Sanchez says.
Best Diner for Any Meal: The Hayden

With a reputation for quality, straight-up beer styles and an intimate atmosphere, Second Pitch has become a local favorite in the short 15 months it’s been in existence. Christened ‘Brew Monkey Beer Co.’ when they opened in August of 2020, Second Pitch went through a name change in March 2021 after a legal challenge from another Texas brewery. Its core beers and service remained. Try the Summer Lightning, a honey blonde ale that won a bronze medal at the U.S. Open Beer Championships last fall; the Hometown Lager, a lager in the California Common style; Hot Wells, a German-style hefeweizen; Meet in The Middle, their West Coast–style IPA; or A Man and His Dog, an Irish stout. Located off Starcrest Drive on the North Side, the brewery often plays host to a local food truck and has regular events, like beer education courses, yoga and trivia.
There’s no shortage of options for delicious pan dulce in San Antonio but the traditional and cross-cultural offerings from Mexico City natives and brothers José and David Cáceres deserve a place on every foodie bucket list. The tequila almond croissant that originated at their farmers market stand still sells out, but you should also try a traditional concha, a croncha (a cross between a concha and a croissant) and, when you want to indulge, a tres leches croissant.
Best Unexpected Taste of San Antonio: Mi Roti

The expansive craft beer list, pommes frites with aioli and burgers with toppings like sour ale onion jam, cider poached pears and bacon marmalade warrant a visit any weekend. The beer garden menu is made sweeter by the outdoor seating area with tables for large and small groups plus room for dogs to lounge near your feet.
Reserve a space on the outside patio at this Southtown staple that has an inventive and always satisfying menu plus an extensive wine list and specialty cocktails worth splurging to try. Visit between 4 and 6 p.m. or 9 p.m. to close for happy hour pricing on drinks and light bites.
Best Brick & Mortar Expansion: Naco Mexican Eatery

When a late-night driver plowed through the front window of Singhs Vietnamese in early July, co-owners Eric Treviño and Louis Singh barely paused their business. Within hours, the glass windows were boarded up, and their team cleaned up the interior so they could resume serving their Vietnamese soul food within a few days. Soon enough, a mural appeared on those boards with a cartoon sumo character and a couple of captions: “Still Open! Dine In or Carry Out” “No Drive Thru!” The boards now sit inside the restaurant.
Best American and Vegetarian: Project Pollo

Sipping on a mimosa or a sangre verde—a green version of a bloody mary—on this Southtown patio during a weekend brunch feels like a faraway escape. Check out the selection of flavorful zero-proof cocktails, too. Pair your sipper of choice with any of the healthful and flavorful dishes on this menu. Special props go out for the Peruvian-style ceviche, eggs with mole verde and the sweet potato waffles.
The expansive outdoor seating area near Pearl has a casual and welcoming vibe. Lights keep the atmosphere going into the evening while heaters and misters make it perfect for dining during (almost) any weather.
Best New Spots for a Coffee Break

There are plenty of house specialties at this bar and restaurant that opened last year in the former Madhatters Tea House & Café, but don’t sleep on the classics, whether the perfectly crafted Manhattan or the Old Fashioned with Milam & Greene Texas Bourbon.
The hype is well-deserved at this luxurious rooftop bar on the 20th floor of The Thompson San Antonio Hotel. Take in sweeping views of the city alongside well-crafted (and Instagram-worthy) cocktails—just don’t forget to make a reservation, especially on weekends when the bar can fill up. Looking for an off-peak time? Consider high tea from 4 to 6 p.m. each weekday.
Best French Food: Brasserie Mon Chou Chou

One reader wrote, “Hands down the best beer in the city, the most community impact and the most recognition outside of the city.” Its national reputation is thanks, in large part, to its Black is Beautiful beer and initiative that raises funds for organizations supporting equality and justice. Still, Weathered Souls remains local through and through. Their beers speak for themselves—well-crafted, creative and consistent in all the best ways. 
Best Can Design: Roadmap Brewing Co.

The mostly evening hours at this Southtown creamery reflect the concept: dessert with a kick. Flavors rotate regularly but you can’t go wrong with a boozy milkshake topped with a generous helping of whipped cream. Past favorites have included Cinnamon Toast Crunch, Chocolate Aztec and Not Your Mama’s PB&J, all infused with alcohol. An extra shot can be added to your shake if you want to take it up a notch and kid-friendly (read non-alcoholic) options also are available. 
Gorgeous salads, smoked turkey on housemade rye or the always-popular quiche Lorraine with bacon and gruyère are just the beginning of reasons to schedule your next lunch meeting at one of the bakery’s three San Antonio locations. The cafes are calm enough that you can comfortably chat but not so quiet that you feel like you have to whisper, the service is stellar and the pastry case is full of excuses to bring a dessert home for later. 
Best Second Verse

An evening at this Castle Hills standout is something special and experiencing the Feed Me option takes the party to another level. Turn your dining decisions over to chefs and co-owners John and Elise Russ and let them create your own personalized menu. Visit often so they can get to know your preferences and create something even more memorable. 
Best Bold Move: Five Points Food & Drink

Best American + Best Vegetarian/Vegan: Project Pollo
Best Asian: Best Quality Daughter
Best Bakery: La Panaderia
Best Barbecue: 2M Smokehouse
Best Bar for Cocktails: The Modernist
Best Breakfast/Brunch: Comfort Cafe
Best Breakfast Taco: Eddie’s Taco House
Best Brewery: Weathered Souls Brewery
Best Burger: Chris Madrid’s
Best Coffee Shop: Summer Moon
Best Cookies: Lily’s Cookies
Best Distillery: Rebecca Creek Distillery
Best Donuts: The Original Donut Shop
Best Food Truck: El Remedio SA
Best French: Brasserie Mon Chou Chou
Best French Fries: Earth Burger
Best Global Eats: TIE India Oven and Clementine
Best Greek/Mediterranean: Pasha Mediterranean
Best Italian: Paesanos
Best Juice Bar/Acai Bowls: Southwest Elixirs
Best Margarita: La Gloria
Best Mexican/Tex-Mex: Paloma Blanca
Best Outdoor Dining: Down on Grayson
Best Pizza: Dough Pizzeria
Best Seafood: Sea Island Shrimp House
Best Steakhouse: Bohanan’s
200 E. Grayson St., Ste. 107
San Antonio, TX 78215
© 2022 Open Sky Media
All rights reserved
Website by Web Publisher PRO
200 E. Grayson St., Ste. 107
San Antonio, TX 78215
© 2022 Open Sky Media
All rights reserved
Website by Web Publisher PRO


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