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Must-Do Eateries

chibiachikachibiachika Registered User regular
So I figured that since I'm taking a trip, I might as well look into local cuisine. Why should I go to a McDonalds when I do that back home? So I was wondering if anyone had any recommendations. I'll have a car so I can go anywhere, plus my hotel is a like 19 miles away away anyways, I could arrange a small group to go check out the foods if anyone is interested.

Currently, the only things I really have in mind are pizza and chili. I've never had Texas-style chili before so figured why not?

There is one chain I want to go to that isn't local to my area, and that's Whataburger, because I hear people say I need to. :o

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Posts

  • 13th_mg_doctor13th_mg_doctor Louisville, KYRegistered User regular
    Texas Land & Cattle Steakhouse, on the bottom floor of the Drury Inn and Suites Riverwalk is very good.

    rzHnQQ1.png
  • shimwoodshimwood Registered User regular
    Lulu's was featured on the Food Network, I think, for their cinnamon rolls:
    http://www.lulusbakeryandcafe.com/

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  • chaosisorderchaosisorder Cupcake Princess and Pinny Whore OregonRegistered User regular
    Texas Land & Cattle Steakhouse, on the bottom floor of the Drury Inn and Suites Riverwalk is very good.

    OMG- yassssss!

  • StinkyTurdStinkyTurd Registered User regular
    really i've been staying in the mariotte right next to the drury inn the last 2 years and i never went down there lol well now i need to try texas land and cattle lol.

  • MachinegunMachinegun Registered User new member
    littleredbarnsteakhouse.com/

    If you want a TEXAS SIZE steak this is where you go!

  • MachinegunMachinegun Registered User new member
    My favorite place for Breakfast

    https://guentherhouse.com/

    Tomsushi
  • japesterjapester Registered User regular
    I'm a local. Guenther House is a favorite of mine, partly for the food (which is tasty and inexpensive) and partly for the charming house/grounds it is located in. I eat at Texas Land and Cattle, which is good, but nothing uniquely "Texas" about it. It's just good food. Since you have a car, I would suggest Rudy's BBQ. They have a few locations, all located just outside of town. Pick the one closest to you. Great for a group as they cut you a stack of meat and you all share. Everything is carved fresh in front of you. (I like the chopped meat the best.) If price is no object, you can try one of the Brazilian style steakhouses. They are all-you-can-eat and high quality. Fogo de Chao is a short walk away, but I prefer Chama Gaucha on the north side of town. For Mexican, my favorite place is right near the convention center--Rosario's. It's a medium-long walk or a very short drive. The tableside guacamole is the best in town. If you like German cuisine, Shiloh's is also very close to the con. Their homemade root beer is super tasty.

    I can't comment on good chili places, and since I'm originally from New York I can't call anything made in Texas "pizza". LOL

    shimwood
  • shimwoodshimwood Registered User regular
    My friend and I ordered pizza last year because we didn't want to go anywhere Sunday night. While it was edible, the quality was about the same as Pizza Hut. So, yeah, not "pizza" but it'll do if you're hungry.

    khd33hubozxv.png
  • chibiachikachibiachika Registered User regular
    Alright, this is a good start! Maybe I can set up a schedule and see if anyone wants to try to hit up some of these.

    And my bit on pizza, I'm not looking for anything super special, I just like to try out like mom and pop pizza restaurants and see how they are. That'd probably be my Thursday night dinner lol

  • orthancstoneorthancstone TexasRegistered User regular
    Taco Taco Cafe for breakfast

    PAX South 2018 - Jan 12-14!
    Pins!
  • japesterjapester Registered User regular
    I forgot to mention a pro tip for Guenther House. If you see a pastry in the case that you want, reserve it with your server as soon as you sit down. Otherwise it might be gone. Also, make sure to visit the gift shop on the second floor. They always have samples up there which are delicious.

  • nbs2nbs2 Registered User regular
    japester wrote: »
    I'm a local. Guenther House is a favorite of mine, partly for the food (which is tasty and inexpensive) and partly for the charming house/grounds it is located in. I eat at Texas Land and Cattle, which is good, but nothing uniquely "Texas" about it. It's just good food. Since you have a car, I would suggest Rudy's BBQ. They have a few locations, all located just outside of town. Pick the one closest to you. Great for a group as they cut you a stack of meat and you all share. Everything is carved fresh in front of you. (I like the chopped meat the best.) If price is no object, you can try one of the Brazilian style steakhouses. They are all-you-can-eat and high quality. Fogo de Chao is a short walk away, but I prefer Chama Gaucha on the north side of town. For Mexican, my favorite place is right near the convention center--Rosario's. It's a medium-long walk or a very short drive. The tableside guacamole is the best in town. If you like German cuisine, Shiloh's is also very close to the con. Their homemade root beer is super tasty.

    I can't comment on good chili places, and since I'm originally from New York I can't call anything made in Texas "pizza". LOL

    For Brazilian, don't forget Texas de Brazil, which is also where the dinner meet up was last year (maybe this year?).

    I can't believe you suggested Rudy's, though. While serviceable, I'd hardly call it good eats. Maybe - just maybe - if you get moist, burnt ends, do you get flavor. If you're in SA, have a car, and can drive a little, the better option is to take quick drive out to Lockhart, Luling, or any of the other BBQ hot spots that are reasonably close. Just don't go to Blacks, the lines are long enough as is.

  • KetarKetar Come on upstairs we're having a partyRegistered User regular
    nbs2 wrote: »
    japester wrote: »
    I'm a local. Guenther House is a favorite of mine, partly for the food (which is tasty and inexpensive) and partly for the charming house/grounds it is located in. I eat at Texas Land and Cattle, which is good, but nothing uniquely "Texas" about it. It's just good food. Since you have a car, I would suggest Rudy's BBQ. They have a few locations, all located just outside of town. Pick the one closest to you. Great for a group as they cut you a stack of meat and you all share. Everything is carved fresh in front of you. (I like the chopped meat the best.) If price is no object, you can try one of the Brazilian style steakhouses. They are all-you-can-eat and high quality. Fogo de Chao is a short walk away, but I prefer Chama Gaucha on the north side of town. For Mexican, my favorite place is right near the convention center--Rosario's. It's a medium-long walk or a very short drive. The tableside guacamole is the best in town. If you like German cuisine, Shiloh's is also very close to the con. Their homemade root beer is super tasty.

    I can't comment on good chili places, and since I'm originally from New York I can't call anything made in Texas "pizza". LOL

    For Brazilian, don't forget Texas de Brazil, which is also where the dinner meet up was last year (maybe this year?).

    I can't believe you suggested Rudy's, though. While serviceable, I'd hardly call it good eats. Maybe - just maybe - if you get moist, burnt ends, do you get flavor. If you're in SA, have a car, and can drive a little, the better option is to take quick drive out to Lockhart, Luling, or any of the other BBQ hot spots that are reasonably close. Just don't go to Blacks, the lines are long enough as is.

    I had a rental car last year and went to Lockhart. The line for Black's at lunchtime on Thursday was super short - just a small line inside the building. I was afraid they were closed for a minute it was so different from the one other time I'd been there.

  • gunadicgunadic Registered User regular
    It's further afield, but Bakery Lorraine at the Pearl has the best baked goods in the city, maybe in the state.

    sirena
  • japesterjapester Registered User regular
    nbs2 wrote: »
    I can't believe you suggested Rudy's, though. While serviceable, I'd hardly call it good eats. Maybe - just maybe - if you get moist, burnt ends, do you get flavor. If you're in SA, have a car, and can drive a little, the better option is to take quick drive out to Lockhart, Luling, or any of the other BBQ hot spots that are reasonably close. Just don't go to Blacks, the lines are long enough as is.

    Interesting. Rudy's is popular among everyone I know (I often take visitors there, too). This is the first criticism I've heard of it. I don't doubt there is better BBQ out there, but I find Rudy's far from flavorless. To each their own, but I think the OP would still enjoy the grub there.

    Yeah, nothing against Texas de Brazil. Lots of those steak places around. I think I favor Chama Gaucha because of the mouth-watering little cheese rolls they bring around. Those are always a big hit.

    I'm happy as long as people don't assume the Riverwalk represents the best of San Antonio dining. All the food is acceptable at the very least, but they are mostly designed to lure in tourists. So it's all about appearances. Very few locals make a habit out of dining at any of those places on the regular. But you won't have an awful experience at any of them, either. And for a tourist spot, prices are very reasonable.

  • StinkyTurdStinkyTurd Registered User regular
    edited January 2017
    japester wrote: »
    nbs2 wrote: »
    I can't believe you suggested Rudy's, though. While serviceable, I'd hardly call it good eats. Maybe - just maybe - if you get moist, burnt ends, do you get flavor. If you're in SA, have a car, and can drive a little, the better option is to take quick drive out to Lockhart, Luling, or any of the other BBQ hot spots that are reasonably close. Just don't go to Blacks, the lines are long enough as is.

    Interesting. Rudy's is popular among everyone I know (I often take visitors there, too). This is the first criticism I've heard of it. I don't doubt there is better BBQ out there, but I find Rudy's far from flavorless. To each their own, but I think the OP would still enjoy the grub there.

    Yeah, nothing against Texas de Brazil. Lots of those steak places around. I think I favor Chama Gaucha because of the mouth-watering little cheese rolls they bring around. Those are always a big hit.

    I'm happy as long as people don't assume the Riverwalk represents the best of San Antonio dining. All the food is acceptable at the very least, but they are mostly designed to lure in tourists. So it's all about appearances. Very few locals make a habit out of dining at any of those places on the regular. But you won't have an awful experience at any of them, either. And for a tourist spot, prices are very reasonable.

    Texas de Brazil also has the delicious tiny cheese biscuits fun fact there also gluten free :) Also I love there lobster bisque having said that yes there's lots of that type of steak house I just favor that one and find it a fun type of restaurant to host a big dinner at which reminds me I really need to get the signup sheet posted.

    StinkyTurd on
    shimwood
  • ahstoddardahstoddard President-kidnapping Ninja Houston-ishRegistered User regular
    I'd also vote to skip Rudy's, or any other chain bbq. Though San Antonio isn't known as a bbq city, there are a few good places. I hear good things about Smoke Shack for bbq, though I have not gone yet myself.

    Then I've also enjoyed Bird Bakery; and Magnolia Pancake Haus was crazy good.

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  • KetarKetar Come on upstairs we're having a partyRegistered User regular
    StinkyTurd wrote: »
    japester wrote: »
    nbs2 wrote: »
    I can't believe you suggested Rudy's, though. While serviceable, I'd hardly call it good eats. Maybe - just maybe - if you get moist, burnt ends, do you get flavor. If you're in SA, have a car, and can drive a little, the better option is to take quick drive out to Lockhart, Luling, or any of the other BBQ hot spots that are reasonably close. Just don't go to Blacks, the lines are long enough as is.

    Interesting. Rudy's is popular among everyone I know (I often take visitors there, too). This is the first criticism I've heard of it. I don't doubt there is better BBQ out there, but I find Rudy's far from flavorless. To each their own, but I think the OP would still enjoy the grub there.

    Yeah, nothing against Texas de Brazil. Lots of those steak places around. I think I favor Chama Gaucha because of the mouth-watering little cheese rolls they bring around. Those are always a big hit.

    I'm happy as long as people don't assume the Riverwalk represents the best of San Antonio dining. All the food is acceptable at the very least, but they are mostly designed to lure in tourists. So it's all about appearances. Very few locals make a habit out of dining at any of those places on the regular. But you won't have an awful experience at any of them, either. And for a tourist spot, prices are very reasonable.

    Texas de Brazil also has the delicious tiny cheese biscuits fun fact there also gluten free :) Also I love there lobster bisque having said that yes there's lots of that type of steak house I just favor that one and find it a fun type of restaurant to host a big dinner at which reminds me I really need to get the signup sheet posted.

    Fogo also has absolutely delicious cheese bread puffs that they bring out at the beginning. They also have those really delicious caramelized bananas they bring as a side. And my favorite selection of meats of any of the chain Brazilian steakhouses. Can't really go wrong with any of them though.

  • JT0418JT0418 san antonio, texasRegistered User regular
    If you go to the pearl there are a lot of good non chain eateries. The granary (bbq), La Gloria (mexican), Southerleigh (southern style food), Supper/Larder (both at hotel emma....best hotel in town) Down on Grayon (american).
    Cured (amazing happy hour from 3-6, half of majority of beers, half of their main cocktails and half off glasses of wine). There is also a farmers market in the am at the pearl on both sat/sun if you want to check that out also. Pearl will be best bang for your buck/time.

    sirena
  • sirenasirena Registered User regular
    Yes for sure check out any of the restaurants at the Pearl! They are all good. Get macaroons at Bakery Lorraine, bring them back to the convention, find me, and give them to me. Kthx.

    For pizza, go to Julian's Pizzeria. They have 2 locations now (original is on West Ave up 281N and the new one is in Alamo Heights on N New Braunfels). And when you're there, save room for dessert and get the Hannah's Huey (the vanilla one, NOT the chocolate). Seriously, get it. If you go there and don't get that dessert, I will hunt you down because everyone should experience that magic.

  • sirenasirena Registered User regular
    And I second the going to Lockhart idea! BBQ capital of TX! You can hit all 3 BBQ places (Kreuz, Smitty's, Black's) if you have a few hours and want to go into a meat coma. We go in that order - get only meat (and fixins like pickles and jalapenos) at the first 2, then Black's for more meat + sides and dessert. You'll have a fun meat-high on the way home which is very entertaining.

  • StinkyTurdStinkyTurd Registered User regular
    JT0418 wrote: »
    If you go to the pearl there are a lot of good non chain eateries. The granary (bbq), La Gloria (mexican), Southerleigh (southern style food), Supper/Larder (both at hotel emma....best hotel in town) Down on Grayon (american).
    Cured (amazing happy hour from 3-6, half of majority of beers, half of their main cocktails and half off glasses of wine). There is also a farmers market in the am at the pearl on both sat/sun if you want to check that out also. Pearl will be best bang for your buck/time.

    Is the pearl in reasonable walking distance from the convention center?

  • sirenasirena Registered User regular
    What's your definition of "reasonable?" ;) It's a 45 min walk. Easier to Uber or Lyft.

  • zerzhulzerzhul Registered User, Moderator mod
    sirena wrote: »
    And I second the going to Lockhart idea! BBQ capital of TX! You can hit all 3 BBQ places (Kreuz, Smitty's, Black's) if you have a few hours and want to go into a meat coma. We go in that order - get only meat (and fixins like pickles and jalapenos) at the first 2, then Black's for more meat + sides and dessert. You'll have a fun meat-high on the way home which is very entertaining.
    dem's the meat sweats yer fixin ta git.

    Also I will be getting Lockhart bbq for sure.

    sirenacabsy
  • PotatoemanPotatoeman Registered User regular
    edited January 2017
    It isn't anywhere near downtown, but if you have the time, Magnolia Pancake Haus is amazing.
    If you like apples/cinnamon/pancakes/sweet things for breakfast and don't mind consuming an outrageous amount of calories, the Apfel Pfannekuchen (Apple Fanny-ku-kin) is seriously the reason I go there. Once a month I must consume it. Everything else is great too, but that's the reason I go.

    Be weary though; they're only open from 7am-2pm, which I know are prime PAX hours. It's worth it!
    http://www.magnoliapancakehaus.com/

    Potatoeman on
    sirena
  • besweeetbesweeet San Antonio, TXRegistered User regular
    Currently, the only things I really have in mind are pizza and chili.

    I haven't had much luck finding a good pizza place. Maybe I'm just use to Cici's...
    There is one chain I want to go to that isn't local to my area, and that's Whataburger, because I hear people say I need to. :o

    Yes, you need to. There's one downtown.

    Animal-_-
  • StinkyTurdStinkyTurd Registered User regular
    Yes there's a whataburger that's around a 10 minute walk from the convention center be aware it can get super busy around midnight when parties start ending. I also heard the first year we ran them out of buns.

  • Cid29Cid29 Registered User regular
    Bolners Bar-B-Que is downtown and is pretty good.

    If you really want Pizza I would suggest Big Lou's

    Late night fast food, definitely Whataburger.

    And for the quintessential Mexican Restaurant check out Mi Tierra.

    Xbox Live: Cid29
  • sirenasirena Registered User regular
    Cid29 wrote: »
    Bolners Bar-B-Que is downtown and is pretty good.

    If you really want Pizza I would suggest Big Lou's

    Late night fast food, definitely Whataburger.

    And for the quintessential Mexican Restaurant check out Mi Tierra.

    Yes, Big Lou's!! :+1:

    I'd go Rosario's for texmex. Mi Tierra is too touristy.

  • besweeetbesweeet San Antonio, TXRegistered User regular
    On the topic of Mexican food, consider Lula's (115 E Travis St.). Good quality food, large portions, low prices.

  • sirenasirena Registered User regular
    Ooh how about Chester's or Longhorn Cafe for a big ol Texas burger? This thread makes me so hungry.

  • besweeetbesweeet San Antonio, TXRegistered User regular
    sirena wrote: »
    Ooh how about Chester's or Longhorn Cafe for a big ol Texas burger? This thread makes me so hungry.

    Try working downtown ;).

    The Esquire Tavern has pretty good burgers IMO.

  • sirenasirena Registered User regular
    besweeet wrote: »
    Try working downtown ;).

    The Esquire Tavern has pretty good burgers IMO.

    lol I can imagine! And dude yes. Love Esquire! Only place I've found boiled peanuts in this city.

  • sammyHD1sammyHD1 Registered User regular

    Cid29 wrote: »
    And for the quintessential Mexican Restaurant check out Mi Tierra.

    Mi Tierra is a personal MUST for me. I go for at least one meal every time i visit SA.
    There is usually a Mariachi if you go for dinner.

  • nbs2nbs2 Registered User regular
    japester wrote: »
    nbs2 wrote: »
    I can't believe you suggested Rudy's, though. While serviceable, I'd hardly call it good eats. Maybe - just maybe - if you get moist, burnt ends, do you get flavor. If you're in SA, have a car, and can drive a little, the better option is to take quick drive out to Lockhart, Luling, or any of the other BBQ hot spots that are reasonably close. Just don't go to Blacks, the lines are long enough as is.

    Interesting. Rudy's is popular among everyone I know (I often take visitors there, too). This is the first criticism I've heard of it. I don't doubt there is better BBQ out there, but I find Rudy's far from flavorless. To each their own, but I think the OP would still enjoy the grub there.

    Yeah, nothing against Texas de Brazil. Lots of those steak places around. I think I favor Chama Gaucha because of the mouth-watering little cheese rolls they bring around. Those are always a big hit.

    I'm happy as long as people don't assume the Riverwalk represents the best of San Antonio dining. All the food is acceptable at the very least, but they are mostly designed to lure in tourists. So it's all about appearances. Very few locals make a habit out of dining at any of those places on the regular. But you won't have an awful experience at any of them, either. And for a tourist spot, prices are very reasonable.

    I just had to give you a hard time about it, I've got friends here on the west side of Houston that do the same with guests (I may or may not also do that) - Rudy's is everywhere and is still better than what they'll get most anywhere else, and you don't have to worry about them running out like the best places.

    I agree about the Riverwalk, too bad it's so close to the convention center. We ended up grabbing lunch there on Saturday since it was the quickest option (the Whataburger line was that scary).

  • japesterjapester Registered User regular
    nbs2 wrote: »
    I just had to give you a hard time about it, I've got friends here on the west side of Houston that do the same with guests (I may or may not also do that) - Rudy's is everywhere and is still better than what they'll get most anywhere else, and you don't have to worry about them running out like the best places.

    I agree about the Riverwalk, too bad it's so close to the convention center. We ended up grabbing lunch there on Saturday since it was the quickest option (the Whataburger line was that scary).

    It's all good. I'm the first to admit that I'm not a big fan of BBQ, which is why my enjoyment of Rudy's always makes me recommend them. Most other BBQ just doesn't rate a second visit from me. But my wife (who is Mexican, born and raised in SA) just laughed when I mentioned this conversation and said, "Arguing BBQ is like arguing religion--it's way too personal." Heh. I'll be checking out some of the other places that were mentioned, though, so that's a plus.

    No complaints from me about having the Riverwalk so close. Prime has such limited food options, it's always a nightmare. And East was even worse, with nothing at all nearby. I love that we basically have a pedestrian tourist zone right around the convention center. I just try to manage expectations for the quality of food at most of the flashier places. Nowadays I'm happy to keep a cooler in my car and retire there for a nice, relaxing lunch. 8-)

  • RuinicRuinic Registered User new member
    Not a local to SA, but as somebody who lives in Texas and stays in Downtown SA 3 times a year for conferences here are some of my recommendations for places on/near the Riverwalk to try (as well as maybe some places further away that I think warrant the drive) along with links to their websites to view menus.

    Riverwalk
    Casa Rio - Some of the better Tex-Mex food I've had downtown and just a short walk from the convention center.
    Schilo's - German Deli that has an amazing variety of sandwiches along with some amazing homemade root beer.
    Michelino's - Good Italian place that does enough food that you could probably split a plate between two people if you wanted.
    Republic of Texas - Good choices of burgers and other Tex-Mex style food.
    Charlie Wants a Burger - This has become one of my recent favorites with a menu full of just about any burger you could dream of along with some good craft beer.
    The County Line - Decent Texas BBQ with other good options. One drink I would recommend here is their Piña Colada because they put a scoop of their ice cream into the mix.
    Sushi Zushi - My favorite sushi place downtown that you can't go wrong with anything you order.
    Fogo de Chão Brazilian Steakhouse - All you can eat Brazilian style steakhouse with an amazing selection. Pricey but worth it if you're looking for a nice meal.
    Rainforest Cafe - A bit pricey but the food a

    Downtown Area
    Texas de Brazil - Another all you can eat Brazilian style steakhouse that we love to go. It's a tough choice between this and Fogo so we usually just go to whichever one we can get a table at quicker when we want to eat here.
    (Haven't really explored much outside of the Riverwalk area because we're either on the Riverwalk or further outside of downtown with friends who live in the city.)

    General San Antonio Area
    Quarry Hofbrau & Beer Garden - Amazing variety of delicious food (I've never ordered something I didn't like), but their alcoholic drink selection is what really draws me here every time. Tons of options for every taste!
    Freetail Brewing Co. - Way out on the NW side of town off Loop 1604 but worth the drive. Great craft beer with pizza, sandwiches, and wraps.
    Magic Time Machine - All the staff is dressed in a costume of their choosing and they stick to their characters throughout the entire time you're there. Great atmosphere and a fun place for the whole family.

    I'm sure there's a lot of good places I missed but this is a list of some of my preferred places to eat/drink.

  • PotatoemanPotatoeman Registered User regular
    I saw someone mention sushi- there's 2 Godai's Sushi in San Antonio and they are fantastic. The one off of 5th avenue is operated by the owner Goro- he's an amazing man with a great history. He makes the sushi and runs it with his wife. Every guest gets complementary miso soup and ginger salad- the dressing is so good I bought some for nyself(they make it in-house)

    It's standard sushi prices, but the food/presentation is great.

  • MagnusCarterMagnusCarter Registered User regular
    Currently running is resturant week accross the city. I've no idea how many place are participating but I walked up to Southerleigh on the recommendation above and had an excellent lunch.
    http://www.sanantoniomag.com/SAM/Calender/index.php/name/San-Antonio-Restaurant-Week/event/7506/

    sirena
  • sirenasirena Registered User regular
    Ooh! I forgot that was this week!

    Here's the full list of participating restaurants: http://culinariasa.org/san-antonio/restaurant-week-2/

    StinkyTurd
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