There’s no shortage of options for a 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 spot on every foodie’s bucket list. The tequila and 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, whenever you want to please, a very leche croissant.
Better commitment to the vision
Eat Vegan HASH
Rogelio and Michael Sanchez’s HASH (Heal and Spread Healing) Vegan Eats celebrates the commitment they made nine years ago to sobriety as well as the vegan lifestyle that grew from their decision to live healthier. Try a zero-proof cocktail (we recommend the No-Jito or zero-proof spicy jalapeño margarita) alongside the vegan elote, mixed berry waffles and more, and don’t miss the how the brothers are impacting the neighborhood around them while bringing tasty vegan fare to the South Side. They stock a free vegan pantry by Harlandale Sunshine Pantry and provide hot food to those who are not housed whenever requested. “At HASH, we want to be a positive space that’s not just in the community but part of it,” says Rogelio Sanchez.
Best restaurant for any meal: The Hayden
Best New(ish) Brewery
Second Pitch Brewing Co.
Renowned for its quality, simple beer styles and intimate atmosphere, Second Pitch has become a local favorite in just 15 months of existence. Named ‘Brew Monkey Beer Co.’ when they opened in August 2020, Second Pitch changed their name in March 2021 after a legal challenge from another Texas brewery. Its basic beers and service remained. Try Summer Lightning, a honey lager that won a bronze medal at the US Open Beer Championships last fall; Hometown Lager, a California Common-style lager; Hot Wells, a German 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 hosts a local food truck and hosts regular events, like beer education classes, yoga, and trivia.
Best meal on the terrace
Outer Loop 410: Hoppy Monk
The extensive list of craft beers, French fries with aioli, and burgers with toppings like sour beer onion jam, cider-poached pears, and bacon marmalade are worth a visit any weekend. The beer garden menu is made more enjoyable by the outdoor seating area with tables for large and small groups as well as room for the dogs to laze by your feet.
Inside Loop 410: Maverick Texas Brewery
Book a space on the outdoor patio at this Southtown staple that offers an inventive and always satisfying menu, plus an extensive wine list and specialty cocktails worth trying. Visit between 4 p.m. and 6 p.m. or 9 p.m. to close to take advantage of happy hour prices on drinks and light snacks.
San Antonio’s Best Unexpected Taste: Mi Roti
Best pop-up residency
GiGi’s Deli at Little Death
Whip up exceptional Italian sandwiches and terrific wines, and you’ll have your next craving. This is GiGi’s Deli, the new long-term home of wine bar/boutique/hangout Little Death. GiGi chef/co-owner Matt Garcia and his business partner Harrison Civick create changing menus that use East Coast Italian-American sandwiches as a backdrop. Whether the GiGi team is just throwing sandos or riffing on a deliciously absurd themed event, there’s always a reason to come by for some delicious bites and a glass – or bottle – of something just as delicious.
Best Brick and Mortar Extension: Naco Mexican Eatery
When an overnight driver entered the front window of Vietnam’s Singhs in early July, co-owners Eric Treviño and Louis Singh barely halted their business. Within hours the windows were boarded up and their team cleaned the interior so they could start serving their Vietnamese soul food again within days. Soon a mural appeared on these panels with a sumo cartoon character and some captions: “Always open! Dine in or take out” “No drive-thru!” The boards now sit inside the restaurant.
Best American and Vegetarian: Project Pollo
Best patio for brunch
Sipping a mimosa or a sangre verde – a green version of a Bloody Mary – on this Southtown terrace during a weekend brunch is like a faraway escape. Also discover the selection of tasty zero-proof cocktails. Pair your drink of choice with one of the healthy and tasty dishes from this menu. Special attachments are coming out for Peruvian Ceviche, Mole Verde Eggs, and Sweet Potato Waffles.
Best outdoor dining
Down on Grayson
The expansive outdoor seating area near Pearl has a relaxed and welcoming vibe. Lights keep the atmosphere going into the evening while heaters and misters make it perfect for dining in (almost) any weather.
Best New Places for a Coffee Break
Best classic cocktails
There are plenty of house specialties at this bar and restaurant which opened last year in the former Madhatters Tea House & Café, but don’t sleep on the classics, whether it’s the perfectly designed Manhattan or the Old Fashioned with Milam & Greene Texas Bourbon.
Best French cuisine: Brasserie Mon Chou Chou
Weathered Souls Brewing Co.
One reader wrote, “Hands down the best beer in town, the most impactful in the community, and the most recognized outside of town. Its national reputation is due, in large part, to its Black is Beautiful beer and its initiative that raises funds for organizations supporting equality and justice. Yet 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.
Best milkshake with a twist
Boozy’s: Dairy + Craft
Evening hours at this Southtown creamery reflect the concept: dessert with a kick. The flavors change regularly, but you can’t go wrong with a drizzled 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 hit can be added to your shake if you want to kick it up a notch and kid-friendly (read non-alcoholic) options are also available.
Best place for a Meetup lunch
Superb salads, smoked turkey on homemade rye, or the ever-popular Bacon and Gruyere Quiche Lorraine are just the beginning of the reasons to plan your next lunch at one of the bakery’s three locations in San Antonio. The cafes are quiet enough for you to chat comfortably but not so quiet you feel like you have to whisper, the service is stellar, and the patisserie is full of excuses to bring home a dessert for later.
Best Second Verse
Best date night
Clementine feeds me
A night out at this exceptional location in Castle Hills is something special and experiencing the Feed Me option takes the party to another level. Leave your culinary decisions to chefs and co-owners John and Elise Russ and let them create your own personalized menu. Visit often so they can learn about your preferences and create something even more memorable.
Best Daring Move: Five Points Food & Drink
Best American + Best Vegetarian/Vegan: Project Pollo
Best Asian: Best Quality Girl
Best Bakery: La Panaderia
Best BBQ: 2M Smokehouse
Best cocktail bar: 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: 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 Fries: Earth Burger
World’s Best Dishes: TIE India Oven and Clementine
Best Greek/Mediterranean: Pacha Méditerranée
Best Italian: Paesanos
Best Juice Bar/Acai Bowls: Southwest Elixirs
Best Daisy: La Gloria
Best Mexican/Tex-Mex: Paloma Blanca
Best outdoor dining: Down on Grayson
Best Pizza: Pizzeria Dough
Best Seafood: Sea Island Shrimp House
Best steakhouse: Bohanan’s