Greater San Antonio

Adelante, 21 Brees, San Antonio, TX (210)822-7681. (No website). Great local vegetarian and healthy dining option near Alamo Heights. Very bright and fun decor give this place an Austin feel. Food is tasty and innovative! Overall one of our favorites in the area. HEADS UP: no credit cards accepted so bring cash.

Augie’s Barbed Wire Smokehouse, 3709 N St Mary’s, San Antonio, TX (210)735-0088. www.augiesbs.net. Like being in the Texas Hill Country, but is located right next to the Sunken Garden Theatre and the San Antonio Zoo. This place has great BBQ smoked on-site, a Beer Garden (watch sporting events there on big screen), and an eclectic Tree House where you can indulge in wine selections and cigars. A delicious and unique experience.

The Barn Door, 8400 S New Braunfels Ave, San Antonio, TX (210)824-0116. www.barndoorrestaurant.com.  For down-home cooking that’s downright delicious, so forget the diet! Charcoal-broiled steaks, chicken, and seafood are the specialties of a house that’s been dubbed a classic in San Antonio, established in 1953. Everything, including the bakery goods, is made-from-scratch and the beef is aged weeks in advance. Wait staff still wears the cowboy costumes designed in the 50’s. Real Texas style!

Bin 555 Restaurant and Wine Bar, in Artisan’s Alley at 555 W Bitters Rd, San Antonio, TX (210)496-0555. www.bin555.com. Chef Jason Dady's Mediterranean cuisine in a "small meze plates" format coupled with contemporary ambiance, an intimate bar and large patio make Bin 555 one of the most innovative restaurants in San Antonio. Designed to be fun and flexible, the menu offers a large selection of Spanish and Italian foods. The wine list offers a mix of eclectic and boutique, new and old world wines. Relax and enjoy yourself.

Bistro Vatel, 218 E Olmos, San Antonio, TX (210)828-3141. www.bistrovatel.com. Chef Damien Watel has created an enduring 4 star French culinary destination, rivaling France’s elegant countryside haunts. Prix fixe menu changing daily and with the seasons. Carefully selected wine list. Attire is business or business casual. Tues – Sat lunch & dinner 11am – 9pm. Sun dinner only 5pm-9pm. Closed Mon.

Boardwalk Bistro 4011 Broadway, San Antonio, TX (210)82-0100. www.boardwalkbistro.net.  Locally owned and operated restaurant featuring Mediterranean cuisine.  Fresh seafood is the house specialty. However, preparations of choice beef, lamb & poultry are always on the front burner. Bistro fare includes a multi-course chef’s tasting menu, numerous vegetarian offerings, homemade soups, salads, breads and fanciful desserts. The pantry is well stocked with fresh herbs, olive oil, artichoke hearts, citrus, capers and Belgium chocolate. Award-winning wine list. Live jazz music – call for schedule.

Cappy’s, 5011 Broadway, San Antonio, TX (210)828-9669. www.cappysrestaurant.com.  A casual and upscale place with a daily heart-healthy offerings, in addition to the pasta and sandwiches, seafood and steaks. Opened in 1977 by Cappy & Suzy Lawton, featuring New American Cuisine, with regional/seasonal specialties. Open daily, lunch, dinner, weekend brunch; reservations suggested.

Cappyccino’s, 5003 Broadway, San Antonio, TX (210)828-6860. www.cappyccinos.com. Fun Bar & Bistro with a very extensive bar and beverage menu. This is the little brother to Cappy’s, featuring soups, salads, sandwiches, Kobe Beef burgers & wood-fired pizzas. Inexpensive and informal, although casual and upscale, you’ll find it in an old brick building built in the 1930s from scrap bricks from the surrounding Alamo Heights neighborhood. Open Mon-Sun for lunch and dinner. Closed Sun.

Carmen’s de la Calle, 720 E Mistletoe Ave, San Antonio, TX (210)727-8272. www.carmensdelacalle.com. A comfy, global cafe with a personality inspired by the two feisty and passionate Carmens of Bizet's 19th century opera and Otto Preminger's 20th century musical along with Hollywood's spunky, flirty Carmen Miranda. Tapas are more about the culture than the portion size - the culture of gathering with friends and family, or perhaps sitting really close to someone you don't know and getting to know them in an environment where food & music is an adventure and life just feels good. Delicious foods, funky jazz or Spanish classical guitar make your tummy and your ears happy. Just 5 minutes from the Vista.

Central Market (Gourmet on the Go), 4821 Broadway, San Antonio, TX (210)368-8600. www.centralmarket.com. This local market brings you food from around the world, plus has a top-notch café. Plump rotisserie chickens are terrific, as are the lasagna, grilled vegetables and salads. Try one of five focaccias made daily. A serve-yourself salsa bar is a basic for great noshing. The possibilities are endless! Open every day 7am – 10pm.

Chris Madrid’s, 1900 Blanco Rd, San Antonio, TX (210)735-3552. www.chrismadrids.com.  The eponymous Chris Madrid's was once an old gas station, but now finds itself serving wonderful hamburgers in 2 sizes: regular and Macho. Families, college students, business folks at lunch and Happy Hour – all here for the 6 varieties of burgers and hand-cut fries, pork sandwiches, nachos & chalupas. Grab a beer or a margarita, but leave your “diet” at the door. Chris’s motto has always been to "Cook each item as if you were cooking it for a friend". Casual, order at the kitchen window, picnic table style. Since 1977. Many times voted Best Burgers of SA.

Ciao Lavanderia, 226 E Olmos Dr, San Antonio, TX (210)822-3990. (No website). This one-time laundrymat (hence the name) now turned restaurant at first glance seems too humble, but a classic Italian menu and hand-made pizzas are sure to please. Somewhat of a hidden neighborhood treasure with blackboard specials changing daily.

Crumpets Café and Bakery, 3920 Harry Wurzbach Rd, San Antonio, TX (210)821-5600.  www.crumpetsa.com. Chef Francois Maeder has brought a little bit of the European palate to the San Antonian atmosphere. Dine riverside surrounded by live oak trees, or select from freshly baked goods to take home. It all tastes great. Military folks get a 20% discount from their meal.

Dough, 6989 Blanco Rd, San Antonio, TX (210)979-6363.  www.doughpizzeria.com. Dough Pizzeria Napoletana is to date one of an elite 32 restaurants in the United States and #292 in the world to receive the prestigious certification from L'Associazione Vera Pizza Napoletana for serving authentic Pizza Napoletana. Some of the unique features are: a Mozzarella Bar, where cheeses are made fresh daily, an all-Italian wine list, specialty beers crafted from local and Italian breweries, an authentic wood-burning oven built by a master oven mason, that cooks the pizzas at 800 degrees or in approximately 90 seconds! A pizza bar where guests can interact with the Pizzaioli as they are making their pizzas. All their desserts, gelatos, and sorbettos, and bakes its own artisan breads fresh daily. DOUGH is a proud member of “Slow Food USA” and supports farmers by sourcing as many products as possible from local farms, and has its own thriving herb garden where fresh herbs are picked daily. Indoor and patio seating.

Earl Abel’s, 1201 Austin Hwy, San Antonio, TX (210)822-3358. www.earlabelssa.com. It was November 1933, when silent film organist Earl Abel opened his first 10-seat restaurant on Main Street. The Great Depression was in full swing and the onset of "talkies" left highly paid entertainers jobless.  Earl, who had once shared top billing with such celebrities as Rudy Vallee, Charlie Chaplin, and Bing Crosby, was forced to find a new way to support his family.  Unable to find work in the theatre, he took what money he'd saved, found a small house on Main Street, filled it with dime store plates and utensils, and opened for business.  The rest is San Antonio history – read more at the website. Perhaps millions have enjoyed Earl Abel’s homestyle foods in the past 76 years. Foods that are not only good for you since they are made fresh and without preservatives, but are a great value as well. The “Simply Delicious” Fried Chicken has zero trans fat. Open daily for breakfast (served all day), lunch, & dinner; kids eat free all day Tues & at dinner Mon – Thurs 5pm - 8pm.

Fleming’s Prime Steakhouse, 255 E Basse Rd, San Antonio, TX (210)824-9463. www.flemingssteakhouse.com.  Fleming's is known for its world-class food and wine, lively and comfortable atmosphere and gracious service. The steaks were among the top rankings by Texas Monthly in the December 2007 issue. A selection of over 100 wines by the glass will delight wine enthusiasts & they have received Awards of Excellence from both Wine Enthusiast and Wine Spectator in 2008 and 2009.

Frederick’s, 7701 Broadway St, San Antonio, TX (210)828-9050. www.frederickssa.com.  Owner Frederick Costa was raised in both Indochina and France, but received his restaurant training in France. Chef Perrin attended culinary school in Neufchatel, Switzerland, but trained in some of the best American French restaurants since the 1970s. Together they bring a vision of Asian foods fused with French, while keeping a classic French style. Customers of Frederick's will say that visiting the restaurant is like walking into your best friend's home.  You feel completely welcomed and special on every visit.

Gianni’s Cucina, 2602 N Loop 1604 West Ste 209, San Antonio, TX (210)233-9240. www.giannisitaliancuisine.com. Italian-born Chef/owner Giuseppe was farm-raised and grandmother-taught until he emigrated and started training in New York restaurants at the age of 16, progressing to Head Chef by 21. He brings an absolute authenticity to classic Italian dishes. Reservations recommended.

Josephine Street Café, 400 E Josephine St, San Antonio, TX (210)224-6169. www.josephinestcafe.com. Here’s a great burgers and steak joint – with a tree growing right through the dining room ceiling! On Spurs game night you can catch their free bus to the AT&T center. You’ll bump into quite a cast of local characters. Try the Pecan Praline Pie – you won’t regret it.

La Fogata, 2427 Vance Jackson, San Antonio, TX (210)340-1337. www.lafogata.com. Internationally known for its flavorful Mexican cuisine, La Fogata is one of San Antonio’s most unique gathering spots, famous for their food, margaritas and great atmosphere. You can even buy their in-house salsas to enjoy at home. Features a different tequila drink each month – just another excuse to return again and again!

La Fonda on Main, 2415 N Main Ave, San Antonio, TX (210)733-0621. www.lafondaonmain.com.  Fish a la Veracruzana comes with exquisite calabacitas. The Steak Ranchera is tender and flavorful. Spinach enchiladas in a spinach cream could hardly be better. Locals and guests alike are thrilled with the patio dining or inside surrounded by Mexican art. A gracious and flavorful experience.

The Melting Pot, 14855 Blanco Ste 110, San Antonio, TX (210)479-6358. www.meltingpot.com. At The Melting Pot, fondue truly becomes a memorable four-course dining experience where you can dip into something different - and discover a unique dining experience including a relaxed atmosphere, private tables, attentive service, fine wines and signature fondue dinners. Winner Wine Spectator Award of Excellence 2006, 2007, 2008. In a category of its own!

Paloma Blanca, 5148 Broadway, San Antonio, TX (210)822-6151. www.palomablanca.com. A wonderful local restaurant with authentic Mexican flare. Tempting offerings as varied as grilled snapper, enchiladas verdes, pozole soup, hand-made flautas and tacos al pastor all await you. Located in Alamo Heights – not far from the Vista.

Pavil, 1818 N Loop 1604 at ASE corner of Huebner Rd, San Antonio, TX (210)479-5000. www.basseriepavil.com. Voted 8th best restaurant in Texas Monthly (Feb 2010) by food critic Patricia Sharpe, this classic brasserie serves up Parisian style dishes to tempt your palate. Although they brag about their garlic escargot in puff pastry, Sharpe recommends the Vegetable Cassoulet as the most memorable dish on the menu. Your dining experience is enhanced by the absolutely authentic French style of the restaurant – like being transported across the ocean! Vegetarian fare is available upon request. Reservations recommended but not required. Complimentary valet parking. Open daily.