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One thing’s for sure:
If you find yourself in San Antonio, you will be eating a LOT of Tex-Mex. It’s everywhere, and because of that, the quality varies from fantastic to forgettable and anything in between.
During my time in San Antonio, I got to sample a number of restaurants in the area. And once you get away from the more generic Tex-Mex, you get to enjoy some standout cuisine.
For good Mexican — La Gloria
Of all the Tex-Mex and Mexican food we ate in San Antonio, La Gloria was the best. Come on — the restaurant’s motto is “You don’t have to die to go to heaven!”
Chef Johnny Hernandez is a graduate of the Culinary Institute of America, and his restaurant focuses on Mexican street food. We ate bowl after bowl of ceviche, tacos, a variety of salsas, skillets filled with bubbling cheese, and every bite was memorable. Definitely hit this place up.
For Texan classics — Lulu’s Bakery and Cafe
Before this trip, I had never had a chicken-fried steak before — a steak breaded and fried, then topped with chicken gravy. Lulu’s is said to have the best chicken-fried steak in San Antonio. So do you think we really deliberated over whether to go? Of course we went there!
And despite (or perhaps because) a chicken-fried steak is essentially fat on top of fat on top of fat, it is gloriously delicious. (Get the gravy on the side, like we did, if you don’t want to be completely decadent.) Lulu’s has lots of diner classics, including, well, chicken-fried chicken as well.
And Lulu’s also has the three-pound cinnamon bun — but that’s a whole other post!
For something different — Bar Rojo
After eating Tex-Mex and heavy food for a few days, you’ll be craving something lighter — so go for sushi! Bar Rojo is one of the establishments at the spectacularly decorated Grand Hyatt. While it’s more of a bar than a restaurant, they have some small plates.
The sushi at Bar Rojo has a southwestern flair, including jalapenos, chiles and other regional ingredients. Go for the Bar Rojo roll — a twist on the spicy tuna roll with roe and wasabi.
And now: a GIVEAWAY!
For this culinary post, it’s a culinary giveaway — I’m giving away a molcajete, a Mexican mortar and pestle!
Sarah and I used this to make our salsa at the Culinary Institute of America. (It looks just like the one pictured above, but darker.) Whether you love to cook or love to entertain, a molcajete is a great item to have in your kitchen.
To enter the giveaway, you must do the following:
- Leave a comment on this post.
- Vote for Team Adventurous Kate on the Race to the Alamo site.
- Become a fan of Adventurous Kate on Facebook.
- Have a mailing address in the US, Canada or the UK, or you can pick it up in person in Munich or Innsbruck August 23-31. (My apologies to my other readers — the molcajete weighs a ton and I don’t want to spend a fortune mailing it.)
- Deadline: August 14, 2011, at 5:00 PM ET.
I hope you enter — and I especially hope you vote for Team Adventurous Kate to win the Race to the Alamo! Remember, you can vote once per day through August 31, and each vote gets you closer to winning a dream trip to San Antonio!
My trip to San Antonio was sponsored by the San Antonio Convention and Visitors Bureau. All opinions, as always, are my own.
34 thoughts on “What to Eat in San Antonio, Texas (WITH A GIVEAWAY!)”
Can’t believe you’d never had chicken fried steak before! And with home gravy yummm! Poor form with the gravy on the side but I have to say, it looks delicious. Hope you win the Race to the Alamo!!
Had to preserve an artery somehow. 🙂
Have voted for you to win the race!
Have liked you on Facebook!
Now, chiming in to tell you that San Antonio is my kind of town for the food and the margharitas which are the best in the world!
So you’re doing your job well because you’re selling me on San Antonio! I’ve voted, liked and sent happy thoughts your way! Good luck 🙂
The Visit San Antonio people will be thrilled to hear that!
Yummy! My mom loves chicken fried steak! Texan food is amazing!
I want a mortar and pestle!! I don’t get chicken fried steak, seriously. It’s like a Nebraska thing, along with Biscuits and Gravy. GROSS.
Love this post! I definitely want to visit San Antonio just for the food.
I second what Adam said. Chicken fried steak is delicious!! I’ve enjoyed reading about your SA adventures!
Hopefully you got to try some of those insanely large food items I suggested on Twitter. Or maybe your group wasn’t big enough to handle a four foot wide pizza. Either way…you’ve got one more vote and one more Facebook fan and hopefully I’ve got a mortar and pestle in the mail! Hope all is well!
Looks like you ate well in San Antonio. Would love to try some good Tex-Mex in Texas. Being from up north in the U.S., I haven’t had much of that.
Thanks for all the great food places you recommended if I ever get down to TX. Looks like it was a very memorable and fun experience!
I’m already a Facebook fan…and I vote about every day!
This will be helpful for my upcoming trip to San Antonio 😀
Wow, this post is making me hungry.
I’ve always wanted to try chicken-fried steak – will have to try to get to Lulus when I’m back in the states. 🙂
I voted & am a fan on facebook!
love your recaps! this one is great because you’re doing the wonderful food of san antonio justice! who doesn’t like tex-mex? YUM.
voted for you today. liked you on fb previously. have a US mailing address…thanks!
Another vote, another great post, another great giveaway! I think you’re my favorite, Kate!
Thanks so much, Colleen!
Here’s my comment for the day. Interesting adventures deserved the vote. You looked like experts with that molcajete.
Came across your blog recently and wanted to say hi! Maybe it’s my “prejudice” as a north-easterner, but I never realized how much San Antonio has to offer, definitely need to make a point to visit! I’ve been following your Race to the Alamo, and I’ve voted, liked your page, and watched your youtube clip; good luck!!! Now I’m hungry after reading this post…
Surprised to see sushi featured on a “what to eat in San Antonio” post but I love it! Definitely couldn’t eat chicken fried steak everyday….
I lived and loved San Antonio for four years! check out “The Cove”next time-local sustainable cuisine, live music, amazing outdoor spaces and great vegan choices, by far our fave! Met all the other requirements-that prize is mine 🙂
Our vegan blogger in the race, Carolyn, had a meal at The Cove and loved it!
I’m obsessed with the food in SA!!! So so so good.
Great post, terrific looking foods. Makes my mouth water! Can’t wait to go to San Antonio! I vote for you and Sarah every day! Deb
I voted and I’m a FB fan. I like to make guacamole so hope I win the molcajete!
I have fond memories of San Antonnio. So much to see and do. And I collect mortar and pestles.
mmmmmmm salsa! and guacamole! San Antonio is tops for food.
I’m experiencing a severe case of involuntary salivation…
Sending this to my brother who just moved to San Antonio! Will have to go visit him soon and try some of these! 😉
Anything served Tex mex style is amazing… I’m a displaced Texan, living in the Midwest, sigh;-)
Moved to San Antonio after living in Colorado and the DC area and have yet to find a meal worthy if writing home about. The food scene in San Antonio is boring for such a large city
Glad you mentioned Lulu’s and La Gloria. The latter has been amazing for years and gets favorable reviews from the locals… which usually is a testament to truly good food!