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Password-required San Antonio speakeasy quietly opens and more local food news

Password-required San Antonio speakeasy quietly opens, plus more news

RD San Antonio
RD is San Antonio's newest cocktail mecca. RD/ Facebook

Editor's note: We get it. It can be difficult to keep up with the what’s what and who’s who of San Antonio food. But we have you covered with our regular roundup of the freshest local restaurant news.

A hush-hush new speakeasy has snuck into the Barn Door Restaurant at 8400 N. New Braunfels Ave. Prohibition-era lounge RD opened October 10 in the eatery’s former party room. Booking a two-hour reservation requires guests to text RD to 210-605-2292 with an arrival time and party size. The confirmation password must be spoken through a peephole.

According to Texas records, PJs Coffee has kicked off its ambitious San Antonio expansion. In May, the New Orleans-based chain announced plans to open 40 new franchises in the River City, part of a statewide push to expand the popular Louisiana brand through Texas. Though the coffee shop has not announced details about future locations, the state listing reveals that renovations have begun on a location at 9703 Bandera Rd., Ste. 120. Construction is set to wrap up by the end of December, but an exact opening date is still unknown.

Guerrilla Gourmet owner James Canter has been selected to participate in the Food and Culture Festival in Shunde, China, October 31 through November 4. During the festival, the new International Gastronomy and Culture Exchange Center will be inaugurated; it will feature hubs from UNESCO Creative Cities Network members.

One of Los Angeles’ most influential chefs is headed to the Hotel Emma’s Larder for a special appearance from 4-6 pm on October 25. San Antonio native Josef Centeno will be signing copies of Amá: A Modern Tex-Mex Kitchen, a cookbook inspired by the ingredients and techniques he grew up with in Texas. Dishes featured in the book, such as a chile shrimp ceviche and corn and cheese taquitos, will be available for sampling.

In other Emma news, Stephane Leopoldo has been named executive chef of the tony Pearl hotel. Leopoldo brings a wealth of experience from working at Paris sweets shops Boulangerie Julien and Patisserie Joubert and as a consultant for the Culinary Institute of America. Locally, he has had stints at Central Market, The Argyle, and La Cantera Resort & Spa.

A few tickets are still available for Bon Mange, Cookhouse’s wildly popular annual dining event. This year, chef Pieter Sypesteyn is cooking up six German-influenced courses, including spaetzle Rockefeller; pretzel beignets with chicken liver mousse; and an Alsatian choucroute tart with three sausages, braised sauerkraut, and potato mousseline.