River Walk restaurant adds zesty Italian flair to Tex-Mex-heavy town
San Antonio might often be associated more with margaritas and tacos than pizza and wine, but there happens to be an authentic Italian eatery hiding out right on the River Walk.
Zocca Cuisine d'Italia, located inside the newly renovated Westin Riverwalk, brings a taste of Northern Italy to South Central Texas with breakfast, lunch, and dinner in an atmosphere of relaxed elegance.
Whether you choose to sit out on the riverside patio or inside the contemporary dining room, you'll surely want to linger over a glass of wine (those carbs need time to digest, after all).
Known for its hand-tossed pizzas and authentic pastas, Zocca Cuisine d'Italia and local celeb chef Jeff Foresman have assembled a menu that emphasizes seasonality and locally sourced ingredients whenever possible — "made in-house" is a term that's not tossed around lightly here. There are also several vegetarian-friendly items available, along with a full gluten-free menu for breakfast, lunch, and dinner.
From the spaghetti with oversized meatballs, marinara sauce, and house-made ricotta to the Tuscan filet with pear and ginger mostarda, grilled asparagus, and oven-roasted potatoes, the options are both plentiful and mouthwatering.
But first, begin your meal with an antipasto of imported meats and cheeses, an order of jumbo lump crabcakes, and a nice bottle of wine. Or be bold with the beef tip flatbread, which is generously spread with goat cheese and dotted with apples, pickled onions, beets, and arugula. Feel like something lighter? The watermelon and feta salad is a refreshing starter or side.
If you're visiting San Antonio and have a jam-packed day ahead, stop in for the express lunch of soup or a salad of locally grown lettuce that's paired with your choice of tagliatelle or spaghetti.
Or you can jump-start your day with a hearty breakfast comprised of the classics (brioche cinnamon-swirl French toast) or more Italian-accented fare (Italian skillet frittata made of oven-baked eggs, pancetta, tomatoes, spinach, caramelized, onions, and goat cheese).
Even if you can only swing in for happy hour — which is 3-6 pm, Monday through Friday —you'll still score a deal on beer, house wine, cocktails, and appetizers.
To ensure you can enjoy the food and atmosphere properly, reservations at Zocca Cuisine d'Italia are encouraged. Book by calling 210-444-6070 or visiting the website.