News you can eat
8 things to know in San Antonio food right now: Sultry new bar opens downtown
Editor's note: We get it. It can be difficult to keep up with the fast pace of San Antonio's restaurant and bar scene. We have you covered with our regular roundup of essential food news.
Openings and closings
Sojourn, a sultry new concept from hospitality veterans Derik Cortez and Andrew Carrillo brightened the former Juniper Tar space with a "public grand soft opening" on August 5. The 244 W. Houston St. bar offers a broad range of cocktails, including tiki classics like Mai Tais and playful originals like a martini made with oolong tea and umami bitters. The small kitchen churns out easygoing bites like crudo, dressed oysters, and a braised pork shoulder Cubano.
A new pizzeria has sliced into the River Walk. Fiume Pizzeria and Wine Barintroduced itself to the downtown scene on August 8. Located at the Palacio Del Rio hotel at 200 S. Alamo St., the eatery bills itself as Texapoletana — a portmanteau of Texas and Napolitana. The Texas part comes from seasonally sourced ingredients culled from local farms. The Neapolitan part comes from the blistered pies, panini, and appetizers like burrata.
Following the sudden departure of Playland Pizza in late June, another business has closed in Maverick Building. On August 4, Local Bar announced it had said goodbye to the downtown hustle after a decade of business. A Facebook post did not divulge a reason for the move.
A San Antonio raspa shop is limiting its hours following the closure of two neighboring businesses. Chamoy City Limits announced that it would temporarily reduce operations to Saturdays and Sundays, explaining via Instagram the February shutter of anchor business Smack's Chicken Shack has left its strip mall home feeling "sketch" after dark. The concept has suffered a string of thefts in 2022, including the April heist of a rooftop air conditioning unit. According to the post, weekday hours will resume once an unnamed new restaurant is up and running next door.
Though Chamoy City Limits didn't spill the beans on the name of its future neighbor, Texas Alcoholic Beverage Commission filings offer a clue. A concept called Lady Bird Beer Garden has applied for a mixed beverage permit at the 447 W. Hildebrand address. There are no details yet on the upcoming watering hole. A website and social media presence appear to be still forthcoming.
Speaking of TABC filings, a new nightspot dubbed Miranda's is headed to 415 E. Cevallos St. Again, the internet offers little clues to the concept. However, a Texas Department of Licensing and Regulation record for the address does include plans for a rooftop bar. We assume the spot is not a temple to master's degree candidate and Che Diaz paramour Miranda Hobbes, but one can always hope.
Other news and notes
Local favorite Texas Nitro Coffee edged out hundreds of Texas food businesses as a finalist for H-E-B's annual Quest for Texas Best competition. Each year, entrepreneurs vie for marketing support, grocery placement, and a cash prize. This year's winner will be announced on August 24 at Dallas' Fair Park.
Fans of the Alamo City's signature condiment will have plenty to pucker over as Chamoy Challenge takes over Rolling Oaks Mall on August 20. Organizers Que Retro Artspromise plenty of sweet-sour treats, with the chamoy champion crowned by celebrity panelists and attendees. Admission is free from noon-5 pm.