This year's particularly punishing San Antonio summer meant many locals spent the season cooped up under the air conditioner’s blast. Now that the weather is merely hot rather than scorching, it’s time to get out of the house.
Plenty of new concepts have opened in the past three months around the Alamo City. From a downtown street food purveyor to a delightful boba shop, these under-the-radar new restaurants will keep foodies busy well into the fall.
After much anticipation, this Northwest Side bubble tea shop finally debuted September 29 with a menu of milk teas, frozen fruit frappes, and red bean matcha lattes. For snacks, guests can choose from applewood bacon fried rice, warm beef udon, Taiwanese popcorn chicken, or fried Oreos. All are served in an Instagram-friendly environment filled with pink neon signs, pastel Acapulco chairs, and a three-dimensional bear mural.
Talk about under-the-radar restaurants. This pan-Asian restaurant snuck into downtown in late July without a published phone number or web address. That didn’t stop locals from finding a menu devoted to some of the best street foods in the world. Try the okonomiyaki, a Japanese pancake with dancing bonito flakes, or the adorable fish-shaped taiyaki filled with strawberry or Nutella.
Dim Sum Oriental Cuisine
Sure, the unadorned cream-colored walls don’t give diners much to look at, but the artful dumplings more than make up for it. The strip mall eatery on Northwest Military Highway offers all the hits like pan-fried daikon cake, steamed barbecue pork buns, steamed pork and shrimp shumai, and luscious egg custard tarts. Go during the weekend, when the restaurant rolls out dim sum carts with seasonal specials.
The sushi burrito craze came to Leon Valley when this Japanese concept debuted in late July. Guests can build their own poke bowl, seaweed wrap, or salad from a huge selection of choices, including raw and cooked seafood, fresh veggies, and dressings like wasabi aioli and eel sauce. The spot also offers two solid ramen bowls with sliced pork chashu. The lighter chicken-based shoyu is perfect for the unseasonable October weather, but it will soon be time to snuggle up with the creamy 10-hour tonkotsu.
Tlahco Mexican Kitchen
This interior Mexican concept has been blowing San Antonians away since it debuted on San Pedro Avenue in mid-September. The menu includes breakfast classics like migas and huevos divorciados and lunchtime tortas and tacos filled with al pastor, bistek, and barbacoa. Unlike similar concepts, it places equal emphasis on the sweet as it does on the savory. Get the day off to a sunny start with pancakes lavished with dulce de leche and topped with fresh strawberries.