It’s not often one gets to sample gourmet chicken tacos, pasta salad, and wines while surrounded by crocodiles, flamingoes, and monkeys. But hungry San Antonians have the opportunity to go wild October 18 when Taste of the Heights takes over the San Antonio Zoo.
This year marks the 25th anniversary for the Alamo Heights Chamber of Commerce’s signature event. Naturally, the group has pulled out all the stops with a program of live entertainment, beverage tastings, and bites from some of the area’s best restaurants.
According to a release, some of last year’s big names are returning to the party, including La Fogata, Paesanos, and Smoke Shack. There is also plenty of fresh talent making their zoo debut, from returning favorites and brand-new restaurants.
Appearing for the first time at the event is Italian trattoria Pesto and gastropub The Winchester. Matinee Cafe, a favorite breakfast and lunch destination near McArthur Park, will be representing its second location, which opened in Alamo Heights this past summer with a Lebanese-inspired dinner menu.
Other savory dishes this year are provided by Southwestern fave Canyon Cafe, JD’s Chili Parlor, popular Quarry Italian joint Piatti, and upscale New American eatery Tribeca 212. Sweets are provided by Amy’s Ice Cream, Paciugo Gelato, and cookie dough shop Viva la Dough.
The culinary staff from the zoo also joins the merry crew of restaurants. (And yes, their bites are for the human guests, not the hippos.)
Mirroring the recent growth in San Antonio’s brewery scene, there is an increasing focus on craft beer at Taste of the Heights, but wine and cocktails will be flowing for those who like their booze less sudsy. The general admission ticket comes with two drink tickets, but attendees can purchase extras.
Adding to the fun is live music scattered in different spots around the zoo grounds. This year, guests can take in performances by husband-and-wife duo Fein Tuned (Kathy and Steve Feinstein), Americana act Jonathan Garcia Band, and The Court Jesters, the famed local band made entirely of lawyers.
As always, Taste of the Heights, is more than just a party. Each year, the chamber selects a different beneficiary as a charitable partner. A portion of the proceeds for the 2018 event will go to Aspergers 101, an organization that supports and provides resources for people with high-functioning autism and Asperger's Syndrome, and their advocates.
Tickets for the rain or shine event are $60 and VIP tables are available for parties of eight with 24 drink tickets. Guests can score a $10 discount by entering code 10off until 11:59 pm on October 17.