News you can eat
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.
To the delight of area foodies, legendary Filipino fast-food operation Jollibee opened its first Alamo City location on December 27, months ahead of its projected mid-to-late 2021 debut. The premature unveiling (and global pandemic) did little to temper local excitement, with some social media users reporting waits of up to three hours for their first taste of the company’s popular Chickenjoy fried chicken. Jollibee is now open daily at 5033 Northwest Loop 410 from 8 am-10 pm. As CultureMap previously reported, the operation offers exclusively pick-up, drive-thru, and delivery options in response to ongoing COVID-19 concerns.
A popular wing purveyor’s long-awaited second location will fly into the Northwest San Antonio early next year. Since owner Dwayne Price’s originating operation first opened in 2016, Wayne’s Wings has received acclaim for its wide range of wet and dry wing seasonings as well as such soul-warming fare like Philly cheesesteaks and waffles. The new outpost, which will be located at 11600 Bandera Rd., is set to open in February 2021. For those unable to wait, Wayne Wing’s originating location on Walzem Road is currently open for dine-in and takeout service.
After this dumpster fire of a year, we all deserve a damn beer. Thankfully, Cervecería 88, a new taco-focused sports bar and grill, has moved into the Near East Side just in time to ring in 2021. Replacing the recently shuttered Eastside Kitchenette at 2119 I-35, this new laid-back watering hole boasts an expanded outdoor patio with a live music stage plus a full bar and tap wall. For eats, customers will find an indulgent array of mini tacos, burgers, and tacos a la carte. Cerveceria 88 is currently open 12 pm - 10 pm, Sunday through Wednesday; 12 pm to 1 am, Thursday; and 12 pm to midnight, Friday and Saturday. For info on Cerveceria 88’s socially distanced NYE celebration, interested parties can visit the operation’s Facebook page.
Other news and notes
After its trailer was stolen on Christmas morning, a local food truck operation is asking for help. From its now-missing setup at 2441 Nacogdoches Rd., family-owned Mamma Mia Food Express served pizzas, calzones, and other homestyle Italian-fare, plus Argentinian-style empanadas from Fat Tummy Empanadas (Mamma Mia had been renting the trailer from Fat Tummy). “This post is addressed to these lazy humans who stole a fully equipped food trailer,” read a statement on Fat Tummy’s Facebook page. “If you have no intention to be a decent human being, we just hope you use it to work ... so you don’t have to steal anymore and hurt hard-working people.” Information on the still-missing trailer can be reported directly to Mamma Mia by calling 210-584-0905. Additionally, a GoFundMe has been set up to help get the family operation back in business.
San Antonians’ holiday celebrations don’t have to end on New Year’s Eve. For Epiphany Day on January 6 (known in some countries as Three King’s Day), beloved baker La Panadería is offering traditional Rosca de Reyes sweet bread. Starting December 29, sweet-toothed Alamo City residents can pre-order the treat, which features flavors like orange and guava with chocolate and vanilla butter crust. While it is customary in Mexican culture to hide a plastic baby in the cake to symbolize the infant Jesus, La Panadería will include the plastic figurine separately for customers to hide themselves. Guests can purchase a small Rosca de Reyes for $4.50, a six-pack of the smaller cakes for $24, and a family-sized serving also for $24. Preorders are now open.
Rising COVID-19 hospitalizations mean more stringent guidelines for local businesses. On December 28, Bexar County officials announced the closure of all area bars. All businesses, including restaurants, that were before operating at 75 percent capacity must now cut back to 50 percent. The restrictions will be observed until the number of COVID-19 hospitalizations has fallen below 15 percent for seven consecutive days.