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Photo courtesy of Main Event

Main Event, the entertainment chain known for its arcade games, sports, and prizes, can’t resist adding even more to its roster. With two San Antonio-area locations (one on North Loop 1604 East and one on TX-151), the games are still the main event, but now dinner is taken care of too — not just a few items at a concession window, but a full restaurant called Family Kitchen that boasts “nearly 50 new and unique menu items.”

These items start with the standard arcade food staples — burgers, sandwiches, pizza — but Family Kitchen applies its own spins for a more creative menu. Whereas before, the entertainment venue served many more generic items, Family Kitchen revamped every item to make sure it was unique to the restaurant, in addition to adding new ones.

A Triple Lava Burger comes with cheese and cheese sauce; a PBB&J Burger combines the classic peanut butter and jelly sandwich with a less-expected blueberry jam and a totally left-field burger, bacon, and cheese; and chicken wings come in eight different sauces and rubs, including a Nashville hot blend and a lemon pepper rub.

“Family Kitchen was developed with extra care, attention to detail and a focus on premium quality ingredients,” said Chef Wiley Bates III, director of culinary innovation at Main Event Entertainment, in a press release. “We’re excited for our guests to experience our new menu offerings, which have been seasoned with salt, pepper and love, and added playfulness that customers experience throughout the rest of the Main Event center.”

As expected at the arcade, the first priority across much of this menu is shareables, including loaded fries, nachos, and pizzas. The shareability does start with volume, with “Family Feasts” bundling commonly ordered items for four to six people, but it also means more inclusive options like vegan Beyond Meat substitutes and salads. Mocktails are also available, although the presence of a “Cotton Candy Shirley” makes it clear these selections are more about being fun for kids than catering to sober adults. (Alcoholic drinks are available at the bar or the restaurant, but are not included on the online menu.)

“The Family Kitchen was largely inspired by Main Event’s brand promise to be a place for families to bond,” said Main Event Chief Marketing Officer Ashley Zickefoose. “From shareable favorites with our Family Feasts to offering something tasty and memorable for everyone in the family….”

Main Event may remind visitors of Dave & Buster’s, for good reason: the two entertainment and food venues are owned and operated by the same parent company. Dave & Buster’s, initially from Dallas, is the significantly larger brand with 148 stores, but Main Event is catching up. The latter is founded and headquartered in Coppell, Texas, and now has 52 locations. Main Event centers are also more kid-focused, and typically larger than those in the Dave & Buster’s, since they offer games like laser tag and escape rooms.

Family Kitchen is accessible to any visitors, whether or not they play any games, but there are food and game bundles to streamline the experience. More information about Main Event and the new restaurant are available at mainevent.com.

8 things to know in San Antonio food right now: Neighborhood bar wiggles back to Broadway

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.

Openings and closings

The Pigpen Neighborhood Bar is wiggling its way out of a lengthy Covid closure. The Broadway mainstay took to Facebook on October 24 to announce it had ended its two-year hiatus. The family friendly destination has been on hold since June 2020, when Governor Greg Abbott closed Texas bars a second time in response to the pandemic. Although the post did not elaborate on the prolonged absence, it revealed that it would serve the same menu as before.

Southerleigh Fine Food & Brewery also reemerged on October 24 after a brief reset. The Pearl staple shuttered on August 22 to undergo a few improvements. Among them were a few new menu items like stuffed ruby red trout, fried calamari, and classic Southern barbecue shrimp.

A new Peruvian concept has pounced on the former location of Tutti’s: A Place for Foodies in Southtown. Leche de Tigre, at 318 E. Cevallos St., is keeping its opening date mum. Still, diners can water their mouths by perusing an online menu full of cebiches, traditional favorites like lomo saltado, and pisco-based cocktails.

Anticipated arcade bar Be Kind & Rewind is officially pressing play at 115 Alamo Plaza on October 28. Owner Alex Amaro has stripped the former Fuddruckers of its workaday vibes, replacing it with neon and blacklight. Opening weekend will take full advantage of the retro set with an ‘80s night on Friday, a ‘90s/ Y2K party on Saturday, and karaoke on Sunday. Expect at least one version of “I Want it That Way.”

East Side spot Truth Pizzeria has bid arrivederci to San Antonio, according to an October 13 social media post. The small restaurant opened in the heat of the pandemic in June 2020, serving a menu of Neapolitan pies. The message did not offer an explanation for the sudden closure.

In brighter East Side news, trailblazing food truck park the Boardwalk on Bulverde is set to reopen in 2023. The space opened in 2011 as San Antonio’s first food truck park, closing in 2016 so the owners could focus on their Cruising Kitchens business. In a social media post, the team shared that it brought the concept back to address a need for “more impactful community activities.”

The Hill Country will taste la belle vie on November 1 when Bakery Lorraine opens its sixth location in Boerne. Located at 134 Oak Park Dr., the shop will serve the same sandwiches, salads, and pastries as the other outposts. Following the unveiling, guests can get their macaron fix Monday through Thursday from 7 am-6 pm. and Friday through Sunday from 7 am-8 pm.

Ahead of its first anniversary, Bubby’s Jewish Soul Food is getting a facelift. Owners Jason and Charlie Nuttall-Fiske announced the temporary closure on October 25, explaining the move is intended to “amp up [the] Bubby’s experience.” An expanded menu, gussied-up interior, and other improvements will be unveiled at a birthday celebration on November 14.

Photo by Angiola Harry on Unsplash

San Antonio restaurant group paints the town pink for breast cancer awareness

Drink Pink

This Breast Cancer Awareness Month, one local company is painting the town pink for the first time in what it hopes will be an annual tradition. FreeRange Concepts — parent company to five Texas restaurants, including The Rustic — is leveraging its three San Antonio businesses in Pink Out Week to raise money for breast cancer patients.

From October 16-23, The Rustic, Bowl & Barrel, and The General Public are hosting fundraising events benefiting the Pink Fund, each with a different public draw. The Rustic will serve frosés (frozen rosé wine), setting aside a dollar per drink. Bowl & Barrel and the General Public are running similar programs, swapping the frozen drink for a cosmopolitan with Tito’s Handmade Vodka.

All three restaurants will accept donations in-person or through a QR code; donors at The Rustic will be entered to win prizes like entrance into local events and gift cards, and donors at the other two participating restaurants are invited to sign cards that will be hung on the walls.

The Pink Fund’s main goal is providing financial assistance to patients, with more than half of that aid going to housing costs, and significant portions going toward transportation and utilities. Since 2008, it has awarded more than 3,200 grants. It has renamed October Breast Cancer Unawareness Month, to reflect the disparity of awareness of the disease, versus the financial strain on seemingly normal life.

“We couldn’t be prouder to partner with The Pink Fund during Breast Cancer Awareness Month,” said FreeRange Concepts cofounder Kyle Noonan. “At FreeRange Concepts, we’re dedicated to being an active member of the communities that we are blessed to serve, and we have a lot of fun activations and events planned to make Pink Out Week an amazing experience. We hope to see everyone stop by each of our brands.”

The Rustic is also throwing a party on October 22 to celebrate the end of the fundraising week, with live music and a themed photo booth. There is no event flier out yet, but The Rustic’s performance schedule shows country singer-songwriter Lacy Brinson playing a free show from 12:30-2 pm, and the iconic, genre-shaping folk rock duo Indigo Girls from 9:30-11 pm ($32). Either way, it’s a good day to hang out at The Rustic.

6 things to know in San Antonio food right now: Irish pub barrels onto Broadway

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.

Openings

After installing tons of wood paneling, locals Phil and Gina Bentley have transformed the former home of Picante Grill at 3810 Broadway into an intimate Emerald Isle hideaway. The Cottage Irish Pub debuted on September 23 after months of construction. Although the space is traditional, the kitchen serves a few unconventional dishes. Expect to see Ruben eggrolls, veggie paninis, and fish tacos alongside more standard fare like fish ‘n’ chips and beef stew. On tap are favorites like Guinness and Harp, and the well features an enviable selection of whisky.

Celebrity chef Johnny Hernandez celebrated the long-awaited opening of the fifth La Gloria location on September 27. The fifth location for the Interior Mexican chain, the Brooks outpost will be only open for dinner as it irons out the kinks. According to an Instagram post from Hernandez, lunch service will begin in approximately two weeks.

Recovery-minded eatery Comfort Café is now serving downtown via a food truck in the Heidgen House courtyard at 121 Starr St. Introducing itself with a soft opening on September 27, the trailer dishes up familiar fare like pancakes, chicken and waffles, and grilled cheese sandwiches. As with the other locations, the truck follows a pay-what-you-can model and benefits sobriety nonprofit Serenity Star.

More mobile munchies can be found on the South Side, where food truck park Rancho 181 celebrated its grand opening on September 17. Though the family-friendly space has not announced any permanent food vendors, it is already hosting live music performances and other community events.

Other news and notes

Prolific local bar owner Jeret Peña is taking on Alamo heights mainstay Broadway 5050 as his next venture. In a partnership with owner PJ Gottsacker, Peña will be revitalizing the food and beverage menus to breathe new life into the concept­ — a San Antonio institution since 1935.

Joel Rivas, head of the Saint City Culinary Foundation, has been named one of Bon Appetit’s "Heads of the Table" for 2022. The annual listings, which honor personalities that make the food scene more inclusive and uplifting, zeroes in on Rivas’ work with Heard, a mental health nonprofit targeting the service industry.

Photo courtesy of Garrison Brothers

Texas' Garrison Brothers plots delicious bourbon takeover for September

Cheers, Y'all

Bourbon lovers, get ready: Garrison Brothers Distillery is launching its 2022 Bourbon Takeover of America on September 1.

The nationwide creative celebration of all things bourbon will run for the entire month of September, which also happens to be National Bourbon Heritage Month.

During that time, the award-winning, first-legal Texas whiskey distillery is partnering with America’s best bartenders and chefs from coast to coast to offer unique, limited-edition, bourbon-inspired cocktails and bites.

Wondering where to indulge in and around San Antonio? Here's your list:

Get even more out of the experience by downloading the Garrison Brothers Bourbon Takeover Passport App and then checking in with what you've just savored.

The more you check in, the more chances you have to be one of the 10 who wins the prize: a custom Garrison Brothers-branded barrel head serving tray, mixing glass, stirring spoon, and jigger.

The Garrison Brothers Bourbon Takeover Passport App is available for download in the Apple App and Google Play stores. Those 21 years of age and older are welcome to participate.

To find out more about 2022 Bourbon Takeover of America, go to www.bourbontakeover.com.

The celebration of all things bourbon will run for the entire month of September.

Photo courtesy of Garrison Brothers
The celebration of all things bourbon will run for the entire month of September.
RR 12 Supper Club/ Facebook [https://www.facebook.com/RR12supperclubofwimberley/photos/175533798269842]

Elegant supper club nods to bygone era in charming Hill Country setting

Dinner party

With its darling shops, charming wineries, and breathtaking Hill Country vistas, Wimberley has long been a choice destination for day trips. Now a group of locals is giving concrete-weary San Antonians another reason to visit: a dining destination in the town's square.

Inspired by the elegant supper clubs of the '30s and '40s, RR 12 Supper Club quietly began serving on July 19. Now the restaurant has geared up to provide the grace of the bygone era.

"When my wife Kimmie and I moved to Wimberley, we had a dream of bringing a supper club to our little bit of heaven," executive chef and co-owner Mark Grimes explains via a release. "When living in the Midwest, supper clubs were our favorite places to dine."

The mood envelops as soon as guests arrive. After entering the restored bungalow amidst a thicket of wild oak trees, guests can dine in a moody sunken lounge or a sparkling dining room. Along with Grimes and Kimmie Dunlay, partners Phil and Peggy Collins outfitted the space with leather furnishings, velvet upholstery, and brass fixtures to match the indulgent fare.

As executive chef, hospitality veteran Grimes focuses on classic cuisine updated with contemporary flourishes. Dinner begins with a complimentary relish tray, a nod to the largesse of supper club tradition. Starters include Parker House rolls; escargot en croute; and a seafood tower with oysters, lobster, king crab legs, and more.

Mains keep the luxe theme going with steakhouse mainstays like wagyu filets or chops. Guests can also nosh on a trio of fresh pastas and specialties such as coq au vin, whole branzino with leek soubise, and Moulard duck with risotto and a coffee demi-glace. With so many riches, dessert stays relatively straightforward, though the 14K chocolate pot de crème does add a bit of glamor.

No supper club experience would be complete without a few libations. In addition to serving a curated wine and beer list, RR 12 classic cocktails like Hemingway daiquiris and Last Words. The drink offerings, however, are not without a few flights of fancy. An otherwise New Orleans regulation Vieux Carré is tea-smoked, and the creamy Grasshopper of ladies who lunch gets a jolt of herbal Chartreuse.

Though the drinks are stiff, RR 12 works to provide service that is anything but.

"No expense has been spared in creating a luxurious environment and bringing together the very best chefs, bartenders, servers, and support people to make the entire dining experience unique and memorable.," says Phil Collins. "Members can expect to be remembered by name, to make new friends in the community, and to look forward to sharing this grand experience with their family and friends."

Though members of the supper club get considerable perks, like wine and food credits and complimentary drinks on members-only Tuesdays, RR 12 also extends its welcome to Wimberley's many weekend warriors. The community at large can get a taste Wednesday through Thursday from 4:30-10 pm and Friday through Saturday from 4:30-11 pm.

RR 12 Supper Club sets the mood with velvet upholstery and sparkling brass.

RR 12 Supper Club/ Facebook [https://www.facebook.com/RR12supperclubofwimberley/photos/175533798269842]
RR 12 Supper Club sets the mood with velvet upholstery and sparkling brass.
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Legendary Red Hot Chili Peppers heat up San Antonio with 2023 tour stop

one hot minute

One of alternative rock's most legendary acts is headed to San Antonio on their highly anticipated North American tour next year. Red Hot Chili Peppers will play the Alamodome on Wednesday, May 17, 2023.

Kicking off in Vancouver, British Columbia on March 29, RHCP will also stop in Houston's Minute Maid Park on Thursday, May 25 to close out the North American leg of the tour before heading to Europe. Effortlessly hip modern rock band The Strokes will support the Chili Peppers on both Texas stops, along with talented bassist-vocalist Thundercat.

Tickets go on sale at 10 am Friday, December 9 online. Other supporting acts along the way include Iggy Pop, The Roots, The Mars Volta, St. Vincent, City and Colour, and King Princess.

Touring in support of their two No. 1 studio albums released in 2022, Unlimited Love and Return of the Dream Canteen, the Chili Peppers have played sold-out shows in London, Paris, Los Angeles, and more with notable artists such as A$AP Rocky, Anderson.Paak, Beck, and HAIM.

The first rock band in 17 years to score two No. 1 albums in one year, the band has been red-hot on the Billboard charts and at the MTV Video Music Awards, where they received the Global Icon Award and brought the house down with a performance of the No. 1 single “Black Summer,'' which also won the award for Best Rock Video.

Fronted by the impossibly chiseled and ageless (he's 60!) Anthony Kiedis, the Chili Peppers formed in 1983. Unabashedly proud of their LA roots, the band burst onto the scene with early singles such as "Higher Ground" and "Give It Away," both showcases of bassist Flea's slappin', funk-fueled basslines.

Throughout the peak of alternative music in the '90s, the band saw tragedy, personnel changes at guitar, and reinventions — Kiedes' rap-singing, Flea's bass grooves, and singalong choruses all constants over the decades.

While many '90s alt-rock acts fizzled, the Chili Peppers stayed relevant; the band boasts two anthemic singles with more than 1 billion streams — "Californication" and "Under the Bridge" — and more than 25 million followers on Spotify.

Expect this show to be packed with Gen Xers and new fans for what promises to be one hot minute.

Red Hot Chili Peppers 2023 tour dates:

  • Wednesday, March 29 – Vancouver – BC Place
  • Saturday, April 1 – Las Vegas – Allegiant Stadium
  • Thursday, April 6 – Fargo, North Dakota – FargoDome
  • Saturday, April 8 – Minneapolis – US Bank Stadium
  • Friday, April 14 – Syracuse, New York – JMA Wireless Dome
  • Friday, May 12 – San Diego – Snap Dragon Stadium
  • Sunday, May 14 – Phoenix – State Farm Stadium
  • Wednesday, May 17 – San Antonio – Alamodome
  • Friday, May 19 – Gulf Shores, Alabama – Hangout Music Festival
  • Thursday, May 25 – Houston – Minute Maid Park

Texas-based 3D printing company tapped by NASA to build on the moon

To infinity and beyond

An Austin-based builder of 3D-printed homes, ICON, is making one small step for man and one giant leap for mankind by signing a $57 million contract with NASA to build on the moon.

According to a release from ICON, the Texas company will soon venture into a new frontier of space dimensions. The contract, announced on November 29, was awarded to the company under NASA's Phase III Small Business Innovation Research (SBIR) program. This program allows ICON to use the $57 million award to build their Olympus system, which adds to previous construction done by both NASA and the Department of Defense for exploration of the moon and beyond.

"ICON’s Olympus system is intended to be a multi-purpose construction system primarily using local lunar and Martian resources as building materials to further the efforts of NASA as well as commercial organizations to establish a sustained lunar presence," the release stated.

The project will work in conjunction with NASA's Artemis program, which launched its first rocket in 50 years on November 15. ICON will work with the program to:

  • Use lunar regolith samples brought back from Apollo missions, in addition to other regolith simulants, to see their mechanical behavior in lunar gravity.
  • Bring advanced hardware and software into space through a lunar gravity simulation flight.
  • Create results to inform future lunar construction approaches for the space community.
  • Establish critical infrastructure necessary for a sustainable lunar economy and habitation.

“The final deliverable of this contract will be humanity’s first construction on another world, and that is going to be a pretty special achievement," said Jason Ballard, ICON co-founder and CEO.

"It's a construction system we call Olympus system that will allow us to use the local materials of the moon to build all the elements of infrastructure necessary for a lunar outpost and ultimately a moon base ... launch and landing pads, roadways, habitats, you name it, all the things on the moon," said Ballard.

He added that they hope to start building on the moon by 2026, starting with a launch and landing pad.

In addition to the grant, ICON was awarded a subcontract in 2021 to support NASA's Space Technology Mission Directorate to create the world's first and only simulated 3D-printed Mars surface habitat. Called Mars Dune Alpha, it is located at NASA's Johnson Space Center and is assisting in long-duration science missions.

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Read the full story and watch the video at KVUE.com.

6 things to know in San Antonio food right now: New beer garden quietly opens

New 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.

Openings

The owners of Gold Feather have unofficially untapped a new venture, LadyBird Beer Garden. Although official channels are keeping details mum, a Facebook page run by landlords VLA Real Estate spilled the beans on the November 25 opening. In addition to serving craft beer, the concept at 447 W. Hildebrand Ave has a full kitchen, bar, and a small patio for enjoying the mild December weather.

Months after coyly announcing a second location, Elotitos Corn Bar sprouted a new Government Hill location on December 3. The snack shop is well known for its aguas frescas and elotes flights, offering the street food staple in various flavors. The new outpost is open Monday through Saturday, 3-9 pm.

Following the recent San Antonio expansion of Oregon-based Dutch Bros Coffee, another out-of-towner is gaining some local buzz. According to Texas Department of Licensing and Regulation records, Arkansas franchise 7 Brew Coffee is brewing its first Alamo City location at 4825 Walzem Rd. Barring delays, the project will be completed in May 2023.

Pop-up concept Rose Hip Coffee has found a permanent home at 116 W. Olmos Dr. in Olmos Park. The broadened Rose Hip Market combines caffeine with boutique retail, offering everything from kid's clothes to ready-to-eat sandwiches and salads. The playful equestrian wallpaper might make it a can't-miss selfie spot.

Other news and notes

A new cocktail conference will lift San Antonio's spirits in January. The Culinaria-hosted Third Coast Cocktail Summit will feature seminars, tastings, dinners, and tipsy soirées during its five-day run from January 10-14. All-access passes are now available for $250 for industry and $500 for general admission at the nonprofit's website.

In other booze news, Kinsman's Brandy Alexander Tour is back in full swing for the holiday season. Dorćol Distilling's annual celebration of the famous desert cocktail has drafted 14 spots to offer the renowned desert cocktail this year, including several newcomers like Allora, Bar Loretta, Double Standard, Ladino, and Sojourn Trading Co. A full list of participants can be found here.