Flavor File: New spots for downtown/Pearl coffee lovers, Minnie’s secret whiskey bar

Flavor File: New spots for downtown/Pearl coffee lovers, Minnie’s secret whiskey bar
Jeremiah Teutsch

Sometimes I wonder how much sleep chef Andrew Weissman gets on a nightly basis. The can’t-stop-won’t-stop owner of Minnie’s/The Luxury/Il Sogno/Sandbar is taking back the reigns at Sip (160 E Houston, (210) 222-0149) on January 1 to give it a serious facelift. Weissman expects to close Sip for two or three weeks to gut the space while knocking out a wall and replacing a few counters. Coffee lovers will be happy to know Weissman will carry Austin’s Cuvee Coffee (he also plans to send his staff to Cuvee for training) and Flat Track Coffee, as well as Chicago’s Intelligentsia Coffee. New Sip will try to reclaim its coffee shop feel with new expanded hours—they’ll open slightly earlier than Starbucks and stay open later (probably more so later on in the week). The coffee shop will “happen to serve” eight to 10 hand-chopped salads and a la minute juices to offer downtown dwellers healthier options.

In other Weissman-related news, the chef held the first-ever speakeasy bar inside Minnie’s Tavern (328 E Josephine, (210) 222-1890) this past Saturday. Attendees learned of the event through a few cryptic tweets Weisman sent out earlier that day. Andy Hack, the recently appointed bar manager at Minnie’s whose track record includes time at Bohanan’s, was the man in charge as dozens of in-the-know boozers visited the secret, cash-only bar upstairs that featured 15 ryes. Keep your eyes peeled for another random speakeasy night at MT’s; chef will likely spread the word via Twitter (@AKWeissman).

The Pearl is about to get a healthy dose of java as Local Coffee (302 Pearl Pkwy, Ste 118) opens its third location in “late December.” The multi-roaster shop will include espresso, slow pour and decaf (pshaw) drinks, while also bringing in a house coffee every three to four months. Cured at Pearl (306 Pearl Pkwy, (210) 314-3929), Steve McHugh’s first solo project, may also open later this month; foodies can expect regional ingredients, organic cooking methods and lots of cured meats.

Juice continues its path toward dominating solid food once and for all in SA. Juice Central, owned by husband and wife team Shahir and Zulekha Salyani, will open two locations in the next few weeks at 4718 Broadway and 315 E Commerce. The shops will focus on juice, smoothies and salads with a vegan/non-dairy angle. If you’re considering a multi-day cleanse, the shop will hook you up with a consultation with a nutritionist. Look for those to open in January (Broadway) and February (Commerce).

Congrats to Shisha Café for 10 years of business in SA! The hookah/shwarma spot holds many a fine memory of UTSA days past.

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