Food & Drink All you can eat

News and notes from the San Antonio food scene

Jim's watch, day 35: Open at last!

Early one morning last week, we stopped by Hildebrand and San Pedro, and peered once more through the windows of Jim's, where we spied bustling workers, who -along with brand-new signage announcing Jim's Café & Coffee Bar - told us the metamorphosis of this 1950's family diner is complete. Surprisingly full of details, Frontier Enterprises gave us one of the menus, and even exclusive access to wander through the restaurant's new café tables and booths a day before the May 5 opening.

The Café & Coffee Bar has a revamped menu, including higher-quality meats, breads, and cheeses and providing some upscale and healthier alternatives to Jim's traditional fare - all in the hopes of appealing to the diverse neighborhood. Along with new salad and sandwich options, a notable addition is the San Antonio Shrimp Pasta: bacon-wrapped shrimp with jalapeño slivers on linguine with sun-dried tomatoes. For stop 'n' go mornings there's a complete coffee and espresso bar featuring Seattle's Best Coffee and pastries from local Nadler's Bakery & Deli. In addition, the new Jim's is wi-fi equipped.

Eat mor chikin

So you thought raving Star Wars geeks, dressed in storm trooper helmets and waving light sabers, were the only ones crazy enough to endure with extreme weather conditions to be first in line? Don't underestimate the intensity of the loyal Chick-fil-A patrons - especially when there's free food involved. On May 12, Chick-fil-A will give away a one-year supply of free combo meals to the first 100 adults in line by 6 a.m. at its newest free-standing restaurant, located at 6565 Ingram; $26,000 in free food will be given away in 15 minutes.

After the launch of this First 100 Fans promotion in 2003, dedicated customers have attended multiple openings, braving floods, tornado warnings, and freezing rain. We're sure the nefarious Chick-fil-A cows are behind this brainwashed madness ... or maybe it's the waffle fries.

White house cakes

Author of Dessert University, Roland Mesnier will be the guest chef at Central Market, 4821 Broadway, from 6:30-9 p.m. on May 18. In 1979, First Lady Rosalynn Carter hired Mesnier as the executive pastry chef at the White House, a post he retired from last July. The book is a complete course in the preparation of spectacular sweets from breakfast confections to pies to fresh-fruit desserts. The menu for the class includes orange sabayon cake, birthday cake with apricots and toasted meringue, and chocolate roulade cake. $60.

Compiled by Nicole Chavez


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