Thrifting is still very much part of the once-Texas Trash Clothing Exchange. Now The Looking Glass, a cozy little bar that's housed inside a former Church's Chicken, the joint is owner Cheryl Richmond and business partner Rhonda Sciaraffa turn at running an adult bar.
And unlike The White Rabbit, where Richmond tended bar for several years, the ambience is tame. Leave the hardcore partying to the Strip — over on McCullough and Locust we're going to behave like adults and take in a few drinks.
Opened just over a month ago, the spot features a small fenced in back patio filled with sturdy picnic tables. Inside, you'll find a serious mix of antique furnishings that would make any estate sale-goer swoon. Though The Looking Glass also serves as a café during the daytime (they open at noon) with a mix of sandwiches and other comfort foods, a few girlfriends and I stopped by this past Wednesday for a nightcap instead. A solid Brandy Alexander ($5.25) was presented on the large chalkboard with the rest of the day's specials. Throwing caution to the wind at my recent lactose aversion, I went for the Brandy Alexander while my pals took in a Lone Star on draft and a jalapeño martini.
After taking one too many posed photos on the antique love seat, we made our way to one of the nooks in the back of the bar. Next to the old-timey wooden phone booth (which we took more photos in, of course) we gabbed over our beverages while sitting on more of the comfy parlor furniture. Bluesy tunes played over the sound system at a rational level — no screaming over bad jams here. Late night snacks — which we couldn't pass up — included deep-dish personal pizza ($3.76 for a six-inch pie) and Frito Pie.
The night was mellow for a Wednesday, sure, but it gave us a chance to catch up and unwind and tap Richmond for details on how the bar came together. The backwall of the bar is a gorgeous armoire/trunk sourced from a shuttered bar in Adkins, and a few other thrift store finds fill the space. A few café style tables are fashioned as collages with Prohibition era gangsters, San Antonio icons and more, while the bar is made to feel a tad more spacious with the use of mirrors.
Prices were fair (and you're not married to the cocktails, there are plenty of beers to choose from), and I'm curious to try more of chef Amanda Rose Tankersley's eats. For now, The Looking Glass is off to a quaint start and is a mature nook to unwind from a hectic day.
The Looking Glass
1710 McCullough Ave., (210) 259-6028