December 23, 2020

29 San Antonio restaurants and bars we said goodbye to in 2020

Due to pandemic-related hardships, lease adjustments and changing tastes, San Antonio lost plenty of bars and restaurants this year.

The casualties included storied favorites such as Spaghetti Warehouse and downtown's Cadillac Bar as well as relative newcomers like Mo's Irish Pub.

We went back to the beginning of the year and tallied nearly 30 high-profile Alamo City eateries that were permanently shuttered this year — all of which left their mark on our culinary history, one plate at a time.
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Cookhouse
720 E.Mistletoe Ave.
Arguably the most elevated taken New Orleans cuisine, Cookhouse will permanently close its doors to welcome a new concept from co-owner Susan Sypesteyn. Golden Wat Noodle House, will be a Cambodian concept that will marry Indian and Chinese traditions in a culinary love letter to the dishes of Sypesteyn’s upbringing.  
Photo via Instagram / the_cookhouse
Cookhouse
720 E.Mistletoe Ave.
Arguably the most elevated taken New Orleans cuisine, Cookhouse will permanently close its doors to welcome a new concept from co-owner Susan Sypesteyn. Golden Wat Noodle House, will be a Cambodian concept that will marry Indian and Chinese traditions in a culinary love letter to the dishes of Sypesteyn’s upbringing.
Photo via Instagram / the_cookhouse
La Botanica
2911 N. St. Mary's St.
Though Texas' first 100% vegan restaurant and full bar survived the initial wave of COVID-19 closures, the local favorite was denied a new lease by its landlord and was fated to close in October. Since it's opening in 2015, La Botanica served the community thoughtful, nutritious vegan eats and drinks, and provided a safe, inclusive and LGBTQ-friendly event space. 
Photo via Instagram / labotanicasa
La Botanica
2911 N. St. Mary's St.
Though Texas' first 100% vegan restaurant and full bar survived the initial wave of COVID-19 closures, the local favorite was denied a new lease by its landlord and was fated to close in October. Since it's opening in 2015, La Botanica served the community thoughtful, nutritious vegan eats and drinks, and provided a safe, inclusive and LGBTQ-friendly event space.
Photo via Instagram / labotanicasa
Mexican Manhattan
110 Soledad St.
After more than sixty years of serving San Antonio, downtown fixture Mexican Manhattan Restaurant permanently closed in late October. The River Walk staple served tacos, chili con carne and margaritas off Soledad Street northeast of Main Plaza and on an extensive patio overlooking the Paseo del Rio. 
Photo via Instagram / joehouston_09
Mexican Manhattan
110 Soledad St.
After more than sixty years of serving San Antonio, downtown fixture Mexican Manhattan Restaurant permanently closed in late October. The River Walk staple served tacos, chili con carne and margaritas off Soledad Street northeast of Main Plaza and on an extensive patio overlooking the Paseo del Rio.
Photo via Instagram / joehouston_09
Madhatters Tea House and Cafe
320 Beauregard St.
Madhatters owners Joey and Gina Cuellar had been planning to retire, even before the pandemic hit, which provided a unique opportunity for restauranteur Roger Herr to acquire the building. Herr plans to create a new concept in the space, Bar Loretta, which will offer modern takes on classic Texas dishes as well as a small market.  
Photo via Instagram / notesonlife2012
Madhatters Tea House and Cafe
320 Beauregard St.
Madhatters owners Joey and Gina Cuellar had been planning to retire, even before the pandemic hit, which provided a unique opportunity for restauranteur Roger Herr to acquire the building. Herr plans to create a new concept in the space, Bar Loretta, which will offer modern takes on classic Texas dishes as well as a small market.
Photo via Instagram / notesonlife2012
Cadillac Bar
212 S Flores St.
This iconic downtown watering hole closed its doors after serving the courthouse-area community ice cold brews and post-proceedings shots for decades. According to the bar’s website, the building was constructed in the 1870s and features what are said to be the first electric streetlights in Texas.  
Photo via Instagram / texas.is.the.reason
Cadillac Bar
212 S Flores St.
This iconic downtown watering hole closed its doors after serving the courthouse-area community ice cold brews and post-proceedings shots for decades. According to the bar’s website, the building was constructed in the 1870s and features what are said to be the first electric streetlights in Texas.
Photo via Instagram / texas.is.the.reason
Big Lou’s Burgers and BBQ
2014 S WW White Rd #1120
Owner Brian Lujan said the 20-year-old offshoot of famed Big Lou’s Pizza had "been having some difficulties" keeping the business afloat during the coronavirus pandemic, and eventually had to close the doors. The locally-operated flagship joint — Big Lou’s Pizza, home of the 42” pie — still slings the saucy treats.  
Photo via Instagram / biglousburgersandbbq
Big Lou’s Burgers and BBQ
2014 S WW White Rd #1120
Owner Brian Lujan said the 20-year-old offshoot of famed Big Lou’s Pizza had "been having some difficulties" keeping the business afloat during the coronavirus pandemic, and eventually had to close the doors. The locally-operated flagship joint — Big Lou’s Pizza, home of the 42” pie — still slings the saucy treats.
Photo via Instagram / biglousburgersandbbq
Avocado Cafe
18771 FM 2252
Family-owned Avocado Cafe & Juice Bar has been serving vegan, vegetarian and gluten-free vittles to the Northeast side for nearly a decade. Following the death of the family patriarch Scott Floyd last year, however, the rest of the family put the cozy, health-conscious eatery up for sale. 
Photo via Instagram / avocadocafesa
Avocado Cafe
18771 FM 2252
Family-owned Avocado Cafe & Juice Bar has been serving vegan, vegetarian and gluten-free vittles to the Northeast side for nearly a decade. Following the death of the family patriarch Scott Floyd last year, however, the rest of the family put the cozy, health-conscious eatery up for sale.
Photo via Instagram / avocadocafesa
Casa Azul de Andrea
1036 S. Alamo St.
In February, this Frida-inspired eatery closed its doors after more than three years of serving tortas, tacos, street corn and cocktails in Southtown. The restaurant — which hosted a popular Sunday brunch as well as local art events — went out on a high note, thanking their following for the support over the years.  
Photo via Instagram / casaazuldeandrea
Casa Azul de Andrea
1036 S. Alamo St.
In February, this Frida-inspired eatery closed its doors after more than three years of serving tortas, tacos, street corn and cocktails in Southtown. The restaurant — which hosted a popular Sunday brunch as well as local art events — went out on a high note, thanking their following for the support over the years.
Photo via Instagram / casaazuldeandrea
Cooter Browns Saloon
11881 Bandera Road
Citing pandemic-related statewide restrictions, lack of a kitchen and a lease agreement that doesn't allow permanent parking for food trucks, the venue's management said it had no other option but to close just a few days before Halloween.  
Photo via Instagram / atcashman
Cooter Browns Saloon
11881 Bandera Road
Citing pandemic-related statewide restrictions, lack of a kitchen and a lease agreement that doesn't allow permanent parking for food trucks, the venue's management said it had no other option but to close just a few days before Halloween.
Photo via Instagram / atcashman
Ruben's Backyard
13838 Jones Maltsberger Road
Ruben’s offered a huge backyard space for families to enjoy their Mexican plates, burgers and sandwiches, plus a full bar for those really just wanting a weekend marg. Ruben’s closed suddenly in January, citing owner Ruben Sepulveda’s retirement. 
Photo via Instagram /  
trustartz
Ruben's Backyard
13838 Jones Maltsberger Road
Ruben’s offered a huge backyard space for families to enjoy their Mexican plates, burgers and sandwiches, plus a full bar for those really just wanting a weekend marg. Ruben’s closed suddenly in January, citing owner Ruben Sepulveda’s retirement.
Photo via Instagram / trustartz