New Kids on the Block: San Antonio Restaurant Openings and Closings in 2017 

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It was a busy year for restaurants. Here’s a quick glance of new faces in 2017 and at-time shocking good-byes.

February

Toro Kitchen Bar opened February 2 with tapas, calimocho and plenty of paella. A second location is planned for St. Paul Square. Find them at 115 N. Loop 1604 E., Suite 1105, (210) 776-3606.

The Argentina-based Café Martinez opened in late February with empanadas, Argentinian espresso drinks, sandwiches, and homemade cheesecake. Find them at 7302 Louis Pasteur Drive, (210) 231-0095.

Mark Weaver, formerly with Tre Trattoria, opened Periphery on Main on February 7 with affordable, approachable and accessible New American fare. Visit Periphery at 2512 N. Main Ave., (210) 966-0404.

Lucky Noodle, sister eatery to Kungfu Noodle opened off Blanco with a bigger menu, bigger space and open kitchen so you can check out the noodle-pulling action. Find them at 8525 Blanco Road, (210) 267-9717.

Bexar Pub, sister bar to currently closed Folc and Park Social, opened on the city’s Eastside on February 17. Think patio sippers, great bar food and the return of the Folc Burger. Find them at 114 Brooklyn Ave., (210) 387-3882.

Battalion, the third restaurant concept by Andrew Goodman and chef Stefan Bowers opened February 28 with Italian fare inside a rehabbed firehouse in Southtown. Find them at 604 S. Alamo St., (210) 354-1024.

click to enlarge Battalion - JESSICA ELIZARRARAS
  • Jessica Elizarraras
  • Battalion
March

NOLA Brunch & Beignets became the second restaurant from chef Pieter Sypesteyn and wife Susan of The Cookhouse (and Where Y’at Food Truck) with a March 7 opening. The eatery became a favorite for its New Orleans-inspired flavors and weeklong brunch offerings. Find them at 111 Kings Ct., (806) 679-3130.



Scratch Kitchen & Bakery opened its doors on March 8 inside a twee house in Alta Vista with scratch-made (ah-ha!) baked goods as well as sandwiches and soups. Find them at 607 W. Russell Pl., (210) 630-2220.

Panifico Bake Shop added a mobile leg to its pan dulce offerings with 2Sueet, a food truck by owners Edna and John Miggins. The shop also went on to add unicorn conchas in 2017.

Kings Bowl, which closed after a fire, reopened on March 5 with renovated interiors and an even bigger menu. The shop was originally opened in 1975 as Rice Bowl on Fredericksburg Road before relocating to Babcock Road in 1993. Find them at 5727 Babcock Road, (210) 690-8819.

San Antonio gained another grocery store with a healthy lean after the opening of a second Natural Grocers location in Alamo Heights. They’ve wooed customers with high quality products and affordable pricing. Find them in Alamo Heights and Castle Hills.

Taquitos West Ave. opened a second location in early March with indoor seating, additional items on the menu such as tortas and quesadillas and and adjoining panaderia for all your tres leches needs. Find them at 12734 Nacogdoches Road, (210) 444-9460.

The sixth Local Coffee location opened in the Shavano Park area on March 15. Much like its predecessors off Sonterra, Broadway, The Pearl, the Medical Center and Leon Springs, the Shavano Park serves Merit Roasting Co. coffee and will feature a guest roaster each week off the Modbar Espresso and pour-over modules. Find them at 4115 Pond Hill Lane, Suite 101, (210) 994-6601.

The Lost Cajun opened with Louisiana favorites, gumbos and Cajun classics, po’boys and beignets. A small a la cart section is filled with Lagniappe or “a little something extra” items such as boudin balls, catfish bites, crawfish pies, and fried pickles. Find them at 5602 W. Hausman Road, Suite 102,
(210) 455-2757.

On March 25, Urban Bricks, known for its made-to-order pies, opened another location in the Alamo City area, this time in Live Oak. Find them at 8000 Pat Booker Road, Suite 100, Live Oak,
(210) 967-0001.


click to enlarge Carnitas Lonja - JESSICA ELIZARRARAS
  • Jessica Elizarraras
  • Carnitas Lonja
April

Carnitas Lonja, opened by Alex Paredes formerly of Lüke San Antonio, held a soft opening the first weekend of Fiesta. The small shop with plenty of outdoor seating and plenty of pork carnitas to go around, is at 1107 Roosevelt Ave., (210) 612-3626.

Hollow Bar opened on the north side with oodles of TVs for you to catch the Spurs on. Find them at 14532 Brookhollow.

Sabor Cocina Bar took over the space previously occupied by Restaurant Mixtli. The eatery features waffles, pancakes, chilaquiles and a la carte dishes, while lunch and dinner offer variations of enchiladas, salads and other house specialties. Find them at 5313 McCullough Ave., (210) 314-7760.

May

Jugo Juicery & Cafe opened a second location off Main with a large, airy space and a menu of pitaya and açaí bowls, cold-pressed juice, smoothies, lattes and tea. 1621 N. Main Ave., (210) 267-1241.

Bubble Waffle Bar added more Hong Kong waffles to the city with a menu of sweet waffle cones available in vanilla, chocolate, red velvet, matcha and purple yam, waffle sundaes, waffle tacos (with three scoops and fixin’-infused waffle batter), and waffle sticks drizzled with flavored syrups. 7755 Eckhert Road, (210) 425-9813.

Hanzo, the latest concept by Steve Mahoney, opened in Lincoln Heights with Asian-inspired cocktails and Japanese cuisine such as lotus root chips with wasabi, edamame and avocado puree, Hamachi sashimi, house made pork dumplings and gyoza sauce. 7701 Broadway, Suite 124, (210) 826-1488.

Sound Bites food truck held a grand opening May 19 and kicked off two music and art-related contests. The menu includes fluffy buns, ponzu noodles, fried rice, vegetable egg rolls and furikake rice. 5431 Grissom Road, (210) 455-8568.

Zedric’s Fit With Flavor opened a second location at the Quarry Crossing with more coolers, more seating and more than 80 dishes to choose from. A Stone Oak location will open next spring. 7322 Jones Maltsberger, Suite 218, (210) 455-0477.

Hanzo - PHOTO VIA INSTAGRAM, HANZOBARSA
June

Kung Fu Kitchen officially opened in June with a menu of American-Chinese food and full. The happy hour includes $1-off beer specials, $2-off cocktails, $2-off appetizers, $3-off flatbreads and $1-off house wines from 3 to 7 p.m. daily and all day Sunday. Find them at 1010 S. Flores St., (210) 267-9277.

Woops!, a New York-based macaron bakery opened its first franchise kiosk inside Ingram Park Mall on June 8. Flavors include espresso macchiato, strawberry milkshake, rose, cookies and cream and more. A new kiosk opened in North Star Mall this December. Find them at 6301 NW Loop 410, (210) 875-6984.

La Panaderia opened its second location in San Antonio filled with fresh-baked loaves, conchas and more on June 9. The shop was immediately a hit with the downtown crowd and Guy Fieri. Find them at 301 E. Houston St., (210) 375-6746.

The Alamo Heights Farmers Market opened June 18 with produce, and ready-made foods including rice pudding, Brazilian cheese bread, popsicles, strawberry wine and more. Sundays from 9 a.m. to 1 p.m. at 255 E. Basse Road.

Steel City Pops, an Alabama-based popsicle company, opened its first San Antonio location on June 29. The shop is known for its fruit and cream popsicles that can be dipped in chocolate, drizzled with syrups and dusted with toppings of your choice. Find them at 812 S. Alamo St., Suite 101, (210) 963-6540.

La Taza Coffee House at Brook Hollow re-opened under new management over the holiday weekend. The shop added a new espresso machine and carries pastries from the Bagel Factory. Find them at 15060 San Pedro Ave., (210) 639-1426.

The Rusty Bucket now has new owners. The barbecue shop known for its ribs is now owned by friends Bryon Hobbs and Jim McShane out of Stockdale, Texas. Hobbs is the owner of Smokin’ Down South BBQ. Find them at 600 Cupples Road, (210) 433-6663.

click to enlarge Rolling Fish Sushirrito and Poké - LAUREN DE HOYOS
  • Lauren De Hoyos
  • Rolling Fish Sushirrito and Poké
July

The Pearl opened its long-awaited Bottling Department Food Hall (the first of its kind in San Antonio) and with it came Tenko Ramen, The Good Kind, Maybelle’s, Bud’s Southern Rotisserie and Fletcher’s Hamburgers. Find it at 312 Pearl Pkwy., Building 6.

Rolling Fish Sushirrito and Poké opened with well, sushirritos, poké and bubble tea. Find build-it-yourself salads, rice bowls, sushirritos and more. Find them at 12730 I-10 W., Suite 304, (210) 592-1003.

The Art of Donut, which originally opened shop as a food truck last December at The Point Park & Eats by Andrea Aguirre and Miguel Aja, opened its brick-and-mortar shop inside the space formerly held by The Fairview. Find them at 3428 N. St. Mary’s St. artofdounut.com.

The Social Spot replaced Pink’s Place on Broadway with new owners and upcoming liquor license. Find them at 930 Broadway, (210) 263-9009.

El Luchador opened off Roosevelt with lots of Mexican wrestling-themed art, drink specials and comfortable seating. Find them at 622 Roosevelt Ave., (210) 272-0016.

August

Fahrenheit 32, the El Paso-based chain opened its first location in San Antonio, on August 27. Find them at 226 W. Bitters Road, Suite 119, (210) 627-6232.

Shake Shack opened its first San Antonio location off San Pedro with Texas-friendly bites such as the Lockhart Link Burger, a cheeseburger topped with griddled Kreuz Market jalapeno cheese sausage link with ShackSauce and pickles. Find them at 7427 San Pedro Ave.

Yellowfish San Antonio, the first to bring San Antonio sushirritos, opened a third location. Find them at 17711 I-10 W., Suite 104, (210) 476-5186.

Boss Bagels opened in Alamo Heights on August 29 with breakfast and lunch options for bagel lovers. Find them at 6458 N. New Braunfels Ave., (210) 504-4888.

September

Squeezers Co. opened its first brick-and-mortar on September 4. Find them at 317 Probandt Road, (210) 376-7455.

In booze news, Alamo Distilling Co. opened off Chestnut with a line of craft whiskies, rum and a tasting room. Find them 621 Chestnut St., (210) 325-7853.

El Bucanero opened its third location, this time off Marbach Road on September 7. That’s a lot more ceviche to go around. Find them at 8300 Marbach Road, (210) 645-7337.

We have more choices when it comes to chicken and waffles with the opening of The South Chicken and Waffles on September 9. Find them at 5739 Callaghan Road, Suite. 100, (220) 647-6677.

Pinch Boil House & Bia Bar started its soft opening process on September 8. Find them at 124 N. Main Ave., (210) 971-7774.

The guys behind Toastie Buns fired up the engine to one of the city’s first food trucks. Follow them on Facebook to see where they’re cookin’.

Pastries and coffee are back in Olmos Park with the mid-September opening of Eaton Sweet Coffee Bar. Find them at 5223 McCullough Road,
(210) 275-1969.

The Alta Vista neighborhood scored a new eatery in Outlaw Kitchens, which opens from 5 to 8 p.m. with take-away dinners and seats for about 23 guests. The menu changes twice a week and they only serve two entrees. Find them at 2919 N. Flores St., (210) 300-4728.

Tucker’s Kozy Korner reopened on September 22 under new management. Spoiler alert: It’s still kozy. Find them at 1338 E. Houston St., (210) 320-21192.

click to enlarge Greek pastitsio (foreground) and vegetable lasagna from Outlaw Kitchens. - JESSICA ELIZARRARAS
  • Jessica Elizarraras
  • Greek pastitsio (foreground) and vegetable lasagna from Outlaw Kitchens.

October

Chef Jason Dady opened his modern chophouse, Range, inside the former Lüke. The eatery packs in Hill Country faves like Parisa (a cheesy beef tartare), table-side martinis, great service and blue cotton candy as a sweet finale. Find them at 125 E. Houston St., (210) 227-4455.

Rosella at the Rand opened with coffee, breakfast, lunch and dinner along with cocktails, wine and beer inside a modern space at the corner of Soledad and Houston. Find them at 114 E. Houston St., (210) 277-8574.

Breathe Lounge opened near the airport with happy hour and funky programming including a singles masquerade affair on November 11 and a fashion show December 2. Find them at 8800 Broadway, Suite 102.

The I-10 & Boerne Stage Road area gained a new piano bar in Bar 301, by the owners of Fralos. Find them at 23567 W. I-10.

Squeezers Co. added a new tenant to its home with Espressivo Coffee, opened by two baristas formerly at Halcyon. The coffee joint joins a yoga studio and the aforementioned juice shop at the location. Find them at 317 Probandt, (210) 560-4669.

Part music venue, part restaurant and bearing several bars, Dallas-based The Rustic opened with a concert by co-owner Pat Green, shuttered for a few days to clear up permitting issues and then finally opened for good. Find them at 17619 La Cantera Pkwy., Suite 204, (210) 245-7500.

The Barrios empire expanded by one with the addition of La Hacienda Scenic Loop inside the former Scenic Loop Cafe. The space serves Sunday brunch with a combination of items from its new and former owners. Find them at 25615 Boerne Stage Road, (210) 687-1818.

A year after a nasty fire put its kitchen out of commission, Francis Bogside reopened its doors on Halloween. The bar now has expanded seating and a new chef in Chris Cook. Find them at 803 S. St. Marys St., (210) 988-3093.

The Lone Star Arts District gained a new brewery with the opening of Künstler Brewing Co. in late October. Find them at 302 E. LaChapelle, (210) 688-4519.

San Antonio’s first poké truck rolled into town in late October. Follow Poke Man on Facebook for location updates.

click to enlarge Bar 301 - FACEBOOK/BAR301
  • Facebook/Bar301
  • Bar 301
November

Tony G’s relocated from St. Paul Square to Denver Heights inside the former Tommy Moore’s Cafe. The fried chicken is worth a visit alone. Find them at 915 Hackberry St., (210) 451-1234.

Kung Fu Tea, a New York City-based boba tea franchise opened near UTSA in early November. Find them at 7211 Green Glen Drive, (210) 239-5333.

Viva La Dough opened off De Zavala Road with raw, egg-free cookie dough in Spurstastic flavors. Find them at 6222 De Zavala Road, Suite 104.

The former home of Nectar Wine Bar now houses a laid-back bar with great specials in The Trophy Room, which opened last week. Find them at 214 Broadway Suite 103, (210) 257-5152.

After a move from Cibolo, 5 Stones Artisan Brewing opened the doors to their new brewery and tap room in New Braunfels. Find them and their wares at 11335 FM 1863, 78132 New Braunfels.

The owners of Bang Bang Bar fixed their food problem by taking over Roy’s Taco Hut and bringing back a familiar face with Kris Martinez, and opening The Dogfather, a hot dog joint. Find them at 6211 San Pedro Ave., (210) 320-1187.

Exactly a year after closing due to a fire, The Phantom Room rose from the ashes with a mid-November opening. Find them at 2106 N. St. Mary’s St.

The Truckin’ Tomato opened a new Saturday market near the airport with artisan vendors and local produce. Find them at 10511 Wetmore Road, (210) 802-5717.

There’s more Vietnamese-style crawfish in town with the second opening by LA Crawfish. The Stone Oak location can be found at 22502 281 N., Suite 110,
(210) 600-3337.

Boba tea is closer to downtown with the opening of Brew’s Lee Tea. No powders or mixes here, just fine teas and chewy boba (maybe some cream cheese). Find them at 4009 Broadway.

The Clean Plate may have closed this spring, but in its place is The Point on Main. Get to The Point for breakfast on weekdays and a tasty Cubano for lunch. Find them at 1022 N. Main, (210) 222-2226.

San Antonio opened a second Taiwanese shaved ice joint (see Snopioca) this November with Snowflake Paradice. The shop uses organic ingredients and fruits to make their snow-like desserts. Find them at 12730 I-10 W., Suite 303, (210) 465-7041.

click to enlarge Lüke -  COURTESY OF LÜKE SAN ANTONIO
We poured a 40 for these homies…

February

The biggest food news in February came out of John Besh’s Lüke San Antonio which closed its doors at the end of the month after six years inside its Embassy Suites location.

In barbecue news, Burnt Ends vacated its Blanco Road location at the end of January. The eatery announced its move earlier this week on Facebook. No word yet on where the barbecue joint will open up shop next.

April

Nectar Wine Bar & Ale House, which opened in 2015, closed at the end of April. Opened by Rachel and Rob Stephens, Nectar suffered from slow business and called it quits.

Saigon Express, a longtime pho staple for the Midtown, closed its doors on April 7 after 14 years of business. The shop’s owner declined to comment on reasons why.

June

Alchemy Kombucha and Culture, at 1123 S. Flores St., known for offering Element Kombucha (San Antonio’s first take on fermented tea) and a veggie-driven menu, closed its dining operations as of June 11. The facility now focuses on producing Element Kombucha along with the occasional event and festival.

Stay Golden Social House, the first patio cocktail bar concept by The Boulevardier Group closed on June 16 after a series of nightly parties. The existing building will be turned into a 10-story office building. 401 Pearl Pkwy.

Timbo’s Burgers, closed its doors on June 17 after 10 years in business at their former location. The restaurant lost its lease in May and was given a 90-day notice. 1639 Broadway.

Bistro Vatel, one of the last remaining French restaurants in the city, closed its doors off Olmos Drive over Father’s Day weekend. Hope isn’t lost — chef Damian Watel and his staff are cooking lunch at Bite, the restaurant owned by wife and fellow chef Lisa Astorga-Watel. Find them at 1012 S. Presa St., (210) 532-2551.

click to enlarge Pollos Asados Los Norteños - PHOTO VIA INSTAGRAM, JENNROLLINS
  • Photo via Instagram, jennrollins
  • Pollos Asados Los Norteños
July

Crossroads Kitchen closed its doors on July 31 after three and a half years of serving great late-night fare to the St. Mary’s Strip crowd.

The Fridge rolled into the Sunset on July 30 after several years of making The Hottie, a Hot Cheetos-crusted sandwich perfect for when the munchies hit.

August

Alberico Fine Wine SA, which opened in 2015, was locked out of its space in mid-August due to unpaid rent. 5221 McCullough Ave.

After more than 32 years in the food business, Cha-Cha’s Mexican Restaurant closed its doors off Bandera Road.

The Original Hot Dog House closed its doors at 1218 W. Bitters Road on August 27. Shop owners will focus on sister location Pugels.

September

Olmos Park said good-bye to Olmos Pharmacy. The shop’s owner closed its doors on September 7 and later announced the restaurant’s equipment was up for sale.

Earl Abel’s closed up shop temporarily as it moved to its new location off Broadway inside the former Timbo’s.

October

Pollos Asados Los Norteños is temporarily closed due to an ongoing legal battle over what neighbors and perhaps the state deem as excessive smoke.

After three years in business, Tacos N Tequila pulled the plug on its San Antonio location. The Dallas and Austin location are still open.

Bryan-based Napa Flats closed its San Antonio location in late October. The shop had occupied the space since early 2015.

Press Coffee closed its doors and will move to mobile operations in the coming months.

Chris Madrid’s is temporarily closed due to a mid-October fire, though in the works of going mobile. Follow them on Facebook for more updates

November

Durty Nelly’s closed for renovations through mid-January. The bar has been at its Riverwalk location since 1974.

After three years in business, Malinalli Bakery & Cafe called it quits in early November, but the shop hinted at a possible return. Stay tuned.

Aldaco’s closed its Dominion outpost this month, but Mexican food will still be available as La Fogata moves in to take its place. The Stone Oak location of Aldaco’s remains open.

Johnny Hernandez closed El Machito on November 12, but also announced that the concept will move to the Southside at Brooks, along with a fourth La Gloria. Bonus: Burgerteca will officially open December 4.

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