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June 20, 2019 Slideshows » Food & Drink

The 25 San Antonio Restaurants You Should Try Before You Die 

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While San Antonio has no shortage of restaurants that you should make it a point to visit, we rounded up 25 local spots that have proven themselves to be some of the best and most beloved restaurants worth dining at before you die.
OF 25
The Original Donut Shop
3307 Fredericksburg Road, (210) 734-5661,
Though prized more for its tacos than its donuts, Original Donut Shop remains a favorite for local foodies. With long lines spilling out onto the street in the mornings and on the weekends, consider this Fredericksburg Road mainstay a high priority to visit – consider its popularity enough reason.
Photo via Instagram / do210
Pollos Asados Los Norteños
4642 Rigsby Ave, (210) 648-3303,
If you don’t mind waiting in line, do yourself a favor and head to the East Side to hit up this gem. Charbroiled chicken is served up with rice, corn tortillas, spicy sauces, lime and grilled onions and jalapeños. Seriously, can’t it get any better than that?
Photo via Instagram / michelle2483
306 Pearl Pkwy #101, (210) 314-3929,
Found at the Pearl, Cured deserves your immediate attention. This rustic-chic eatery offers charcuterie-focused New American cuisine and craft cocktails among an impressive menu featuring regional ingredients and hand-crafted cured foods. Seriously, swing by to see what all the fuss is about and give Chef Steve McHugh your highest praise.
Photo via Instagram / curedatpearl
Mr. & Mrs. G’s Homecooking
2222 S WW White Road, (210) 359-0002,
Though most San Antonians have their go-to spot for authentic Southern fare, Mr. & Mrs. G is considered to be one of the best spots for the cuisine – if not the best. Opened by William and Addie Garner, the East Side gem has classic dishes like chicken & dumplings, with plenty of pastries that are the cherry on top.
Photo via Instagram / jesselizarraras
Taquitos West Ave.
2818 West Ave, (210) 525-9888,
While there’s plenty of local spots to score mini tacos, Taquitos West Avenue is definitely a standout among them all. This West Avenue spot keeps it simple with counter-service where you can choose from a variety of tacos. Just be sure to add lots of salsa.
Photo via Instagram / happyhungryhipster
2M Smokehouse
2731 S WW White Road, (210) 885-9352,
Nationally-recognized 2M has everything a top-notch barbecue spot should have – a selection of classic meats and sides that will have your eyes rolling back. With pitmaster and owner Esaul Ramos at the helm, choose to have your meats served up in a taco or sandwich, then select from a list of sides from chicharoni macaroni to Mexican street corn.
Photo via Instagram / jay_w_jay
Sichuan House
3505 Wurzbach Road #102, (210) 509-9999
This strip mall joint may be a humble eatery, but it’s also known for serving up some of the best Chinese food in the city. Sichuan tapas, hot pots and dishes like pork belly and Kung Pao shrimp await you at this hole-in-the-wall gem. Take a few pals, order one of everything and load up on Sichuan cuisine. Splitting the bill will be easy, the leftovers not so much.
Photo via Instagram / timdisaster
The Guenther House
205 E Guenther St, (210) 227-1061,
While the Alamo City has no shortage of brunch options, not many have quite the historic legacy as the Guenther House. Settled on the banks of the San Antonio River, this Southtown outpost serves up homey American and Tex-Mex options from omelettes to enchiladas. This beautiful home-turned-restaurant-and-museum features patio dining too.
Photo via Instagram / rehnsfoodventure
The Cove
606 W Cypress St, (210) 227-2683,
A true gem with all sorts of cool features, the Cove remains one of the quirkiest and most prized eateries in San Antonio. Complete with live music, a laundromat and car wash, this dog- and kid-friendly (there’s a playground, too) restaurant serves up organic American fare that folks of any diet will love – and devour time and time again.
Photo via Instagram / sacravings
926 S Presa St, (210) 225-2547,
Housed in a restored former filling station, Chef Mark Bliss’ highly-esteemed Southtown eatery brings you inspired New American fare alongside a selection of charcuterie, wine and beer. The service is just as superb as the food, so expect a completely-satisfying dining experience you’ll definitely want to treat yourself to every special occasion.
Photo via Instagram / kennedyhatfieldasel
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5251 McCullough Ave, (210) 338-0746,
Headed by the dynamic duo chefs Diego Galicia and Rico Torres, this innovative restaurant serves regional Mexican tasting menus that utilize indigenous ingredients and pre-Hispanic techniques. The intimate space is reason enough to visit, but the food will truly amaze you. Consider your life changed after dining here.
Photo via Instagram / b.present.sinq
Ray’s Drive Inn
822 SW 19th St, (210) 432-7171,
Whether you’re Team Ray or Team Henry, make it a point to stop by Ray’s Drive Inn. This San Antonio staple is home to the original puffy taco – and has a patent and everything to prove it. The drive-thru institution, housed on the West Side, also serves up tasty burgers and dogs, so be sure to bring your appetite.
Photo via Instagram / s.a.vortooth
La Panaderia
Multiple locations,
José and David Cáceres are building an empire with La Panaderia, prized for its handmade artisan breads and pan dulce. With the flagship Broadway location, a second downtown and another expected to open at the Rim, La Panaderia has proven itself as a nationally-recognized cafe that has all the heart of San Antonio.
Photo via Instagram / s.a.vory
Tellez Tamales & Barbacoa
1737 S General McMullen Dr, (210) 433-1367,
Whether barbacoa or tamales is your vice, enjoying these staples is a quintessential puro San Antonio experience. Don’t let the long lines around the holidays discourage you from stopping in – these savory bites are worth it, no matter how long the wait. Just don’t forget to grab all the salsas and Big Red to complete your too-damn-delicious meal.
Photo via Instagram / fitproblems
Smoke Shack
3714 Broadway St, (210) 957-1430,
Chef Chris Conger keeps it real with quality meats and sides that will satisfy any appetite. Available as a sandwich or served on a platter, these dishes are among the best ‘cue you can find in the Alamo City. To truly live your best life, order the Smoke Shack Mac.
Photo via Instagram / jessy_eats
Chris Madrid’s
830 W Hollywood Ave, (210) 735-3552,
A local favorite opened by the late Chris Madrid, this institution is prized for its super cheesy bites. Now owned by Richard Peacock, this spot serves up signature burgers (like the Cheddar Cheezy and the Tostada Burger), nachos, chalupas, beer and margaritas.
Photo via Instagram / butta_chunks
El Bucanero
Multiple locations,
While San Antonio is home to a growing number of Mexican seafood joints, El Bucanero may just be the city-wide favorite. With three locations across the Alamo City, this local chain is one not to miss with its selection of tostadas y botanas frescas.
Photo via Instagram / abismo_edward
Mi Tierra Cafe y Panaderia
218 Produce Row, (210) 239-9215,
Owned by the beloved Cortez family, this landmark Mexican cafe and bakery with classic dishes, margaritas and mariachis is a constant favorite for locals and tourists alike. Open 24/7, this festive spot is a solid choice for late-night eats and big parties.
Photo via Instagram / ninister_jin_njuice
The Big Bib
104 Lanark Dr, (210) 654-8400,
Damn scrumptious wood-smoked meats plus hearty sides and classic desserts to match await you at the Big Bib. This casual barbecue spot lets your get your fill via platter or sandwich – either way you’re sure to finish your meal by licking your fingers. Yep, it’s just that good.
Photo via Instagram / thesammywyman
Niki's Tokyo Inn
819 W Hildebrand Ave, (210) 736-5471,
This family-run mainstay has long been regarded as one of the most authentic spots for Japanese dining. Complete with tatami-style seating, you can order from the selection of traditional sushi, Japanese entrees and sake.
Photo via Instagram / r.u.r.u
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16401 La Cantera Pkwy, (210) 247-0176,
Chef Andrew Weissman’s La Cantera outpost calls for your attention during your time here in San Antonio, whether you’re a local or just visiting. Expect seasonal fare with a French and Texas twist, with brunch and dinner service. Dress up for the occasion as this beautiful space and delicious fare to match will definitely be a memorable meal.
Photo via Instagram / weissmanandrew
Cappy’s Restaurant
5011 Broadway, (210) 828-9669,
A favorite for brunch, Cappy’s brings contemporary American fare to San Antonio. Brought to you by owners Cappy and Suzy Lawton, this upscale casual space features a selection of seafood, prime steaks and regional specials. Expect warm hospitality to be served up here too.
Photo via Instagram / cappysrestaurant
Bohanan’s Prime Steaks & Seafood
219 E Houston St, (210) 472-2600,
Chef Mark Bohanan surely knows what he’s doing – take the esteemed steakhouse with his name as proof. The chic space, complete with a cocktail lounge, patio and live jazz, serves up steaks and a variety of seafood dishes for any special celebration, or if you just want a damn good meal.
Photo by Jason Risner Photography via Instagram / bohanans
Thai Dee
5307 Blanco Road, (210) 342-3622,
Whether you have a soft spot for Thai or just want some damn good eats, trust Thai Dee to deliver a sensational meal. This unassuming eatery brings you all the traditional fare of Thailand as well as regional dishes for an authentic experience. Oh, and the cherry on top is that it’s BYOB.
Photo via Instagram / safood.e
Restaurant Gwendolyn
152 E Pecan St #100, (210) 222-1849,
Brought to you by the incredibly talented Chef Michael Sohocki, Restaurant Gwendolyn should be frequented for its impeccable fare – and for the fact that it’s all made without motorized machines. That’s right, the selection of locally-sourced, upscale American dishes are presented to you without use of pre-Industrial Revolution devices. Prepare to be truly amazed.
Photo via Instagram / restaurantgwen
The Original Donut Shop
3307 Fredericksburg Road, (210) 734-5661,
Though prized more for its tacos than its donuts, Original Donut Shop remains a favorite for local foodies. With long lines spilling out onto the street in the mornings and on the weekends, consider this Fredericksburg Road mainstay a high priority to visit – consider its popularity enough reason.
Photo via Instagram / do210

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