San Antonio Restaurants

San Antonio is a terrific dining town. It's big enough and has enough demanding conventioneers to support fine dining you'd usually find in much larger cities. But it still has a relaxed small-town feel that makes it easy to eat out almost anywhere without much fuss. You can count on one hand the number of restaurants requiring
San Antonio is a terrific dining town. It's big enough and has enough demanding conventioneers to support fine dining you'd usually find in much larger cities. But it still has a relaxed small-town feel that makes it easy to eat out almost anywhere without much fuss. Yo
San Antonio is a terrific dining town. It's big enough and has enough demanding conventioneers to support fine dining yo

San Antonio is a terrific dining town. It's big enough and has enough demanding conventioneers to support fine dining you'd usually find in much larger cities. But it still has a relaxed small-town feel that makes it easy to eat out almost anywhere without much fuss. You can count on one hand the number of restaurants requiring jackets; the dress codes at most other nice restaurants pretty much stops at "no shorts, please." Reservations and long waits are rare except at a few high-end restaurants and at peak times on the River Walk.

Essentially, San Antonio cuisine is about two things: Mexican-inspired flavors and meat. Mexican, Tex-Mex, Latin, and a variety of other fusion variations crowd this bi-cultural town. You'll find wonderful Mexican breads and pastries, rich sauces with complex flavors heavy with chilies, fresh peppers, even chocolate. Margaritas and local beers, courtesy of the local German immigrant brewing tradition, remedy the occasional chili overdose (though not all Latin food here is spicy—far from it). If your idea of a perfect meal is a steak, ribs, or just a killer hamburger, this is your kind of town. But San Antonio isn't stuck remembering the Alamo at every meal: chef-driven restaurants with a wide range of offerings, including sushi, offer a break from beef and tortillas.

Most restaurants, especially downtown and at the River Walk, are open seven days a week. Outside the downtown tourist area, restaurants generally close at around 10 on weekdays, 11 on weekends. River Walk restaurants and bars stay open later, generally until 2 am. San Antonio bans smoking in all restaurants except in designated outdoor areas (bars do allow it). Tipping conventions are standard, generally 15% for lunch, 20% for dinner.

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  • Biga on the Banks

    1. Biga on the Banks

    $$ | River Walk | American

    Like Texas, enthusiastic chef Bruce Auden's menu is big and eclectic, and the dining atmosphere manages to be both bigger than life and romantic...Read More

    Biga on the Banks
  • 2. Silo Elevated Cuisine

    $$ | Northeast | American

    Just a few miles northeast of downtown, Silo has beautiful views of the city from its sleek first-floor bar and second-floor restaurant. The...Read More

  • 3. 20nine Restaurant and Wine Bar

    $$ | Alamo Heights | American

    Part of the Alamo Quarry Market shopping complex, this upscale spot may make you wonder whether you're going to dinner or a wine tasting. Well...Read More

  • 4. Acenar

    $$ | River Walk | American

    This nouvelle Tex-Mex hot spot sits astride a less-traveled section of the San Antonio River Walk. Start out with excellent margaritas—many...Read More

  • 5. Aldo's Ristorante Italiano

    $$ | Northwest | Italian

    This outpost of northern Italian fare near the Southwest Texas Medical Center and USAA is in a warm and homey century-old house. Fresh, simple...Read More

  • 6. Azúca Nuevo Latino

    $$ | King William Historic District | Caribbean

    If you want something different from San Antonio's usual Mexican or Tex-Mex offerings, venture south to find festive fare hailing from the Caribbean...Read More

  • 7. Boudro's on the Riverwalk

    $$ | River Walk | American

    A little bit Gulf Coast, a little bit Mexican, and a whole lotta Texan, this landmark River Walk establishment caters to almost every taste...Read More

  • 8. Crumpets Restaurant & Bakery

    $$ | North | American

    The name sounds stuffy, but the dining room is everything but at this European-inspired location far removed from downtown's urban closeness...Read More

  • 9. Esquire Tavern

    $$ | Downtown | American

    Originally opened in 1933 following the end of Prohibition, the Esquire Tavern has a storied past, forgotten for many years in its once dilapidated...Read More

  • 10. La Margarita Mexican Restaurant & Oyster Bar

    $$ | Downtown | American

    In the heart of Market Square, you can eat Mexican fare or oysters or both while surrounded by Spanish tile and light music. Try the fajitas...Read More

  • 11. Landry's Seafood House

    $$ | River Walk | Seafood

    In the thick of things right on the San Antonio River, this upscale national seafood chain is a pleasurable oasis from the hustle and bustle...Read More

  • 12. NAO

    $$ | Latin American

    A unique restaurant concept owned and operated by the San Antonio satellite location of the Culinary Institute of America, NAO features a rotation...Read More

  • 13. Paesanos

    $$ | River Walk | Italian

    This deservedly popular spot at a bend on the San Antonio River melds fine Italian dining with a Mediterranean approach. The range of foodie...Read More

  • 14. Paloma Blanca

    $$ | Alamo Heights | Mexican

    A warm, almost clubby atmosphere—especially in the bar, with its fireplace and leather sofas—lets you know to expect more than the typicCambridge...Read More

  • 15. The Brooklynite

    $$ | American

    This sleek pre-Prohibition-style craft cocktail bar popped up in September 2012 with little warning. A last-minute opportunity for celebrated...Read More

  • 16. The Granary Brew and 'Cue

    $$ | Barbecue

    This turn-of-the-century home at The Pearl is one of the new hot spots to discover the pleasure of slow-smoked meats and barbecue. A counter...Read More

  • 17. The Sandbar

    $$ | Seafood

    Not all seafood is created equal in a town where Tex-Mex and burger joints rule. But when it comes to the absolute best seafood you can find...Read More

  • 18. Zuni Grill

    $$ | River Walk | American

    While its eclectic Southwestern food is nothing special, loft-like Zuni Grill certainly ranks heads above the many tourist traps on the River...Read More

  • 19. The Monterey

    $$ | King William Historic District | American

    A local hangout in the hip historic King William District that took San Antonio by storm when it opened in 2010 with a gastropub menu focused...Read More

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