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  1. #1
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    Jul. 10, 2001
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    Default A couple of days in San Antonio where should we eat? What should we see?

    Food wise, we want local flavor, no chains. We like nice places but not overly fancy. We are carry on only, so there won't be dresses or jackets and ties. Brew pubs? Wine bars?

    Museums we shouldn't miss? Artsy areas? Historical interest?
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  2. #2
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    Mar. 14, 2004
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    Left coast, left wing, left field
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    You must see the Riverwalk! It is fabulous. Unusual, and lots of local flavor. My favorite place for dining is this one: www.boudros.com

    You can take a riverboat cruise as a separate entity, but the restaurant mentioned above, Boudro's, also serves dinner on a riverboat. If I recall correctly, you take your seat on the boat and are served salad and maybe soup. The boat does one circuit, docks, and you are served the main course. Another circuit of the river while you are eating your dinner. Absolutely lovely. I particularly loved their prickly pear margaritas!

    I always stayed right on the Riverwalk, but I was traveling on business and it was funded by the client. All I ever did outside of the Riverwalk was drive to a call center, which I can't actually recommend LOL. But if you are there for short time, between the Riverwalk and the Alamo, you will probably find all you need to do.
    Arrange whatever pieces come your way. - Virginia Woolf

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  3. #3
    Join Date
    Apr. 5, 2011
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    407

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    Every time I'm in San Antonio I have a drink at the Menger Bar at the Menger Hotel near the Riverwalk. There are still bullet holes in the ceiling from one of Teddy Roosevelt's visits. We always stay on the Riverwalk. It's great way to spend most of an evening between the bars and restaurants.

    The San Antonio Zoo is not exceptionally large but it's quite pretty. Natural Bridge Caverns is definitely worth a visit. Plus it's almost balmy once you get underground, which is a very good thing if you're visiting in the summer.

    I know you said you're not wanting anything fancy but Bohanan's on the Riverwalk is my favorite restaurant. Best steak ever and I've eaten a lot of steak.

    I have eaten at this wine bar several times and always enjoyed it. They actually have full entrees, which many wine bars don't.
    http://www.20ninewine.com/

    If you go on the Riverwalk be sure to get a drink at the Iron Cactus. I've never had their food but they have tons of different kinds of tequila. I always get the Cactus juice frozen drink. The ingredients are: Torada Silver Tequila, Everclear, Midori Melon Liqueur and DeKuyper Blue Curacao. It's really strong because of the everclear but tastes fantastic. Then you have brunch at Las Canarias.



  4. #4
    Join Date
    Oct. 13, 2011
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    Texas
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    Default

    Are you wanting to get out of San Anotnio a bit?

    We're in New Braunfels. It's a small, touristy town with two wonderful little "downtown" areas. New Braunfel's itself and Gruene. There are great bars, winery's, and amazing food. I really shouldn't live in a town with this much great food. We also have fun things to do and wonderful parks. It's about 30 minutes from the San Antonio airport. My favorite parts of the San Antonio area are the small towns outside of San Anotnio. I don't venture into San Antonio often (even though I live here).

    If you want more info, please just DM me!
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  5. #5
    Join Date
    May. 2, 2011
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    Texas
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    The Alamo Cafe serves local Tex-Mex and the food is really good.
    http://www.alamocafe.com/

    I've only been to the IH 10 location, so i can't speak for the San Pedro locale.

    The Tip Top has been around forever and serves the best chicken fried steak! http://www.tiptopcafe.com/
    If you go there, it's cash only. Also, it probably hasn't been remodeled since the day it opened, but the food is good.

    Here is an overview of the historical landmarks in San Antonio;

    http://visitsanantonio.com/english/E...ites-Landmarks

    Have fun!
    "How does it feel to be one of the beautiful people?" Julian Lennon



  6. #6
    Join Date
    May. 2, 2011
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    Texas
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    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by Belmont View Post
    Are you wanting to get out of San Anotnio a bit?

    We're in New Braunfels. It's a small, touristy town with two wonderful little "downtown" areas. New Braunfel's itself and Gruene. There are great bars, winery's, and amazing food. I really shouldn't live in a town with this much great food. We also have fun things to do and wonderful parks. It's about 30 minutes from the San Antonio airport. My favorite parts of the San Antonio area are the small towns outside of San Anotnio. I don't venture into San Antonio often (even though I live here).

    If you want more info, please just DM me!
    I second the New Braunfels/ Gruene area. We live just outside Gruene in the country and love walking around Gruene in the Fall. During the summer however, parking can be tough because of the tourists.
    "How does it feel to be one of the beautiful people?" Julian Lennon



  7. #7
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    Jun. 24, 2005
    Location
    Lorena, Texas
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    For site-seeing in San Antonio, I love the missions. The Alamo is neat, but touristy (IMHO). I love the other, lesser known missions. They're beautiful, fairly quiet (at least when we were there), and full of history.
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  8. #8
    Join Date
    Jul. 20, 2003
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    San Antonio, TX
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    As others have said, a lot depends on if you have transportation and are interested in getting out of the city a bit.

    Riverwalk is worth seeing, and I think the boat tours are fun. Most of the restaurants are chains, but several posters have mentioned some that aren't. The Esquire Bar has some amazing cocktails and has been open continuously since Prohibition.

    The Alamo: gotta see it. It's free to get in, and even if there's a line, it moves fast. Very little of the original structure is left now, but the artifacts inside tell the story.

    Gruene/New Braunfels, especially for live music and dining on the Guadalupe river. Love the Gristmill and Gruene River Grill. Lots of cute antique/boutique shops.

    I have not been to Natural Bridge Caverns yet but I am dying to go!

    There is a stretch of the Riverwalk called Museum Reach where several of the prominent art museums are located. It's pretty far up the river from downtown, so I'd get a cab or drive.

    The Missions are also lovely.

    ETA: if you've got room in your bags and want some margarita glassware, hit up Market Square/El Mercado. Lots of vendors, some more authentic than others, but all the margarita pitchers you could want! Also some of the traditional woven clothing, clay work, tiles, etc. I go there any time I need a gift for someone.
    Jonah 4:4: And the Lord said, "Do you do well to be angry?"

    With every day that passes, college football season gets that much closer!



  9. #9
    Join Date
    Jan. 27, 2002
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    new england,,usa
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    DH and I met friends and had dinner at gwendolyns in San Antonio a month ago.
    first --it was $$$$$ but so fun.
    they brought out an amuse bouche, a free little appetizer course.
    it was a teeny tiny fried quail egg with a teeny tiny home made biscuit---they were so tiny I think they must cook the biscuits in thimbles!
    the food was excellent, local and farm sourced, but the presentation was the real star of the show.
    they have this very involved vintage german coffee maker they use to make coffee at the table, in fact iirc they only use traditional and vintage tools to prepare and cook the food.
    it was def a memorable experience, and there were tourists like us amongst the more fancier dressed people.



  10. #10
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    Oct. 20, 2001
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    San Jose, CA
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    Mostly I'm just going to second things others have mentioned!

    The Riverwalk is great to eat, walk along, take a cruise, stay on, etc. Just do some walking and pick a restaurant that looks good!

    The Alamo is much smaller than you would expect, but definitely a place to visit and check out.

    Natural Bridge Caverns are very neat.

    I'll also recommend New Braunfels but for a different reason - the river tubing! Go to Texas Tubes and ride down the Comal River. It's about 3 hours for one go. A really fantastic way to spend a Texas day - warm air, cool water, relaxing and fun. Go on a weekday and start before noon and there will be fewer crowds. There are lots of rental places but I like Texas Tubes the best because they have a private lot right on the water.

    If you aren't in Texas much you should also get some BBQ, specifically brisket. Cooper's in New Braunfels is pretty good, I don't know enough about the ones in San Antonio.



  11. #11
    Join Date
    Aug. 13, 2013
    Location
    Austin, Texas
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    35

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    Quote Originally Posted by kathy s. View Post
    The Alamo Cafe serves local Tex-Mex and the food is really good.
    http://www.alamocafe.com/

    I've only been to the IH 10 location, so i can't speak for the San Pedro locale.


    Have fun!
    Gurrrl, I am questioning your taste in Tex-mex; Alamo Cafe is no bueno. However, Chester's Hamburgers nextdoor is awesome!


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  12. #12
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    Thanks for all the info! We will only be there for three days, so I don't know if we will have time to get to New Braunfels, but the grandgirls might like the tubing. I'll have to find out if they've been there. My stepson lives on the west side of town, so we'll see.

    We have the Riverwalk on our schedule, of course, and the Alamo.

    Suz, Gwendolyn's sound terrific, but probably not for a visit with kids. Maybe we can sneak in a day early!!
    *****
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  13. #13
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    Jul. 20, 2003
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    San Antonio, TX
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    Something to keep in mind: if it rains (which it rarely does, but who knows) the seating capacity of many restaurants will be cut in half. Outdoor seating is big out here, especially on the Riverwalk. And strangely, it can be kind of hard to get really good Mexican food; a few of the hole in the wall places are gems, but many are sketchy. A good place downtown is Rosario's (not on the RW, but not far from it).
    Jonah 4:4: And the Lord said, "Do you do well to be angry?"

    With every day that passes, college football season gets that much closer!



  14. #14
    Join Date
    May. 4, 2003
    Location
    Canada
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    If you have never been into huge underground caves with stalagtites/mites
    they are awesome to someone like me.

    We went to the track - it's not exactly Keenland!

    Wanted some Tex-ribs - so went to a place on Riverwalk - plate was so big, with sausage, ribs, etc., but all drowned in a sauce that apparently came from a five gallon bucket and all you could taste was bbq sauce...

    I wanted to go to the King Ranch so badly, it was dead there. But at least we went and there was a huge gorgeous furniture store with very Texan furniture in it on the way.
    Proud member of People Who Hate to Kill Wildlife clique



  15. #15
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    Oct. 20, 2001
    Location
    San Jose, CA
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    The kids will love tubing! We've been taking my nieces and nephew since they were 5 and the oldest is now 15.

    Never trust BBQ at a restaurant with waiters or that comes with sauce. Real Texas BBQ is served on butcher paper and without sauce.


    1 members found this post helpful.

  16. #16
    Join Date
    Jun. 27, 2002
    Location
    Texas
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    5,174

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    Quote Originally Posted by JoZ View Post
    You must see the Riverwalk! It is fabulous. Unusual, and lots of local flavor. My favorite place for dining is this one: www.boudros.com
    I second this recommendation. This place is fabulous and right on the Riverwalk, which is fun in itself.

    If you are looking for some nightlife, the Pat O'Brien's piano bar is lively and fun.

    The Chart House restaurant in the Tower of the Americas is pretty neat. We have taken out-of-town visitors there, who found it to be a cook experience.

    We are at Fort Hood but love going to San Antonio...it's a fun weekend getaway for us.



  17. #17
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    Zevida, I get the BBQ thing and is part of what I meant by local food. I live on NC and there is only one kind of BBQ to get at a BBQ place. If it's not pulled pork, it's not NC BBQ. Finding a good brisket is on the list.

    Is there an artsy area with local pottery or other types of galleries? Not the thousands of dollars of imported oil paintings stuff, but more local stuff.
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  18. #18
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    Oct. 31, 2009
    Location
    Minnesota
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    416

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    I know you said "no chain restaraunts", but in a pinch if you see a Trudy's (might just be in Austin?) or a Le Peep, both get A+ from me.

    Last time I was in Austin, I ate either at Taco Cabana or Waffle House pretty much the whole week. Am so sad we have neither in Minnesota.
    The very existence of flamethrowers proves that sometime, somewhere, someone said to themselves, "You know, I want to set those people on fire, but I'm just not close enough to get the job done".



  19. #19
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    Apr. 21, 2014
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    Oh Man..speaking as a Canadian Tourist go to http://www.howlatthemoon.com . My girlfriends and I closed this place down the night we went this past winter. I've never had so much fun in my life!



  20. #20
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    Jul. 10, 2001
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    Thanks for all of the recommendations. We were going to go to Boudros for dinner Monday night, but they were closed on Monday! So we went to La Fonda on Main, which was a truly fabulous place. We had lunch at Boudros on Tuesday. Lived up to all the recommendations!!

    We ended up doing the Inner Space Cavern, due to a massive misunderstanding of the pre planned adventure and it was very cool. We wouldn't have done it intentionally as it was pretty far away. It also put the ex Mrs. Mr. Midge in my passenger seat, while Mr. Midge was riding with his son and a grand girl. Proof that I have evolved as I have aged!
    *****
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