Gwendolyn, located downtown along the Riverwalk, is a fine-dining American restaurant that, like the Grandmother it's named for, inspires deep love and devotion. A cozy, romantic venue, Gwendolyn is an ideal place for a first date, anniversary or if you're simply a foodie who appreciates impeccable food. Gwendolyn is committed to serving handmade food made from local ingredients. Chef Michael is a devotee of the Slow Food Movement which emphasizes eco-awareness. Even more impressive, Gwendolyn refuses to use all the modern gadgetry that most restaurants can't seem to live without. The menu is small, offering a three course or five course pre-fix menu with two options for each course that changes daily. You can check the website to see what the current day's menu will be, and you'll want to call ahead to book your reservation.
Recommended for Romantic Dining because: For an intimate fine dining experience with exquisite farm-to-table cuisine, take your lucky lad or lady to Gwendolyn.
Kimberly's expert tip: Make sure to ask about their off-menu house-made charcuterie and cheese plate!
Cured is one of the newest restaurants to grace the historic Pearl Brewery and it clearly belongs in such fine company. Chef Steve McHugh brings charcuterie, salumi and other hand-made, farm-to-table dishes to the carefully restored Administration building at the Pearl. Their charcuterie options are cured from 60 days to 10 months and are becoming quite popular fare in San Antonio. All of the items, such as the Apple Jalapeno Pork Rillettes, Whipped Pork Butter and Country Style Pork Pate are made in house and proudly displayed in their humidity-controlled locker. The entrees at Cured aren't to be overlooked. Whether you're in the mood for seafood, fowl, beef, pork, goat, lamb or simply vegetarian, there's a little something scrumptious for everyone!
Recommended for Romantic Dining because: Located at the Pearl Brewery, Cured is a fine choice for an upscale meal with your sweetheart.
Kimberly's expert tip: A great place for some housemade charcutterie.
Hot Joy started out as a pop-up restaurant on Monday nights when The Monterey was closed. Their Twice-Fried Chicken Wings made with crab fat caramel is now the stuff of legends and partly responsible for why they quickly gained a loyal following. Get ready for extreme sensory overload, from the explosion of color in the decor to the explosion of flavor in every dish! Hot Joy is not for the faint of heart but the daring palette. Chef Quealy Watson has an obsession with Asian food and a talent for combining ingredients in a surprisingly delicious way. "I would have never thought of that, but it really works," can often be heard around the tables at their restaurants. The Crispy Pork Belly tacos made with a Malaysian flatbread, mole ssamjang, Kewpie and herbs works. The Hot Fried Chicken made with chili oil, Szechuan peppercorn, sour chilies and oyster sauce works. Quite frankly, it all works. There is not a dish on this menu that isn't worth trying, so let you're own adventurous palette decide.
Recommended for Romantic Dining because: If you want a little spice in your romance, head to Hot Joy.
Kimberly's expert tip: Start your meal off with the homemade Banchan or Fried Pork Springrolls and save room for one of their wonderfully unique desserts!
Owner, David Snyder, has combined his love and experience abroad with the genius of Executive Chef, Sean Fletcher, to create fresh authentic Southern European and Mediterranean dishes that are to-die-for! From the paella, with its fragrant flavors and velvety texture, to the (off-menu) Branzino, grilled to perfection with roasted garlic and grilled lemon, the cuisine is off-the-charts delicious. They take advantage of seasonal ingredients by offering dishes like the watermelon and heirloom tomato salad, but you can't go wrong with starters such as the decadent Eggplant Josephine. There isn't one item on this menu you won't savor and remember. What really stands out about Bella's is a true appreciation for quality and simplicity where the ingredients themselves are allowed to shine in a perfectly balanced symphony of flavors.
Recommended for Romantic Dining because: Bella on the River is always a wonderful choice for a romantic night along the riverwalk.
Kimberly's expert tip: Be sure to take advantage of the made-from-scratch desserts such as their ever-popular Virginia's Pistachio Cake or the scrumptious Butterscotch Creme Brulee. Yum!
Meadow is a charming new neighborhood restaurant located at The Alley in central San Antonio. The spacious eatery is family-owned and offers a creative menu of Texas-centric delights. Start your meal off right with their pork belly biscuit or wood oven cornbread accompanied by some scrumptious house-made jalapeno pimento cheese and honey lard-butter. Next, sample a variety of shared plates, such as their cabbage pancake or steak tartare. For entrees or large plates, you can't go wrong with their fried chicken served with braised greens, chow chow and hot sauce. It might just be the best fried chicken in the city! Everything is made from scratch by Chef PJ Edwards. The restaurant also makes an effort to work with local farmers and ranchers, ensuring the dishes are fresh and made with seasonal Texas ingredients that are guaranteed to have your mouth watering!
Recommended for Romantic Dining because: Meadow offers a fun, new experience for lovers, with great local eats and drinks.
Kimberly's expert tip: Check out Meadow for brunch and enjoy some familiar and unique fare, such as their wood oven french toast and smoked gulf fish salad.
Biga on the Banks has earned a stellar reputation. Request table 31 when you make a reservation at Biga on the Banks, and you'll end up with the best view in the house. You won't be gazing at the river, but you will have an eye on chef Bruce Auden as he concocts lobster ravioli on arugula and guinea ham in guajillo sauce. Tasting menus are a draw, but the food is equally as interesting when ordered a la carte. The loft-inspired space is airy and light, but don't worry, you'll have plenty of elbow room when you dig in.
Recommended for Romantic Dining because: Biga on the Banks offers an old-world romance you can't find anywhere else in the city.
Kimberly's expert tip: This is the place to go if you want a beautiful view of the riverwalk.
NOLA Brunch and Beignets is owned and operated by one of San Antonio's most talented chefs, Pieter Sypesteyn, who originally hails from New Orleans. He introduces those authentic flavors and cuisine at this fairly new eatery, that's sole focus is brunch. What could be better than brunch that can be had on days that aren't typically reserved for brunching? You can enjoy a relaxing "brunchy" meal here every Tuesday through Sunday. The menu is full of such yummy options, it's difficult to choose. You can nosh on Hashbrown Crusted Trout, Eggs Rockafella, Bread Pudding French Toast with seasonal marmalade, a Blue Crab Omelette or Shrimp and Grits, just for starters. You'll definitely want to save room for a plate of beignets for dessert, which come in classic powdered sugar or stuffed with lemon curd or coffee and chicory. Enjoy a meal from the Big Easy in the Alamo City!
Recommended for Romantic Dining because: For a sexy brunch spot to start the day out right, nosh on some freshly-made Beignets with your love.
Kimberly's expert tip: It's brunch at NOLA Brunch and Beignets, all day, every day, Tuesday through Sunday!
Rebelle Restaurant in the newly-renovated St. Anthony Hotel has finally come to fruition and oh what a plump, juicy treat it is. Once, years ago, the restaurant at the St. Anthony was the place to go for dinner... and now it is once again! Executive Chef Stefan Bowers along with restaurateur Andrew Goodman, have already proven their talents at the successful Feast Restaurant in Southtown, San Antonio. With Rebelle, they're now well on their way to earning national attention. With Chef Bowers' gift for blending scintillating flavors and Goodman's aesthetic grace, this duo is a match made in heaven - which is what Rebelle looks like, if heaven is an enchanting, purple-hued dreamscape where the lusty libations and seductive cuisine never end. For Chef Bowers, it's all about the flavor. While the dishes are certainly thoughtfully put together, you quickly lose sight its beauty once you taste it. Chef Bowers calls it "high-risk" cuisine because if even one component of these highly composed dishes is not on point, it throws the entire dish off. The concept is shared plates of elegant, extraordinarily fresh and diverse cuisine. Rebelle is French for rebel and is their acknowledgement of the common use of French techniques used in the dishes, even though the menu is quite global. It's also the perfect description for these two men who are true to their own vision and no one else's. The menu includes the most succulent Char-Grilled Spanish Octopus with braised corona beans and basil pistou; a decadent 32 oz. Cote de Bouef (bone-in Ribeye with tarragon butter); perfectly-cooked Veal Sweetbreads with black trumpets and lobster knuckle butter and Rosemary and Red Pepper Spiced Goat Shank, to name a few. Bon appetit!
Recommended for Romantic Dining because: Rebelle screams sexy, from the decor and mood lighting to the incredible seafood and boozy cocktails!
Kimberly's expert tip: Try the "Funday," a pitcher of rum, pineapple, orange juice, pomegranate and lemon.
Not only is this Pan-Latin restaurant and bar located along San Antonio's picturesque riverwalk, but it has one of the most stunning dining rooms in the country, with a floor-to-ceiling glass wall the opens up when the weather's cool enough to enjoy it. Chef Edward Villarreal is at the helm, serving up an array of Latin-inspired breakfast dishes, from sweet plaintain griddle cakes to a Cubano con Huevo. This savvy chef is also the star of a culinary series, Homegrown Chef, that inspires gourmands to cook, eat and explore San Antonio's delicious food scene. Go for breakfast, lunch, brunch or dinner. They also offer happy hour, and good eats from their downstairs speakeasy-esque bar and late night options, when most restaurants are closing down. The perfect choice before or after an event at the Tobin, as they're within walking distance.
Recommended for Romantic Dining because: This floor-to-ceiling glass restaurant will impress that special someone! Take your date to the speakeasy bar for cocktails before or after.
Kimberly's expert tip: If you can, get a room at this beautiful historic hotel along the riverwalk.
Enjoy a little bit of France in San Antonio at this absolutely lovely Texas Brasserie, featuring specialty wines, meats and beer. One of the newest restaurants to open in the Southtown arts district, it's quickly become a local's favorite, as it offers a sophisticated and relaxed ambiance with plenty of cozy places to dine. Weather permitting, you'll definitely want to take advantage of their expansive outdoor patio. Now onto the scrumptious food! Although the menu is French-inspired, there is easily something on it that everyone will love. The Executive Chef, Chris Carlson, is a well-known force in the Alamo city, and does not disappoint. Dinner is a feast of choices, from mussels to quail, and their signature rotisserie options, including duck, a fan favorite! Good news is they're now open for lunch, dinner, and Happy Hour to boot!
Recommended for Romantic Dining because: Take your date to Paris without leaving San Antonio at this beautiful Texas Brasserie.
Kimberly's expert tip: If you can, be sure to make a reservation, as this place fills up fast for lunch or any other time.