Nao: Interwoven Education and Food Perfection

I love the concept of Nao.  It’s a capstone class for the Culinary Institute of America students where they get to work both the back and the front of the house to really understand and appreciate how a restaurant functions.  The flavor has always tended to that of Latin America, but they seem to recently have moved away from the small plate format to a combination of small plates and main courses.  I like this much better as it allows for a little sharing at the beginning of dinner, but then you get a yummy meal that’s all yours (unless your husband likes your dinner better)! Continue reading

Saveurs 209 est très magnifique!


sleek & modern

During my little hiatus, several new restaurants have popped up in our lovely city.  One that we’ve had our eye on is Saveurs 209 — a little French restaurant downtown that’s been getting some rave reviews!

Parking is a little bit of a pickle (but it’s worth the little bit of trouble).  There is no valet and street parking is tight.  We found a spot in the St. Anthony’s lot for $10 — a little pricey but only a block and a half away.  When we walked in the restaurant, we were pleasantly surprised by the cheerful modern decor.  The small space seemed very open because of the white paint and orange accents.  The cute orange lanterns and modern orange chairs were a nice touch! Continue reading

Hoping Sustenio Will Sustain

It’s been a while, fellow diners! A little break was all I needed to shed those “memories of meals past” that I carried with me.  Mostly on my thighs.

I’ve heard both good and bad about Sustenio and J has been there for lunch, and we figured we’d try it out with a couple of our dining buddies, M&M, before they move back to Houston.   The only consistent commentary I’ve heard about Sustenio is that it’s in a weird place.   That is definitely true.



As we pulled up to the massive Eilan retail/residential/hotel space in which Sustenio resides, I felt as if we were in Vegas.  Well, except there were no cars in the parking lot, no people in sight, and there was an eerie abandoned quietness that made me think we should turn back.   I was waiting for the tumbleweed to blow by, but J assured me that he had been to Sustenio for lunch and that it really did exist, so we pressed on.  The question is, can a restaurant succeed in a venue that is so empty and off the beaten path?   I hope so! Continue reading

The Slow Food Movement has Arrived in San Antonio

A huge thank you to the Rivard Report for highlighting the efforts of Slow Food South Texas today.  I was especially fortunate to speak with the gang from the San Antonio Food Bank Catalyst Catering program.  Thank you Joe Domiguez (Executive Chef), David Rodriguez (staff chef), Robert Gratteau (student), and Rudy Fernandez (student) for giving me a new appreciation for, and perspective on, slow food and its place in our community.  Read the article here on The Rivard Report.

Slow Food Harvest Gala: Silent Auction Items Needed!

Next Saturday, November 3, Slow Food South Texas will hold its 2nd annual Harvest Gala and accompanying silent auction.  This year, like last, the funds raised at the Harvest Gala will go to support educational programs, farm dinners, and cooking classes to expose people to the joy of growing, preparing and eating healthy food.

As a local dining blogger, I am a strong advocate of local restaurants, food producers and accessibility to local, healthy food – for everyone.  My favorite Slow Food effort is the cultivation of gardens currently growing at two local schools.  Every two weeks, Slow Food volunteers visit these schools and teach students how to tend a garden and what to do with the garden’s harvest. Teaching children the value of home- or locally-grown healthy food is important to our community’s health, the environment and our local economy.

This year we’re committed to making the Harvest Gala an even bigger success and we are hoping you (or someone you know!) will help by making a donation to our silent auction. In the past, local businesses and individual contributors have generously donated a variety of items for the auction, such as:

  • Tickets to local sporting events or shows
  • Private in-home cooking lessons
  • Gift certificates to local restaurants and shops
  • Locally made crafts and works of art
  • Passes to local events, amusement parks, or other attractions
  • Signed cookbooks

These are just a few examples of suitable silent auction items – we certainly encourage creativity in your support!  Last year’s event sold out and with a strong lineup of local celebrity chefs featured at this year’s gala, the event is sure to be a success.

Confirmed chefs include:

  • Michael Sohocki of Restaurant Gwendolyn
  • Steve McHugh, formerly of Lüke, currently planning the opening of his own restaurant!
  • John Russ of Lüke
  • Chad Carey of The Monterey
  • Chefs from The Culinary Institute of America, San Antonio
  • Tim the Girl, Chef and Caterer Extraodinaire
  • Joe Dominguez of the SA Food Bank
  • Chefs from the Culinary program at The Art Institute
  • Plus, more to come!

Visit the Slow Food website to learn more about the organization.  You can find more information on the Harvest gala on the website as well.  If you have additional questions, please reach me via email at sa.palate at

Old School Cooking with Chef Michael

Exciting news!  Check out The Rivard Report for a write-up of our experience in Chef Michael Sohocki’s (of Gwendolyn) cooking series sponsored by Slow Food South Texas.  There are four classes left in the series – join us!


It’s True: Food IS Bliss

We’d been hearing great things about Bliss for a while now, but just made it there a couple of weeks ago.  The restaurant’s website states that “food is bliss” and after this dining experience, I agree!  Located in Southtown, this trendy spot has plenty of parking, a cute bar and some outdoor seating. Continue reading