A non-foodie tackles San Antonio’s trendy tastes

I am not a foodie. I admit that right now. To be fair, I don’t know very many people who would even call themselves that. I would like to think that college kids””people who usually do not have a reliable, full-time job that affords them a large disposable income””cannot go out to eat at fancy restaurants all the time.

Personally, I don’t really hate McDonald’s, and I might even go so far as to say that, yes, I even like it.

Don’t worry, I won’t be talking about the best McDonald’s around town. Though, now that I think about it, that does sound like a great idea for an article”¦

But what I’m really here to write about today are a couple of trendy restaurants opening up that you may not have known about. Both gained their reputation in other cities or states, and both are coming to San Antonio.


Torchy’s Tacos

Torchy’s Tacos is opening a location at Lincoln Heights (near the Quarry). It is hugely popular in Austin, Dallas and Houston, and it is finally coming to our fair city. Since we do live in San Antonio, it’s a bit surprising that we’re getting one, since we are not lacking in restaurants that serve tacos.

If you’re tired of the usual places like Chipotle or Freebirds, Torchy’s Tacos offers something different to fill your  generic and  inauthentic Mexican cuisine needs.

While I haven’t had too much Torchy’s experience, one of my close friends says that just about every dish is tasty. They even do great renditions of simple things like the potato, egg and cheese taco. Because of “the potato, the egg and, well, the cheese.”

The most popular item, judging by my very unscientific methods, is something called the trailer park taco. It is a combination of fried chicken, green chilies, lettuce, pico de gallo and cheese. You can even get it “trashy,” which means they take out the lettuce and put in queso.

As you can see, the Austin vibe really shows. How can you not love how trendy and hip this place is?


In-N-Out Burger

In-N-Out is much celebrated by people from California, the home state of the chain. It almost seems to be a requisite for California natives, which is almost ridiculous. I get it, it’s great, whatever.

Anyone with an opinion on this restaurant says that In-N-Out is the best fast-food burger and that “you have try the animal-style fries” (that’s extra sauce, grilled onions and lots of cheese on top of a basket of fries).

There are currently plans for two new locations here  in San Antonio, and while I definitely want to visit this place every once in awhile, I cannot get all that excited about it. Still, I’ll admit that putting an In-N-Out here makes sense. California is hemorrhaging people into Texas and our state’s cities are booming, so Texas is a good jumping point for In-N-Out.

The entire aesthetic reminds me of the “˜50s, which I love. It does feel weirdly  like entering a time machine. There was a guy in a Scooby-Doo van and a girl who looked like Jacqueline Crowley.

It might be more of an Austin thing, but I imagine that In-N-Out will also be quite popular with certain demographics here in SA.


The Pearl

I am being somewhat pretentious by talking about “trendy and hip” restaurants that originated in other places, so I also wanted to wrap up by mentioning one trendy option that started right here in San Antonio: the Pearl. I am sure you have heard of this place but my god, it is just cool.

I knew of the place during the day because of the Saturday morning’s Farmer’s Market. The CIA, yes that CIA, is stationed around that area and a number of restaurants hire the talented CIA students. Also, if you didn’t know, this CIA is The Culinary Institute of America.

I recently went to the Granary and I was incredibly uncomfortable, out-of-place and uncouth. I loved it though. Even as a non-foodie, I can tell you that this place is worth a try.