Recently, work took me to San Antonio. I’ve been to San Antonio several times before, and wanted to get off the beaten path a little. I have normally just stayed along the Riverwalk, but after about a day that gets old. I wanted to venture out and try something more local.
I wanted to go to a place where I could drink a few beers, eat some ribs, and watch some of the NFL playoff games. After going to a sketchy bar called Texas T’s Pub, I decided to venture out. About Texas T’s: if you’ve seen Star Wars, think to the bar sceene where Luke Skywalker and Obi-Wan meet Han Solo. Texas T’s reminded me of that. My friends and I were literally the only Gringos in the place, and I felt like at any moment someone was going to tap me on the shoulder and say the didn’t like me. Unfortunately, I didn’t have a lightsaber to defend myself. I guess it wasn’t so bad, I went back there before I left.
Anway, this place called The Granary was recommended to us, so we decided to give it a try. When I walked in, I was disappointed. I was expecting somewhere like Cooper Creek in Athens, a bar that brewed their own beer and served good ole Texas cue. What I found was a fancy, foodie hipster place. The menu reminded me of something like Speak Easy, with weird BBQ combinations. The menu said for an optiminal dining experience to order several dishes, so it was kind of tapas.
The hostess said it would be an hour and half wait. We didn’t really know where we were, and had walked a long way to get there, so at this point we were commited to stay and wait it out. I had a couple of funky beers. I am not a sophisticated beer person, I like my watered down piss beers. But I ordered some pale ale and it was pretty good. If you like funky Terripan beers, this place was for you.
We ordered appetizers of Grit Fritters and Texas Toast. The Texas Toast was awesome. It was so good, we got another order of it. It was served with some BBQ butter, but that was not necessary.
The 3 of us ordered the Pork Shank, Smoked Lamb Leg, and two Barbecue Boards. The smoked pork shank was served with lentil beans and was delicious. The smoked lamb had a lot of curry, and with the cous cous, it reminded me of an Indian dish. But as odd as these two dishes were, they were both awesome.
The Barbecue Board comes standard with baked beans, potato salad and bread. The meat on the Barbecue Boards change daily, but we were in luck. We got some pulled pork and ribs on ours. It came with one rib on each plate. This presented a logisitcal nightmare: 3 dudes, two ribs. Thankfully, the waiter recognzied our delimma and brought out an extra rib.
The pork and sides were good, nothing special that you couldn’t get here at home. The potato salad was served hot and was good…different, but good.
BUT, oh my goodness. The Rib. It was just one rib, but oh my goodness it was awesome. The best rib I have ever in my life tasted. It was a piece of art. The Mona Lisa, The David, and the rib at the Granary. I asked the waiter what made it so good. The dry rub they used had the usual ingredients-brown sugar, orageno, etc., but this had something special: coffee.
It was a long walk back to the hotel, but after eating all that food it was needed. The Granary is in the old Pearl district, and apparently this is the young trendy area of town. Lots of fancy, foodie places and loft apartments.
If you are ever in San Antonio and want to depart the Riverwalk, call the Granary and first ask for a reservation. But then ask if they have the ribs. If they do, you would do yourself a big favor to hop in a cab and ride over to Avenue A.