Do you Uber? Millions do, and loyal users will tell you Uber makes things easy, and perhaps that’s why the name Uber is now practically synonymous with taxi.
Uber is all the buzz in Texas media right now as the state legislature is working on a bill to give the state control over the company’s uber expansion instead of city municipalities. San Antonio recently banned the company from picking up fares in the city limits, a decision that isn’t sitting well with a lot of San Antonians. Uber opponents argue the company doesn’t do enough to research its drivers’ backgrounds, a claim Uber says isn’t true. A criminal case involving an Uber driver in Houston is fueling that debate.
Meanwhile, loyal users continue to sing Uber’s praises. Once you try the ride sharing service, you just might join their ranks.
It’s easy to use the service. The Uber app allows you to submit a trip request which is then routed to crowd-sourced taxi drivers who use their own vehicles. In Austin, one of the drivers uses a Rolls Royce [above]! Pricing is similar to metered taxis, although payment is handled exclusively through Uber and not with the driver personally.
Uber has changed the way many wine and dine, providing an easy alternative for transportation after an evening of great food and wine. Now you can credit up to $30 on your first ride with Uber! Enter the secret promo code via the link below and start saving… 😉
Here’s your ticket to the open road (without having to drive or navigate), as well as awesome food & drink in the ‘South Texas Triangle’ of San Antonio, Houston and Austin. Some of the SA spots are in the city limits but just barely. Maybe Uber one way and taxi home if you live nearby…
Aldaco’s Dominion. There isn’t much La Maestra Blanca Aldaco can’t teach us about traditional Mexican cuisine. The newest location of her wildly successful restaurant and cantina is nestled against a green belt near the prestigious Dominion neighborhood. It boasts two private dining areas, a rather zesty Shrimp/Oyster bar and the same family-inspired recipes Blanca is known locally for. Have you tried her award-winning Avocado Margarita (as seen on the Today Show)? Hop to it…it’s 5 o’clock somewhere! 😉
Aldaco’s – Dominion
22211 Interstate 10 Frontage Rd
San Antonio, TX 78257
Smoke: The Restaurant. We’ve tracked Smoke “The Truck” and its every move since its inception in late 2014. Chefs Brian West & Ronald Green are now set to expand their penchant for BBQ with no boundaries to a brick and mortar location opening at the end of April on the city’s north side in Stone Oak! Stoke the fire and see what all the buzz is about…
Smoke (COMING SOON!)
700 E. Sonterra Blvd
San Antonio, TX 78258
The Original Rudy’s “Country Store” And Bar-B-Q. The original location up W. IH-10 at Leon Springs is home to the ‘WORST Bar-B-Q in Texas’ if you ask them. If you ask us, they’ve also got quite a sense of humor. Rudy’s is one of those local gems you take out-of-towners to just to show off. It’s real Texas BBQ the way it ought to be…smoky, saucy and sizzling. My personal favorite menu item is the Smoked Turkey Breast. The Beef Brisket and Rudy’s legendary Sause are also UBER popular. 😉
Every day of the week military men and women receive a 10% discount on their entire meal. Gotta love that!
Rudy’s – Leon Springs
24152 W. IH 10
San Antonio, TX 78257
Silo Terrace Oyster Bar. Selections change daily at Silo’s latest offshoot of elevated cuisine – their Terrace Oyster Bar, out IH-10 not far from our Aldaco’s and Rudy’s selections above. Here they speak ‘Oyster-ology’ and you have the option to order individually or by the half dozen with oysters flown in from all along the east coast…Maine, Connecticut and Martha’s Vineyard to name a few.
Both lunch and dinner also feature cold bar selections such as crab, lobster and shrimp, in addition to plates for the table to be washed down with signature cocktails like El Diablo, a refreshing, tequila-based drink to tango with.
Silo Terrace Oyster Bar
22211 IH10 Werst 78257
Masraff’s. It’s no wonder Travel & Leisure recently crowned Houston as the #1 spot for ‘food snobs’ in America — the pickings are plenty! One restaurant that holds a special places in my heart (and stomach!) is Masraff’s in Uptown…I’ve been coming here with my husband for years. It’s location in the heart of the Galleria area lends itself appropriately to the cuisine: contemporary American with a touch of elegance. The business crowd can attest.
Special events are off the charts here with Masraff’s often playing host to some of the top wine dinners in all of Houston. Their Colossal Crab Cakes are some of the best I’ve ever had!
1753 Post Oak Blvd.
Houston, TX 77056
Caracol Restaurant – Mexican Coastal Cuisine. Prepare for a fury of flavors at Caracol. The vibrant kitchen a few blocks down from Masraff’s provides a tour de taste of Mexico’s 16 coastal states. Celebrity Chef Hugo Ortega is the brainchild behind the variety of colorful seafood you’ll discover here, while his brother Ruben, a talented pastry chef, handles dessert. That’s where you’re in for a treat! All roads lead back to Caracol’s artisan chocolate made the old fashioned way, entirely from scratch…
2200 Post Oak Blvd #160
Houston, TX 77056
Harwood Grill. Top-tier steak is still on the menu at the former 60 Degrees Mastercrafted in River Oaks. This upscale concept restaurant is set to have a more casual approach focused around HeartBrand Akaushi steaks and burgers…though not a $200 burger as its predecessor once teased.
Houston, Texas 77098
Pax Americana. Pax Am opened last summer to what seemed like instant fanfare. With a dining room designed to awaken your inner extrovert (seating is banquet-style tables), polite conversation with your neighbor (stranger or not) recalls days of old, or, let’s say pre cell phones. The food is contemporary American and comes in small plates, so it’s good for sampling, switching, mixing and munching on a little of this and that. The star when Goodtaste was last there had to be the Grilled Octopus with bacon-braised kale in a cauliflower-anchovy puree. Sweet, savory and utterly masterful.
4319 Montrose Blvd.
Houston, TX 77006
Barlata Tapas Bar. For cuisine indigenous to northern Spain, head to South Lamar. Barlata is rustic and refined, featuring numerous tapas, larger plates and paella. Barlata translates roughly to “the can bar,” a purposeful nod to latas, small tins of gourmet, ready-to-eat veggies, meat and seafood, preserved in brine–an integral part of the tapas culture. Here are two recipes from Chef Daniel Olivella we love:
— Gambas Al Ajillo (Shrimp with garlic and adobo)
— Arros Negre (Black rice with squid & clams)
1500 S. Lamar Blvd #150
Austin, TX 78704
Olivia. The setting is modern, bright and inviting at Olivia. Brunch here is amazing with staples like the Olivia Benedict and Eggs Florentine grounding a menu otherwise in flux, based on the current season and what’s available locally. You’ll quickly see why Bon Appétit named it one of the best new restaurants in America its debut year in 2009. Dinner includes the option of a Tasting Menu (offered Sunday-Thursday) with 6 or 10 courses…full table participation is required!
2043 S. Lamar Blvd
Austin, TX 78704
Second Bar + Kitchen. “Natural American” in a dynamite location in downtown Austin, Second Bar + Kitchen is lauded for accessible, farm-to-table fare from rotisserie selections and salads to sandwiches, pizzas and desserts. Their Pepperoni Soup is a standout that’s offered year-round, made with San Marzano tomatoes, Mozzarella, and plated with garlic croutons [below]. Craft and local beers are available for purchase, as is your choice of more than 20 wines by the glass.
Second Bar + Kitchen
200 Congress Ave.
Austin, TX 78701
Salty Sow. This East Side American Gastropub is housed in what was once a general store operated by jazz pianist, Robert Shaw, just blocks from downtown and the University of Texas. Salty Sow serves local, mindfully sourced food and hand-crafted cocktails in a cozy ‘farmhouse’ atmosphere. Don’t miss out on their remaining James Beard House Preview Dinner on Wednesday, April 22nd. Items include the following recipes paired off with seasonal wines and ales.
1917 Manor Road
Austin, Texas 78722