Last Friday night, after a solid Howl at the Moon happy hour where we maxed our credit cards and got kicked out of the bar, we hit the boulevard and headed down to First Friday in Southtown. The first stop, naturally, was the Blue Star Brewing Co. for some post-Howl grub. It was a great idea. So great, in fact, that everyone else in the city had the same idea. Meaning the wait was over an hour. After signing in with the hosts, perusing the subtly shocking exhibit by John Webb titled “Bodies of Work” (spoiler alert: bodies. Er, body parts. Private ones.) at the Blue Star Contemporary Art Center, and buying sausage on a stick in the parking lot, the wait was STILL an hour. Person whose name was after mine in the queue: you’re welcome. I left.
A short stroll north on South Alamo led me to stumble upon something bright, shiny, extremely trendy, and brand spankin’ new: FEAST. Open just since September, Feast in King William by Chef Stefan Bowers offers small fancy plates and royally rad cocktails. Also – BIG NEWS – Sunday brunch at Feast is slated to begin THIS SUNDAY, folks. That means you could be one of the first to try it, AND, even better, you might see me there.
So, let’s talk food. On their dinner menu, noshables are descriptively categorized as Hot, Chilled, Grilled, Crispy, Melted, or Mains. Did I mention how trendy this place is? I’ll hit you with my thoughts on items from a couple of categories. If you have a hankerin’ for Hot (but not too weird), try out the Spice Barbacoa. Served on a long, skinny, and very chic rectangular plate, you’ll likely drip barbacoa juice on the table and look like a fool. So maybe ask for a small round plate. The very yummy barbacoa is complemented by a garlic yogurt and comes served in lettuce wraps. These are great to share with the table, but also work as an entrée if you split one or two other small plates. In the Crispy section, while the Fried Calamari wasn’t anything to write home about, it earned some points with me because there was not a tentacle in sight. (I love creatures of the sea, but I don’t necessarily want to see them on my plate looking almost the same as when they are still kickin’ it in the sea, you know what I mean?) The adult chicken fingers are good, but even better is the coriander cream that accompanies them. Moving on to Melted, the Stuffed Grape Leaves were QUITE tasty. Filled with goat cheese, they’re a far cry from your typical Greek dolma, but very flavorful and rich. I’ll definitely get these puppies again. Finally, let’s talk Jack Cheese Mac: a little bit creamy, a little bit crunchy, Feast has successfully made it cool for humans over the age of 6 to order mac and cheese.
The ambiance of Feast is (have I mentioned yet?) VERY HIP. And I’m not just talking minimalist-menu-with-one-and-two-digit-prices-and-no-decimals-hip; no, I mean the degree of hip that requires clear chairs, sparkly modern chandeliers, model-like waiters, oddly shaped plates, and thumping music fit for a club. Oh, and fiber optic hanging light balls outside. Yes, FIBER OPTIC! Food-wise, Feast would be a great place to go with a small group so you could sample lots of menu items. Vibe-wise, you should take (a) anyone who thinks they’re cool to prove to them that, no, they’re not, or (b) anyone whose car has a bumper sticker that says Keep San Antonio Lame.
Feast is for sure a needed and very unique addition to the ‘hood. As evidenced by my affinity for hot dogs and the fact that I accidentally wore Converse into Feast (oops?), I’m perhaps not quite as trendy as their target audience. But believe you me, as those Brussels sprouts on the menu that I have yet to try are my witness, I plan on faking it from time to time.