Mike Sutter's Top 10 San Antonio restaurants in 2022

Steak, sushi, seafood, Italian, Mexican, French, Japanese and inventive American restaurants all find a place at the table this year.

It’s been three years since the Express-News ranked San Antonio’s Top 10 restaurants. Through the pandemic closures of 2020 and the staggered restarts and painful recovery, we’ve given the city’s restaurant scene room to reboot and find its new order.

A year ago, when dining rooms returned to 100 percent capacity, we began reviewing and rating restaurants again, shifting from a four-star rating system to a more universal five-star system, evaluating the highest-profile new openings and casting fresh eyes on the city’s enduring favorites.

Five of these restaurants from 2019’s list are returning to this year’s Top 10. They’re survivors, adapters and fighters who’ve climbed back to offer the same levels of food, service and atmosphere that made them great in the first place.

Five others are new to the list, including the restaurant now at No. 1. Two are new to the city, and the other three rose to the top by not being content with merely surviving, but evolving into better versions of themselves.

With a toast to better times on the other side of the pandemic curve, here are 10 best San Antonio restaurants for 2022.

10. Pharm Table

611 S. Presa St., Suite 106

It was hard not to love the rainbow-bright, health-forward aesthetic of chef Elizabeth Johnson’s compact iteration of Pharm Table downtown. But when it moved last year to a bigger, thoroughly modern space in Southtown and added a smart wine and cocktail list, full service and a dinner menu with room for vegans, vegetarians and carnivores at the same table, Pharm Table found its voice without losing its soul. Read the review →

Website: pharmtable.com

Instagram: @pharmtable

Phone: 210-802-1860

9. Aldo’s Ristorante Italiano

22211 Interstate 10 W., Suite 1101

Handmade pasta is a rare art, and no San Antonio restaurant is making spaghetti, ravioli and angel hair better than Aldo’s. The new space at the Dominion Ridge shopping center traded the stuffy clubbiness of the original spot in the Medical Center for the dramatic sweep of an opera house, with a crackling cocktail scene, a smart European wine list and a menu that embraces pizza, pasta, chops and seafood with equal panache, guided by the steady, stylish charisma of owner Aldo Ghaffari. Read the review →

Website: aldossa.com

Instagram: @aldossatx

Phone: 210-696-2536


8. Silo Terrace Oyster Bar

22211 Interstate 10 W., Suite 1210

The flagship of Patrick and Cari Richardson’s local Silo chain, this Dominion-area designer treehouse of a space is home to San Antonio’s best seafood, with daily rotations of briny East Coast oysters, impressive fresh seafood towers and expertly grilled and roasted renditions of scallops, redfish, seabass and lobster. Read the review →

Website: siloelevatedcuisine.com

Instagram: @siloterrace

Phone: 210-698-2002

7. Clementine

2195 NW Military Highway

In the pandemic’s worst days, Clementine in Castle Hills pivoted to takeout with industrial efficiency, lining up brown-bag versions of its sprawling “Feed Me” chef’s menu and stocking cardboard caddies with bottles of wine to-go. With its charmingly spare dining room and patio back at waitlist capacity, Clementine chefs and owners John and Elise Russ are still mining the rich vein of Southern cooking with specialties like bayou-style shrimp and coconut rice, a free-ranging beet salad and hot cardamom doughnuts, along with offering some of the city’s best wine guidance. Read the review →

Website: clementine-sa.com

Instagram: @clementine.sanantonio

Phone: 210-503-5121

6. Shiro Japanese Bistro

107 W. Jones Ave.

Far and away San Antonio’s best sushi bar, Shiro brings a little West Coast swagger courtesy of chef and owner Grey Hwang, a San Diego transplant who gets his fish from the famed Tsukiji fish market in Tokyo. From that fish, he creates tight sculptures of nigiri, sashimi and sushi tapas that radiate simplicity and complexity at the same time, augmented by specialties like fried fish collars, truffled crab croquettes and sushi rolls like the buttery Lobster Robbery. Hwang conducts the Shiro symphony in a boisterous space that’s all concrete, glass and pink neon overlooking the River Walk. Read the review →

Website: shirossan.com

Instagram: @shiro_riverwalk

Phone: No phone

5. Bohanan’s Prime Steaks & Seafood

219 E. Houston St., Suite 275

The city’s best servers still call Bohanan’s home, creating an old-school, captain-style service experience that makes great cocktails, wine, steaks and seafood taste even better. Chef and owner Mark Bohanan regularly holds court in this downtown dining room straight from a hyper-stylized wiseguy movie. Everything’s back at 100 percent, from a sultry mezcal-driven old-fashioned cocktail and pan-fried bites of French-grilled oysters to a perfectly grilled bone-in prime New York strip and a coldwater lobster tail from Australia presented like a marble sculpture. Read the review →

Website: bohanans.com

Instagram: @bohanans

Phone: 210-472-2600

4. Mixtli

812 S. Alamo St., Suite 103

No single restaurant made a bigger transition during the pandemic than Mixtli, the modernist Mexican restaurant that ranked No. 1 on 2019’s list. Chefs and owners Rico Torres and Diego Galicia closed their original location in a 12-seat boxcar near Olmos Park in 2020 and reopened Mixtli last summer in a Southtown restaurant space with room for a cocktail bar and more than triple the capacity, affording the luxury of multiple seatings rather than one communal service a night. While Mixtli lost some of its intimacy and storytelling spark in the move, it preserved the same attention to detail and creative flair, with dishes like scallops presented with coconut foam and dry-ice, a radiant shrimp tamal and chopped mussels on squid ink masa. Service is up close and personal, delivered by chefs in a clean, modern space that still brings the cooks and diners together in the same room. Read the review →

Website: restaurantmixtli.com

Instagram: @mixtlicloud

Phone: 210-338-0746


3. Cured

306 Pearl Parkway, Suite 101

Cured chef and owner Steve McHugh has become the Susan Lucci of the the James Beard Awards, nominated as a finalist yet again this year for Best Chef — his sixth time, still chasing that elusive win. His continued recognition by the Oscars of food reflects the consistency of the restaurant he started in 2013 in the old administrative building in the Pearl as an homage to his Midwestern upbringing and his New Orleans kitchen experience. The gold-framed curing case in the front lobby holds the secret to Cured’s charcuterie boards, the city’s best, built with smoked duck ham, pork rillettes, aged coppa and housemade jams and pickles. The experience is rounded out by strong cocktails, aged steaks and upscale variations on heartland favorites like pork poutine with pickled cauliflower and a Frito pie made with trimmings from dry-aged rib-eye. Read the review →

Website: curedatpearl.com

Instagram: @curedatpearl

Phone: 210-314-3929

2. Bliss

926 S. Presa St.

Chef and owner Mark Bliss called the pandemic “a bizarre dream,” one that forced him to close Bliss for a while to regroup. But Bliss came out stronger on the other side, drawing from an experienced waitstaff that never misses a beat and a menu that’s not afraid to keep playing its greatest hits a decade after they debuted in Southtown. Bliss still connects with crispy oyster sliders, seared scallops with cheese grits and roasted duck with foie gras, all served in a building that combines the exposed-brick charm of an old gas station with the modern gleam of polished steel. Read the review →

Website: foodisbliss.com

Instagram: @bliss_texas

Phone: 210-225-2547

1. Brasserie Mon Chou Chou

312 Pearl Parkway, Building 2, Suite 2104

This French newcomer to the Pearl kicked off the Express-News’ revival of restaurant reviews a year ago, setting the bar high by earning all five stars of our new five-star rating system. French comfort food found its champions in steak frites, roasted rabbit and a melted cheese sandwich with raclette carved tableside. Mon Chou Chou channeled cosmopolitan style with a shellfish melange called Coquillages à la Normande and a tawny lobster bisque with a billowed crown of puff pastry. With the charismatic Philippe Placé out front and the accomplished chef Laurent Réa in the kitchen, this project from the Southerleigh Hospitality Group connects on every level, from the Parisian-style charm of its sidewalk patio, cafe-tile floor and broad wooden bar to one of the city’s warmest, most professional service experiences. Read the review →

Website: brasseriemonchouchou.com

Instagram: @brasseriemonchouchou

Phone: 210-469-3743



Mike Sutter • msutter@express-news.net  • @fedmanwalking


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