You've been walking up and down the River Walk for hours, and now you're starved. Climb one of the many staircases leading to the streets above the river, and you will find some nice, quiet dining. Take our advice: Pick one of these spots.
Visit The Original Blanco Café
Walk three blocks from the river to Blanco Café. Stop here for lunch or breakfast, which is served all day. Albert San Miguel will greet you as you walk in. He and his wife, Graciela, own the cafe, which his father opened 31 years ago.
The food here is plentiful and made with care. Steaming tortillas, which follow Albert's mother's recipe, are made from 5 a.m. until closing. They are a perfect accompaniment to queso or are delicious eaten with butter. For breakfast, try the chilaquiles--scrambled eggs, corn chips, tomatoes, peppers, and onions ($5.49). The Deluxe Mexican Dinner, a lunch favorite, includes rice and beans, a crispy taco, a chalupa, three enchiladas, plus tortillas--all for $6.99. Don't forget to order a tall glass of fresh-squeezed lemonade. 419 North St. Mary's Street; (210) 271-3300. Hours: 5:30 a.m.-3 p.m Monday-Friday, 6 a.m.-2 p.m. Saturday.
More Than Sushi at Sushi Zushi
This restaurant is the place to dine when you want to stay close to the River Walk but escape the crowds. Sushi Zushi highlights traditional Japanese dishes, but the most fun ones combine local flavors, such as cilantro and jalapeños, with traditional Asian ingredients. The San Antonio Roll ($10) wraps crabmeat in salmon and cucumber and is topped with a spicy sauce. The Toreado Roll ($10), made with crab, scallops, and avocado, is served warm. The Texas Roll ($8.50) features roast beef, of course. If you're not in the mood for sushi, try the rice and noodle dishes, which are flavorful and beautifully presented. 203 South St. Mary's Street; (210) 472-2900. Hours: 11:30 a.m.-10 p.m. Monday-Thursday, 11:30 a.m.-11 p.m Friday, 12:30-11 p.m. Saturday, 5-9 p.m. Sunday.
Have a Seat at The Davenport
Not hungry, but still want to stop for a rest? Then try The Davenport, a cool lounge with a retro feel. The glass walls facing the street are perfect for watching passersby. Both locals and visitors alike gather here for conversation. Bartenders are on hand to mix anything to your liking, from the classics to refreshing watermelon martinis. 200 East Houston Street; (210) 354-1202. Hours: 2 p.m.-2 a.m. Monday-Saturday, 6 p.m.-2 a.m. Sunday.
This article is from the September 2005 issue of Southern Living. Because prices, dates, and other specifics are subject to change, please check all information to make sure it's still current before making your travel plans.