Hey Austinites - has it been a while since you've made the hour and a half drive down to San Antonio? Here's a tasty reason - visit the newish The Granary 'Cue & Brew in the hip reinvented Pearl District in downtown San Antonio! Luke and I headed there this weekend to visit his parents, and they said we HAD to go to The Granary - the brother owners are actually friends of Luke's from his school days!
Imagine that Lamberts and its fancy barbeque is magically transferred to San Antonio, but along the way they added the tasty beer of a microbrewery and the nice dichotomy of a traditional barbecue lunch and more upscale, adventurous options for dinner. That's what you'll find at The Granary! Their menu changes often, so this is just a taste of what you might find there.
The microbrewery aspect was a huge draw for Luke, and he wasn't disappointed with the beers they had to offer. I went with the beer cocktail route and ordered the shandy - made with their housemade rhubarb soda (they have seasonal soda offerings) and beer. So refreshing on a hot September day - I had two! They also make their own root beer, which is super flavorful! They can make you a root beer float, if you're daring enough (we wanted to save room for the main event - the meat!).
They had a strong appetizer menu, but with our eye on the prize, we just ordered a couple small things to taste while we waited. The heirloom tomato salad had a nice mix of large, juicy heirloom tomatoes and some smaller cherry tomatoes. And, interestingly enough, avocado ice cream on the side! That was a first for me (ice cream for an app, not avocado ice cream - I already know I love that!). We also enjoyed the grilled figs which weren't on the menu, paired with a cocoa "dirt" and apricot gel.
The entree menu was tough to select from - we spent a solid 5 minutes debating what to get. Luke's dad insisted on the Barbecue Board (like what you would get there for lunch) which featured brisket, pulled pork, and stellar sides of potato salad and beans. The nice thing about this was the portion - generous but definitely not too much!
For me, the highlight was the beef clod (a shoulder cut). This was a GENEROUS portion of beef and had a super flavorful crust made of quinoa and coffee, and it had a maltiness (from the tomato caramel I think, which was addictive) that Luke said reminded him of beer! This is a must-get.
A close second was the BBQ Beef ramen. I asked the server if this was more BBQ-y or ramen-y, and he said it was somewhere in the middle - dead on! Love that the noodles were cooked in their beer, and the shallots were so flavorful. Of course the BBQ was amazing, and my only complaint was that the egg was difficult to eat.
Not too sweet
The fun continues to dessert, though there were definitely some options that were stronger than others (we had all 4 items!). Notably missing (or maybe not, since we didn't realize it until we were leaving) was chocolate, but I survived :)
The buttermilk pie was divine (and Luke's family are hard core buttermilk pie fans/critics!), but the most innovative and delicious dessert was the Beer and Pretzel ice cream with mustard caramel - we loved the complex flavor and the sweetness tempered by a bit of bitterness.