First Thursday Night Markets at Pearl

First Thursday Night Markets at Pearl begin this Thursday March 1, 2018.  Photo: Pearl, used with permission.

Pearl’s First Thursdays has a new format that will allow guests to enjoy the best of the Farmers Market vendors. This Thursday March 1 from 4p.m. to 8p.m. is the inaugural First Thursday Night Markets with select local vendors and entertainment taking place every first Thursday throughout the year.  These events feature live music and dining and shopping specials for the ultimate local shopping experience. (Pearl, 2018)

Over 20 Pearl Farmers’ Market vendors will set up shop on Pearl Parkway, offering their latest products and handmade goods. These will include PAWSitively Sweet Bakery,  Organic Chix, Ms. Chocolatier, Braune Farms, River Whey Creamery, Holdman Honey, Happy Earth Garden, Talking Tree Farm, Poteet Country Winery, Bending Branch Winery, Grain Free Haven,  Madge’s Food Company, Byccombe Natural Solutions, Ricerise,  Lil Red’s Boiled Peanuts, Wildflower Caramels, Al’s Gourmet Nuts, Deep River Specialty Foods, Ming’s Thing, Sol Y Luna Bakery, Parker Creek Ranch, Peaceful Pork, Texas Black Gold Garlic, Wild Roots and Mother Culture.

Indie rock band St. Dukes will perform at Pearl Parkito throughout the evening and activities will include cornhole boards on the lawn outside of Cured. Guests can enjoy specials from select Pearl retailers with special offerings like Hiatus Spa + Retreat’s five-minute mini lift with Nuface and skin consultation, High Street Wine Co.’s complimentary wine tastings and discounts for night market patrons. Happy hours from Cured and Jazz, TX will be available, as well as specials and discounts from Nao, Larder, Lick Honest Ice Creams and more.

Pearl Parkito
306 Pearl Pkwy
San Antonio, TX 78215


Book review: ‘Quietus’ by Vivian Schilling

‘Quietus’ is a suspenseful thriller by Vivian Schilling.  Courtesy photo used with permission.

Vivian Schilling is an American novelist, screenwriter, actress and independent filmmaker. The award-winning author has written the novels ‘Sacred Prey’ and ‘Quietus,’ both of which take place in a supernatural setting and tackle the themes of immortality, existentialism and religious conflict. ‘Quietus’ is a psychological thriller about a young woman brought back from the brink of death to find the world around her forever altered. It will be reissued on Tuesday February 27, 2018.

At the beginning of ‘Quietus,’ Kylie O’Rourke, her husband Jack, her best friend Amelia Blackwell and her husband Dix Hamilton are aboard a small plane headed for Boston through the White Mountains. The flight is uneventful until the weather takes a turn for the worse and the plane goes down in sub-freezing temperatures. Kylie wakes up in the hospital still groggy from the medication and afterwards starts having memories of the crash and events the other survivors do not remember. Putting all that aside, she returns to her normal life, but the memories, nightmares and visions remain, and she starts questioning the events of that night and her own sanity. As the other survivors start dying from suicide, accidents and other tragic deaths, she becomes increasingly paranoid and desperate to filter the real from the imaginary in a desperate attempt to escape a supernatural force determined to even the scales of fate.

It is difficult to describe exactly what type of novel ‘Quietus’ is. Part psychological thriller, part sci-fi/fantasy, it is a suspenseful tale that grabs the reader and does not let go until the shocking conclusion. The language is easy to understand and at 500-plus pages, the action does not falter. As each character succumbs to the inevitable in the Final Destination-like storyline, it is heart-breaking to see them go. Fans of art history are in for a treat in Book Two, Chapter Eighteen when one of Kylie’s clients, an art connoisseur, starts explaining the background of the statues that have Kylie so intrigued. Beautifully written, the fantasy sequences are incredibly realistic and haunting. The personification of Death as someone from Kylie’s past is genius, and, in the end, Death collects the souls it is due because they were never meant to survive the accident. ‘Quietus’ is recommended for fans of gothic novels who appreciate aspects of fantasy, suspense and psychological thrillers mixed in just to keep things interesting.

*A copy of this book was given for an honest review. The opinions expressed here are solely the author’s.

‘Wit’ at The Public Theater of San Antonio

‘Wit’ opens Friday February 23 at The Public Theater of San Antonio’s Cellar Theater.  Photo: Jeremy Whittington, used with permission.

Up next at The Public Theater of San Antonio is ‘Wit,’ a one-act play by American playwright Margaret Edson. The winner of the 1999 Pulitzer Prize for Drama, it opens this Friday February 23 at the Cellar Theater and runs until Sunday March 11, 2018. Show times are Thursday, Friday and Saturday at 7:30p.m. and Sundays at 2p.m. Prices are $35 for general adult, $25 for military with valid ID, $25 for seniors aged 60 and older and $20 for students with valid ID. Additional ticket service fees may apply and discounts are available for groups of ten or more. Tickets are available online and at the box office at (210) 733-7258. (The Public Theater of San Antonio, 2018)

‘Wit’ tells the story of Vivian Bearing, a renowned English professor, who is diagnosed with terminal ovarian cancer. The action takes place during her final hours as she recalls the initial diagnosis and looks back on her life through the intricacies of the English language, especially with wit and using the metaphysical poetry of John Donne. She reassesses her life and her work with a profundity and humor that are transformative both for her and the audience. The cast includes Diana Trotter as Vivienne Bearing, PH. D, Shane Vickers as Harvey Kelekian, M.D., Brendan Brady as Jason Posner, M.D., Erin Polewski as Susie Monahan, R.N., B.S.N, Linda Ford as E.M. Ashford and Sam Mandelbaum, Michael Zaiontz and Kimberlyn Kacie as Ensemble cast members.

Disclaimer: this show contains adult themes and content.

The Public Theater of San Antonio
Cellar Theater
800 W Ashby Place
San Antonio, TX 78212
(210) 733-7258

DIY ideas for National Margarita Day

DIY ideas for National Margarita Day. Photo: Twang, used with permission.

Thursday February 22 is National Margarita Day and for anyone looking for some last-minute DIY cocktail ideas, Twang is sharing a twist on the typical margarita and a recipe using their products. Anyone can use these ideas to create their own cocktail in the comfort of their own home. Twang is a family-owned and operated creator and manufacturer of premium-flavored salts, sugars and seasonings based in Texas. Twang’s product lines include Twang-A-RitaBeer Salt and more, all designed to easily add flavor to drinks and elevate at-home alcoholic beverages to cocktail bar status. Twang’s products are available throughout the country in 46 states, in grocery stores, convenience stores and online. (Twang, 2018)

Orange Pomegranate Margarita:
1 oz. pomegranate juice
1 oz. orange juice
.5 oz fresh lime juice
2 oz Tequila Blanco
1/2 oz Cointreau
1/2 oz light agave syrup
Twang-A-Rita Golden Roar Salt

Prepare the glass. Drag a cut lime around the rim of the glass. Dip the rim in Twang-A-Rita GOLD salt. Make the drink. Combine ice, agave, pomegranate, orange and lime juice with the tequila and Cointreau in a cocktail shaker. Shake vigorously and then pour into chilled, ice-filled glass or mason jar.

Margarita Con Twang:
Ice cubes
3 oz tequila
2 oz freshly squeezed lime juice
1 oz Simple Syrup
1/2 to 1 teaspoon orange liqueur
1 tablespoon Lime-salt-sugar
2 tablespoons of Twang-A-Rita Unwind Lime Salt

Rim a glass with Twang-A-Rita Lime Salt and set aside. Fill a cocktail shaker with ice. Add tequila, lime juice, Simple Syrup and orange liqueur. Cover and shake until mixed and chilled, about 30 seconds. In general, the drink is ready by the time the shaker mists up. Place Lime-salt-sugar on a plate. Press the rim of a chilled rocks mason jar or wine glass into the mixture to rim the edge. Strain margarita into the glass.

Whataburger Oh Whata Night to benefit Harlan High Class of 2020

The next Whataburger Oh Whata Night fundraiser on Thursday February 22 will benefit Harlan High School Class of 2020. Photo: Whataburger, used with permission.

Whataburger periodically hosts events to help the community and its various schools. These events have ranged from “Oh Whata Nights” to jalapeño eating contests, drawings and raffles. This Thursday February 22 from 5p.m. to 8p.m., Whataburger is hosting a fundraiser to benefit Harlan High School Class of 2020. The public is invited to come and show their support by enjoying their favorite menu items and during the posted hours, Whataburger will donate 20 percent of the sales to the students. Attendees who present an official school ID will have a chance to win “Whataburger For a Year” – where one customer’s name will be drawn to win the prize, a free Whataburger each week for an entire year. The first 100 guests will receive a free Whataburger sports bottle. This Whata Night fundraiser will be at the posted location only. (Whataburger, 2018)

Whataburger has been making burgers since 1950 when Harman Dobson opened a humble hamburger stand in Corpus Christi, Texas. He wanted customers to take one bite and say, “What a burger” so he named his stand on Ayers St “Whataburger.” Whataburger now has over 700 locations across the country and continues to deliver fresh, made to order meals everyday with superior customer service. Community support includes charitable giving and volunteerism to nonprofit organizations that focus on children’s charities, cancer research, hunger assistance, disaster relief and military support.

5760 W Loop 1604 N (near Culebra Rd)
San Antonio, TX 78251
(210) 688-6335

Bakery Lorraine opens location at the RIM
Bakery Lorraine’s new location at the RIM is now open for business.  Photo: Josh Huskin, used with permission.

On Monday February 12, Bakery Lorraine, a local favorite and nationally recognized pastry shop famous for its colorful macarons and exquisite French pastries, opened its third location in San Antonio. Located at the RIM shopping center, Bakery Lorraine’s menu offers pastries, breakfast, brunch, lunch and dinner. This location also offers beer and wine service. (Bakery Lorraine, 2018)

Owned by chefs Anne Ng, Jeremy Mandrell and operator Charlie Biedenharn, Bakery Lorraine has quickly become a sensation in San Antonio. It was named one of the best new bakeries in the U.S. by Food & Wine and CNN’s Eatocracy blog, as well as one of the “13 Destination Bakeries” by Conde Nast Traveler.

Partners Jeremy Mandrell and Anne Ng met while baking at Thomas Keller’s world-famous Bouchon Bakery in Napa Valley and after perfecting their craft in California, they settled in San Antonio in 2010 and in 2011 they established Bakery Lorraine. Bakery Lorraine serves handmade French pastries and macarons using the finest ingredients. From the best flours and seasonal fruits to farm-raised eggs and dairy, Bakery Lorraine is elevating the way cookies and croissants are perceived in San Antonio. This new location features breakfast items, including the breakfast parfait, the quiche Lorraine and breakfast sandwiches and a variety of savory lunch dishes, including an assortment of salads and soups and artisan sandwiches. Business hours are 8a.m. to 9p.m. daily

Bakery Lorraine
17503 La Cantera Pkwy #108
San Antonio, TX 78253
(210) 415-4066

Special Lent menu at Whataburger

For those observing the Lenten season, Whataburger has a special menu.  Photo: Whataburger, used with permission.

The Lenten season is here and for those who opt to go meatless on Fridays, Whataburger is offering customers the Whatacatch fish sandwich and Whatacatch dinner to accommodate and provide more ways for our customers to enjoy their meals “just like they like it.” (Whataburger, 2018)

The Whatacatch sandwich includes a wild-caught Alaskan Pollock fish fillet with southern-style cornmeal breading, served on a toasted four-inch bun, accompanied with crisp lettuce and topped off with Whataburger’s original tartar sauce. The Whatacatch dinner includes two all-white fish fillets, French fries and Whataburger’s tartar sauce.

Whataburger has been making burgers since 1950 when Harman Dobson opened a humble hamburger stand in Corpus Christi, Texas. He wanted customers to take one bite and say, “What a burger” so he named his stand on Ayers St “Whataburger.” Whataburger now has over 700 locations across the country and continues to deliver fresh, made to order meals everyday with superior customer service. Community support includes charitable giving and volunteerism to nonprofit organizations that focus on children’s charities, cancer research, hunger assistance, disaster relief and military support.

Boiler House and Witte Museum host ‘Dinner in the Wild’

Boiler House and the Witte Museum are hosting ‘Dinner in the Wild’ on Wednesday March 21.  Photo: Boiler House, used with permission.

Boiler House Texas Grill & Wine Garden has partnered with the Witte Museum for ‘Dinner in the Wild,’ a specialty charity event featuring renowned local chefs. This multi-coursed ticketed dinner will take place on Wednesday March 21 from 6:30p.m. to 9:30p.m. There are a limited number of tickets available online for $250 per person. Guests will be able to experience an exclusive evening of fine dining centered around the “Texas Wildlife” theme, combining ingredients from the state’s land, water and sky. (Boiler House Texas Grill & Wine Garden, 2018)

The evening will begin with cocktails and passed hors d’oeuvres in the newly transformed Witte galleries, followed by a multi-course twilight dinner created by top local chefs with al fresco style seating options in the Texas Wild Garden space. Participating chefs led by Boiler House Chef Jarrad Gwaltney include Jeff Balfour from Southerleigh, Jason Dady from Tre Trattoria, Tim McDiarmid from Tim the Girl Catering and Anne Ng and Jeremy Mandrell from Bakery Lorraine. Witte Museum curators Helen Holdsworth, Curator of Texas Wild and Dr. Bryan Bayles, Curator of Anthropology and Health, will work with the chefs and their courses to explore the significance of the South Texas region in the past, present and future of the state and how each person can have a profound impact on the stewardship of Texas’ land, water and sky. The event is co-chaired by Emily and Bo Conrad, as well as Carol and Fred Reyes.  Texas’ own singer-songwriter Luis Rey will be providing the evening’s entertainment.

All proceeds from the event go directly towards ensuring all K-12 students on field-trips to the Witte Museum get to experience San Antonio’s official Tricentennial exhibition, ‘Confluence and Culture: 300 Years of San Antonio History.’ This fundraiser covers all aspects of the field-trip costs including buses, gas, general admission and Tricentennial programming for students.

Witte Museum
3801 Broadway St
San Antonio, TX 78209
(210) 357-1900

National Margarita Day on February 22

The Prickly Pear Margarita at Hotel Contessa. Photo: Hotel Contessa, used with permission.

Thursday February 22 is National Margarita Day and San Antonio has plenty of places to get a margarita, whether authentic or creative. When it comes to downtown, Downstairs at the Esquire is the place for a simple, traditional, tequila-forward margarita and at the Cork Bar at the beautiful Hotel Contessa, guests can try their prickly pear margarita. At the Pearl, the house cocktails at Sternewirth at Hotel Emma include La Babia Margarita and Pony Tricks. For those in New Braunfels, Krause’s Café features margaritas on tap featuring fresh citrus and served on the rocks. (The Esquire Tavern, Pearl, Krause’s Café, 2018)

Rosella at the Rand is the recently-opened restaurant with a full bar that is livening up downtown San Antonio. They are celebrating by offering a special, off-menu cocktail called The Rosella Margarita ($9) on February 22. The signature recipe below was created by Jesse Torres, Bar Manager at Rosella at the Rand.

The Rosella Margarita:
1 oz Cimarron Tequila Blanco
1/2 oz Arette Tequila Reposado
3/4 oz Combier
3/4 oz Lime Juice
1/4 oz Simple Syrup

Shake well with ice and serve either up or on the rocks in chilled, salt-rimmed glasses. Express the oils of an orange over the drink and garnish with a lime wedge.

‘The Balcony’ at The Public Theater of San Antonio

Walter Sanders, III as Lee Johnson in ‘The Balcony’ at The Public Theater of San Antonio.  Photo: The Public Theater of San Antonio, used with permission.

Coming up at The Public Theater of San Antonio this month is ‘The Balcony.’ It will play in the Cellar Theatre on Tuesday February 27 and Wednesday February 28 at 7:30p.m. as part of Black History Month. Tickets are $20 and are available online or at the box office at (210) 733-7258. (The Public Theater of San Antonio, 2018)

Set in 1913, ‘The Balcony’ is a historical fiction production about a young Black man named Lee Johnson. Mr. Johnson is accused of murdering San Antonio’s most beloved physician, Dr. Augustus Maverick and the city of San Antonio is up in arms, threatening to lynch the young man before he has his day in court. To keep him from being killed by the 1,500 angry citizens in the street outside the courthouse, the Bexar County Judge hides the young man in his chambers. The trial testimony reveals some surprises that no one anticipated but Mr. Johnson becomes a victim of his circumstances.

‘The Balcony’ is an original play written by attorney and author Lee Cusenbary, who has been a contributing writer to The Renaissance Guild’s series “Divas and Men of Eastwood,” receiving the Best Script Award from ATAC for his script, “Men of Eastwood,” produced at the Carver Center. It stars Walter Sanders, III as Lee Johnson, Tyler Askins as Sidney Overton, Kimberly Askins as Mary Overton/Fena Nussbaum, Judge Philip Kazen as Judge Charles Anderson, Scott Leibowitz as District Attorney A.B. Storey, Robert Mortiz as Dr. L.L. Shropshire, John Heller as Bailiff Fred Barnes and Rebekah Williams as Mable Lewis.

The Public Theater of San Antonio
800 West Ashby Place
San Antonio, TX 78212
(210) 733-7258