Julia’s Bistro & Bar
Imagine for a minute that Julia Child grew up in San Antonio, did her stint in Paris, then returned to a modest and lively inner city neighborhood. This bistro, from the same Jean-Francois Poujol (along with chef de cuisine Zack McKinney) who brings us the cozy comfort-food cafe SoHill, right next door, puts that imagining into its menu. For example, chile relleno here is a roasted poblano filled with shredded braised lamb and goat cheese and bathed in chimichurri, wildly herbal and aromatic. Moules marinière live on the classic-French side of things, with a creamy white wine sauce, but the duck street tacos take on Mexico with stellar results, featuring lots of texture with a corn pico, cotija cheese, and a sprinkling of cilantro. Bare and spare, the dining room’s minimalist decor of Edison bulbs and exposed brick is warmed up with attentive and informed service.
City: San Antonio