Hey there. I'm looking for a little help.
Once a year I meet up with a bunch of French gastronomes in an American city; this year we're in San Antonio. I'm an Englishman living in New York; since in their eyes I am The American, it's up to me to find good places to eat.
All of us live in fantastic food cities; when we travel, we look more for an *authentic* local experience than an international class gourmet meal. For example, in New Orleans, the big hit was Uglesicht's, and not one of the nationally ranked New American joints. People have recommended Le Reve to me, but the website made the place seem stuffy, and the menu didn't seem too exhilarating; I have no doubt that it's excellent, but we won't go (unless people INSIST that we do).
I was hoping for places with good flavour - we'd really like to learn about Tex-Mex food and barbecue, Texas style. I've poked around a bit, but there's so much here! I'm definitely going to check out Willard's for jerk, and there was a restaurant an hour and a half away which sounded like an adventure.
What I'd like is to hear from you guys where we MUST go. We have five dinners, and four lunches (extra points if anyone knows of good finds near the damned convention center (the pretext for our visit)): every one of them has to count! As I say, we're willing to travel for good food.
To recap, for us it's about authentic, local, atmospheric dining; a little dirt and grime doesn't worry us. Indeed, the French love that kind of stuff - more real!
I'm counting on you: I know you'll deliver the goods...
Thanks in advance,