If you enjoy farmer’s markets, live music, quaint shops, and delicious restaurants, then I have the ideal place for you to visit:
Pearl. (More formally known as Historic Pearl.)
Located near downtown San Antonio & established in 1983, Pearl is a historic brewery that transformed to a 22-acre hot spot. (Before planning a visit, consider staying in the on-site Emma hotel!)
Pearl is dog-friendly & has one-of-a-kind shopping, restaurants that are sure to please any palette, & a farmer’s market that takes you to a magical place. No, that’s not the alcohol talking; I am completely sober in a coffee shop right now. Bookmark this page. I am about to tell you how to spend your Saturday (or Sunday) making memories on the Pearl grounds in San Antonio, TX.
9:15 am: Bakery Lorraine
Stop here first for a raspberry cheese danish, in-house “pop tart,” or avocado toast. Get your morning energy with a chai tea latte or an iced vanilla latte. You will not be disappointed. This bakery takes me back to our magical honeymoon & the corner Parisian cafe’s we loved so much. Give me all the coffee & pastries, please!
10:00 am: Farmer’s Market Browsing
When you walk around, be sure to stop at all the vendors & try whatever it is they have to offer. That’s right- the best part of Christmas markets or mall food stores- the FREE samples. You will get anything from homemade cheese to decadent caramels (Sundays only), locally harvested honey, flavorful hummus & pesto, and more. Ps. The “more” should be an artisan “gut shot” from Another Mother Vinegar because you’ll need it at the end.
They have more than food, yes, but it was lower on my totem pole. However, Wild Roots has an impressive succulent selection that you can’t pass up- especially if you do the whole live plant thing. Organic Chix (a local San Antonian) has all-natural cleaning products, which I am digging these days. Side note: If you aren’t on the all-natural bandwagon yet, there’s still room to join us!
11:00 am: Farmer’s Market Lunch
I know I just sent you on a food chase, but now it’s time for something more substantial. Do what we did: order one thing from three vendors & share. It’s way more fun to try a variety of cuisines while you’re there, don’t you think?! Start with a pork belly soft bun from Ming’s Thing, then try a mouth-watering tamale from La Hacienda Products (because you’re in San Antonio), & end with Crepelandia because who doesn’t love a delicious Nutella crêpe?
12:00 pm: Shopping
Even if shopping isn’t your cup of tea, you’re sure to find a charming storefront that speaks to you! If nothing else, walk around a bit…you just ate a lot of delicious food. My fav Pearl shop is Leighelena. They have something for everyone; from jewelry, unique gifts (like the Ruth Bader Ginsberg candle I purchased), fun socks, vintage boots, cute hand towels, etc. (Side note: Their website doesn’t reflect how diverse the store is, in my opinion. Look at their Yelp for a better representation.) Another neat store is The Tiny Finch! (Again, please visit Yelp for a better feel for their store.) The Tiny Finch is some of the best gift-shopping you can find- even if it’s for yourself. Who doesn’t love a little retail therapy anyway?! I fell in love with pizza earrings, a leather beer journal, the world’s best pencil, the cutest greeting cards, fashionable decorative pillows, and allll of their smell-good stuff! I am not normally a big shopper- bc online is so easy- but these shops are different. They inspire me to open up my very own brick & mortar store, Joanna Gaines style!
2:00 pm: Relax
Now that you have eaten & shopped, it’s time to drop. Grab an indie bestseller from The Twig Book Shop & take it easy outside. Find your new fav spot on the perfectly manicured lawn, or sit on a bench if getting up off the ground would take help from a battalion.
“Something very magical can happen when you read a good book.” -J.K. Rowling
3:30 pm: Happy Hour/Early Dinner
It’s happy hour time! Do me a favor and go to Cured. Cured had an incredible happy hour (Mon-Sat, 3:00pm-6: 00 pm), including fried quail legs for a steal! And omg, they were DELICIOUS. We also ordered a pick-your-own-meats-and-cheeses charcuterie board– my FAV! Based on our waiter’s excellent suggestion, we tried a the Deschutes Brewing Black Butte Porter– YUM! We then mixed our alcohol, not suggested, & ordered a Cured* cocktail. So. Worth. It. I don’t think I need to go through all the food we ordered because I would be able to feel the judgment from afar, but the point is, their food is delicious. The service & atmosphere are top-notch, as well!
*CURED: Lemon Thyme Moonshine, Ginger, In-House Citrus Bitters, Sparkling Wine
5:30 pm: Live Music
To end the night with a bang, step down into the cozy bottling house cellar to find Jazz TX, a hot spot for live music. Jazz TX offers a 5:30 pm early show (No cover Tue-Thur/$5 cover Fri-Sat) and an 8:30 pm main show ($10-$30 cover Tues-Sat). No matter what show you attend, you’ll discover beautifully curated South Texas musical talent genres including Jazz, Blues, Big Band, Texas Swing, Salsa, etc. that will knock on the euphoric regions of your brain. Still worried about all the food I made you eat? No worries- make sure your Apple Watch is on & scoot to the jazz-vibe/Texas dance hall dance floor to boogie off some calories. If you’re more of a night owl than I am, good news: Jazz TX offers a variety of Texas beers on tap, wine, craft cocktails, & a full kitchen of gratifying South Texas cuisine (until 10:00 pm weeknights/11:30 pm weekends). Jazz TX stays open until 1:30 am Fri-Sat, but seriously, aren’t you ready for some shut-eye at that point?? I’m exhausted thinking about it.
9:30 pm: Sleep
Head over to my blog post on The Emma Hotel, book your stay, & stumble into your cozy af bed after your memorable day at The Pearl in San Antonio, TX!
- See a full list of Pearl’s farmer’s market vendors here.
- See a full list of Pearl’s retail vendors here.
- Make Jazz TX reservations here.
Photos by: Historic Pearl