Sunday, March 21, 2010

"Tuesday," 3/21/10 - Las Canarias

Date: 3/21/10
Restaurant: Las Canarias
Location: 112 College St, inside the Omni La Mansion hotel on the Riverwalk. You can journey through the hotel to get there (which is recommended since parking at the Omni gets you a parking voucher, score!) but the entrance to the restaurant is actually on the Riverwalk.
Executive Chef: John Brand

It's a special Spring Break edition of Tuesdays in Wasabiland! We had the pleasure of spending the weekend with Rebekah and her darling baby Aubrey, and decided to send them off in a food coma. Las Canarias has a full service breakfast and dinner menu as well, but their Sunday Champagne Brunch is said to be a treat of a tradition in San Antonio, so off we went! Boy, what a breakfeast.

Welcome! (The view from the Riverwalk.)

A trip to the Riverwalk is always nice on a Sunday morning before the rest of San Antonio decides to join you.

The brunch is buffet style, $38.95 per person which includes unlimited champagne as well as juice and coffee. The service was absolutely impeccable--granted, they might have just been charmed by Aubrey, but we had a whole cadre of servers assuring our culinary satisfaction at every turn. Beautiful, airy ambience with a great view of the Riverwalk (except that we were seated on the far side of the room, so our great view consisted mostly of our overflowing plates).

Let's just say that there is no buffet like this one. So. Much. Food. Inside we had 5 different stations set up with everything from brunch staples like fruit, salad, cheese (like 10 different kinds, most of which I was unable to identify!), cold cuts from salami to chorizo to pate... more breakfasty things like waffles and omelets made to order, chilaquiles, cider-cured bacon, sausages, country potatoes, eggs benedict (with brisket and onion/chives in the hollandaise)... more lunchy things like salmon, crab salad, butternut squash or tortilla soup, crab legs and cocktail shrimp...

And that's not even counting the outside grill station which offered succulent prime rib, or the pastry station! Hoo boy. Food coma, full speed ahead.

Why, what do we have here? I do believe it's a plate full of win!

Gonna try to recap, from bottom clockwise: fresh French bread covering about 5 types of cheese ranging from goat to nut-and-honey filled to blue to swiss; a very dubious pickled tomato filled with some uber ripe cheese (probably the one bad bite of the meal); crab salad; delicious hummus and a tasty olive tapenade; THE BEST BUTTERNUT SQUASH SOUP EVER, oh my gosh, amazing food. Want always. Every day. Don't care how full I am. Where was I? Oh yes. Hiding behind the soup is fresh fruit--and if you're wondering where the best fruit in San Antonio can be found, it's here. I had the ripest, sweetest melon and pineapple. Also, chilaquiles (scrambled eggs with tortilla strips, peppers and cheese); sausage, bacon, pate, a shrimp and assorted cold cuts.

If you come here for brunch or any other time, please make a point to order the butternut squash soup. If that wasn't made abundantly clear above. It was the unanimous favorite of all of us, and we have VERY different taste in food.

Plate #2...from bottom: gawgeous smoked prime rib; made-to-order waffle with bananas foster topping; french toast with fresh whipped cream; and Texas brisket egg benedict on cornbread muffin.

Plate #3 (and at this point I feel I must specify that I am not taking pictures of ALL our plates...just the ones that survived long enough to be photographed. The others disappeared before I could even get the camera up. My apologies.): grilled asparagus; country potatoes; salmon in a sweet tangy glaze; chocolate pecan bread pudding in creme anglaise; another Texas egg benedict; another french toast triangle; and in the center, a frothy little flavor bomb that I will refer to as the Magical Disappearing Strawberry Mousse Puff. Pop this bite in your mouth and it just dissolves into sweet nothings. It's so good. It all was so. So. Good.

Rebekah getting her grub on. Notice the determination on this over-stimulated diner's face as she tackles the never-ending pile of delish.


Finally it was dessert time. Actually, it's a little misleading to think that we had the propriety to wait til the end of our meal for dessert. I just like the flow of pictures better this way.

A trio of desserts. We have the best truffle ever, springy and rich with oreo and/or coffee grounds in the base; a so-so cupcake with yummy tropical pineapple icing; and the redux of the Magical Disappearing Strawberry Mousse Puff.

This cake was a black hole. No lie. It sucked all the matter from the room and condensed it onto my fork. I grew three sizes this day. (Also, the final bite of Magical Disappearing Strawberry Mousse Puff.)

Our waiter snagged this darling trio of creme brulees for us early in the meal because he said they tend to go fast. They were tasty, although the garnishes were a little heavy for the bitty portion of actual creme brulee in each ramekin.

Even Aubrey got her buffet on! Everybody had happy tummy after this meal, lemme tell ya.

Returnability: high, with good company. Anyone coming to San Antonio over a weekend should consider coming here to be pampered, stuffed, and tossed out into the Riverwalk fray. It was truly a lovely experience and I was so glad to share it with my girls. (And Tavis.)


Brian Moon said...

Texas does such awesome buffets. We need more of those in Portland.

Also! BABY PICTURES! Or, picture. But, still. Hope Rebekah and Aubrey had a great visit.