San Antonio: Paesanos

My hubs used to be on a team at work that loved to go out all the time. He would come home every week with tales of where they had lunch that day which always made me envious as most likely I had a PB & honey sandwich that day. I remember hearing the name of this place a couple of times and after so many recommendations I decided he needed to take me there. They’re famous for their Paesano dishes that feature a shrimp or fish bathed in garlic and butter sauce served with pasta. A few meant-for-each-other ingredients, when fresh, are hardly bested. Shrimp, butter, garlic, cheese and pasta are one of those combinations for me. The pasta had great chew, perfectly al dente, covered in tender buttery shrimp and parmesan, an ultimate comfort food for sure. Especially when you can get it along side a serving of eggplant parm. My mom is Italian and this dish is ALWAYS made when 2 or more of her family are present so it hits my heart when a restaurant has a great version of it. Still crispy eggplant in a rich, deep tomato sauce with fresh cheese. Oye.

We started our meal with bulbs of garlic in a clay pot filled with olive oil and roasted until sweet and tender. I’ve had sweeter garlic but this was still really good. Smashed on their grilled bread, with salt and herbs and I could have eaten that for dinner alone! They have quite a few appetizers to choose from but I’m always a sucker anything with bread, particularly when it’s paired with garlic.

We also had their fresh battered fish with a creamy buttery wine sauce with artichoke hearts, mushrooms, capers and red peppers. Their fish changes depending on the market so it’s different week to week. The crust was a bit lost by the butter sauce but was still great with the flaky fish and briney capers. You will have a hard time choosing what to get when you see the menu but it doesn’t appear you can go wrong. My next three victims: crispy eggplant stack, sesame seared tuna with wasabi potatoes, edamame and soy butter & red fish fra diaviolo with mascarpone basmati rice and grilled roman artichokes.

Paesanos definitely speaks more Mediterranean than Italian but most definitely has its own take on things. I like that in a place.

Paesanos (3622 Paesanos Parkway, San Antonio, Texas 78231 // 210.493.1604)


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