Courtesy McIntyre's

The Southtown area south of downtown San Antonio has a plethora of dining, bar, recreational, and other entertainment options for all ages. The newest dining and drinking destination for residents and visitors, however, hails from Houston.

McIntyre’s, an icehouse-style sports bar with three original locations in the Houston region, expanded into San Antonio in late 2022, opening at the former bar The Patio at 1035 S. Presa St. An extended grand opening was held December 29 through January 2.

Like its Houston-area counterparts, the San Antonio McIntyre’s blends indoor and outdoor spaces with textured walls, a range of seating options, and ideal views of large, high-definition televisions positioned across the sizable patio.

The patio at McIntyre’s is dog friendly, a key aspect that complements the relaxed vibe at the growing bar chain.

Michael Paolucci, who is partnering with Kyle Berg on McIntyre’s ownership and operations, said their first San Antonio location was well-received by locals and tourists opening up during the final days of the recent holiday season in the Alamo City.

“The first two days were great,” Paolucci said.

The drink menu features traditional and craft beers, cocktails on tap, signature, classic and frozen cocktails, a wide selection of whiskeys, as well as wines and champagne.

McIntyre’s hosts resident food trucks to feed hungry guests. Garcia Barbecue is scheduled Sundays through Tuesdays and every other Saturday, serving up smoked quest nachos, sandwiches and tacos.

Another venture, Jeepney Street Eats, is cooking up various goodies Wednesdays through Fridays, and every other Saturday.

Visitors may also take advantage of happy hour and an assortment of lawn games, such as cornhole.

Paolucci and Berg are not done in San Antonio: McIntyre’s has filed a project with the Texas Department of Licensing and Regulation to develop a second San Antonio location near North Star Mall at 86 NE Loop 410.


Courtesy McIntyre's

Houston-based sports bar McIntyre's opened its first San Antonio location in Southtown at 1035 S. Presa St., adding onto the neighborhood's growing number of entertainment offerings.

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Cult-favorite Houston cookies now shipping nationwide via new website

Send a taste of Houston

It’s just become a little easier to send a taste of Houston to friends and family in faraway places. Dessert Gallery is now shipping its cookie dough nationwide for at-home baking.

“The cookies have a cult following,” Dessert Gallery owner Sara Brook tells CultureMap. “In this day and age of online shopping and ordering what you want, when you want and wanting to try everything from everywhere, it seemed like the perfect time to put our cookies out there to the wider universe. I’m really excited. We’ve been working really hard on packaging and shipping.”

Available in four flavors — Chocolate Chunk, White Chocolate Macadamia Nut, Brookie, and Red Velvet with white chocolate chip — each box contains a dozen frozen dough pucks and a sheet of parchment paper. Recipients bake the frozen dough according to the instructions provided. Prices start at $36 for a dozen cookies, or customers may order a 24-pack that includes six cookies of all four flavors for $65 (plus tax and shipping).

In particular, the Chocolate Chunk cookies have been a fan favorite from day one. As the name implies, the pieces of high quality Guittard chocolate in each cookie are far too large to qualify as mere “chips.”

“The thing that sets our cookies apart is it’s more chocolate chunks than cookie dough,” Brook says. “We are serious about the ratio of dough to chocolate chunks.”

After a series of trial runs sent to friends, family, and this author's very lucky nephews — including a seven-year-old who gives two very enthusiastic thumbs up — the cookies are available for purchase from the Dough by Dessert Gallery website. Brook says she's looking forward to sharing her cookies with the rest of the country.

“I just can’t wait to get it out there, because I think people will love it,” she says. “That’s what my whole career has been about is putting stuff out in the world and hoping people love it. It puts all kinds of warm and fuzzy feelings out there.”

Known for its nostalgic cakes, cookies, and other treats, Dessert Gallery has been satisfying Houstonians’ sweet toothes for almost 40 years. The bakery and cafe recently announced it would open a second location in The Woodlands Waterway later this year.

Researchers name ancient beaver fossil after favorite Texas gas station


The legend of a treasured gas station chain continues with a new chapter: a rediscovered beaver fossil is being named after Buc-ee’s.

The ancient animal was named Anchitheriomys buceei (A. buceei) by Steve May, a research associate at the University of Texas Jackson School of Geosciences and lead author of the Palaeontologia Electronica paper that describes the beaver.

A. buceei fossils were rediscovered by researchers in UT Austin’s collections and include fossils from six different Texas sites. May decided to name A. buceei after Buc-ee’s upon spotting a “This is Beaver Country” billboard in 2020 that reminded him of the fossils he was studying at the time.

Though Buc-ee’s was founded in 1982, CEO Arch “Beaver” Alpin III said in a press release that his business’ history is longer than he thought, and that he may “need to rethink [their] beginnings.”

Occurrences of A. buceei can be found between 15 and 22 million years ago along the state’s Gulf Coast. At first glance, they don’t appear much different from current native Texas beavers. But according to the report’s co-author Matthew Brown, who is also the director of the Jackson School’s vertebrate paleontology collections, they are nearly 30 percent bigger than today’s beavers.

A partial skull fossil of the beaver was originally collected in 1941 by paleontologists. One of the original finders was Texas A&M University museum curator Curtis Hesse, who passed away four years later before he could name it a new species and publish his study.

More information about A. buceei can be found on UT Austin’s website.

Ben Berg serves up a New England-style seafood restaurant for downtown office tower

Ben Berg's downtown clambake

Ben Berg’s quest to put his spin on every possible cuisine shows no signs of slowing down. The veteran Houston restaurateur will soon add seafood to his repertoire.

Called Dune Road, the new restaurant takes inspiration from classic New England seafood shacks. The restaurant is slated to open this fall in the Texas Tower, the 47-story office building at 845 Texas Ave.

Berg Hospitality turned to New York-based ICRAVE to design the approximately 5,400-square-foot restaurant. Expect nautical elements such as polished metals, lacquered wood, and shiplap-inspired elements. A raw bar will be incorporated into the large, 56-seat bar area. The space will also include a private dining room and a westward-facing patio.

Dune Road restaurant rendering

Rendering by ICRAVE

A rendering previews the dining room.

Turning to the food, the menu will center around New England favorites such as chowder (both clam and seafood), lobster bakes, fried clams, and lobster rolls. Beverage selections will pair well with seafood and be “fit for partaking in on a vintage Chris Craft docked off a coastal town,” according to a release.

“With Dune Road, we aim to elevate the flavor of seafood by keeping it clean, simple and mostly grilled, sourced from only the finest suppliers around the country,” Berg said in a statement. “Can you get a steak? Of course. But seafood is the star here.”

Of course, Berg Hospitality is known for steaks, stemming from its ownership of prominent Houston steakhouse B&B Butchers. The company operates seven other concepts, including The Annie Cafe, Turner’s, Trattoria Sofia, and B.B. Lemon.

In the coming months, it will open several more, including Buttermilk Baby, a retro-style diner; Benny Chows, a Cantonese-style Chinese restaurant that will be located next to B&B Butchers; Canopy Social, a British Caribbean-inspired patio bar above Benny Chows; La Table, a reimagined take on the Galleria-area French fine dining restaurant; Tavola, an Italian restaurant below La Table; Annabelle Brasserie, a restaurant in the Autry Park mixed-use development that will serve breakfast, lunch, and dinner; Turner's Cut, a fine dining steakhouse in the Autry Park mixed-use development; and Prime 131, a wood-fired steakhouse in the Docks at Timbergrove mixed-use development.

Dune Road will occupy a space on the west side of the Texas Tower. Developed by real estate development firm Hines and Ivanhoé Cambridge, the building offers more than 1 million square feet of office space. Previously, Chicago-based Italian restaurant Etta announced it will open a location on the east side of the tower.

“Dune Road will be a key addition to the hospitality-driven experience at Texas Tower,” says John Mooz, senior managing director at Hines. “With the goal of providing a curated F&B offering to the north side of downtown, this new concept from Ben Berg’s powerhouse team will offer our tenants and the surrounding community the perfect setting to dine, recharge, and exchange.”

Seafood seems to be having a moment in Houston. Golfstrommen, a restaurant in the Post HTX food hall from Norwegian chef Christopher Haatuft and Top Chef winner Paul Qui, has earned raves since it opened in 2021. Navy Blue, a seafood restaurant in Rice Village from the team behind Bludorn, topped Texas Monthly's recent list of the state's best new restaurants. They'll be joined by a number of newcomers, including Little's Oyster Bar, a new concept from Pappas Restaurants; Balboa Surf Club, a new restaurant from the owners of Italian restaurant il Bracco; and Katami, a new restaurant from Kata Robata chef Manabu Horiuchi.