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News and notes from the San Antonio food scene

Over the moon

Eclipse Cafe,14439 NW Military at Huebner, will open on September 26. Chef Louis Halfant, has designed a menu that includes wood oven-baked pizzas, fresh salads, market-fresh seafood, and a number of nightly specials. Halfant hopes to create a friendly neighborhood atmosphere where regulars and special requests are welcome. The menu features items such as shrimp remoulade, Bubbe's chicken soup, wood-roasted Atlantic salmon, and moon pie. Eclipse Café will be open for lunch 11 a.m.-2 p.m. Monday-Friday, and reopens for dinner 5-9 p.m. Monday-Thursday, 5-10 p.m. on Friday and Saturday. The café will serve brunch 10 a.m.-2 p.m. Saturday and Sunday. For more information, call 408-7614

French to farm fresh

Texas Farm to Table Café has a new chef: Chris Spencer, formerly of L'Etoile. Farm to Table owner and chef Brian Montgomery says Spencer will take over as head line cook at lunch, so that Montgomery can focus on creating a breakfast menu (Amen!), stocking soon-to-appear retail shelves with gourmet Texas food products, and pursuing the café's raison d'être, locally harvested produce, meat, and cheese.

Rest in peace, Thomas Benninger

As the great 18th-century gastronome Brillat-Savarin once said, "The discovery of a new dish does more for the happiness of mankind than the discovery of a star." Mankind accordingly must be saddened by the death of a culinary star whose dishes gladdened us all. Thomas Benninger, the late chef of Gladys at the Strand, will be missed for his inspired plates and generosity to many local causes, and, perhaps most of all, for his creative spirit.

- Compiled by Erica Alcorta, Susan Pagani, and Ron Bechtol

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