- Jessica Elizarraras
- The burger is reason alone to sneak out of work
As discussed in our restaurant review of Cured (February 5), the food, ambiance and hospitality all lead to being, well, cured. Call it kismet, but after a particularly taxing day at the office, and after two weeks of being in a general funk, I decided to head to the Pearl’s latest eatery to check out the happy hour with a girlfriend who had never been (I clearly failed her) in hopes of raising my spirits.
Cured’s happy hour runs 3 to 6 p.m. Monday through Friday. Mind you, I love Cured, that’s no secret. But who the hell gets out of work at 5 p.m., or earlier, these days? Who’s actually taking advantage of these joyous few hours? For our visit on Wednesday, I pulled myself away from my laptop and headed to the Pearl with just under 30 minutes to spare. Joined by small groups of mild-mannered industry folks, we were going to make this one count.
Thankfully, service was speedy. Bartenders Katie and Alex took care of us immediately by offering their specials—half-priced craft cocktails (usually priced $9 to $12), beers ($3 to $11), with the exception of the miscellaneous brews listed on the menu, and wine by the glass. We started with the Adam’s Apple ($5 during happy hour), the winning cocktail at this year’s Rivertini San Antonio River Foundation event, featuring Cinco vodka, fresh green apple sour, bay leaf tea and hints of apple celery vinegar shrub. Smooth, delicate and sweet, I could see why the Adam’s Apple took home this year’s giant martini glass trophy.
Although there are no specials on food during happy hour, Cured does offer a few bites off its lunch menu including the mixed green salad, gumbo, the pork cheek “poutine,” charcuterie and dessert. And then there’s the Blue Ribbon Burger ($8 for a single with fries), only offered at lunch and brunch that consists of a beef and bacon blend patty, onion jam and a house-made cheese sauce.
We settled on the burger, obviously, and the mixed green salad ($8) with crushed blackberries, smoked pecans, Texas feta, radish curls and a light spring onion dressing. Because I was playing the part of carefree early happy hour attendee and wasn’t checking my emails obsessively, I went with a glass of the Mommy’s Time Out (yes, that’s the name of the wine) pinot grigio. Hailing from Italy’s Delle Venezie region, the pinot grigio was fruity on the nose and tart with plenty of citrus flavors. You can sip it or you can pound it (but beware, it does have a 11.5 percent ABV). This vino could make a stay-at-home mom of me yet.
As one of four restaurants at the Pearl that caters to the happy hour set (with only two of those four offering food discounts), Cured deserves return visits, if only because it encourages leaving your cubicle just a tad earlier than usual. Work-life balance, people!
306 Pearl Pkwy, Ste 101