WINE & DINE: CAPPY’S

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CONTEMPORARY AMERICAN CUISINE WITH AN INTIMATE ATMOSPHERE

Cappy’s Restaurant and Bar, with its eclectic interior, offers upscale, intimate dining in Alamo Heights without any sense of pretentiousness.
It’s tucked away in a small Broadway retail center and connected to Cappyccino’s, a bistro/café spot. Both are owned by Cappy and Suzy Lawton, and both structures share patio space for shaded outdoor dining. It may look small, especially on the inside, but Cappy’s makes the most of its footprint with plenty of space to roam on either of its two floors. Picasso-inspired paintings adorn the walls. The second floor windows afford patrons a view of passers-by traveling Broadway and the adjacent businesses.
In spite of feeling and appearing to be in a small restaurant, you won’t find conversations from nearby tables drifting or crossing over to create a noisy environment. As with Cappyccino’s, the atmosphere is appealing and family-friendly.
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The menu is not terribly long, but it changes to offer a variety of contemporary American cuisine. The lunch and dinner menus are equally strong, with plenty of solid seafood specialty dishes available. My waitress during a lunch stop came over quickly, cooly breaking down the day’s specials in the way of the chef’s soup and the catch of the day. While Cappy’s has salads such as Cobb, house and chicken, there’s a rare ahi tuna salad and a grilled salad with one’s choice of beef tenderloin or chicken with peppers and onions. Each of those salads could be a meal in itself.

wd6My choice this go-around was the kale salad, topped with Parmesan, dried cherries, pine nuts and lemon soy vinaigrette. The cherries and vinaigrette nicely balanced each other in a colorful presentation. Specialty entrees for lunch include the Prince Edward mussels, accompanied by hand-cut fries and toasted ciabatta bread. There’s the steak frites – an Allen Brothers beef tenderloin complete with pommes frites, Parmesan tomato and herb butter. There’s also a jumbo lump crab cake, accentuated by chipotle aioli, lime cream, guacamole and a small salad.

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For a specialty entrée, gumbo was an instant choice. Sure, one could go for a cup of gumbo, but a bowl of steaming gumbo with shrimp, chicken, andouille sausage and blackened catfish is a sight to behold. It’s filling and a tad spicy. If a diner is in the mood to make the gumbo spicier, the waitress beats you to it by offering Tabasco.
The crispness of the kale salad and satisfied feeling that follows the bowl of gumbo are matched in the middle by a specialty cocktail such as the Vespa or Pisco sour. The bar at Cappy’s offers these and many other specialty and classic cocktails. If that’s not your speed, there’s an extensive selection of white and red wines.
Cap off a satisfying meal with a slice of warm chocolate cake topped with vanilla bean ice cream. Other sweet after-meal options include sticky toffee pudding with butterscotch brandy sauce, crème brulee, key lime pie, coconut cream pie and New Orleans bread pudding. Cappy’s also stocks tasty coffees, freezes, ports and sherries and liqueurs to round out one’s meal. Overall, service was fast, knowledgeable and friendly. For an intimate yet well-paced quality meal in a contemporary setting, Cappy’s is a top choice.

BY EDMOND ORTIZ

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