We Love: San Antonio’s The Brooklynite

April 29, 2014 | By | Comments (1)
Photo: Jody Horton

Photo: Jody Horton

Contributing editor Paula Disbrowe claims one of the 35 chairs at the sleek The Brooklynite in San Antonio, Texas, celebrating the cocktail.

Shaking Things Up
Thanks to his potent elixirs and sense of whimsy via drinks such as The Love Beat (with gin and celery bitters; $9), Jeret Peña has stirred up both a local following and national attention. He was named a semifinalist for the James Beard Foundation Award’s Outstanding Bartending Program.

The Vibe
Swanky, sultry cocktail parlor with vintage glam wallpaper, antique portraits, and furniture from local thrift stores. Funky taxidermy in the bar’s special event space and ingredients such as tequila infused with the flavor of chorizo add a distinctly San Antonio flavor.

The Chatter
Along with high fives about the Spurs, expect an enthusiastic exchange about downtown’s rapid growth, the River Walk’s extended museum reach, and a forthcoming trolley.

Owner and head bartender Jeret Peña. Photo: Jody Horton

Owner and head bartender Jeret Peña. Photo: Jody Horton

First Round
Start with the drink that put Jeret on the national cocktail scene: The Missionary ($8) with gin, cucumber, blueberry sipping vinegar, and grapefruit. “It doesn’t follow the tradition of adding sugar or citrus. It gets both sweet and sour from a Korean blueberry sipping vinegar,” he says.

Best Bar Snack
The Brooklynite doesn’t serve food; instead it welcomes regular visits from local food trucks. Best bites include the Truffled Mac and Cheese topped with Cheez-Its from Tapa Tapa ($8)  and Steamed Pork Buns from chef Jason Dady’s The DUK Truck ($8).

Tip Jar
Throw caution aside and order a cocktail on tap. Jeret alternately serves Negronis, his favorite cocktail, or old fashioneds from a keg. The boozy base (as precisely measured as made-to-order drinks) is lightened up with a kick of nitrogen.


Photo: Jody Horton

Make It At Home

The Missionary

Combine 3 tbsp. gin, 4½ tsp. blueberry drinking vinegar (such as HongCho), and 1 tbsp. fresh red grapefruit juice in a cocktail shaker filled with ice. Cover with lid; shake vigorously until chilled (about 30 seconds). Strain into a 10-oz. glass with ice. Garnish with a grapefruit peel strip.

Makes 1 serving. Hands-on 5 min., Total 5 min.


  1. Randa Gipson

    Ha! I just saw my little brother, Tyler O’Neal, sitting at the bar! He is always raving about the place! I believe he is a frequent visitor! 🙂
    Can I request a printed copy of the magazine or a copy of the photo. I would love to have that framed for him.

    August 8, 2014 at 2:48 pm

Leave a Comment

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s