Dark Chocolate Balsamic Cake

Dark Chocolate Balsamic Cake

For a sneak peek of up-and-coming culinary talent, make plans to visit Savor in San Antonio.

The restaurant opened Jan. 22 inside the Texas campus of The Culinary Institute of America at the Pearl entertainment district. Led by professional instructors, students working toward associate degrees prepare and serve local and seasonal, “modern American” food that draws from various cultures they’ve studied, from Asian to European cuisine.

The 2,500-square-foot space—designed by Austin’s Clayton & Little architecture firm, also the designers of Pearl neighbors Cured, Local Coffee, and Southerleigh—seats 62 and features an open kitchen that allows diners to see the diligent students at work.

At Savor, which is open for dinner Tuesdays through Saturdays, guests create custom three-course ($38) or four-course ($46) meals with dishes such as honey-chili roasted chicken with fat rice and Asian lime and grilled Gulf shrimp with polenta, olives, and tomato. There’s also a bar and lounge area with shareable plates ($8-$27) and a cocktail program, as well as wines and craft beer.

The Culinary Institute of America offers culinary and hospitality degrees with four campuses in Hudson Valley, New York, Napa Valley, California, Singapore, and San Antonio, established in 2008. Notable CIA graduates include Mixtli chef Diego Galicia and La Gloria chef and restaurateur Johnny Hernandez. CIA San Antonio opened a restaurant, Nao, in 2012 that focused solely on Latin American cuisine. Nao closed in December to make way for Savor, a broader concept.

From January 28 to April 11, Savor also plays host to a temporary bakery and café that serves coffee and pastries as well as breakfast and lunch.

The influx of student talent, who will hopefully stick around town after graduation, makes the Alamo City a culinary destination to watch.

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