Last week while walking to school I noticed that chairs and tables had been added to the patio of a little blue house that sits facing South Alamo Street. I wasn’t caught completely off guard, in fact I’ve been anticipating Casa Azul de Andrea for a while. I first heard of the Mexican cafe through an article detailing how the city approved zoning for the restaurant on accident – not enough parking spaces for code.
Fortunately since it was the city’s mistake, the restaurant was still allowed to open sans parking. And since we live right outside the King William Cultural Arts District boundary where Casa Azul is located, we don’t need it anyway- we walked. (BCycle and bus stops are nearby as well).
Some restaurants take a little while to hit their stride. I won’t call out names, but one of my favorite San Antonio spots took a few months to really fine tune their eats. Casa Azul on the other hand opened exactly a week ago from today, and have already done everything right. That includes the wonderful cantaloupe agua fresca that we had both as an appetizer and then again as a dessert.
The naming of Casa Azul is obvious – it’s a blue house, literally a casa azul. But more than that, La Casa Azul is the home of Mexican artist and activist Frida Kahlo. Now preserved as a museum, La Casa Azul saw the birth of Frida, the life of her family and lovers, and is still celebrated for its architecture and garden.
The closest I’ve gotten to the house was at the New York Botanical Garden during the summer of 2015. The exhibit recreated the beautiful gardens of Casa Azul with explanations on how the colorful setting influenced Kahlo’s work.
San Antonio’s Casa Azul de Andrea plays homage to Frida throughout the restaurant. The menu itself is meant to be that of a simple sandwich shop you could find in Mexico City.
And like the aqua fresca, the food is perfect too. Hello mole fries!
The menu consists mostly of tortas (sandwiches) and a few mini taco options. But what drew me in were the mole fries. Because I love mole, and I love cheese fries – how could I not love them together? Though next time I think I will try chili lime fries. In addition to fries, tacos and tortas, you can also get your street corn fix , frijoles, or chips with a trio of dips (called the 3 amigos).
And being a Southtown eatery, of course they offer Sunday brunch. Barbacoa, menudo, chorizo, molletes and of course, you can get the 3 amigos on Sunday too. Visions of Steve Martin, Chevy Chase, Martin Short and Frida Kahlo y’all.