September 14, 2018

Sights to See + Good Eats: Market Square + Mi Tierra Cafe y Panaderia, San Antonio, Texas


Market Square  514 W. Commerce, downtown, (210) 207-8600.  Free.  Take in the town’s lively culture in this three-block outdoor plaza near city center.  The largest Mexican market in the U.S., the streets are lined with restaurants, shops, and produce stands.  Mariachi bands and dancers sometimes entertain, and many Hispanic festivals are held here.

Market Square in San Antonio, Texas
Market Square in San Antonio, Texas


A large indoor market--El Mercado--contains shops and stalls that sell a plethora of items from Mexico.  You’ll find everything from hand-embroidered dresses to leather belts.  We bought a souvenir mini-pinata plus three identical children’s brooms for my three little granddaughters.

El Mercado at Market Square in San Antonio, Texas
El Mercado at Market Square in San Antonio, Texas


merchandise at El Mercado at Market Square in San Antonio, Texas
merchandise at El Mercado at Market Square in San Antonio, Texas


Mi Tierra Cafe y Panaderia  218 Produce Row, (210) 225-1262.  Open 24 hours.  No reservations.

Christmas decor at Mi Tierra Cafe y Panaderia at Market Square in San Antonio, Texas
Christmas decor at Mi Tierra Cafe y Panaderia at Market Square in San Antonio, Texas

Begun in the 1940s as a small breakfast cafe for farmers, this cheery place is still run by the same family but has grown into a sprawling restaurant with many dining rooms and a separate bakery.  Diners can choose seating at tables, in booths, or at a counter, and elaborate Christmas decor adds to the festive atmosphere.  Breakfast here is a must.  That’s when you can order chilaquiles, the Machacado Mexican omelette with shredded beef jerky, and menudo to help ease away the excesses of drinking too much the night before.

Christmas decor at Mi Tierra Cafe y Panaderia at Market Square in San Antonio, Texas
Christmas decor at Mi Tierra Cafe y Panaderia at Market Square in San Antonio, Texas

And at lunch and dinner you can choose from a vast array of Tex-Mex specialties--think flautas, enchiladas verdes (my favorite), and housemade tamales.  These rinse down well with Tequila, beer, or a fruit-flavored margarita.  Mariachis will play a song for $5.  A separate panaderia sells an assortment of mouth-watering pan dulces (sweet breads) and cookies, which you can eat in house or take home.  Get a handful of guava campechanas or a bag full of the famous pecan pralines to nibble on.

bakery at Mi Tierra Cafe y Panaderia at Market Square in San Antonio, Texas
bakery at Mi Tierra Cafe y Panaderia at Market Square in San Antonio, Texas


pan dulces at Mi Tierra Cafe y Panaderia at Market Square in San Antonio, Texas
pan dulces at Mi Tierra Cafe y Panaderia at Market Square in San Antonio, Texas

Be sure to take a look at the detailed “American Dream” wall mural painted by resident artist Robert Ytuarte.  Look closely to pick out celebrities Carlos Santana, Cheech Marin, and Eva Longoria.  The Cortez family also operates several other restaurant in town.

"American Dream" mural at Mi Tierra Cafe y Panaderia at Market Square in San Antonio, Texas
"American Dream" mural at Mi Tierra Cafe y Panaderia at Market Square in San Antonio, Texas


Cheech Marin and Carlos Santana in "American Dream" mural at Mi Tierra Cafe y Panaderia at Market Square in San Antonio, Texas
Cheech Marin and Carlos Santana in "American Dream" mural at Mi Tierra Cafe y Panaderia at Market Square in San Antonio, Texas
Mi Tierra Cafe Menu, Reviews, Photos, Location and Info - Zomato 


More things to do in San Antonio.

Great ideas for travel adventures in California and the U.S. and around the world.

images ©2018 Carole Terwilliger Meyers 

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