SAN ANTONIO – Step inside Barrio Barista and you’re instantly hit with the smell of coffee, the sound of conversations and a noticeable passion for customer service.
“Good food brings good people in,” owner of Barrio Barista Gilbert DeHoyos said. “The community likes it here because they know if they’re gonna get a plate a certain way, they’re gonna get it the same way and that’s most important.”
Gilbert De Hoyos and his son, Gilbert De Hoyos Jr., are the duo behind this West Side business that opened in 2014. They’re set on staying just a few blocks away from St. Mary’s University and Memorial High School.
“Other people have said why don’t you put this downtown and I said well this is the neighborhood where we were brought up in, it comes back to this is where I feel most at home,” De Hoyos Sr. said.
For many who live in this area, this coffee house experience is a first for them.
“To be offering fresh coffee on this side of town is kind of unheard of,” barista and co-owner Gilbert De Hoyos Jr. said.
The customer favorites include a mexican mocha, mazapan latte and the signature horchata latte.
“When we opened back in 2014, I believe we were the only place offering horchata lattes and now it seems you can go anywhere to pick up a horchata latte, which is nice,” De Hoyos Jr. said.
The building was once a meat market owned by De Hoyos Sr.’s parents.
“It’s not where you’re at it’s how good you’re customer service is,” De Hoyos Sr. said.
De Hoyos Sr. is often found in the kitchen, making their signature barbacoa grilled cheese (add a fried egg on top for a real mind-blowing experience) or conversing with his customers.
“We can see that the community shares the same vision that we do,” he said. “People feel more proud of their neighborhood because we are part of this growth here.”
Barrio Barista is located at 3735 Culebra Rd. Click here for more on their online orders. It’s open Wednesday through Saturday from 8 a.m. to 3 p.m.