San Antonio Small Businesses That you Need to Watch Out For

Business

Three people talking together in a cafe

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14 min read

How many times have you typed in ‘San Antonio small business’ into your search engine of choice hoping to find a complete list that isn’t limited to one or two industries?

We have, and outside of a handful of posts on Small Business Saturday, there isn’t really a lot of information out there.

Sure, there’s plenty of online directories, but scrolling through endless pages of local businesses is less than ideal. And will bring you no closer to the San Antonio small businesses that you need to watch out for.


Consumed banner for an event in San Antonio, Texas

The businesses we’ve chosen to highlight all offer something unique. Some sell coffee, others produce beautiful works of art for you to buy and display at home.

We’ve tried to offer somewhat of a mixed bag here. Mostly to give you a better understanding of just how varied the small business scene is in San Antonio. That, and we thought it would make for a much more interesting read compared to sticking with one particular market.

Let’s not waste anymore time and dive right in, starting with Bike World, a local provider of bikes and bike repairs in the great city of San Antonio!

One of Bike World's locations in San Antonio
Credit to Bike World

Bike World

Why: Bike World offers a range of quality bikes and bike services.
Where: 5911 Broadway, 15675 San Pedro Ave., 300 E. Grayson St., and 835 SE Military Dr San Antonio, TX

Ask any cyclist in San Antonio where they can go to find high quality bikes and bike services, and nine times out of ten they’ll talk about Bike World. How could they not, considering it’s the city’s leading independent cycling company!

One of the great things about this San Antonio small business is just how helpful they are. Bike World could sell a range of bike services/bikes and leave it at that. But their website is full of helpful information and advice.

For example, they run very successful bike tours around San Antonio, perfect for tourists and anyone looking to learn more about the city.

“Fully engage your senses as you actively explore San Antonio, an ideal biking destination with all its natural beauty and cultural attractions. Let Bill and Bonnie Simons, both native Texans and Certified Professional Tour Guides, show you their favorite places.”
– Bike World

In terms of where you can find these guys, they have five main locations of note:

  • Alamo Heights
  • 281
  • Historic Pearl
  • Southside
  • Bike World West

San Antonio small businesses like Bike World are very easy to remember. The logo in particular is something we couldn’t help but notice. A logo that reminds us a lot of the DP Fasteners logo (one of our clients).

If you find yourself in need of a new bike, bike accessories, or bike repairs, then you need to pay Bike World a visit. They’ll be more than happy to help!

Various beer taps on the walls of the Flying Saucer
Credit to Flying Saucer Draught Emporium

Flying Saucer Draught Emporium

Why: It’s an out of this world taproom beaming with San Antonio spirit.
Where: 11255 Huebner Rd, San Antonio, TX 78230

Is there anything more cultural than a taphouse in San Antonio – one with over 200 global beers on tap. Needless to say, it’s a great place to unwind after a long day at work, or simply visit on the weekend to talk shop with your buddies.

The walls inside this place are lined with all kinds of curious and general brik-a-brak. All of it alcohol/San Antonio related. They also sell a fine selection of food too. We’d recommend checking out something known as ‘The McGregor’ which is a burger that packs a serious punch.

For updates on what beers have been added to the lineup be sure to check out the Flying Saucer website. It’s a bit of an outdated site, but if you scroll down to the ‘New Arrivals’ section, you should find a list of the latest additions.

These guys are open 11am to 11pm from Sunday to Thursday and 11am to 12am Friday to Saturday. So get yourself down, and prepare to soak yourself in the culture and some of the best drinks San Antonio has to offer.

A woman working inside Merit Coffee
Credit to Merit Coffee

Merit Coffee

Why: Merit Coffee is a bonafide expert in finely roasted coffees.
Where: Ste 1113, San Antonio, TX 78258

Here’s one for the coffee drinkers out there.

Merit Coffee is a local roastery that is obsessed with quality. Their obsession drove them to start sourcing and roasting their own coffee. Coffee that they source from all parts of the world – Central/South America and Africa, most commonly.

They sum up what they’re all about pretty well on the website:

“For many of us, coffee means more than a morning jolt of caffeine. It’s an indulgence, a ritual, a small happy moment in the day.

That’s why we keep pace with the rapid evolution of coffee craft and often lead the way. Like you, we care about the taste and quality of the coffee we serve and the hospitality you experience at Merit Coffee.”

Unlike some of the other coffee stops in San Antonio, Merit works directly with the farmers to ensure that everything is of a high standard. You can find Merit Coffee in South San Antonio, at Ste 1113, San Antonio, Texas 78258.

Want more information on the best coffee shops in San Antonio? Check out our post here. We cover all the best spots and then some.

Mario Guajardo sat inside his studio
Credit to Richter Goods

Richter Goods

Why: A local clothing brand with a story to get behind.
Where: 2202 Broadway, San Antonio, TX 78215

We can’t talk about small businesses in San Antonio and not mention the homegrown clothing brand known for its ‘maverick shirting.’

We’re of course referring to Richter Goods. This brand designs and creates all of its clothes in real time, while maintaining the integrity of its designs from the sketching process all the way through to distribution.

“American Made. Small Batch. Always finished with details from the West.”
– Richter Goods

Mario Guajardo, the man behind Richter Goods, grew up wearing pressed Western Shirts and cowboy boots in Mexico City. His father, whose ancestors were Native Texans, made it a proud staple of his children’s wardrobe.

Guajardo started Richter Goods in 2011, and is still going strong.

People sitting at a table at The Esquire Tavern
Credit to The Esquire Tavern

The Esquire Tavern

Why: A vintage bar, with a vintage feel, and vintage appeal.
Where: 155 E. Commerce San Antonio, TX 78205

Here’s an interesting fact for you:

The Esquire Tavern boasts the longest wooden bar top in all of Texas. For reference, the bar top is over 100 feet of beer-soaked wood, rubbed smooth “by the elbows of a zillion tipplers.”

In other words, it’s a vintage bar with a lot of history.

WorldBestBars.com rated it very highly, calling it “an iconic bar on the San Antonio Riverwalk,” and following up by saying “Esquire Tavern overflows with character and history while making some of the finest cocktails in all of Texas.”

Like the Flying Saucer, The Esquire Tavern is a must visit spot for drinks and pub grub. Located on 155 E Commerce St, the Tavern is just a stone’s throw away from the infamous Majestic Theatre, not to mention a bunch of other local establishments – such as Waxy’s.

The Esquire Tavern is open Sunday to Monday, closing at 2am every Thursday, Friday and Saturday. When it opens never changes (11:30am).

Head on down, and tell them Canny sent you!

A cartoon depiction of Hogwild Records in San Antonio
Credit to Hogwild Records

Hogwild Records

Why: Hogwild is the heart and soul of San Antonio.
Where: 1824 N Main Ave, San Antonio, TX 78212

In the age of Amazon and other online stores, it’s easy to forget about the little guy.

Hogwild Records is a San Antonio staple, and one of the best record stores you’ll find in the city, period. The shelves in this place are lined with a varied selection of music. One glance at their Instagram or Discogs page will tell you that.

Music lovers, you’ve more than likely heard of, or visited Hogwild Records in the past. For those not in the know, this business sells everything from CDs to band tees. They also sell cassettes and vinyls!

One of the first things that stood out to me was just how unchanged it feels. It doesn’t try to be anything other than a music store. It’s unapologetically itself, which explains why it’s a go-too spot for a lot of music lovers in and around the area.

In short, if you’re in the 1824 N Main Ave area then you need to pay this San Antonio small business a visit.

People attending a glass blowing class at Caliente Hot Glass
Credit to Caliente Hot Glass

Caliente Hot Glass

Why: Classes, commissions, and creative glassworks.
Where: 1411 N Hackberry, San Antonio, TX 78208

From one great small business to another. Caliente Hot Glass is a professional glass blowing studio in San Antonio, Texas. They’re known for a lot of things, but its range of glass-focused classes are easily the most talked about.

Here’s a quick rundown of the types of classes they offer for those interested:

  • Tandem Glass Blowing
  • Glass Art Classes
  • Seasonal Glass Blowing
  • Beginners Classes

The art they create needs to be seen to be believed. On their online shop you’ll find everything from glass hearts to seasonal decor. All very pleasing to look at, but they all pale in comparison to the specialty collections.

It’s actually quite tough to put into words what these glass sculptures look like – especially the ‘Plato’s Caves’ sculptures. We aren’t even going to try explaining it, so we’ll throw it to Caliente to do it for us:

“Plato’s Caves are murrine-encased solid sculptures that create an optical illusion at each core using the magnifying properties of glass… Murrine are discs of glass made much like taffy; glass is repeatedly bundled, stretched, and sliced to create a detailed pattern.”

Definitely pay these guys a visit if you’ve ever been interested in glass sculptures or taking classes to hone your own glass blowing skills.

Various Busted Sandal Brewery drinks on a table outside
Credit to Busted Sandal Brewing Company

Busted Sandal Brewing Company

Why: A local brewery company with a fun sense of local pride.
Where: 7114 Oaklawn Dr. San Antonio, TX 78229

There are a bunch of local Boozy Brilliance: Beer Packaging Exploredbreweries occupying the city of San Antonio. But Busted Sandal Brewing Company is one we can’t help but keep coming back to. Probably due to the name.

Does the name remind anyone else of an unreleased Jimmy Buffet song?

Busted Sandal Brewing Company was formed sometime in mid-2001. Two sober guys were playing darts and drinking beer at Waterloo Brewing in Austin, Texas. Looking around the establishment, the two lamented that a similar experience couldn’t be found in San Antonio.

“Busted Sandal Brewing Company is dedicated to brewing beer that will bring the Busted Sandal experience to you and your friends. From favorite, standby styles, to inventive and fresh flavors, we want to be there when you form your life’s greatest moments. From our tap to your glass, here’s to living life to the fullest.”
– Busted Sandal Brewery

It was at that moment that the two would begin to get the ball rolling for what would later become Busted Sandal Brewing Company.

The pair jokingly state on the about us section on the website that the original name (Super Awesome Mind Blowingly Delicious and Tasty Beer Brewing Company) was already taken, which led to the new name.

Someone reading to a group outside of The Twig Book Shop
Credit to The Twig Book Shop

The Twig Book Shop

Why: An indie store operating out of an old brewery.
Where: 306 Pearl Pkwy UNIT 106, San Antonio, TX 78215

The Twig Book Shop is another small business in San Antonio that you really need to watch out for.

You see, this business has been around since 1972 and continues to attract a lot of attention from locals and the out-of-towners looking for an independent bookstore with heart. It also attracts a lot of history lovers due to just how long it’s been around for!

Outside of providing newly released books for children and adults, the space doubles up as a venue for local and national poets/authors.

You’ll often see speakers reading out excerpts of their latest releases at The Twig. If you’ve never attended one of these events, do so. They’re very entertaining and a great way to meet other book lovers in San Antonio.

In terms of opening times, The Twig is open 10am to 6pm Sunday to Monday. We’d recommend heading there early on a Sunday. It tends to be pretty quiet around that time, allowing you to browse the shelves without distractions.

Various craft items inside of Feliz Modern
Credit to Feliz Modern

Feliz Modern

Why: Art. Life. Fun.
Where: 110 W Olmos Dr, San Antonio, TX 78212, 303 Pearl Pkwy #104, San Antonio, TX 78215

Feliz Modern is a name that keeps popping up on Small Business Saturday, and with good reason. This small San Antonio business is as bright as they come (literally). They sell art, gifts, and home decor, all with a strong sense of community and pride.

Co-owners Mario and Ginger Diaz both come from art/design backgrounds, and wanted to create a space for colorful ideas and the everlasting connections that come by gifting what they sell to friends and family.

The original shop on Olmos Drive opened all the way back in 2017. Following the success of the company, a second location quickly followed – which you can find at the Historic Pearl Brewery.

What’s the secret to their success?

According to Feliz Modern, they wouldn’t be where they are today without “an amazing team of employees focused on customer experience.” The fact that the brand has been featured on BuzzFeed, CNN, and Time Magazine probably helps too.

People eating and drinking inside of Bakery Lorraine
Credit to Bakery Lorraine

Bakery Lorraine

Why: Mouth-watering baked goods you won’t ever forget.
Where: 2800 Broadway St. San Antonio, TX 78209, 7338 Louis Pasteur Dr, San Antonio, TX 78229, 17503 La Cantera Pkwy, San Antonio, TX 78257, 306 Pearl Pkwy #110, San Antonio, TX 78215

Mouth-watering baked goods that combine French pastry techniques with a playful inventiveness, Bakery Lorraine has made a name for itself in multiple locations across San Antonio and Austin.

Owners Anne Ng and Jeremy Mandrell met while working at Bouchon Bakery in Napa Valley and have been baking together ever since. It wasn’t until 2011 that the two would meet Charlie Biedenharn to start Bakery Lorraine.

Starting out, the brand would appear at various local farmers markets, where they quickly built up a loyal following. One thing that hasn’t changed over the years is the level of care and attention they bring to their offering.

Every item that they put out is handmade with the utmost care and attention to detail. Each ingredient is treated with the proper respect and thoughtfulness it deserves — from the miller’s flour to the dairy farmer’s eggs and butter.

Bakery Lorraine is a textbook example of what local businesses in San Antonio can achieve, without shying away from its local roots.

San Antonio Small Businesses That You Need to Watch Out For

We’ve covered quite a lot of ground today haven’t we?

We hope we’ve opened your eyes to a bunch of small businesses in San Antonio. Every brand we mentioned is more than deserving of your time and attention. They’re also deserving of your money if you’d like to go even further to support these local businesses.

Which small business stands out the most to you? And, will you be paying them a visit/purchasing something from them anytime soon?

If we had to choose, we’d probably start with The Twig Book Shop. We love reading and the history of the company/building has us more than intrigued.

If you run a small business yourself and need help in the important areas (like branding and websites), know that Canny is there if you need us. We’ve helped set countless small businesses up for success through our services, and can help find the same level of success too!

Get in touch today and let’s get your business up and running, together.