THIS RESTAURANT IS CLOSED Gladys at the Strand
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THIS RESTAURANT IS CLOSED Gladys at the Strand Restaurant Review: Gladys (named for the two grandmothers of the chef-owner Thomas Benninger) seems to fill a void in the Huebner Oaks-UTSA area; it was a hit from day one---both with well-heeled locals and those from the nearby 'burbs. The stagey setting can get noisy with all their appreciation, too, so go prepared to concentrate mightily to hold a conversation---a condition only amplified by the generously large tables. The lush lobster risotto that caught our attention as an appetizer early on has since been replaced by one of duck confit with wild mushrooms or asparagus (perhaps it will cycle back through in time), and duck confit also figures with a dish of sweet-hot Thai cabbage. (The confit may be of the contemporary, short-cut sort, but the flavors are fine.) Sauces sometimes falter, as in the sesame-seared rare tuna with a decorative-only red curry reduction. Herb-crusted lamb racks with sweet potato mashers and a limed demi-glace would be fine without any sauce at all. Gladys' pepper-crusted filet with truffled mashers and a peppercorn-brandy sauce seems to call out for one of the more outgoing wines from the Interesting Reds category of the voluminous list; if you'd prefer to stick with bubbly, the pan-seared snapper with a coconut beurre blanc and a haricot vert-pineapple salad would appear to be just the ticket. Desserts range from a somewhat timid crème brûlée to an over-the-top chocolate lava cake with an excessive banana sauce. So why stop there: order an after-dinner drink on the order of the intense Bonny Doon framboise; it can trump almost any sweet in sight.