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El Alma is the culmination of two great friends — Restaurateur Carlos Rivero, and Chef Alma Alcocer. Together, they bring to life a fresh approach to Mexican flavors in a cozy neighborhood restaurant.

Bolivian-born Rivero, grew up in San Antonio where his passion for the food and service industry was first sparked growing up around his grandfather’s tortilla factory. In later years, he further honed his skills as he worked his way from waiter to general manager at Austin fine dining institution. Jeffrey’s. His first restaurant, El Chile Café y Cantina opened in October of 2003 and was soon followed by baby-brother taco joint, El Chilito.

Originally from Mexico City, Alcocer, another Jeffery’s Alum, is now the Executive Chef for the El Chile Restaurant Group, and can be found on the line of her namesake restaurant, El Alma, several nights a week.

Rivero, one of Alcocer’s biggest fans had long wanted to find a way to collaborate with the talented chef. In 2011, he asked her to join his team to help revitalize El Chile’s menu. It soon became evident that a restaurant of her own was the next logical step. The two hatched a plan to create a concept that would blend her classic training with her Mexico City roots, featuring dishes like the Crema De Elote, a corn and poblano chowder, and the roasted Duck Relleno.

Located on Barton Springs Road in a funky multi-tiered structure, the restaurant prominently features a stone staircase built into a natural rock formation adorned with tropical plants and a waterfall. The rooftop houses an expansive outdoor patio where guests can dine with a view of the Austin skyline throughout the year.

Alcocer cooks with a passion and inviting hospitality just like you were in her own home. From the bar, guests can enjoy specialty margaritas such as the Chilanga, the Flaquita, and the Mezcaloma, a smoky twist on a Paloma.

El Alma’s bold, flavorful food, and fresh and friendly atmosphere have given truth to the idea that when you combine two like-minded friends with a mission to bring good food to the Austin dining scene, you’re sure to win a loyal following.


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