Looking back, 2014 proved to be another banner vintage for the St. Louis culinary scene, which continues to grow and expand. Here are a select few of the events that helped shaped the year that was:
Millions of Americans travel for business purposes, and staying healthy is important to making the most of any trip. Jayne McAllister of Jayne McAllister Travel Wellness works with companies across the country to help ensure that employees have all the tips and tools they need to minimize the risk of becoming ill while traveling. She recently shared some advice with LN.
Q: Chef, I love Crab Rangoon and would love to make some, but I’m afraid they won’t turn out as good as the ones at the restaurant. I am not even sure what type of dough I need to use. Can you give me an easy recipe I can try it at home?
The King & I has been a South Grand landmark in South City for years, establishing itself as the place to go for authentic Thai food. Always bustling, the restaurant clientele is a melting pot of urbanites, suburbanites, hipsters and the decidedly un-hip, all coming together for a taste of Thailand. We stopped in recently for a long overdue meal.
Fans of fine food and the works of The Bard will be pleased to find out that Bixby’s, located on the second floor of the Missouri History Museum, is partnering with Shakespeare Festival St. Louis for this year’s productions of Henry IV and Henry V. Bixby’s will host an intimate and elegant communal dining experience for five nights throughout the run of the show. Guests can make reservations to dine at a community table, under the stars, and enjoy a lavish full-course meal, focused on dining with local influence. This experience is limited to 40 guests per night. Tickets are $50 and include a reserved seat for the show; dinners begin at 6 p.m. Tickets can be purchased online at sfstl.com.
The DeMun neighborhood in Clayton is one of our favorite areas to meander around on a gorgeous spring evening. Plenty of trees and flowers in bloom and a plethora of places to drop in for a drink and a bite. The newest spot to open up in the area is Seedz Café, a quality vegetarian/vegan eatery for those who want something light and delicious and plant-based.
One recent dining trend around town that's most welcome is the spate of new restaurants offering vegetarian and vegan fare that's creative: Tree House is one such eatery.
The folks at The Libertine are branching out into the world of Community Supported Agriculture (CSA). The popular Clayton eatery is now offering subscriptions to its new CSA, which will include a bag of locally produced food each week for pick-up, as well as house-made delights from their kitchen, courtesy of chef JOSH GALLIANO. There are several levels and types of subscriptions to choose from, including omnivorous, paleo, vegetarian and vegan options. For more info, check out the restaurant's website at libertinestl.com, or send them an e-mail at firstname.lastname@example.org.
It's been announced that Chef GIAN NICOLA COLUCCI has been tapped to replace Chef FABRIZIO SCHENARDI as executive chef at Cielo and the Four Seasons Hotel St. Louis. A native of Turin, Italy, Colucci most recently served as executive chef at Starwood Hotel & Resort Danieli in Venice. He's expected to take the reins later this month. Benvenuto, Signore!
With the tasty array of Asian restaurants on South Grand Boulevard, it's sometimes easy to forget that this bustling thoroughfare also is home to some other equally delicious ethnic eateries. One of our favorites is Meskerem, which specializes in authentic Ethiopian cuisine. We figured it was high time to stop back by and get a dose of some authentic East African delicacies.
Like most of restaurateur David Bailey's eateries, Small Batch combines a creative overall concept with bold design and inventive cuisine. All of these factors were on prominent display when we dropped in recently for a drink and a bite.
Folks with a sweet tooth in West County now have easier access to award-winning cupcakes. The Cup’s newest shop is now open for business in Chesterfield at 1590 Clarkson Road, between Talbots and Chico’s. The Chesterfield location offers The Cup’s signature cupcakes, as well as sugar cookies, cakewiches, Kaldi’s coffee beverages and gelato. Hours are 9:30 a.m. to 6:30 p.m. Monday through Thursday, and 9:30 a.m. to 9:30 p.m. Friday and Saturday.
Look for Seedz Cafe, a new vegetarian eatery, to open for business in early 2014 at 6344 South Rosebury in the DeMun neighborhood. The spot will feature an array of raw items, as well as smoothies and other plant-based specialties.
Since its beginnings, Herbie's Vintage '72 has been a dining destination for locals and visitors alike, anchoring the northern end of Euclid Avenue in the Central West End.
In the midst of all the shopping and the planning, it’s easy to forget that the holidays are really all about making time to be with family and friends. We asked local experts for tips to make this year’s seasonal gathering the most memorable one yet.
The Restaurant at The Cheshire, under the direction of Chef REX HALE, has unveiled its new fall menu highlighting a plethora of locally sourced ingredients. Small plates include show-stopping Ahi Tuna, Thin and Raw, as well as Pan Fried Naked Cowboy Oysters, served with butternut squash and bacon salad. For Mains, there’s Braised Pork Shank with caramelized vegetables; Maine Sea Scallops with pumpkin risotto; and Red Wine Braised Beef Short Rib with autumn vegetable ragout (shown), among others. Tasting menus ($32 per person) also are available, with a wine flight option. For reservations, call 932-7818 or visit restaurant-stl.com.
The western reaches of the St. Louis area are getting some quality restaurants to satisfy diners' desire for food and drink that's a bit more elevated. One of the latest arrivals to the scene is Prasino, which recently opened in St. Charles.
The patios are closing and the air conditioners are being turned off as local restaurants make the switch to cooler weather. Menus also are being updated to reflect the change of seasons. Here's a selection of eateries around town taking advantage of local produce and products to make this fall the tastiest yet:
This husband-and wife team met while living in Chicago, worked together on organic farms in Australia and New Zealand and now runs St. Louis vegetarian food truck Lulu's Local Eatery, complete with truck-rooftop garden.
In our quest to mine St. Louis' delicious ethnic cuisines, we made our way to The Grove's Everest Café. When we finally pushed back from the table, the only things on our minds were how had we not stopped in before and when could we return.
Kraftig Light, brewed by St. Louis' William K. Busch Brewing Company, took top honors in the American-style Light Beer category at the North American Beer Awards, held earlier this month in Idaho Falls, Idaho. The brew bested entries from many of the biggest names in beer in the country, including Anheuser-Busch's Michelob Ultra and Budweiser Select, which took second and third places, respectively.
Despite the vibrant food culture here in St. Louis, there's still a dearth of quality vegetarian and vegan dining options around town. Frida's Deli, which opened last summer in U. City, is doing its part to rectify this situation, offering up a nice selection of veggie-centric fare, as well as raw, low-glycemic, gluten- and oil-free choices.
Chill Cool Frozen Yogurt in Clayton will be celebrating its third anniversary on Friday, April 19. At 3:30 p.m. that day, Fredbird will make an appearance to hand out limited-edition Chill batting-helmet bowls with frozen yogurt purchases. The store also will present its third annual donation to Friends of Kids With Cancer during the celebration. By the way, Chill has some new spring flavors on the menu: Root Beer Float, Mango Sorbet and Pina Colada.
SweetArt Bake Shop in the Shaw neighborhood is a marriage of food and art. And that works out beautifully for owners Cbabi and Reine Bayoc, who happen to be husband and wife.
Big congrats go out to Robust in Webster Groves and Copia Restaurant And Wine Garden downtown. The two vino-centric eateries made Open Table's Diners' Choice 2012 Most Notable Wine List Top 100. Way to represent the Lou!