Help Alton Brown Find the Mystery St. Louis-Style Pizza that Stole His Heart
Live music, large-scale food experiments, colorful puppets and even stand-up comedy make up Alton Brown Live!: the Edible Inevitable Tour, set to hit the Fox Theatre (527 North Grand Boulevard; 314-534-1111) on Saturday, February 1. The production comes from Peabody and James Beard award-winning Food Network celebrity-turned-icon Alton Brown, most renowned for his uber-educational culinary brainchild Good Eats as well as hosting Iron Chef America. Brown stops into town for the second leg of his tour, and from what we're told, things will get messy.
Alton Brown. | David Allen
Read on for our Q&A phone conversation with Brown to preview the event, and help us in our quest to figure out where he got some of the best pizza of his life on a past visit to St. Louis.
Gut Check: So just to verify, you've been to St. Louis quite a few times, including on your show, Feasting on Asphalt, when you visited Forest Park to check out some World's Fair myths. You've been to Ted Drewes, a lot of our doughnut shops and even our neighbor across the river, Alton, Illinois, that gets pronounced differently from your own name.
Alton Brown: Well, you know. They all just apparently revel in being wrong. That's OK by me.
I saw that you also have a St. Louis-style pork rib recipe featured on an episode of Good Eats.
So what are your impressions of St. Louis and its food, just in general, throughout all of your visits?
St. Louis is the crossroads of the country, you know. It's really tough to do a cross-country trip across America in any direction and not come through St. Louis. It's almost impossible. When you look at a map, it really is kind of the crossroads of America. I think that your town takes food seriously while not taking itself seriously which is kind of refreshing. There's nothing stuck up about St. Louis or about the food there that I've noticed.
How does the doughnut and restaurant scene here compare to ones you've experienced in Atlanta or anywhere else for that matter?
LA has got a big doughnut scene. You guys have a big doughnut scene. New York has a big doughnut scene. I wouldn't say that Atlanta has up-and-coming doughnuts. It has a couple good places, but that's about it. It's really difficult to compare and contrast because, quite frankly, I haven't eaten at enough restaurants in St. Louis to be able to address the food scene there in a comprehensive way.
But what does Brown think of our pizza?