Happy Hour at Tamm Avenue Grill: House-Smoked Meats and More in Dogtown

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Tamm Avenue Grill's beef-brisket quesadilla. | Photos by Mabel Suen

The Place: Tamm Avenue Grill (1227 Tamm Avenue; 314-261-4902)

The Hours: Happy hour is offered Monday through Friday from 4 to 7 p.m.

The Deals: $2 domestic beers, $3 well drinks and a selection of full-size plates for $5 each.

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Vernon's BBQ Voted "Most Underrated": Matt Stiffelman on What Makes It So Irresistable

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Chicken breasts in the smoker at Vernon's. | Kaitlin Steinberg

The readers have spoken: In our poll last week, y'all picked Vernon's BBQ (6707 Vernon Avenue, University City; 314-726-1227) as the most underrated barbecue restaurant in St. Louis. Any barbecue challenge in St. Louis is going to be tough, but we talked to Vernon's co-owner Matt Stiffelman on what sets his place apart from the competition.

"I think we're always doing something different, which keeps us on our toes. Some of the stuff we do, we know that it's not going to be liked by everyone," he says. "But we do it to take risks or to cross a line at times. We can't make everybody happy, but if the people that like it love it, we're not losing."

See also: First Look: Vernon's BBQ and Catering

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Pizzeoli Has Perfect Neapolitan Pizza Down to a Science: Review

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The classic Margherita, with fresh tomato sauce, fresh mozzarella, fresh basil, hand-grated Parmesan and extra virgin olive oil. | Mabel Suen

Pizzeoli
(1928 South Twelfth Street; 314-449-1111)
Tues.-Thurs. 11 a.m.-9 p.m.
Fri. 11 a.m.-9:30 p.m.
Sat. 4-9:30 p.m. (Closed Sun. and Mon.)

Pizzaioli is the Italian word for pizza-maker. It's a literal translation, but it's a bit like calling Salvatore Ferragamo a guy who makes shoes. To understand the essence of the word, one need not travel any farther than the corner of Allen and Twelfth Street in Soulard. There, Scott Sandler has opened Pizzeoli (an Americanized spelling of the term), an edible love poem to Neapolitan-style pizza. The former real-estate broker had been an at-home baker for years, experimenting with breads and obsessing over the perfect pizza dough. When his real estate career hit a rough patch last year, he decided to follow his dream of opening a pizzeria. Sandler enrolled in the Associazione Verace Pizza Napoletana's training program in California to further hone his craft.

Talking to Sandler, however, you'd think he taught the course. This man is serious about pizza. When he's not in front of the oven with peel in hand, he can be found walking around Pizzeoli's tiny dining room, espousing the virtues of yeast and why it's important to use a particular style of mixer to work the dough. He approaches his craft with a precision that borders on obsession, and his customers reap the benefits.

See also: Cooper's Legendary American Pub Serves Both Timeless and Forgettable Food: Review

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Macaroni Grill Is Selling All Its Shit on Craigslist

Categories: WTF?

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via Craigslist

All four St. Louis locations of national Italian chain Macaroni Grill closed rather abruptly last month, leaving employees and fans in the lurch. But perhaps there is a silver lining -- that is, if you're in the market for some restaurant-grade appliances. It seems Macaroni Grill is trying to unload more than 4,000 kitchen items in an auction by way of Craigslist.

See also: St. Louis Restaurant Openings & Closings: December 2014

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The Best Food Instagrams in St. Louis This Week: January 14 to 20

Categories: Food Porn

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The "Delmar" at Pi Pizzeria. | Instagram/@weeatstuffstl

We've said it before, and we'll say it again: Instagram was practically made for pictures of food. Gut Check has rounded up our favorite foodie accounts in St. Louis, but there are so many cool photos every week, we wanted to share what St. Louis' best chefs, bartenders and eaters are Instagramming. If you see a good one, send it to us!

See also: The Best Food Instagrams in St. Louis This Week: January 7 to 13

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Earthbound Brewing, New Microbrewery on Cherokee, Produces St. Louis' "Weirdest" Beer

Categories: First Look

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Earthbound Brewing's "Irish Red," "Pecan-Chicory Stout," "Rosemary-Juniper Pale Ale" and "Belgian Pale Ale." | Photos by Mabel Suen
Earthbound Brewing's (2710 Cherokee Street; 314-504-3532) intent is to offer up "St. Louis' smallest, weirdest beer." Ever since the homegrown brewery began selling its product over the holidays, it seems to have achieved just that. In a cozy 1,000-square-foot, shotgun-style space on Cherokee Street, co-owners Rebecca Schranz, Stuart Keating and Jeff Siddons pour out from-scratch concoctions such as a spicy, burly "Rosemary-Juniper Pale Ale" and a smooth "Pecan-Chicory Imperial Stout."

See also: Earthbound Brewery, New Beermaker on Cherokee Street, Uses History as an Ingredient

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Guess Where I'm Eating Sausage Pizza and Win $25 to iTap

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Sausage pizza. | Cheryl Baehr

Eating pizza is a totally great way to celebrate a nice weekend. It's actually a great way to celebrate anything, or to just have a Tuesday night. We had pizza at a (hint) classic St. Louis restaurant. Think you know which one? Take a guess and you could win some free beer.

See also: Guess Where I'm Eating This Pulled Pork and Win $20 to Fork & Stix [UPDATED]

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Ancho Reyes, a Spicy Chile Liqueur, Arrives in St. Louis

Categories: Booze

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Tasting Ancho Reyes | Patrick J. Hurley

The Drunken Vegan, a.k.a. Patrick J. Hurley, is a full-time barman at the Civil Life Brewing Company and cocktail enthusiast about town. He's an unapologetic drunkard, a vegan and a bon vivant, and, no, he doesn't think those last two terms contradict each other.

A couple of months ago, an odd product started appearing in liquor stores and on the shelves of the more adventurous bars: Ancho Reyes. It's a Mexican liqueur made with real ancho chile peppers. Its rich and surprisingly good flavor makes it a natural ingredient to add to cocktails served at better Mexican restaurants, the kind of places that already go well beyond the margarita slushie.

"This is too good to pass up," Kyle Harlan, bar manager at Mission Taco Joint (908 Lafayette Avenue; 314-932-5430) remembers thinking after first tasting Ancho Reyes. "We like products that use real ingredients. You can taste it. It's like biting into an ancho chili, but toned down a little."

See also: 10 Great Bars Without Televisions (Or, Where to Avoid the Big Game)

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Chef Chat: Joe Everett Is Scape American Bistro's Fish Out of Water

Categories: Chef Chat

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Executive chef Joe Everett of Scape American Bistro. | Courtesy Scape American Bistro

Joe Everett's grandma was skeptical at first about his enthusiasm for being in the kitchen. As a little boy, Scape American Bistro's (48 Maryland Plaza; 314-361-7227) executive chef would pester her while she was hard at work whipping up her Italian specialties -- sampling everything and always in the way. Eventually, she stopped chasing him out and began teaching him, instilling a love for food that he just couldn't shake.

See also: Chef Chat: Julie Weldele Is Scape American Bistro's Sweet and Sour Pastry Chef

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The Best Food Events in St. Louis This Week: January 19 to 22

Categories: Events

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Guerrilla Street Food is offering five all-new dishes at its pop-up this week. | Jennifer Silverberg

This seems to be the week of pop up dinners -- not that that's a bad thing. See how many restaurants you can hit for Clayton Restaurant Week or preview Mike Randolph's new place. Try brews from the Modern Brewery at Onesto or try all-new dishes from Guerrilla Street Food. Continue on for our food-related recommendations.

See also: The Best Menus at Clayton Restaurant Week 2015

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