Gus' Pretzels' Cinnamon-Sugar Pretzels Are a Sweet Option at the Generations-Old Shop

Categories: Sugar High

Welcome to Sugar High, a series devoted solely to spotlighting the best ways to sate a sweet tooth in St. Louis. We'll sample the best the city has to offer at restaurants, bakeries and holes-in-the-wall, and provide some insight on how these confections are made along the way.

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Classic Gus' Pretzels: pretzel sticks and cinnamon-sugar twists. | Photos by Mabel Suen

Since 1920, Gus' Pretzels (1820 Arsenal Street; 314-664-4010) have been part of the fabric of St. Louis. The recipe for the soft, dense sticks and twists has remained the same through three generations of sons named Gus.

The salted, browned bread has long been sold on street corners throughout the city. But a sugar-coated offering at the Benton Park bakery recently caught our attention: the cinnamon-sugar pretzel.

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Fitz's Newest Soda, the Berry Pomegranate, Also Comes in a Float

Categories: Sugar High

Welcome to Sugar High, a series devoted solely to spotlighting the best ways to sate a sweet tooth in St. Louis. We'll sample the best the city has to offer at restaurants, bakeries and holes-in-the-wall, and provide some insight on how these confections are made along the way.

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Fitz's "Merry Berry" float with Berry Pomegranate pop. | Photos by Mabel Suen

The original recipe for Fitz's (6805 Delmar Boulevard; 314-726-9555) root beer dates back to 1947, and to this day, the company still uses bottling line equipment from that era. Currently, the local soda producers are active five days a week and run 500 gallons daily -- that's 1,200 cases and 28,800 bottles a day.

While the mainstay tried-and-true formula still hits the spot every time for St. Louisans, Fitz's fizzy, sweet sodas now come in more colors than a rainbow. Its latest offering, berry pomegranate, debuted earlier this spring.

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The Wedding Cake Cupcake at Smallcakes, a Special Occasion Dessert For Any Old Day

Categories: Sugar High

Welcome to Sugar High, a series devoted solely to spotlighting the best ways to sate a sweet tooth in St. Louis. We'll sample the best the city has to offer at restaurants, bakeries and holes-in-the-wall, and provide some insight on how these confections are made along the way.

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A selection of Smallcakes' sweets: bear claw, pink vanilla and wedding cake flavors. | Photos by Mabel Suen

Smallcakes: A Cupcakery (343 South Kirkwood Road; 314-698-2780) opened a year ago in Kirkwood, slinging thirteen standard flavors of cupcakes baked daily in addition to a rotating selection of specialty flavors. Mainstay cupcakes include everything from hot-fudge sundae and red velvet to peanut-butter cup and lemon-drop options.

The shop's most popular seller, however, is a familiar flavor typically reserved for special occasions: the "Wedding Cake" cupcake.

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Pastries of Denmark's Petit Fours: Bite-Size Confections From Copenhagen to Creve Coeur

Categories: Sugar High

Welcome to Sugar High, a series devoted solely to spotlighting the best ways to sate a sweet tooth in St. Louis. We'll sample the best the city has to offer at restaurants, bakeries and holes-in-the-wall, and provide some insight on how these confections are made along the way.

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An assortment of petit fours from Pastries of Denmark. | Photos by Mabel Suen

Since 1988, Pastries of Denmark (12613 Olive Boulevard; 314-469-7879) has offered residents of Creve Coeur a variety of eats and sweets in its European-style cafe. Chef-owner Kristian Vesth -- a fourth-generation baker -- whips up everything from authentic Danish pastries and breads to cheesecakes, pies and cupcakes. The dessert most true to his roots, however, is the petit four, a miniature confection he brought with him all the way from Copenhagen's landmark Hotel D'Angleterre.

See also: The Ten Best Dessert Spots in St. Louis

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Lucky Buddha's Five-Spice Crème Brûlée: A Spice-Infused Rendition of a Classic Dessert

Categories: Sugar High

Welcome to Sugar High, a series devoted solely to spotlighting the best ways to sate a sweet tooth in St. Louis. We'll sample the best the city has to offer at restaurants, bakeries and holes-in-the-wall, and provide some insight on how these confections are made along the way.

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Lucky Buddha's five-spice crème brulee. | Photos by Mabel Suen

At Lucky Buddha (3701 South Jefferson Avenue; 314-833-4568), chef Rene Cruz offers up his own twist on Asian cuisine, borrowing concepts from tried-and-true traditions and fusing them into his own contemporary creations. His five-spice crème brûlée is a perfect example of this approach, taking a familiar dish and giving it a personal spin.

See also: Lucky Buddha: A New Asian-Fusion Cuisine and Craft-Cocktail Lounge in South City

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Amy's Corner Bakeshop's Scones: A Simple Family Recipe For a Versatile, Perfected Pastry

Categories: Sugar High

Welcome to Sugar High, a series devoted solely to spotlighting the best ways to sate a sweet tooth in St. Louis. We'll sample the best the city has to offer at restaurants, bakeries and holes-in-the-wall, and provide some insight on how these confections are made along the way.

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Cranberry-orange scones. | Photos by Mabel Suen

Amy's Corner Bakeshop (4476 Chouteau Avenue; 314-371-2253) is as traditional as it gets for a homegrown American bakery. The Grove cafe opened in 2013 and offers the best of owner Amy Verkamp-McArthy's family recipes. Each week, her grandmother even comes in to bake a classic cake, available by the slice.

Alongside cinnamon rolls, muffins, cookies, coffee cake and gooey-butter cake, one special item always makes it into the pastry case every time the shop opens its doors: scones, made with a recipe perfected over the years by Verkamp-McArthy's mother.

See also: First Look: Amy's Corner Bakeshop

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Vincent Van Doughnut's "Mini Vinnies": Fun, Flavorful Doughnut Holes From Scratch

Categories: Sugar High

Welcome to Sugar High, a series devoted solely to spotlighting the best ways to sate a sweet tooth in St. Louis. We'll sample the best the city has to offer at restaurants, bakeries and holes-in-the-wall, and provide some insight on how these confections are made along the way.

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The latest "Mini Vinnie": a gooey-butter filled doughnut hole dipped in chocolate and topped with ganache. | Photos by Mabel Suen

Since rolling out its artisanal doughnuts in November 2013, Vincent Van Doughnut has made tracks all over town, offering its from-scratch treats on the streets, at Straub's Markets and even paired with ice cream for breakfast. On March 14, the food truck set roots in Clayton with its first brick-and-mortar storefront at 40 North Central Avenue in Clayton.

On any given day, visitors can look forward to a rotating set of around a dozen offerings including one of chef-owner Vincent Marsden's ongoing series of creations: "Mini Vinnies," or doughnut holes with decadent fillings or dips.

See also: I Scream Cake's "I Scream Sammys": Artisan Ice Cream Between Vincent Van Doughnut Treats

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Piccione Pastry's Sfogliatella Riccia: A Flaky, Orange and Ricotta Filled Italian Pastry

Categories: Sugar High

Welcome to Sugar High, a series devoted solely to spotlighting the best ways to sate a sweet tooth in St. Louis. We'll sample the best the city has to offer at restaurants, bakeries and holes-in-the-wall, and provide some insight on how these confections are made along the way.

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The sfogliatella riccia at Piccione Pastry. | Photos by Mabel Suen

Since opening in 2013, Piccione Pastry (6197 Delmar Boulevard; 314-932-1355) has offered some of the best desserts in town. Six days a week, choose from a variety of Italian-style confections available at its Delmar Loop storefront including ten different kinds of cannolis, cookies by the pound, rum-infused cakes and perhaps most notably, its signature treats made fresh each morning: the sfogliatella riccia.

See also: First Look: Piccione Pastry

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The Feasting Fox's Warm Apple Strudel: A Simple and Comforting European-Style Dessert

Categories: Sugar High

Welcome to Sugar High, a series devoted solely to spotlighting the best ways to sate a sweet tooth in St. Louis. We'll sample the best the city has to offer at restaurants, bakeries and holes-in-the-wall, and provide some insight on how these confections are made along the way.

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The Feasting Fox's apple strudel. | Photos by Mabel Suen

Some desserts simply stand the test of time, and the warm apple strudel at the the Feasting Fox (4200 South Grand Boulevard; 314-352-3500) is no exception. Chef Joe Feltmann, who has headed up the kitchen the German-themed restaurant for fourteen years, says this classic has held its spot on the dessert menu for as long as he can remember.

See also: Happy Hour at the Feasting Fox

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I Scream Cake's "I Scream Sammys": Artisan Ice Cream Between Vincent Van Doughnut Treats

Categories: Sugar High

Welcome to Sugar High, a series devoted solely to spotlighting the best ways to sate a sweet tooth in St. Louis. We'll sample the best the city has to offer at restaurants, bakeries and holes-in-the-wall, and provide some insight on how these confections are made along the way.

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I Scream Cakes' blueberry-cheesecake ice cream paired with Vincent Van Doughnut's blueberry-cheesecake doughnut. | Photos by Mabel Suen

Since opening in 2011, I Scream Cakes (2641 Cherokee Street; 314-932-5758) has offered picture-perfect ice cream cakes using its own from-scratch, all-natural ice cream. Chef and owner Kerry Soraci, who moonlights as a tattoo artist at Iron Age Tattoo, makes one-of-a-kind, award-winning treats including everything from intricate, fully edible sculptures to gluten-free drumsticks, garlic ice cream, beer floats and even frozen treats for pups.

Her latest novelty creation features a collaboration with artisan pastry makers Vincent Van Doughnut: the "I Scream Sammy." Every Saturday morning starting at 11 a.m., you can create your own ice-cream sandwich by pairing a doughnut with a scoop of your choice.

See also: I Scream Cakes Gets a Second Wind

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