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The London Tea Room's Blueberry-Lemon Cake: Perfect Pair with a Fragrant Cup of Tea

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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London Tea Room's blueberry-lemon cake. | Photos by Mabel Suen

While growing up in the county of Hampshire on the southern coast of England, the London Tea Room's (3128 Morgan Ford Road; 314-241-6556) manager Jackie James adopted a knack for baking at an early age. She'd wait for her parents to go on their weekly Saturday stroll, during which time she'd experiment in the kitchen making pots of tea and sandwiches to go with her homemade rock cakes, shortbread and sponge cakes.

When Pat and Alan Richardson decided to open up a mom-and-pop tea shop to coincide their furniture business in 2007, James seemed like a natural choice to fill in when the cafe lost its baker. Since then, she's developed the range of in-house baked goods for the pastry case, including everything from rock cakes and their family's recipe for scones to a tried-and-true customer favorite: moist and flavorful blueberry-lemon cake.

See also: First Look: The London Tea Room

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Corner 17's Fluffy Ice: A Frozen Taiwanese Treat Topped with Fresh Fruit

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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Corner 17's "Green Tea Matcha Fluffy Ice." | Photos by Mabel Suen
In addition to its specialty hand-pulled noodles, Corner 17 (6623 Delmar Boulevard; University City; 314-727-2402) features a full menu of desserts and drinks, including tapioca-studded treats and fresh fruit juices. While the standard "Corner 17 Milk Tea" with boba hits the spot, it's the unique final item on the restaurant's chalkboard menu that most captures our dessert-loving eye: the fluffy ice.

See also: First Look: Corner 17

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The Fountain on Locust's "Banana Bourbon": A Sundae with a Shot of Booze

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 Fountain's "Banana Bourbon" sundae. | Photos by Mabel Suen
Did you know that July is National Ice Cream Month? OK, so we're a little late in the game, but summer's as good a time as any for frozen treats -- especially at the Fountain on Locust (3037 Locust Street; 314-535-7800), where ice cream takes center stage year round. The Fountain has a number of old-fashioned sundaes for kids of all ages to enjoy, but it's the booze-infused cocktails and dessert sauces that really take the menu of sweet treats over the top.

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Vinnie's Pinwheel Baklava: A Lighter Take on the Traditional Greek Favorite

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 warm and crispy baklava at Vinnie's. | Mabel Suen
If you type the name "George Potsos" into the search bar on YouTube, you'll find one of two things: videos of his band, Honeytribe, or short cooking lessons. The bassist and chef at Vinnie's (3208 Ivanhoe Avenue; 314-664-7007) starred as "Rock'n'Roll Chef" years ago for a friend's project, whipping up some of his favorite dishes and family recipes. The how-to on his mother's baklava video only got a few hundred views, but now anyone can see the authentic Greek sweet up close just by stopping by Vinnie's for lunch or dinner.

"My mom's the best Greek chef that I know, and it's not just because she's my mom," says Potsos. "She grew up in Rhodes, Greece, and is pretty much self-taught -- she's just got the touch."

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Red Fox Baking & Catering's Lemon Tart: A Delicate Pastry Baked In a Wood-Fired Oven

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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Red Fox Baking's lemon tart. | Photos by Mabel Suen
Red Fox Baking & Catering got its start working out of the kitchen at Black Bear Bakery, handcrafting hearty breads and flaky pastries to sell at local farmers' markets. After partnering with south-city grocery-cafe concept Grove East Provisions (3101 Arsenal Street) in the spring of 2013, the homegrown bakery carved out its own little corner in south city, building a brick wood-fired oven from scratch that would take the company's baked goods to the next level. Its beautiful lemon tart is no exception.

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Sugarfire Smokehouse's Crack Pie: A Gooey, Buttery Treat Perfect For the Fourth of July

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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Sugarfire Smokehouse's "Crack Pie." | Photos by Mabel Suen

Summertime means plenty of must-eat foods in St. Louis, but with the fourth of July fast approaching and the tantalizing smell of barbecue soon to envelop the air, there's one food we look forward to the most on the picnic table: a slice of that good old-fashioned American pie. Luckily, Sugarfire Smokehouse (9200 Olive Boulevard, Olivette; 314-997-5301) provides.

See also: Sugarfire Smokehouse's New '50s-Style Outpost Slinging Barbecue in St. Charles

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Russell's on Macklind's Coconut Cake, A Divine Classic Dessert By the Slice

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 coconut cake at Russell's on Macklind. | Photos by Mabel Suen
Chef Russell Ping of Russell's on Macklind (5400 Murdoch Avenue; 314-553-9994) describes his baking style as "homespun gourmet," perfecting nostalgic, American-style family recipes. His toasted coconut cake, a buttermilk pound cake filled and frosted with lightly sweetened vanilla whipped cream, is a classic example of his unadulterated, divine desserts.

"I believe that there is a certain art to keeping things simple. We use the highest quality ingredients we can find and try to balance flavors. We strive for product that is rich and decadent, but never overly sweet or complicated," says Ping.

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The Kitchen Sink's Sweet Potato Fries: A Taste of Thanksgiving In Each Bite

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 Kitchen Sink's sweet potato fries. | Photos by Mabel Suen
Servers at the Kitchen Sink (255 Union Boulevard; 314-454-1551) will likely forewarn guests who order it: "Have you had our sweet fries before?" The Cajun-themed restaurant's take on the hand-cut fry comes out way different than the traditional plain jane. Coated in a syrupy marshmallow glaze, they encapsulate a Thanksgiving casserole in a convenient finger food that's more suited as a dessert than as a side.

See also: First Look: The Kitchen Sink Debuts Expanded Space and Menu

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Giovanni's Kitchen's Panna Cotta Trio, A Creamy Dessert in Three Different Flavors

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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Panna cotta trio with berries, Grand Marnier and Belgian chocolate. | Mabel Suen
Here's how we know the panna cotta dessert at Giovanni's Kitchen (8831 Ladue Road; 314-721-4100) is authentic: Chef Alessando Bozzato got the recipe from a pastry shop in Gorizia, a small town in Northeast Italy, when he was only fifteen.

"I wrote down copies of the recipes, and the owner still doesn't know," he says with a laugh. "And I've been making it for the past thirty years."

See also: First Look: Giovanni's Kitchen

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Crepes Etc.'s Crepe Cake: Layers and Layers of Delicate Flavors

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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Tiramisu crepe cake. | Photos by Mabel Suen
It should be no surprise that Crepes Etc. (52 Maryland Plaza; 314-367-220) excels at dessert -- its sweet specialty displays itself prominently in the business' name, after all. Outside of the cafe's made-to-order menu, the French take on the pancake comes readily available at the pastry case in the form of a carefully assembled crepe cake.

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