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WAYS TO UPGRADE

YOUR PICNIC

lamb lollipops with herb dipping sauce p. 38

GOOEY BUTTER CAKE

BEST JAPANESE

15 WAYS TO

WORTH THE DRIVE

B E E R S

TREAT YO SELF!

P. 11

P. 29

P. 45

ST. LOUIS’ INDEPENDENT CULINARY AUTHORITY

May 2015

SAUCEMAGAZINE.COM

R E V I E W B AC K B A R AT S C A P E P. 25 FREE, MAY 2015

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contents MAY 2015

editors' picks 11

EAT THIS Gooey Butter Cake at Spoon Baking Co.

13

HIT LIST 4 new restaurants to try this month

14

KITCHEN ESSENTIALS John "Mo" Mozeliak of the St. Louis Cardinals

reviews 19

NEW AND NOTABLE Seoul Q

by michael renner

31

10 cool coffee drinks

by kristin schultz

22

POWER LUNCH Gobble Stop Smokehouse

32 54

by byron kerman

VEGETIZE IT Pound cake

WHAT I DO

25

by kellie hynes

Michael Miller of Kitchen Kulture

Backbar at Scape

35

NIGHTLIFE by matt berkley

dine & drink

by ligaya figueras

MAKE THIS Tortellini with peas and pancetta

by dee ryan

29

last course

A SEAT AT THE BAR PHOTO BY JONATHAN GAYMAN

Dak Bulgogi at Seoul Q p. 19

COFFEE

25 Ways to Upgrade Your Picnic

Features 38

25 WAYS TO UPGRADE YOUR PICNIC

Four experts tell us what to sip, stir and shake

52

45

by glenn bardgett, cory king, and ted and jamie kilgore

STUFF TO DO

TREAT YO SELF!

by byron kerman

by meera nagarajan

May 2015

COVER DETAILS Lamb lollipops with dipping sauce are just one way to upgrade your picnic. Find 25 ideas for transforming your outdoor meal into an alfresco party beginning on p. 38. PHOTO BY CARMEN TROESSER

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M AY 2 015 • VO LUM E 15, ISSU E 5 Where's your PUBLISHER favorite place EXECUTIVE EDITOR to picnic in ART DIRECTOR St. Louis? MANAGING EDITOR, DIGITAL

SPECIAL SECTIONS EDITOR STAFF WRITER FACT CHECKERS PROOFREADER PRODUCTION DESIGNER EDIBLE WEEKEND EDITOR CONTRIBUTING PHOTOGRAPHERS Lafayette Park, especially during the summer concert series

CONTRIBUTING EDITORS CONTRIBUTING ILLUSTRATOR CONTRIBUTING WRITERS The west side of Horseshoe Lake in Carondelet Park: I can bring my Boston Terriers, enjoy the birds and people-watch.

EVENTS COORDINATOR LISTINGS MANAGER ADVERTISING SALES MANAGER ACCOUNT EXECUTIVES ADVERTISING ACCOUNTS COORDINATOR INTERNS

To place advertisements in Sauce Magazine contact the advertising department at 314.772.8004 or sales@saucemagazine.com. To carry Sauce Magazine at your store, restaurant, bar or place of business Contact Allyson Mace at 314.772.8004 or amace@saucemagazine.com. All contents of Sauce Magazine are copyright ©2001-2015 by Bent Mind Creative Group, LLC. The Sauce name and logo are both registered to the publisher, Bent Mind Creative Group, LLC. Reproduction or other use, in

Allyson Mace Concordia Park on Ligaya Figueras DeMun Avenue: It Meera Nagarajan offers shady trees, a sloping hill and Catherine Klene historic buildings Ligaya Figueras as the perfect Kristin Schultz backdrop. Jackie Parker, Kristin Schultz Emily Lowery Michelle Volansky Catherine Klene Dustin Bryson, Sherrie Castellano, Jonathan Gayman, Ashley Gieseking, Elizabeth Jochum, Elizabeth Maxson, Carmen Troesser, Michelle Volansky Garrett Faulkner, Jackie Parker Vidhya Nagarajan Glenn Bardgett, Matt Berkley, Ligaya Figueras, Kellie Hynes, Georgia Kaye, Byron Kerman, Jamie Kilgore, Ted Kilgore, Cory King, Catherine Klene, Anne Marie Lodholz, Meera Nagarajan, Maggie Pearson, Amrita Rawat, Michael Renner, Dee Ryan, Kristin Schultz, Ben Wood Rebecca Ryan Rebecca Ryan Allyson Mace Jill George, Angie Rosenberg Jill George Georgia Kaye, Rima Parikh, Victoria Sgarro

whole or in part, of the contents without permission of the publisher is strictly prohibited. While the information has been compiled carefully to ensure maximum accuracy at the time of publication, it is provided for general guidance only and is subject to change. The publisher cannot guarantee the accuracy of all information or be responsible for omissions or errors. Additional copies may be obtained by providing a request at 314.772.8004 or via mail. Postage fee of $2 will apply.

EDITORIAL POLICIES The Sauce Magazine mission is to provide St. Louis-area residents and visitors with unbiased, complete information on the area’s restaurant, bar and entertainment industry. Our editorial content is not influenced by who advertises with Sauce Magazine or saucemagazine.com.

Sauce Magazine is printed on recycled paper using soy inks.

Our reviewers are never provided with complimentary food or drinks from the restaurants in exchange for favorable reviews, nor are their identities as reviewers made known during their visits.

SAUCE MAGAZINE subscriptions are available for home delivery NAME__________________________________________________________ STREET ADDRESS_________________________________________________ CITY_______________________________ STATE ______ ZIP______________

SEND A $29 CHECK TO: SAUCE MAGAZINE – SUBSCRIPTIONS for a 12-month subscription 1820 Chouteau

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St. Louis, MO 63103 May 2015


letter from the editor

My 15-year-old son, Anton, and I picnic at Clayton's DeMun Park, just like when he was a toddler.

Y

ou’re looking at my son, Anton, one of the two main reasons I am passionate about good food. The other reason is his older brother, Alvaro. When I held my first newborn 19 years ago, I quickly realized that food had to be a priority if I was going to raise healthy kids and fuel myself with enough energy to keep up with them – like on outings to the park.

PHOTO BY CARMEN TROESSER

Picnicking on our tartan blanket was one of our favorite activities when my boys were little. Typically, I’d pack sandwiches or dinner leftovers, fruit, raw veggies and cookies. A juice box was a frequent treat, but no one died when tap water was the beverage of the day. On these excursions, we discovered hidden spots in Forest Park and in pockets across St. Louis. DeMun Park in Clayton was a regular destination for us. It was on such a picnic at DeMun about a dozen years ago that I met a young mother with a set of 3-yearold twins. She caught my attention because her sons were eating peanut butter and honey sandwiches on what looked like homemade bread. (Someone else my age baked bread!) During our conversation, she lamented how crumbly the bread was because she had run out of flour and had to substitute other grains. (A

May 2015

fellow cook who would rather rummage through the pantry for a substitute than run to the store? Be still, my home-cooking heart!) Anne Marie Lodholz remains a dear friend to this day. Moreover, you’ll find tasty recipes developed by Anne Marie and her husband, Dan Lodholz, in their online Sauce column, The Weekend Project, and in this month’s picnic feature, “25 Ways to Upgrade Your Picnic” (p. 38), which turns the everyday picnic into an alfresco fete. Whether you go on a picnic for the fancy cheese and crackers, bottle of wine, a beautiful sunset or the promise of playground swings (you’re never too old), the best part is when you stop for a moment and appreciate everything around you: the people, the place and, yes, even that sandwich on crumbly bread that Mom baked. That, friends, is the power of food. Cheers, For more on Kitchen Kulture, turn to p. 54.

Ligaya Figueras Executive editor

More than ever, area businesses are joining forces to create hyperlocal food and drink experiences. On this month’s Sound Bites segment, Sump Coffee owner Scott Carey and Kitchen Kulture co-owner Christine Meyer join Sauce executive editor Ligaya Figueras to discuss the rise of innovative culinary collaborations and why teaming up can be a winning recipe for everyone. Tune in to St. Louis Public Radio 90.7 KWMU’s Cityscape Friday, May 15 at noon and 10 p.m.

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editors' picks

EAT THIS

St. Louis knows a thing or two about GOOEY BUTTER CAKE, so we do not make the following statement lightly: SPOON BAKING CO. has raised the bar for our city’s classic dessert. A cookie-like crust is sturdy enough to stand up to a fork, yet meltingly tender on the tongue. It cradles a remarkable soft-centered filling that hits the perfect PHOTO BY CARMEN TROESSER

balance of pure sugar and luscious butter. Grab your keys and hit the road – this is one of the best gooey butter cakes you’ll find east or west of the Mississippi.

SPOON BAKING CO., 4 E. BROADWAY, ALTON, 618.374.6098, SPOONBAKINGCOMPANY.COM

May 2015

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hit list

4 new restaurants to try this month

4 Homestyle barbecue and live music headline at J&C, the second restaurant for husband-and-wife owners Jerome and Cathy Jenkins, located down the street from sister eatery Cathy’s Kitchen in Ferguson. Order the tender pork steak sandwich, pair it with fried okra and potato salad and just try to not lick your fingers. Look for a variety of house-made pies or try the bread pudding drizzled with sweet cream sauce, and then jump on stage and audition to be the weekend entertainment. This family-oriented joint welcomes any blues act to audition during the week for possible paying gigs on Friday and Saturday nights.

J&C BBQ & BLUES

1 EdgeWild Restaurant & Winery is bringing casual American cuisine (and beer) to sister restaurant EdgeWild Bistro & Tap. Unique twists to typical bar fare begin with snacks like togarashi-inspired popcorn tossed with kale chips and appetizers such as avocado-crab salad with house-made Indian fry bread. Sandwiches also sport creativity. Try the BLT&P, with pastrami adding oomph to a classic BLT, or the Kirin Chicken, a banh mi-style sandwich with a whisper of wasabi. Sammie traditionalists will smile at the Roast Dip, thick with beer-braised short rib. Among entrees, indulge in the meatloaf trio (bison, duck and a beef-sausage blend, each wrapped in cured meat), but add green with a side of crispy Brussels sprouts. Beer nerds will revel in the 22 rotating taps and more than 50 bottled brews that span the globe. Wine lovers can select EdgeWild labels, but on a hot day, we recommend the thirst-quenching Lambic Sangria.

Athlete Eats, now known as Revel Kitchen, is taking to the streets. The mobile eatery, led by chefowner Simon Lusky, will serve Athlete Eats favorites as well as new items, including a cold soba noodle salad tossed in an Asian peanut sauce and garnished with a sous-vide egg. For a meaty fix try the Arepa Carnita Burger – a houseground pork patty in a fresh arepa, smothered with mesquite-smoked, pineapple-yogurt sauce. Drink your PB&J with a smoothie of bananas, peanut butter, skim milk, chocolate protein powder, almonds and blueberries. Look for Revel Kitchen to start its engine at Food Truck Friday on May 8.

12316 Olive Blvd., Creve Coeur, 314.548.2222, edgewildbistro.com

314.932.5566, Twitter: @eatrevel, Instagram: @eatrevel

South Kingshighway has a new place for authentic Bosnian fare. The cevapi offers generous portions of house-made beef sausages between two pieces of chewy, freshly baked Bosnian flatbread. For a meatless meal, grab the zeljanica, house-made bread stuffed with spinach and cheese and baked to a golden brown. For dessert, try the krempita, a light and fluffy vanilla treat that layers a thin slice of sponge cake, a hefty portion of custard and a puff pastry top.

ANTONIO’S BISTRO & MARKET

EDGEWILD AND J&C BBQ PHOTOS BY MICHELLE VOLANSKY; REVEL KITCHEN FOOD TRUCK PHOTOS BY MEERA NAGARAJAN

EDGEWILD BISTRO & TAP

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REVEL KITCHEN FOOD TRUCK

J&C BBQ & Blues, 304 S. Florissant Road, Ferguson, 314.738.9222, Facebook: J&C BBQ and Blues

1 BLT&P from EdgeWild Bistro & Tap 2, 3 Cold soba noodle salad and PB&J

5005 S. Kingshighway Blvd., St. Louis, 314.899.9885, Facebook: Antonio’s Bistro on Kingshighway and Neosho

smoothie from Revel Kitchen Food Truck 4, 5 Bread pudding and pork steak sandwich from J&C BBQ & Blues

For more on Food Truck Friday, turn to p. 52.

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“OhYeah!: I use that. If I had to rank it: chocolate, then mocha (from the gym where he trains) and then vanilla.”

Kitchen Essentials John 'Mo' Mozeliak

Now in his 20th year with the St. Louis Cardinals and his eighth season as the club’s general manager, John “Mo” Mozeliak has his eating and drinking game plan down. Here’s how this baseball exec stays in top form. – Ligaya Figueras

“I do four eggs overmedium, sausage, bacon and coffee.”

BREAKFAST OF CHAMPIONS

shake it up

John Mozeliak prepares breakfast at his Ladue home.

“I sometimes do butter coffee. It’s made with Bulletproof organic coffee beans, unsalted butter and coconut oil. It can almost replace a meal. Our chef, Simon Lusky, and David Bell, our bench coach, introduced it to me.” For more on chef Simon Lusky, turn to p. 13.

UTILITY PLAYER

THE OENOPHILE

FRIDGE ESSENTIALS

“My favorite utensil might be my corkscrew. My wife and I love wine. Our go-to wine would be pinot noirs: Kistler, Red Birds.” “I would be the primary griller. My favorite would be a New York strip with the Simon Lusky rub. He makes it for me. It’s a barbecue rub. I don’t know the exact ingredients, but I know it has coffee grounds in it.”

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IF IT HAS TO BE GREEN … “I don’t really like vegetables. If I do, I like to eat spinach. My favorite is a spinach salad with bacon and hard-boiled eggs and a bacon fat-balsamic vinaigrette.”

“Eggs, salmon, nuts – cashews are my favorite.”

May 2015

PORTRAIT BY ASHLEY GIESEKING

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reviews All Sauce reviews are conducted anonymously.

Seoul Ssam Wrap at Seoul Q

new and notable

Seoul Q

I

BY MICHAEL RENNER | PHOTOS BY JONATHAN GAYMAN

n December, owner David Choi relocated his wildly successful Seoul Taco restaurant – the brick-and-mortar version of his equally successful food truck – from a small spot on a side street in The Loop to the massive space on the main drag that once housed Ginger Bistro. There, he also opened his Korean barbecue concept, Seoul Q, for a two-in-one Korean dining experience the likes of which St. Louis has never seen before. While a floor-to-ceiling latticed partition is not quite the 38th parallel north, it keeps the two operations separate.

new and notable SEOUL Q p. 19 / power lunch GOBBLE STOP SMOKEHOUSE p. 22 / nightlife BACKBAR AT SCAPE p. 25 May 2015

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tender. Both took well to dipping sauces, including Pappy’s Seoul Q sauce, made with Pappy’s Original barbecue sauce punched up with vinegar, sesame oil and the sweet-hot red chile paste gochujang.

reviews NEW AND NOTABLE p. 2 of 2

at Seoul q, order anything you can grill yourself.

Of the three soups, we chose kimchi and soon doo boo. The former, with its sharp, acidic tang, layered heat and tomatoscented broth, could have cured anything from a cold to a hangover while the latter – rich with shrimp, mussels and silken tofu – got its deep, powerfully umami taste and smoky aroma from onions, mushrooms, kelp and anchovy.

Between the many meat choices, myriad side dishes and cooking processes, there’s a lot to take in. What may feel chaotic to some is downright adventuresome for others. The custom-built cement tables encourage communal dining. Eight are equipped with gas-fueled braziers and sleek, telescopic exhaust tubes overhead for DIY barbecuing, while six are outfitted with induction burners to keep the family-sized hotpots warm.

Where the Seoul Taco side is fast-casual and the ambiance is bright and frenetic with cartoonish murals and multicolored lights, Seoul Q’s vibe is stylishly rustic, simple but not exactly subtle. It’s as if the ancient Korean vision of a universe composed of earth, fire, water, wood and metal was distilled to fit into a singular space. True to Korean cooking, Seoul Q combines the five pillars of flavor essential to Asian cuisine – salty, sweet, sour, spicy and bitter – and it brings together five key colors: red, yellow, white, black and green. It’s all designed to provide dizzying contrasts of spice, color and texture, and there was no better representation than banchan, refillable side dishes of beef croquette, fish cake, egg soufflé, pickled cucumber, three varieties of kimchi and sweet black fermented beans. There’s no rulebook here; just let your palate guide how you assemble everything.

AT A GLANCE Seoul Q

Fortunately, the menu is laid out clearly into appetizers, soups, hotpots, specials and barbecue. The trick for four of us at the grill table was figuring out how much to order. Because things can rapidly get out of hand, a helpful server is essential. Ours was, even though we still dialed back our order a bit. The Seoul Ssam Wrap seemed a good way to get into the communal spirit of things

WHERE 6665 Delmar Blvd., University City, 314.925.8452, seoulqstl.com

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DON’T MISS DISHES Seoul Ssam Wrap, anything you grill yourself

before starting our grilling adventure; all we had to do was stuff crisp lettuce leaves with braised, caramelized pork belly and shoulder and radish kimchi, drizzle on one of several accompanying sauces, wrap and eat. But pacing was too fast – the rib-eye and flap tail steaks we ordered to grill later arrived together. Between the lettuce leaves, fillings, dipping sauces, grilled meats, bowls of rice and those six accompanying side dishes, the table was quickly overrun … and all that was before the order of marinated pork arrived for the grill. Yet none of it mattered once the passing of plates, the “here, try this,” and the grilling got into full gear. With six beef and four pork offerings, there is no shortage of meat to grill yourself or with your server’s assistance, should you be intimidated. Our rib-eye was nicely marbled, and the flap tail (from the bottom sirloin butt) was lean and

VIBE Relaxed, stylishly rustic

The typical Korean beverages of choice are beer and rice wine. Two Korean beers, Cass and Hite, and one Nicaraguan beer, Toña, share space with a couple 4 Hands and Schlafly brews. There are bottles of Korean makali, a cloudy, sweet, fermentedrice liquor, and soju – the top-selling spirit in the world – an extremely smooth, clear, slightly sweet cross between sake and vodka. The cocktail list features five soju-based drinks, including a remarkably refreshing Seoul Reviver No. 4 that incorporates a ginger shrub, lemon juice and black sesame bitters. Seoul Q doesn’t take reservations, but you can huddle around the small, standingroom-only bar tucked in the back corner, or you can cool your heels at a nearby cafe or bar and wait to be called or texted when your table is ready. With so much food and grilling and mixing and ladling and tasting, confusion and fatigue can quickly set in. Fight it any way you can. The flavors are worth it. Just give in and let the experience flow. It will not only be one of the best meals you’ve eaten, but also the infectious, communal nature of Korean dining will be the most fun you’ve had in a long while.

ENTREE PRICES Ranging from $16 specials to $40 for hotpots that serve two to three people

WHEN Sun. – 5 to 11 p.m., Mon. to Thu. – 5 p.m. to midnight, Fri. and Sat. – 5 p.m. to 1:30 a.m.

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reviews POWER LUNCH

Power Lunch

GOBBLE STOP SMOKEHOUSE BY BYRON KERMAN | PHOTOS BY ELIZABETH MAXSON

A family barbecue joint run by Seventh-day Adventists does things differently than most St. Louis ’cue spots. It’s not open on Saturdays, and there is no pork, which the religion abjures. Yet seven members of the Howard family have reconfigured smoked turkey into a series of clever dishes that will bring you back for more. Gobble Stop Smokehouse customers linger after lunch.

2 The sheath of fried cornmeal batter over the cob is reasonably tasty, but it makes melting butter into the grooves between the kernels virtually impossible. One fetish may obviate the other.

1 TALKIN’ TURKEY Turkey tips are the cornerstone of this restaurant. The tips are really snipped ends of turkey thighs, smoked, tossed in Barbecue Sweet ’n Smoky Sauce and plated on white bread to soak up the drippings. Between the great smoky flavor and the gristle to eat around, turkey tips taste for all the world like rib tips. Turkey tips are a fine intro to the magic these cooks can work with a big bird, and it makes for some seriously messy eating. (Gobble Stop Gobble stop should consider putting a smokehouse roll of paper towels at each 1227 Castillon Arcade Plaza, table.) “Turkey ribs” [1] are a Creve Coeur, 314.878.5586, machine-made cut, meaning gobblestopsmokehouse.net white meat is attached to the shoulder blade. Then, they’re smoked to a perfect pink inside and a gorgeous golden-red outside and served with a sauce of your choice. Turkey tenderloin is cut from the breast, smoked The Buffalo pulled chicken sandwich [2] and served with provolone, sauteed onions, does not blast the diner with spicy heat, but portobello mushrooms and a mustard-based stays in the mild zone. With its big chunks barbecue sauce on a chewy, toasted pretzel of juicy thigh meat, onion rings, provolone bun. Fried turkey meatballs benefit from and pickles, it’s a thick, delicious sandwich. aggressive Sriracha, garlic and other spices. However, the molten cheese at the core was SAUCE BOSS so minimal it required careful inspection to locate; the accompanying mayo-based sauce Of the many things Gobble Stop does well, was bland and unworthy of these beauties. its selection of sauces is a tutorial on how to do barbecue right. The Barbecue Sweet ’n Smoky Sauce is not a treacle of thick THE OTHER WHITE MEAT St. Louis-style corn syrup, but balanced Chicken does not get short shrift here. and popping with genuine flavor. The hot Perfectly smoked wings emerge red on the barbecue sauce is masterful; it doesn’t blow outside and pink and juicy on the inside. you away with fire, but instead delivers

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SWEET TEA TIME Do not miss the sweet tea here; it may be the best to pass your lips. Floating in the tureen with the tea and ice are many mint sprigs and whole, punctured citrus fruits. The tea becomes a festive, fruity punch that’s hard to stop drinking.

THE TAKEAWAY Counter service is warm and fun; the owners and employees at the register are good-natured jokers. Lunch traffic is brisk, but if you have to wait a bit longer than expected, the quality of the food justifies it. This is real food, not fast food. Here’s to the new St. Louis-style barbecue. a gracious, rise-and-fall heat profile. Carolina-style mustard barbecue sauce is usually vinegar-forward, but here the acid is countered by sweetness for a tangy zing. Also, the sauces served on the side are warmed first, which is not just a courtesy but an enhancement for the taste buds. SIDEKICKS The uncommonly fresh, mayo-based house-made coleslaw [3] tastes like it was prepared within the hour. Soul food-style potato salad (aka heavy on the hard-boiled egg yolks) is delightful. Fried corn on the cob is an acquired taste.

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nightlife

reviews

Backbar at Scape

NIGHTLIFE

BY MATT BERKLEY | PHOTOS BY DUSTIN BRYSON

Backbar is served by a U-shaped stone bar that makes good use of four well-chosen taps that feature a revolving selection Backbar at Scape of brews. My 48 Maryland Plaza, visits found them St. Louis, 314.361.7227, serving great pints backbaratscape.com of Boulevard Tank Seven, Urban Chestnut Zwickel (in a proper UCBC mug to boot) and Deschutes Porter. There are a handful of wines by the glass, priced in the $9 to $12 range, along with featured cocktails. The cocktail menu is dominated by warm-weather drinks – nominally sweet and citrusy choices like the 18th Amendment, a pseudo mojito that subs a splash of Backwoods moonshine for rum, with strawberries, mint and lime floating in ginger ale. A more potent choice is the Ultimate Manhattan, which hardly lives up to its name (the bartenders can be heavyhanded with the sweet vermouth) but still offers a nice hit of Knob Creek bourbon with a dark morello cherry to munch on afterward. This is not to say there’s a lack of talent behind the bar. This place pushes out perhaps the best Bombay gin martini I’ve sipped on in years. And while it may seem like a laid-back spot, orders are delivered correctly and at a good pace.

A

quiet stretch of alley space tucked between The Chase Park Plaza and Maryland Avenue, steps away from the epicenter of the Central West End’s thriving entertainment scene, is home to Backbar at Scape, a swanky and secluded open-air patio. Peddled toward the wellheeled crowd, this outdoor urban retreat is a fine spot to ease back on a warm night and sip, savor and splurge. Juxtaposed to the adjacent back alley entrance of the raucous and wild Mandarin Lounge, Scape’s Backbar couldn’t be more opposite. While liquored-up 20-somethings stand in line for the elevator to Mandarin’s remixthumping rooftop party, the patrons at Backbar glance over and smile. Unhurried and more self-possessed, the atmosphere is relaxed and upscale, but no less flirty

May 2015

or indulgent. There are no packed lines for shots, but you will find well-dressed young professionals and a more mature after-dinner crowd cozying up to the bar with cold cocktails in hand. Live bands, mainly jazz and other acoustic groups, are regular features here, too. In this bustling midtown setting, Backbar enjoys a healthy happy-hour crowd that takes advantage of $3 beers and $5 wine and cocktail specials. Cardinals game nights are likewise a popular draw for patrons looking to avoid the typical sports bar scene. The open-air space has the feel of an Italian courtyard. A massive wall covered in ivy is dressed with stone columns that support 72-inch flat-screen TVs. A handful of tables open up to the bar and adjacent lounge areas, decked out with high-tops, cushy chairs and plenty of steel bar stools.

Backbar offers a menu of high-end small plates and shared items – steamed mussels, shrimp and grits, daily updated cheese boards – along with Scape’s regular food offerings. The best of these by far is the braised beef bruschetta, which offers generous hunks of savory beef on top of a thick slice of bread smothered in a saltysweet red pepper goat cheese tapenade garnished with light, Calabrian peppers. Pair this with a tall, ruby red glass of the J.L. Chave Mon Coeur Cotes du Rhone, a medium-bodied red with a long, berryfilled finish. At $3 a pop, fresh oysters (both East and West Coast varieties) on the halfshell are available and worth the splurge after a few martinis. An expensive though not overpriced treat, Backbar at Scape stands out as a solid destination for secluded date nights, an afterdinner drink with friends or a cold pint and a ballgame. That’s not bad work for a little strip of back alley.

ORDER IT: Backbar at Scape

Backbar’s Bombay gin martini is one of the best around.

Braised beef bruschetta offers generous hunks of beef smothered in red pepper goat cheese tapenade.

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dine

& drink

See Glenn Bardgett's pick for a crisp vin gris

ILLUSTRATIONS BY VIDHYA NAGARAJAN; PHOTO BY ELIZABETH JOCHUM

A SEAT AT THE BAR / Four experts tell us what to sip, stir and shake I am a longtime fan of wines by Josh Jensen’s Calera Wine Company, yet I only recently had my first taste of one of its pink wines. The 2014 Calera Vin Gris of Pinot Noir Central Coast GLENN BARDGETT sports a stunning neon Member of the Missouri Wine pink color, but it carries the and Grape Board and wine weight and length of a red director at Annie Gunn’s wine. Most rosé, pink and vin gris wines (they have three alter egos) are easy, breezy, fun and fruity. This $20 bottle, however, has a very high IQ. It’s a seriously complex, crisp dry wine that tastes like pinot noir and can carry a conversation with dishes equally as sophisticated and full-flavored. May 2015

We love the art and science of mixing ingredients to make a delicious cocktail. Rieger’s Kansas City Whiskey does the same balancing act on a larger scale with whiskey. It’s a blend of malt, corn and straight rye whiskeys with a touch of 15-year-old oloroso sherry TED AND JAMIE to lend subtle sweetness and KILGORE nuttiness. Rieger’s was released in USBG, B.A.R. Ready, BarSmart late 2014, marking the resurrection and co-owners/bartenders at Planter’s House of J. Rieger & Co., a brand founded in the late 18th century that rose to become the largest wholesale mailorder whiskey house in the U.S. The thoughtfully balanced recipe, interesting history and elegant flavor are why we’re drinking this spirit. Try it neat or in a whiskey sour.

If pressed to name a few Japanese beers, you’d likely list adjunct lagers that you only drink at a sushi bar. It’s time to get acquainted with the best craft beer from the Land of the Rising Sun: CORY KING Hitachino Nest Beer by Kiuchi Certified Cicerone, head Brewery. This microbrewery brewer at Perennial Artisan creates innovative beers like Ales and founder of Side Hitachino Nest White Ale, Project Brewing a beautiful Belgian-inspired witbier; Hitachino Nest Red Rice Ale, a pink-colored ale that holds slightly fruity, sake-like flavors and is dangerously drinkable; and my favorite, Hitachino Nest Espresso Stout, a Russian Imperial stout packed with coffee notes. saucemagazine.com I SAUCE MAGAZINE I 29


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COOL COFFEE DRINKS By Kristin Schultz

1. Flash Brew Poured right from the temperaturecontrolled keg, this flashbrewed (hot-brewed onto ice) coffee is straight-up cold, clean, strong and available to go in a refillable growler. La Cosecha Coffee Roasters, lacosechacoffee.com 2. Sprubbles Move over, gin. Tonic water adds fizz and a foamy head to the daily featured espresso stirred with house-made jam over ice that results in a complex, bright beverage. Blueprint Coffee, blueprintcoffee.com 3. Turkish Coffee Martini Cardamom-spiked, super-fine coffee is brewed Turkish-style before joining a shaken mix of Godiva chocolate cream liqueur, vodka and sugar. Cafe Natasha’s, cafenatasha.com

BLUEPRINT PHOTO BY SHERRIE CASTELLANO

4. Until the Morning Hickory smoke is added to a mix of cold-press coffee, rye whiskey, bitters, simple syrup and the Italian bitter liqueur Cynar, which emphasizes the bitter character of coffee in this bright yet serious cocktail. Blood & Sand, bloodandsandstl.com 5. Coffee Cola Even the hottest temps can’t undo the sweet, refreshing bubbles of a seasonal syrup, custom created for each coffee bean varietal, to which is added ground coffee, vanilla bean and sea salt, then reduced, strained and finally suds-ed up with soda water. Ahhh … Sump Coffee, sumpcoffee.com

May 2015

Warm weather marks the switch from piping hot coffee to cool, caffeinated goodness. Here, 10 trendy drinks to check out this summer.

6. Bitt’s Cold Press Take home a bottle of this dark and luscious concentrate and mix with water, milk, ice cream or even root beer – let your creativity flow. Living Room, arthousecoffees.com

COFFEE

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7. Jitter Mud Thai coffee takes a ride in the blender when French-roasted Joe and sweetened condensed milk are whirled with ice cream, chocolate sauce and ground coffee, then topped with whipped cream and caramel sauce. King & I Thai Restaurant, kingandistl.com 8. Barrel-aged Iced Latte Green coffee beans spend two to three weeks aging in spent wine barrels from Chandler Hill Vineyards before being roasted and cold-brewed, resulting in a smooth yet bold coffee with fruity undertones. Mississippi Mud Coffee Roasters Cafe, mississippimudcoffee.com 9. Drag Race A coldbrew toddy goes uptown when stirred with Michter’s rye, a selection of amari and coffee liqueur for a clean, sophisticated digestif. Planter’s House, plantershousestl.com 10. Sweet Cream Cold Brew Chill out with a local version of ready-to-drink cold-brew coffee and sweet cream. On your way out, grab a second 16-ounce bottle of the agave-sweetened brew to savor later. Park Avenue Coffee, parkavenuecoffee.com

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VEGETIZE IT

Vegan Pound Cake

A

BY KELLIE HYNES | PHOTOS BY CARMEN TROESSER

s a child, I picked strawberries in my mother’s expansive garden. I gathered bowls of sweet, sunwarmed berries that Mom then mashed, smothered with white sugar and poured over a butter-filled pound cake. This was the ’70s after all, when my favorite fruit came from a can of Libby’s Fruit Cocktail.

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Hungry for more vegetarian dishes? Go to samg.bz/ saucemeatless every Monday to check out our Meatless Monday column, where you’ll find recipes to prepare tasty vegetarian fare at home. May 2015


Now that I’m older and wiser, I appreciate produce that’s not suspended in heavy syrup, and I recently found a cake recipe that uses self-rising flour instead of eggs to lighten its texture. I wondered if I could use the same flour to create a vegan version of my childhood dessert – a cake that was substantial enough to support strawberry sauce and my nostalgia. Pound cake gets its moniker because it was originally made with a pound each of butter, eggs, flour and sugar. I omitted the butter and eggs in my first test recipe, baking a concoction of self-rising flour, vegetable oil, water, sugar and vanilla. The result was a little flat and a little bland, but not nearly as terrible as I worried a pound cake without butter and eggs would taste. What happened next can be charitably described as losing my mind. For three days, I tested cake after cake, changing a flour, fat, sugar or liquid each time to see how it affected the taste and texture. It was like I was back in my middle-school science lab, except the results were edible, and I didn’t accidently release a swarm of fruit flies by dropping a test tube. The self-rising flour, so named for the baking powder and salt already blended into the mix, yielded a cake that was 50 percent taller than one made with all-purpose flour. (The all-purpose flour cake was more akin to a shortbread tea biscuit. Apparently it’s not really for all purposes.) But in the same way bakers use unsalted butter to control sodium in a recipe, I wanted to keep tabs on the baking powder. So instead of self-rising flour, I used low-protein cake flour. Less protein means less gluten is formed in the batter, which makes the cake airier and softer. Between the cake flour and a tablespoon of baking powder, my next test had a lovely, egg-free rise. A tablespoon of baking powder seems excessive, but I got away with it because I didn’t use any baking soda. Baking soda’s sciency name is sodium bicarbonate. Heat it up and it produces sodium carbonate, aka a weird metallic aftertaste. An acid will partially neutralize the sodium carbonate and its nasty flavor, which is why biscuit recipes that call for baking soda typically also call for acidic buttermilk instead of regular milk. My cake recipe doesn’t have an acid like lemon or vinegar, so baking soda was out. But baking powder, which is May 2015

baking soda with the right amount of a neutralizing acid already included, worked like a charm. Once I nailed down the flour and leavening, the rest of the recipe fell together. A cake made with vegetable oil was less gunky than one made with melted margarine, a cake that I fondly dubbed “the teenager” because it was brittle on the outside and gooey on the inside. I learned that coconut milk yogurt did nothing to improve the cake, but almond milk yogurt added a wonderful graham-cracker taste and buttery mouth feel. And though it pains me to say Mom was right, old-school white sugar yielded a finer crumb than those 21st-century, fancy-pants sweeteners agave and turbinado sugar. While it’s not technically an ingredient, I can’t overstate how helpful it was to measure the flour using a digital scale. A good scale can be had for less than $35, and it’s exponentially more accurate and faster than the spoon-and-level method. The scale helped me make the recipe from start to delicious finish in less than an hour, leaving me plenty of time to contemplate a career in food science – as long as no fruit flies are involved.

• In a large mixing bowl, combine the cake flour, ½ cup sugar, vegetable oil, water, yogurt, baking powder and 2 teaspoons vanilla extract. Mix until the batter is smooth. • Pour the batter into the prepared pan and bake 35 to 40 minutes, until the top is golden brown. Remove from the oven and let cool to room temperature. • Meanwhile, in a heavy-bottomed pot, heat the strawberries and the remaining ¼ cup sugar over medium-high heat. Cook 5 minutes, stirring frequently, until the strawberries soften and their juices release and thicken. • Remove the sauce from the heat, stir in the remaining 1 teaspoon vanilla extract and the lemon juice. Using an immersion blender, purée the strawberry sauce. Set aside and let cool to room temperature. • To serve, drizzle 3 tablespoons strawberry sauce over each cake slice and garnish with the fresh mint.

buy it

Most bakers measure flour by weight, not volume. To measure accurately every time, use a digital scale. We recommend Escali Primo Digital Scale. $33. Kitchen Conservatory, 8021 Clayton Road, Clayton, 314.862.2665, kitchenconservatory.com

VEGAN VANILLA NOTPOUND CAKE WITH STRAWBERRY SAUCE 8 SERVINGS Vegan margarine, such as Earth Balance Vegan Buttery Sticks, or cooking spray, for greasing 2¼ cups (10 oz.) cake flour, such as King Arthur Unbleached Cake Flour Blend ¾ cup (6 oz.) sugar, divided ½ cup vegetable oil ½ cup water 6 oz. vanilla almond milk “yogurt,” such as So Delicious Dairy Free 1 Tbsp. baking powder 3 tsp. vanilla extract, divided 1 pint fresh strawberries, stemmed and quartered 1 tsp. lemon juice Fresh mint leaves, for garnish • Preheat the oven to 350 degrees. Grease a 9-inch round cake pan with the margarine and set aside.

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MAKE THIS TORTELLINI WITH PEAS AND PANCETTA ACTIVE TIME: 10 MINUTES

MAKE THIS Peas and pancetta are a timeless Italian combination. Here, the duo gets a dash of French flavor that’s nothing less than magnifique. Prepare 1 pound cheese tortellini according to package instructions. Set aside. Meanwhile, in a large skillet over medium heat, cook ½ cup diced pancetta until crispy, about 4 minutes. Add 1 thinly sliced small shallot and saute 1 minute. Add ¼ cup fresh orange juice and 1 tablespoon orange zest. Raise the heat to mediumhigh, add 2 cups fresh peas and simmer until tender, about 3 minutes. Remove from heat, stir in 2 tablespoons chopped fresh tarragon, 2 tablespoons chopped fresh mint and 1½ tablespoons butter. Season with salt, if desired. Toss with the tortellini and serve immediately. – Dee Ryan

PHOTO BY SHERRIE CASTELLANO

Find several varieties of fresh spring peas this month from Hot Skillet Farms at the Tower Grove Farmers Market. In a pinch, use frozen peas to prepare this dish, but don’t defrost before adding to the pan.

If you enjoy Dee Ryan’s quick and easy recipes in Make This, don’t miss her online column, Just Five. Go to samg.bz/saucejust5 to find recipes you can whip up in a jiffy and require just five key ingredients.

May 2015

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25

WAYS TO

upgrade

YOUR PICNIC

From left: Britt Simpson, Daniel Suarez, Katie Clifford Evans and Stefani Jacobsmeyer

Picnics evoke romantic notions of leisurely afternoons on a blanket in the grass. A spread of cheese and charcuterie is laid out, ready to be paired with crusty bread and maybe a squeeze of Dijon. A chilled bottle of wine rests nearby, just waiting to be uncorked. Of course, in reality you slap together a sandwich, grab a bag of chips and forget the stupid blanket altogether. It’s time to live up to the fantasy. When the sun is shining and skies are blue, don’t settle for a PB&J and bottled water. Here, 25 ways to transform your picnic from a simple outdoor meal into a bona fide party alfresco.

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PHOTOS BY CARMEN TROESSER

May 2015


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prepare these 9 picnic-perfect dishes recipes start on p. 42

GRAB AND GO Fozzie’s Sandwich Emporium foodatfozzies.com “Zip into Fozzie’s for veggie gyros and Parmesan herb chips (and extra napkins).” – Dee Ryan

Blues City Deli bluescitydeli.com “Blues City Deli’s muffuletta is the closest thing to NOLA (and nirvana) in St. Louis. Get the olive dressing on the side and dress the sandwich onsite. The gorgeous sammies are heavy enough to weigh down a blanket but barely last long enough to do so.” – Maggie Pearson

Bogart’s Smokehouse bogartssmokehouse.com

LAMB LOLLIPOPS

with HERB DIPPING SAUCE recipe on p. 43

11. Think outside the bottle

Boxed wine isn’t exactly synonymous with refinement, but who cares? You’re eating on the ground, after all. Nonbelievers, take note: Boxed wines have come a long way from the days of boozy Juicy Juice. Now, you can find a full range of wine inside those cardboard boxes, some of which can hold the equivalent of nearly seven 750-milliliter bottles. Not only are boxed wines convenient for transporting and serving (no corkscrew necessary), but they’re also inexpensive, eco-friendly and last longer than bottled wines, whose flavors change significantly once opened. Your best bet among boxed wines is Big House Red. This 3-liter blend is tasty, balanced and takes a chill quite well. $17. Lukas Liquor, 15921 Manchester Road, Ellisville, 636.227.4543, lukasliquorstl.com – Ben Wood

May 2015

“There’s rarely wait time when you stop to get your carryout order, and there’s nothing better than messily eating succulent ribs under the sun on the grass. Just remember to stock up on the wipes!” – Amrita Rawat

Piccione Pastry piccionepastry.com “Stop by Piccione Pastry for those adorable, delicious, soft, almond-y, chocolaty Italian tricolor cookies for dessert.” – Byron Kerman

Extra Virgin, an Olive Ovation extravirginoo.com “The unexpectedly buttery, fruity flavor and neon green hue of Castelvetrano olives from Extra Virgin turn a meat and cheese board into something really special.” – Ligaya Figueras saucemagazine.com I SAUCE MAGAZINE I 39


ASIAN PORK LETTUCE WRAPS recipe on p. 42

Picnic do’s and don’ts Picnics are certainly more casual than restaurant affairs, but the rules of society and food safety still hold true. Before you throw down a picnic blanket, check out these do’s and don’ts to keep the day fun for everyone. – Kellie Hynes 14 Do plan your menu. Dining alfresco presents unique transportation and temperature challenges. A chilled soup is less elegant when it’s sloshing all over a hot car. Mayo-filled sandwiches and deviled eggs turn toxic after too much time in our St. Louis summers. If you wear white, odds are a melting chocolate chip cookie has it in for you. Don’t fall prey to these classic picnic faux paux; check out page 42 for easy to carry and consume recipes.

15 Do venture outside your backyard and your comfort zone. St. Louis County park ranger supervisor Steve Tiemann wants you to explore off the beaten path and Highway 40 corridor. He recommends Fort Belle Fontaine Park in North County and Bee Tree Park in South County for gorgeous walking trails and peaceful views of the Missouri and Mississippi rivers, respectively.

16 Don’t be a litterbug. Or bug other people. Or attract bugs. It’s obvious, but needs to be said: Trash is unsightly at best, dangerous at worst (broken glass bottles). Also, be courteous to your fellow park revelers and keep your music down and your clothes on. Finally, remember the bug spray, especially if you ignore the clothing rule.

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FLOATING FEAST Romantics, consider trading that checkered blanket for a Forest Park paddleboat. Thursday evenings through September, The Boathouse offers Moonlight Paddleboat Picnics featuring personalized picnic baskets stocked with goodies that could include vegetarian or turkey wraps, flatbread, cheeses, marinated olives, grapes, chips, popcorn, biscotti and brownies. Upgrade your basket with a bottle of wine or a bucket of beer and paddle off into the sunset. Online reservations required. – Georgia Kaye $35. Thursdays, June to September – 7:15 to 10:30 p.m., The Boathouse in Forest Park, 6101 Government Drive, St. Louis, 314.367.2224, boathouseforestpark.com

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13. The Basket

The basket is critical to your picnic’s success. We could wax poetic about how woven wicker and folding handles take us back in time, but practicality also matters. Without insulation and a zipper closure, your meticulously packed spread could spoil or (gasp!) fall out and become a feast for undeserving bugs. Look cool – and keep your meal cool, too – with this Bungalow Stripe Insulated Picnic Basket. $25. World Market, 24 Brentwood Promenade Court, Brentwood, 314.918.7800 worldmarket.com

17 Do keep your pup on a leash. Yours is the Best Doggie Ever. Mine is, too. But a free-range dog violates park leash laws and can scare other people and pets. For everyone’s sake (including Fido’s), keep him close or leave him at home.

18 Don’t be a redneck. Drive on the streets, not the grass. Yes, people really do go off-roading, said Dan Skillman, St. Louis’ commissioner of parks, and it kills the turf and trees. Keep the park healthy by transporting your coolers to the picnic benches the old-fashioned way – make your kids carry ‘em. May 2015


Mason jars also make great dessert cups. Get the recipe for Blueberry Pie in a Jar on p. 43.

PICNIC

19. A Mason jar is good for so much more than canning. Prepare drinks in quart-sized, screwtop jars and toss them in the basket – no spills, no cleanup, no waste. Set of 12: $18. Kitchen Conservatory, 8021 Clayton Road, Clayton, 314.862.2665, kitchenconservatory.com

ESSENTIALS A delicious meal is only half the battle. From beautiful napkins to vintage basket alternatives, here’s everything you need to take your picnic to the next level. – Maggie Pearson

20. A picnic is only as good as its foundation. Spread out a blanket from Pendleton Woolen Mills, a century-old company known for heavy-ply wool and classic American design. $145 and up. Clay & Cotton, 159 W. Argonne Drive, Kirkwood, 314.394.1400, clayandcottonkirkwood.com

21. Shields up! Keep the flies off your hoagie with a foldaway, mesh food protector. $3.25. REI, 1703 S. Brentwood Blvd., Brentwood, 314.918.1004, rei.com

22. Save a tree and leave the paper towels at home. Instead, wipe your chin with reusable Sferra Festival linen napkins that come in a rainbow of colors. Set of four: $50. Sallie Home, 9821 Clayton Road, Clayton, 314.567.7883, salliehome.com

mason jar

23. Weary of wicker? Pack a vintage leather suitcase with service for four and always be prepared for a stylish picnic. Selection and availability vary, so be on the lookout. $35 and up. The White Rabbit, 9030 Manchester Road, Brentwood, 314.963.9784, thewhiterabbitstl.com

mesh food protector

24. sferra festival linen napkins pendleton woolen mills blanket

Forgetting a corkscrew or bottle opener can really put a kink in your style. Pick up a charming bottle opener that pops both your wine and your beer and let it live in your picnic basket year-round. $12 and up. K. Hall Designs, 8416 Manchester Road, Brentwood, 314.963.3293; Plaza Frontenac, 1701 S. Lindbergh Blvd., 314.991.6988, khalldesigns.com

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swissmar petite lux cheese knife set

May 2015

If there’s no cheese, are you really on a picnic? Share that Gruyere and effortlessly spread the brie with a four-piece Swissmar Petite Lux Cheese Knife Set. $50. Bertarelli Cutlery, 1927 Marconi Ave., St. Louis, 314.664.4005, bertarellicutlery.com

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Recipes SPICED LENTIL DIP 4 SERVINGS This dip is like Antonio Banderas, circa 1990: smooth, spicy and impossible to resist. – Dee Ryan 1 cup brown lentils 1 small carrot, chopped into 1-inch pieces ¼ red onion, coarsely chopped 1 bay leaf Pinch kosher salt, plus more for seasoning 2 cups water 1 clove garlic, chopped 1 tsp. chopped jalapeno 1 Tbsp. garam masala 1 ∕8 tsp. cayenne pepper 3 Tbsp. olive oil, divided Freshly ground black pepper, to taste 3 Tbsp. lemon juice 3 Tbsp. chopped cilantro Lavosh or Classic Cham Pita Bread, for serving • In a medium saucepan, cover the lentils, carrots, red onion, bay leaf and a pinch salt with the water. Bring to a boil over high heat, then reduce the heat to low and simmer uncovered 25 to 30 minutes, until the carrots are fork-tender and most of the water has evaporated. • Remove the bay leaf and drain the lentils, reserving any excess liquid. Transfer the lentils to the bowl of a food processor. Add the garlic and jalapeno and purée. Add the reserved liquid a few tablespoons at a time and purée until the mixture reaches the desired consistency. Set aside. • In a medium skillet over medium-low heat, saute the garam masala and cayenne pepper in 2 tablespoons olive oil 1 minute, until aromatic. Stir in the lentil purée and cook 3 minutes. Remove from heat and transfer to a serving bowl. Season to taste with salt and pepper. • Stir in the lemon juice, drizzle with the remaining 1 tablespoon olive oil and garnish with cilantro. Serve warm or at room temperature with lavosh or pita. Locally made Classic Cham Pita Bread is a perfectly chewy base for this

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hearty dip. It’s delivered fresh Tuesday through Sunday to Global Foods Market, 421 Kirkwood Road, Kirkwood, 314.835.1112, globalfoodmarket.com

ASIAN PORK LETTUCE WRAPS 4 SERVINGS Don’t bother with silverware (or chopsticks) on a picnic. These Asianinspired pork lettuce wraps make delicious finger food. – Dee Ryan ¼ cup plus 1 tsp. sugar, divided 1 ∕8 tsp. kosher salt ½ cup white vinegar Pinch red pepper flakes 1 medium carrot, peeled and julienned 2 shallots, thinly sliced ¼ cup chopped fresh cilantro ¼ cup chopped fresh mint 1 Tbsp. chopped jalapeno 1 Tbsp. lime juice 3 Tbsp. soy sauce 1 Tbsp. rice vinegar 1 ∕8 tsp. sesame oil 1 ∕8 tsp. cayenne pepper 1 tsp. fish sauce 1 lb. ground pork 2 Tbsp. minced fresh ginger 2 Tbsp. thinly sliced garlic 8 Bibb lettuce leaves Chopped peanuts, for garnish • In a small bowl, dissolve ¼ cup sugar and the salt in the white vinegar. Add the red pepper flakes, carrots and shallots and stir to coat. Set aside. • In another bowl, stir together the cilantro, mint, jalapeno and lime juice. Set aside. • In another small bowl, combine the soy sauce, rice vinegar, the remaining 1 teaspoon sugar, sesame oil, cayenne pepper and fish sauce. Stir until the sugar is dissolved and set aside. • In a large skillet over medium heat, saute the pork, ginger and garlic, until the pork is no longer pink, about 6 minutes, breaking up the pork into crumbles. Remove from heat. Drain the fat from the skillet and discard. Return the skillet to medium heat and

add the soy sauce mixture. Saute another 2 minutes, stirring to coat the meat. Set aside and let cool. • Place the cooled pork into a large serving bowl, draining off any excess liquid. Add the herb-lime juice mixture and toss to combine. • Meanwhile, drain and discard the liquid from the carrot mixture. Toss the carrot mixture with the pork. • To serve, spoon ¹∕³ cup pork mixture into each lettuce leaf and garnish with chopped peanuts.

ROASTED CARROT SALAD 4 SERVINGS This roasted carrot salad packs all the nutrients needed for an afternoon hike, travels beautifully, and is tasty at any temperature. – Anne Marie Lodholz 2 lbs. rainbow carrots, peeled and trimmed 1 medium red onion, halved and sliced crosswise into thin half-moon shapes 2 Tbsp. olive oil ½ tsp. kosher salt ½ tsp. ground cardamom or several fresh thyme sprigs Freshly ground black pepper, to taste 1 Tbsp. white balsamic vinegar • Preheat the oven to 425 degrees. • Cut the carrots on the bias into ½-inch slices. • In a large bowl, toss the carrots and onion with the olive oil, salt, cardamom, pepper and vinegar. • Spread the mixture evenly on 2 baking sheets. Roast 10 minutes, stir, and roast another 10 minutes. • Pour into a serving bowl. Taste and adjust seasoning. Serve at room temperature.

MUSHROOM TARTS 12 SERVINGS Whether you forage for mushrooms in the forest or at the farmers market, these flaky goat cheese-mushroom tarts are the perfect

way to transport your favorite fungi on a springtime picnic. – Anne Marie Lodholz 1 cup flour 1 tsp. kosher salt, divided 10 Tbsp. cold butter, cubed, divided 4 Tbsp. cold cream, divided 8 to 10 Tbsp. ice water 1 Tbsp. olive oil 1 shallot, finely minced 8 oz. cremini, button or other spring mushrooms, stemmed and finely minced ¼ tsp. freshly ground black pepper 3 to 4 sprigs fresh thyme or 1 Tbsp. chopped fresh parsley 2 Tbsp. white wine or sherry 2 oz. goat cheese ¼ tsp. sugar 1 egg, beaten • In the bowl of a food processor, pulse together the flour and ½ teaspoon salt. Add 8 tablespoons butter and pulse until the mixture resembles coarse meal with some pea-sized lumps. • Add 2 tablespoons cream and the ice water, 1 tablespoon at a time, pulsing until the dough is evenly moist and begins to pull away from the sides. Form the dough into a 1-inch-thick disc, wrap in plastic and refrigerate at least 30 minutes. • Meanwhile, prepare the filling. In a large saute pan, melt the remaining 2 tablespoons butter and the olive oil over medium heat until the butter begins to foam. Saute the shallot until golden, 2 to 3 minutes. • Add the mushrooms, the remaining ½ teaspoon salt, the pepper and the thyme. Saute until the mushrooms release their liquid and the moisture has evaporated, about 5 minutes. • Add the wine and simmer until the liquid has evaporated, 1 to 2 minutes. Add the remaining 2 tablespoons cream and simmer until the mixture thickens, 1 to 2 minutes. • Remove the pan from the heat and stir in the goat cheese and sugar until the cheese is melted and incorporated into the mixture. Taste and adjust seasoning. Set aside and let cool slightly. • Preheat the oven to 400 degrees. Coat a baking sheet with nonstick May 2015


cooking spray. • On a floured surface, roll out the chilled dough to 1∕8 -inch thick. Use a pastry cutter or large glass to cut 12 3-inch circles. Place 1 teaspoon cooled mushroom filling in the center of a pastry circle, then fold over to create a half-moon shaped pocket. Seal the edges with a fork. Repeat with the remaining pastry circles. • Place the tarts on the prepared baking sheet and brush the tops with the beaten egg. Bake 20 minutes, until golden brown. Let cool completely. Serve at room temperature.

LAMB LOLLIPOPS WITH HERB DIPPING SAUCE 4 SERVINGS A vibrant dipping sauce made with fresh mint is a bright twist on lamb’s normal sidekick, mint jelly. Use the bones as handles for finger food at its fanciest. Pinkies up! – Dee Ryan 8 frenched lamb chops ¼ cup olive oil plus more for brushing, divided 1 Tbsp. plus 1 tsp. kosher salt, divided 1 Tbsp. plus 1 tsp. freshly ground black pepper, divided 3 green onions, ends trimmed and cut in thirds 1 cup fresh parsley ½ cup fresh mint leaves ¼ cup fresh marjoram ¼ cup fresh oregano leaves ¼ cup white balsamic vinegar ½ cup water • Prepare a charcoal grill for high, direct heat. Brush the lamb chops with olive oil and season both sides with 1 tablespoon salt and 1 tablespoon pepper. Grill 4 minutes. Flip and cook another 4 minutes, until the internal temperature reaches 145 to 155 degrees. Place on a serving dish and cover with foil. • Meanwhile, make the dipping sauce. Place the green onions, parsley, mint, marjoram, oregano, vinegar, the remaining 1 teaspoon salt and the remaining 1 teaspoon pepper in the bowl of a food processor and pulse, scraping down the sides as needed. With the food processor running, drizzle in the remaining ¼ cup olive oil and ½ cup water until blended. Transfer to a serving bowl. • Serve the lamb chops warm or at room temperature with the dipping sauce. May 2015

TOASTED BLACK BEAN AND QUINOA BURRITOS 4 SERVINGS These protein-packed, dairy-free burritos can stand up to St. Louis summer heat. Make a double batch and freeze the extras for easy weekday lunches. – Kellie Hynes 2 15-oz. cans black beans, rinsed and drained 1 small jalapeno pepper, seeded and chopped ½ cup fresh cilantro, loosely packed 1 Tbsp. olive oil 2 Tbsp. lime juice 2 tsp. red wine vinegar 1 tsp. ground cumin ½ tsp. kosher salt ¼ tsp. freshly ground black pepper ¼ cup diced red onion 1 cup fresh or frozen corn kernels, cooked 1 cup cooked quinoa or white rice 4 9-inch flour tortillas Salsa and guacamole, for serving (optional) • Place the black beans, jalapeno, cilantro, olive oil, lime juice, red wine vinegar, cumin, salt and pepper in the bowl of a food processor. Pulse 5 to 8 times, until coarsely blended. Taste and adjust seasonings. Set aside. • In a separate bowl, combine the red onion, corn and quinoa. • Spread ½ cup bean mixture in the center of 1 tortilla. Add ½ cup quinoa mixture. Fold the left and right sides of the tortilla toward the center, then roll the bottom of the tortilla up and over the filling, continuing to roll until the burrito is snug. Repeat with the remaining 3 tortillas. • Toast the burritos in a dry cast-iron skillet over medium heat for a few minutes on each side, until the tortilla is lightly browned. Serve with salsa and guacamole, if desired.

PINK CITRUS BARS

½ cup (1 stick) butter, cubed Pinch kosher salt 1 cup raspberries 2 eggs 2 Tbsp. lemon juice 2 Tbsp. lime juice Powdered sugar, for dusting • Grease an 8-by-8-inch baking pan with nonstick spray. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees. • In a small bowl, use your fingers to rub together ¼ cup granulated sugar and the zest. Transfer the citrus-sugar mixture to the bowl of a food processor and add 1 cup flour, the butter and the salt. Pulse until a dough forms. • Press the dough evenly into the bottom of the prepared pan. Bake 15 minutes, until lightly browned at the edges. Remove and let cool completely. • Meanwhile, prepare the filling. In the bowl of a food processor, purée the raspberries, then strain through a finemesh sieve into a bowl. Discard the seeds. • In a large mixing bowl, whisk together 3 tablespoons of the raspberry purée, the eggs, lemon juice, lime juice, the remaining ¾ cup granulated sugar and the remaining 4 tablespoons flour until combined. Pour the filling over the par-baked crust. Bake 25 minutes, until the filling is just set. • Let cool completely, then sift powdered sugar over the top. Slice into 9 bars and serve. Store any remaining raspberry purée in the refrigerator for future use.

WHISKEY SOUR SLUSH 8 SERVINGS Courtesy of Heidi Goss This unfussy frozen whiskey sour slush is a staple at our family Christmas gatherings, but its portability also makes it ideal for a warm weather picnic. The recipe doubles well, so batch up and no one will go thirsty. – Ligaya Figueras

9 SERVINGS These lovely pink bars are the perfect on-the-go treat for a sunny picnic and won’t melt the way chocolate is prone to do. – Amrita Rawat

4 cups hot tea ¼ cup sugar 12 oz. frozen concentrate lemonade 6 oz. frozen concentrate orange juice 1 cup Jim Beam bourbon whiskey

1 cup granulated sugar, divided Zest of 1 small lemon or lime 1 cup plus 4 Tbsp. all-purpose flour, divided

• Pour the tea into a 2-quart plastic container with a lid. Add the sugar and stir to dissolve. Add the lemonade

and orange juice concentrates and the whiskey. Whisk until combined. Cover and freeze 24 hours. • To serve, use a metal spoon to break the slush into chunks and scoop into cups.

BLUEBERRY PIE IN A JAR 4 SERVINGS These individual pies are easy to put together and even easier to transport. You can top with either a pie or crumb crust. Screw on the lid, attach a little plastic fork and you’re good to go. – Amrita Rawat 1 package prepared pie dough 3 cups blueberries ½ cup granulated sugar 3 Tbsp. cornstarch 1 Tbsp. lemon juice Zest of 1 lemon ¼ tsp. ground cinnamon Pinch kosher salt 1 Tbsp. cold butter, cubed Coarse sugar, for sprinkling Special equipment: 4 half-pint Mason jars with lids • Preheat the oven to 375 degrees. • Unroll the pie dough and use a jar lid to cut 4 circles of dough to top each pie. Set aside. • Use the remaining pie dough to line the bottom and insides of each Mason jar, tearing and pressing it together as needed to cover the glass. Stop just below the lip of the jar. Set aside. • In a large mixing bowl, stir the blueberries, sugar, cornstarch, lemon juice, lemon zest, cinnamon, salt and butter together until incorporated. Divide the filling evenly among the jars. • Place a circle of pie dough atop the filling inside each jar, then use a fork to press the dough evenly around the edge. Cut a slit in the top of each and sprinkle with coarse sugar. • Bake the Mason jars on a sheet tray 45 minutes, until the pies are bubbling and golden. Let cool. Cover with the lids until ready to serve. Prefer crumble tops to crust? Use a pastry cutter or fork to combine 2 tablespoons flour, 1 tablespoon oats, ½ tablespoon brown sugar, ¼ teaspoon cinnamon and 1½ tablespoons cubed cold butter together until a coarse mixture forms. Sprinkle on top of the pie filling instead of the top crust and bake. saucemagazine.com I SAUCE MAGAZINE I 43


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T R E AT YO SELF! As the fine folks from “Parks and Recreation” preached, at least one day a year, you need to treat yourself. Feel like ordering a sky-high triple-stack pie? Treat yo self. Crave a waffle drowning in banana butter sauce and ice cream? Treat yo self. Got a hankering for a porterhouse steak the size of your face? Treat. Yo. Self. It’s time to blow big money on food and drink around town. All you have to do is save the date and plan your itinerary from among these 15 lavish picks so that nothing and no one come between you and your day of decadence.

PHOTO BY CARMEN TROESSER

by meer a nagar a jan

Grand XIII cocktail at The Lobby Lounge at The Ritz-Carlton

May 2015

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breakfast ONE OF EVERYTHING, BREVAN’S PATISSERIE In a perfect world, you’ve got a bangin’ bod even though you eat dessert for every meal. I can get you halfway there. At Brevan’s Patisserie in Edwardsville, you can eat breakfast like Buddy The Elf thanks to the pastry shop’s treasure trove of decadent desserts. Try the Brendan, a chocolate mousse dome filled with a silky peanut butter cremeux covered in chocolate ganache and garnished with peanut brittle, or The Nutty Colombian, coffee mousse, hazelnut cremeux and coffee caramel on a hazelnut candy bar. And don’t miss the most luxurious sandwich of all time – ultra-smooth ganache with a hint of salted caramel sandwiched between two chewy chocolate chip cookies. Can’t decide? No need. On a day like this, get one of each; most items are $5 or less – and you deserve it. Prices vary. Brevan’s Patisserie, 1009 Century Drive, Edwardsville, 618.307.5772, brevanspatisserie.com

BANANAS FOSTER WAFFLE AT OLIVETTE DINER

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Diner food is joyful food whether you’re drunk, nursing a hangover or just starting a regular day. At Olivette Diner, the waffles bring me joy, especially the bananas Foster version. A hot, Belgian waffle is generously gilded with a glossy, buttery banana-brown sugar-cinnamon sauce and capped with a humongous scoop of melting vanilla ice cream that turns this work of art into an overindulgent, delicious mess. Don’t apologize. $7. Olivette Diner, 9638 Olive Blvd., St. Louis, 314.995.9945, Facebook: Olivette Diner

May 2015

PHOTO BY CARMEN TROESSER

BANANAS FOSTER WAFFLE, OLIVETTE DINER


HEART STOPPING BLT AT CROWN CANDY KITCHEN of Texas toast smeared with Miracle Whip. It doesn’t get more opulent than this. $9. Crown Candy Kitchen, 1401 St. Louis Ave., St. Louis, 314.621.9650, crowncandykitchen.com

WOW BOARD, ANNIE GUNN’S

mid-morning

BLT PHOTO BY CARMEN TROESSER; WOW BOARD PHOTO BY MICHELLE VOLANSKY

HONEY AND WINE WRAP, CHAUMETTE VINEYARDS & WINERY There may come a point on this glorious day when you feel guilt for all this extravagance. When that moment comes, rid yourself of doubt by applying wine and honey to your whole body. The spa at Chaumette Vineyards & Winery originally developed its Honey and Wine Wrap to strengthen the body’s immune defenses. A warm paste of dry honey powder, chardonel wine and wine yeast will exfoliate and revitalize your skin and, more important, restore your conviction to buy whatever you want on Treat Yo Self Day. After a 90-minute session, bask in the glory of renewed confidence in the spa’s sanctuary room overlooking picturesque Saline Creek Valley and unwind with a complimentary glass of one of Chaumette’s award-winning wines. Darling, you look mahvelous! $175. Chaumette Vineyards & Winery, 24345 State Route WW, Ste. Genevieve, 573.747.1000, chaumette.com May 2015

MILKSHAKE, BAILEYS’ RANGE If I had my way, I’d have a milkshake a day just like I did when I was a kid. At Baileys’ Range, all 15 flavors of rich, silky ice cream are made from scratch. There’s white chocolate-raspberry, coconut crunch, triple chocolate, salted caramel, pistachio … and my favorite, cookies and cream. With so many options, it’s difficult to choose. However, if you order the large (of course you’re ordering the large), you can mix any two flavors and save yourself the trouble of making such a difficult life decision. $5.50. Baileys’ Range, 920 Olive St., St. Louis, 314.241.8121, baileysrange.com

lunch HEART STOPPING BLT, CROWN CANDY KITCHEN Step inside this little North St. Louis spot and be transported into a Norman Rockwell painting. Grab a seat at one of the booths and order Crown Candy’s famous Heart Stopping BLT. Some 14 to 15 slices of fatty, crispy, crunchy, salty bacon are unabashedly piled between slices

Chef Lou Rook III has earned my trust. Even though I never know exactly what I’m going to get when I order the Wow Board, when this gustatory spread arrives at the table, I always squeal “Wow!” and then devour everything. Now it’s your turn. This repast comes with various meats like Cajun andouille sausage, a pork terrine, fried chicken livers with horseradish or boudin balls. Accompanying those savory flavors, you’ll find a sweet foil such as a gooseberry or bacon chutney. Cheese is essential, and local favorite Baetje Farms’ Bloomsdale has made cameos in the past. One mainstay is the thinly sliced Irish soda bread, toasted to a golden hue and slathered in butter. With all those lardaceous elements, pickled vegetables like carrots, onions, jalapenos and radishes add the perfect briny bite. $24. Annie Gunn’s, 16806 Chesterfield Airport Road, Chesterfield, 636.532.7684, smokehousemarket.com

mid-afternoon CHOCOLATE TASTING, VB CHOCOLATE BAR Alcohol and sugar are mankind’s two biggest food vices, and at VB Chocolate Bar, they pair them like evil geniuses. Reserve a tailor-made, four-course tasting party, and they will give you an experience that matches your every whim. If chardonnay is your thing, they might pair one that holds notes of tropical fruit and melon with a milk chocolate strawberry-sage-goat cheese truffle. If you prefer a dry red, your lips might meet a cabernet and affogato a la mode: a cream cheese brownie with a scoop of ice cream swimming in a shot of espresso. The first Thursday of the

month, VB brings cigars into the tasting mix; spend an evening puffing a few boutique cigars while swigging a couple craft beers and sipping fine whiskeys, then finish with specially made desserts. If cigars, sweets and adult beverages sound like a love triangle, this one’s for you, baby. Four-course chocolate tasting: $25 per person; Sip and Smoke: $30 per person. VB Chocolate Bar, 5326 State Highway N, Cottleville, 636.352.1139, vbchocolatebar.com

WOW BOARD AT ANNIE GUNN'S

happy hour VOLCANO BOWL, TASTE Four straws, please. The Volcano Bowl at Taste requires a bit of teamwork. This fruity punch is a mix of freshly squeezed grapefruit and lime juices, a little dark maple syrup and a lot of rum – Plantation 5-year, Angostura 5-year and Rhum Barbancourt 4-year. A classic recipe from cool cocktail dude Jeff “Beachbum” Berry, this punch is the perfect way to usher in warm weather and balmy nights. If you go it alone, know that this is a quick ticket to get faded. However, there is such a thing as a siesta. $45. Taste, 4584 Laclede Ave., St. Louis, 314.361.1200, tastebarstl.com saucemagazine.com I SAUCE MAGAZINE I 47


TABLE PUNCH, BLOOD & SAND Membership has its privileges. Ten bucks a month at Blood & Sand gets you in the door Monday through Thursday, guaranteed. After all, the weekdays aren’t just for work; they’re also for happy hour. Grab five of your closest friends (or maybe just the most deserving one) and post up with the Table Punch, a seasonally changing libation served in an ornate crystal bowl with six cups. This month, expect a refreshing floral concoction called Silver Springs that contains Ebb & Flow gin, falernum, lime juice, honey and bitters. Floating inside will be two kinds of flavored ice – raspberrytea-citrus-gin and mint-Zucca – melting at different rates, each imparting its flavor over time. It’s almost like three cocktails in one. Now that’s a steal. $50. Blood & Sand, 1500 St. Charles St., St. Louis, 314.241.7263, bloodandsandstl.com

dinner A charred, marbled, juicy steak is the ultimate in luxe dining, especially if it weighs 1½ pounds. 801 Chophouse’s steaks are aged four to six weeks, turning hunks of meat into dishes so tender and flavorful that adding a fancy rub or marinade is a sin. The steaks are seasoned simply, with just sea salt and freshly cracked black pepper, then cooked in a raging hot 1,800-degree broiler, lending the outside the flavorful crust that I covet. I’m talking steak that’s perfectly seasoned, seared and succulent – anything less would be uncivilized, especially on your day of days. $65. 801 Chophouse, 137 Carondelet Plaza, Clayton, 314.875.9900, 801restaurantgroup.com

GRAND PLATEAU, HERBIE’S VINTAGE ’72 The Grand Plateau is undeniably grand, a platter loaded with steamed and raw fruits de mer – one lobster, four shrimp, eight snow crab claws, 16 Blue Point oysters and a trio of dipping sauces atop crushed ice. Order it with a glass of white Burgundy like the crisp Domaine des Chazelles and get a seat at table No. 30. Celebs, pro athletes and even a prince (hello there, Prince Albert II of Monaco) have taken a seat at the storied Turkey Table because it’s the perfect spot to

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TABLE PUNCH AT BLOOD & SAND

see and be seen. Watch passersby cut their eyes: They’ll want your seat, what you ordered, basically your life. It’s good to be you. $125. Herbie’s Vintage ’72, 405 N. Euclid Ave., St. Louis, 314.769.9595, herbies.com

PUNCH PHOTO BY SHERRIE CASTELLANO; STEAK PHOTO BY CARMEN TROESSER

24-OUNCE PORTERHOUSE, 801 CHOPHOUSE

after-dinner drinks 2010 CHÂTEAU LAFITE ROTHSCHILD GRAND CRU CLASSÉ BORDEAUX, CIELO If you’re going to buy expensive wine, you’re going to buy a Bordeaux. We could rhapsodize about Château Lafite Rothschild’s earning First Growth (Premier Cru) status in the historic Bordeaux Classification of 1855, or the estate’s epic

24-OUNCE PORTERHOUSE AT 801 CHOPHOUSE

May 2015


2010 vintage. But those are just details. This is one of the world’s greatest wines. It’s a bottle for those who are wine romantics, who understand that satiety has almost nothing to do with quantity and everything to do with how long the wine stays with you. Long after you try it, this big Bordeaux will linger on your palate like a beautiful memory and long after you leave, the staff will speak of you and the night they sold the Lafite. This is how legends are made. $2,900. Cielo, 999 N. Second St., St. Louis, 314.881.2105, cielostlouis.com

GRAND PLATEAU AT HERBIE'S VINTAGE '72

GRAND XIII, THE LOBBY LOUNGE Drink like you’ve got royal blood coursing through your veins. The Grand XIII is a decadent mix of 150-year anniversary Grand Marnier, top-of-the-line brut Champagne from the House of Veuve Clicquot and the crown jewel: Louis XIII de Rémy my Martin – an unparalleled cognac made from a blend of 1,200 eaux-de-vie, some aged up to a century, that carries deep notes of figs, vanilla and oak. This gold-medal drink is served in a gleaming Waterford crystal martini glass, yours to take home after you’ve savored every last magnificent drop.

whatever you fancy. Just give them 24 hours to get the job done. These triple threats truly let you have dessert your way.

$500. The Lobby Lounge at The RitzCarlton, St. Louis, 100 Carondelet Plaza, Clayton, 314.863.6300, ritzcarlton.com

Slice: $7.50; whole stack: $84. Sugarfire Pie, 9200 Olive Blvd., Suite 108, Olivette, 314.736.6300, sugarfirepie.com

STACK PIE AT SUGARFIRE PIE

FLAMBÉE FOR TWO, CYRANO’S CAFE & WINE BAR

BANANAS CYRANO AT CYRANO'S

DESSERT PHOTOS BY SHERRIE CASTELLANO; SEAFOOD PHOTO BY CARMEN TROESSER

dessert STACK PIE, SUGARFIRE PIE I can’t imagine a more decadent dessert than this: three spectacular pies stacked one on top of the other on top of the other. Go with a tried-and-true combo like pecan pie topped with Mississippi Mud (a dense, gooey brownie pie baked in a graham cracker crust) crowned with a Sugarfire Pie (a chess pie that tastes like a Bit O’Honey candy bar). Lately, pastry chef Carolyn Downs has been touting her new favorite stack: red velvet gooey butter pie on the bottom; then Funfetti pie with its gooey filling of sweetened condensed milk, white chocolate and sprinkles; and an Oreo brownie pie on top. But wait, there’s more! A swath of chocolate ganache fuses together the bottom and middle pies, while a spread of marshmallow fluff unites the middle and top pies. But you’re the guest of honor, so customize your stack pie with May 2015

At Cyrano’s, take your pick of three flambées for two, then settle back for some entertainment. The server wheels a cart tableside, cooks the fruit in sugar and butter, adds booze and ignites it. Once the flames die down, she pours some of that sticky, sweet sauce over three scoops of vanilla ice cream – unless it’s just you, which would make it one bowl and six scoops. And you’re not done yet. The crowning glory to your day: the bread pudding to go. With 24-hours’ notice, you can get enough dessert to feed 24 people. Pour the bourbon cherry sauce over the bread pudding, pop it in the oven until it bubbles, and have your way with it at home, lying down, binge-watching “Parks and Recreation,” just as it should be. Flambée for two: $20; bread pudding whole pan: $96; half pan: $48. Cyrano’s Cafe & Wine Bar, 603 E. Lockwood Ave., Webster Groves, 314.963.3232, cyranos.com

TREAT

y awa e v i g

YO SELF!

Indulging is even more fun when someone else foots the bill. This month, we’re giving away nearly $1,000 in prizes from some of these establishments. Follow Sauce on Facebook and Twitter to find out how to win.

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STUFF TO DO:

THIS MONTH BY BYRON KERMAN

Triple Crown Series Throwdown May 2 and 16, Sanctuaria, 4198 Manchester Road, St. Louis, 314.535.9700, sanctuariastl.com Bartenders Matt Seiter and Matt Obermark have concocted a series of special cocktails to sip during watch parties for the biggest horse races of the year. Among the offerings, the Kentucky Derby party features mint juleps and chef Wil Pelly’s hot brown beignets. The Preakness party includes Triple Crown Punch and East Coast fried oyster sliders, and the Belmont Stakes party June 6 includes White Carnations (peach vodka, OJ, cream and club soda) and Pizza, Politically Incorrect (beerbattered NY-style pizza with spicy ranch dip).

Food Truck Friday May 8 – 4 to 8 p.m., Tower Grove Park, 4256 Magnolia Ave., St. Louis, 314.772.8004, saucefoodtruckfriday.com Sauce Food Truck Friday returns this month with more delicious food and fun. More than 20 food trucks plan to park it at Sauce Magazine’s first Food Truck Friday of the season, including favorites like Guerrilla Street Food and Seoul Taco and newcomers such as Rise Coffee Truck and Revel Kitchen. Grab local brews from Urban Chestnut and 4 Hands, and stop by the Sauce tent to purchase Speed Passes, which enable holders to use expedited lines for ordering. Come early, bring lawn chairs, blankets, kids and dogs, and rock out to the sounds of Letter to Memphis.

River Styx Literary Feast May 8 – 7 p.m., Tavern of Fine Arts, 313 Belt Ave., St. Louis, 314.367.7549, riverstyx.org The feast is edible and figurative at this annual benefit for local literary magazine River Styx. While author Lucinda Roy and live jazz musicians feed your mind, stuff your face at an ample buffet. Some offerings from Denotes a Sauce Sponsored event

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Tavern of Fine Arts include spanakopita, hummus, tabbouleh, baba ghanoush, flatbreads and flourless chocolate cake. Look for literary-themed drink specials, too. Tickets available online.

Duck, Duck, Goose: Unsung Heroes Culinary Competition May 18 – 6 p.m., Four Seasons HotelSt. Louis, 999 N. Second St., St. Louis, 314.881.2105, cielostlouis.com Sous chefs keep the culinary ships afloat, and these first mates will showcase their skills using Hudson Valley duck foie gras in a friendly competitive dinner. Participating sous chefs include Shimon Diamond and Saul Juarez of Cielo, Justin McMillen of Sidney Street Cafe, Ryan McDonald of Truffles, Josh Poletti of The Libertine and Alex Feldmeier of Brasserie. Andrew Jennrich of Annie Gunn’s will be on hand to demo duck butchery, and Cielo bartender Jorie Taylor will create duckinspired cocktails. Tickets available online.

International Dine Around May 21 – 5 to 10 p.m., participating restaurants, South Grand Boulevard, St. Louis, 314.772.5750, southgrand.org Choose from 22 restaurants representing 13 countries at this year’s International Dine Around on South Grand Boulevard. Wander down the street and indulge in different courses at Basil Spice Thai Cuisine, Baida Moroccan Restaurant, Gelateria Del Leone, Meskerem, LemonGrass, Cafe Natasha’s, Tree House and Rooster South Grand. Each ticket book gets you an appetizer, entree, dessert and drink, plus a wild card, at a different participating restaurant. Ticket book and menus available online.

IndiHop May 30 – 1 to 7 p.m., The Grove and Cherokee Street, St. Louis, 314.535.5311, indihopstl.com Fifty different beers and local coffee selections May 2015


await your delectation at IndiHop. You can try them at 25 businesses in The Grove (including The Demo and Just John) and 25 on Cherokee Street (including Earthbound Beer and Saint Louis Hop Shop). A who’s who of area craft brewers provides the suds, IndiHop provides the shuttles to ferry drinkers from ’hood to ’hood, and a dozen local bands entertain along the route. Tickets available online.

sponsored events Laumeier Art Fair May 8 – 6 to 10 p.m.; May 9 – 10 a.m. to 8 p.m.;, May 10 – 10 a.m. to 5 p.m., Laumeier Sculpture Park, 12580 Rott Road, Sunset Hills, 314.615.5278, laumeier.org Some 150 juried artists will display their works at this annual art fair. Also, enjoy tastings from Missouri wineries at Friday’s Art of the Vine, discuss brewing over Schlafly beer at Art of the Ale on Saturday and finish the weekend with a resplendent spring buffet at the Mother’s Day Brunch on Sunday. Tickets to all events available online.

Urbanaire May 9 – 9 p.m. to midnight, Union Station, 1820 Market St., St. Louis, 314.446.1142, promoonline.org/events Support equality for all Missourians at Urbanaire at Union Station. Enjoy an open bar and a late-night snack, or go premium and indulge in edibles from 25 area restaurants. DJ Alan Ray and live music will rock downtown all night long.

Wine & Dine with Sauce Magazine May 15 – 6:30 to 8:30 p.m., Dierbergs, 1080 Lindeman Road, Des Peres, 636.812.1336, dierbergs.com/school Join Sauce executive editor Ligaya Figueras, art director Meera Nagarajan and wine writer Glenn Bardgett as they host a cooking class featuring recipes and drinks from the pages of Sauce. Seating is limited. Register online.

St. Jude Harvest in the Heartland May 19 – 6:30 p.m., World’s Fair Pavilion at Forest Park, 1904 Concourse Drive., St. Louis, 314.925.5605, stjude.org/ harvestintheheartland Join Sauce publisher Allyson Mace and the Pasta House Co.’s J. Kim Tucci at Harvest in the Heartland, a tasting event to benefit St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital. Sample food from area restaurants, and sip cocktails while bidding during a live auction. Tickets available online. May 2015

Picnic in the Park May 31 – 4 to 7 p.m., Tower Grove Park, 4256 Magnolia Ave., St. Louis, 314.771.4424, towergrovepark.org Grab your picnic blanket and join hundreds of your closest friends at Picnic in the Park. Get your grub from six mobile eateries, tour an exhibition featuring works by local artists and enjoy live music. Bring the kids, too: A petting zoo, face painting and balloon animals await.

Local Foods Challenge June 1 to 30, participating locations, stlfoodchallenge.org Become a true locavore during the monthlong Local Foods Challenge. Sign up online to take the challenge and track where you eat and which local food businesses you patronize in June. Attend educational and festive events and learn where your food comes from and how some area restaurants source locally.

It’s My Own Damn Fault June 4 – noon to 8 p.m., Hollywood Casino St. Louis, 7777 Casino Center Drive, Maryland Heights, 855.785.4263, hollywoodcasinostlouis.com/entertainment Before the Jimmy Buffet concert at the Hollywood Casino, the parking lot will be home to outdoor bars and 10 mobile eateries. Fill up, then get in the Margaritaville mood with tribute band Rock This Boat until 7 p.m.

Celebrity Chef Series June 8 – 5:30 p.m., The Restaurant at The Cheshire, 7036 Clayton Ave., St. Louis, 314.932.7818, restaurant-stl.com Acclaimed chefs Colby and Megan Garrelts of Bluestem in Kansas City and Rye in Leawood, Kansas, will join Restaurant chef Rex Hale for a five-course wine dinner, and the duo will also discuss their new cookbook, Made in America. Reservations available online.

Schlafly Farmers Market Wednesdays – 4 to 7 p.m., Schlafly Bottleworks, 7260 Southwest Ave., Maplewood, 314.241.2337 x2, schlaflyfarmersmarket.com Stop by the Schlafly Farmers Market on Wednesdays and gather your local produce from longtime vendors like Eckenfels Farms and Riverbend Roots Farm and newcomers such as Seeds of Hope.

Tower Grove Farmers Market Saturdays – 8 a.m. to 12:30 p.m., Tower Grove Park, 4256 Magnolia Ave., St. Louis, tgmarket.org More than 60 vendors will sell everything from produce and meat to preserves and bread. Arrive early to join in a free yoga session.

Midtown Farmers Market Saturdays – 8 a.m. to 12:30 p.m., 6655 Delmar Blvd., University City, 314.913.6632, Facebook: Midtown Farmers Market Spring is in full swing at the Midtown Farmers Market. Art House Coffee will keep you caffeinated while you gather produce from new vendors like Iron Hill Farm and Robinson Family Farms. saucemagazine.com I SAUCE MAGAZINE I 53


Michael Miller

Last year, 34-year-old Michael Miller left his post as executive chef at Dressel’s Public House to give full-time attention to Kitchen Kulture, the budding mobile food business he co-founded with Christine Meyer. Prepping food all week to sell on Thursdays for pop-up lunches at Sump Coffee and on Saturdays at the Tower Grove Farmers Market is different from working the line at a restaurant, but as Miller explained, orchestrating a moveable feast is never boring.

that if this was something I was going to take seriously, this was a great place to cut my teeth. Kitchen Kulture gained popularity as a pop-up restaurant and prepared foods business, but that’s not how it began. It started as a T-shirt concept. Being a cook (at Monarch) having a busy night and getting through it, we’d go out and have beers afterward. A lot of my co-workers would wear their chef coats as a way to show individuality or a symbol of pride. I was like, “I think there’s a better way to say ‘I’m in the industry’ without having to wear a smelly coat.” Wouldn’t it be cool if it was quality T-shirts that spoke to food and cooks? We approached Patrick Horine (co-founder of the Tower Grove Farmers Market). He was like, “You have to have a little more to get in the farmers market.” He pitched us (the idea of) prepared foods. I was like, “Sure, let’s do that.” My main goal was to get the shirts out. People really took to the food – not so much the shirts, but the food.

Why does your concept resonate with diners? There’s an allure to the collaborations we do, especially the Thursday lunches at Sump, because they’re two quality products that aren’t normally together. People would normally spend their entire lunch break to get an exceptional cup of coffee. Now, they get two quality, artisanal products. How would you classify Kitchen Kulture cuisine? We don’t have one style in particular. I like the flexibility of being able to have the food ingredient-driven and seasonally driven. It’s exciting to do Mexican street fare, then do a more refined French dish, then something Southern. Your menus change weekly. Is that a challenge? It depends what time of year it is. We try to source from farmers, so in winter it can be a challenge. We have a lot of things we come back to, though, like steamed buns. You can put whatever you like in the middle. What are you preparing this spring? We do a lot of kimchi; one of the most popular is our nettle and garlic mustard mix. And we’ll make a nice ragout with morels when we get those. What is the most important skill you’ve learned? Being able to manage money. That’s not the exciting answer, but it’s very important to be conscious of where your money is going and when it’s coming back in. What satisfaction does Kitchen Kulture give that you couldn’t get working at a restaurant? It’s never going to be boring. You’re forced to think on the fly, to problem-solve. I’m looking at the weather for Thursday, and it’s going to rain. We’re going to have to figure out how we’re doing lunch in the rain. – Ligaya Figueras

Kitchen Kulture 314.277.3881, kitchenkulture.co

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PHOTO BY ASHLEY GIESEKING

WHAT I DO

What inspired your culinary career? I visited San Francisco. It blew my head off. I was exposed to so many flavors I hadn’t seen before. I ate a lot. Two weeks later, I sold all my possessions, quit my job and moved there. I knew


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