ELMWOOD, P. 21 HELLO JUICE & SMOOTHIE, P. 26 OUR BLOODY MARY GUIDE, P. 33 8 WEIRD COFFEE DRINKS, P. 14
DO YOU KNOW THE EMPANADA MAN? why we love tango argentina food in st. charles, p. 9
I SAUCE MAGAZINE I 1 ST. LO U I Sâ€™ I N D E P E N D E N T C U L I N A RY AUTH O R IT Y // S AU C E MAGA Z I N E .C O M saucemagazine.com // F R E E , MAY 2019
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M AY 2019 • VOLUME 19, ISSUE 5 What’s your favorite bloody mary garnish?
I like adding bubbles,
PUBLISHER ART DIRECTOR MANAGING EDITOR MANAGING EDITOR, DIGITAL STAFF WRITERS ASSOCIATE EDITOR An entire EDIBLE WEEKEND EDITORS cheeseburger SENIOR DESIGNER PROOFREADER CONTRIBUTING PHOTOGRAPHERS
CONTRIBUTING ILLUSTRATOR CONTRIBUTING WRITERS Anything pickled
ADVERTISING SALES MANAGER ACCOUNT EXECUTIVES EVENTS COORDINATOR LISTINGS EDITOR INTERNS
so Topo Chico or a Allyson Mace Stag. Meera Nagarajan Heather Hughes Catherine Klene Adam Rothbarth, Matt Sorrell Lauren Healey Lauren Healey, Catherine Klene Michelle Volansky Megan Gilmore Julia Calleo, Jonathan Gayman, Virginia Harold, Izaiah Johnson, David Kovaluk, Carmen Troesser, Michelle Volansky Vidhya Nagarajan Glenn Bardgett, Matt Berkley, Taylor Coutain, Ryan Griffin, Justin Harris, Lauren Healey, Heather Hughes, Jamie Kilgore, Ted Kilgore, Catherine Klene, Meera Nagarajan, Heather Parker, Michael Renner, Adam Rothbarth, Matt Sorrell, Stephanie Zeilenga Allyson Mace Matt Bartosz, Bea Doerr, Angie Rosenberg Amy Hyde Amy Hyde James Boeckmann, Taylor Coutain Bacon
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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. 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.
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St. Louis, MO 63103 May 2019
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contents M AY 2 019
editors' picks 9 EAT THIS Empanadas at Tango Argentina Food
by meera nagarajan 11 HIT LIST 3 places to try this month
by adam rothbarth and matt sorrell 14 ELIXIR Coffee gets weird
by heather hughes 16 FIXATIONS by heather hughes, meera nagarajan, adam rothbarth and matt sorrell
last bite 54 STUFF TO DO by taylor coutain 56 WHAT I DO Nicola Macpherson
citrus salad at elmwood, p. 21
by adam rothbarth 58 LANDMARK Schneithorst’s Restaurant & Bar
by adam rothbarth
Butterfly pea flower adds color to the cocktail scene
by matt sorrell 19 A SEAT AT THE BAR Five experts tell us what to sip, stir and shake
by glenn bardgett, justin harris, ryan griffin and ted and jamie kilgore
Our bloody mary guide
by matt sorrell 40
reviews 21 NEW AND NOTABLE Elmwood
by michael renner 26 LUNCH RUSH by matt berkley PHOTO BY IZAIAH JOHNSON
PHOTO BY IZAIAH JOHNSON
Hello Juice & Smoothie
29 NIGHTLIFE Rosalita’s Cantina in Des Peres
by stephanie zeilenga
MIDEAST BY MIDWEST
A tour of Middle Eastern restaurants
by heather parker
Tune into St. Louis Public Radio 90.7 FM May 7 when Sauce joins St. Louis on the Air to discuss this month’s must-try new restaurants on Hit List. Then listen later in the month when we talk mushroom farming with Ozark Forest Mushrooms owner Nicola Macpherson.
COVER DETAILS Empanadas Find out why you should try one of every flavor empanada at Tango Argentina Food in St. Charles on p. 9. PHOTO BY JULIA CALLEO
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PHOTO BY JULIA CALLEO
Tango Argentina Food, 2012 Campus Drive, St. Charles, 636.757.3076, tangoargentinafood.com
At Tango Argentina Food, a tiny, family-run takeout spot in St. Charles, empanadas are the only menu item. Fried to perfection, often by owner Hector Aberastury, these golden beauties come in a variety of rotating flavors, from spinach and feta to beef, peppers, onions and olives, and even ham and cheese. Each pocket arrives piping hot, stuffed with molten cheese holding the ingredients together. Try one of each â€“ at only $3 apiece, you wonâ€™t regret it.
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PHOTO BY MEERA NAGARAJAN
3 new places to try this month
SPRING VEGETABLE DISH AT BULRUSH
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HIT LIST p. 2 of 2
BAGEL CHAMP There’s an underdog vibe at Bagel Champ, perhaps built on the feeling that a renowned fried chicken restaurant (Byrd & Barrel, which houses the bagel pop-up Saturday and Sunday for brunch) shouldn’t also serve great bagel sandwiches. But now it does. We were blown away by the sausage, egg and cheese, which featured absurdly good house-made sausage, and we also enjoyed the fried chicken bagel, which included hearty slaw and a tasty kimchi spread. The bagels, soft and almost briochelike, are perfect for these hefty sandwiches. With a rotating selection of collaborations with eateries like Gioia’s Deli and Pie Guy Pizza, you can never be sure what will be on the menu, which is part of the allure.
clockwise from bottom: the fried chicken bagel at bagel champ; bulrush chef-owner rob connoley; bulrush; from left, bulrush sous chef justin bell, bar manager chris voll and connoley
Bulrush, the long-awaited restaurant from James Beard-nominated chef Rob Connoley, creates a reality that seamlessly melds past, present and future. The cuisine has origins in the food of the Ozarks circa the mid-1800s, reimagined in a fine-dining context. Along with an a la carte bar menu, Bulrush offers a $100 seven-course tasting menu for four seatings a night. Dishes feature local, ultra-seasonal ingredients, many foraged by Connoley and sous chef Justin Bell. On a recent menu, fermented persimmon made an appearance in a vinegar pie as well as an ice cream with white bean miso, while paw paw appeared as “caviar” atop a bluepoint oyster and as a component of a cocktail syrup. Everything is used to its maximum effect, and virtually nothing is wasted, an old idea born of necessity that finds resonance in the “modern” idea of the zero-waste kitchen. At Bulrush, everything old is new again.
3307 Washington Ave., St. Louis, 314.449.1208, bulrushstl.com
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3422 S. Jefferson Ave. (inside Byrd & Barrel), St. Louis, 314.875.9998, Instagram: @bagelchamp
THE DUBLINER Fans of high-quality Irish pub food shed more than a few tears when The Dubliner closed shop downtown in 2015. Well, dry those eyes because The Dubliner has found a new home in downtown Maplewood, and its menu of favorites is back and every bit as good as the original incarnation, from shepherd’s pie to bangers and mash. And you’d be hard-pressed to find a better plate of fish and chips in town: The ultra-fresh battered cod is fried to a glorious golden brown with nary a bit of grease to be seen (or tasted).
2733 Sutton Blvd., Maplewood, 314.781.4607, dublinerstl.com May 2019
BULRUSH PHOTOS BY MEERA NAGARAJAN; BAGEL CHAMP PHOTO BY ADAM ROTHBARTH
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COFFEE GETS WEIRD By Heather Hughes Don’t tell Big Dairy, but coffee has finally escaped the milk-and-syrup hegemony. When it comes to flavored drinks, coffee shops are using espresso more like a versatile base spirit than a hot chocolate add-in these days. Espresso and tonic has transitioned from novelty to a regular menu item. Blueprint Coffee makes a superb version that combines its full-bodied Penrose espresso with a bright housemade tonic featuring fresh notes of citrus, lemongrass and bitter cinchoa bark. Coma Coffee adds a floral flair to the bubbly refresher with hibiscus tea ice cubes in its version made with cold brew concentrate rather than espresso.
Northwest Coffee cools things down with its subtly sweet coconut water Americano, while the Living Room in Maplewood goes full-sugar with a Sproda incorporating Fitz’s root beer. The espresso brings a grown-up depth of flavor to the carefree soda. The Sunrise, another concoction from the Living Room, combines espresso and orange juice to surprisingly successful effect. The coffee disappears into the sweet juice with just a trace of caramely richness. Nonalcoholic coffee shop cocktails aren’t exactly new – Sump Coffee teamed up with St. Louis bartender Tim Wiggins (co-owner of Retreat Gastropub and Yellowbelly) for a rotating series of drinks a few years ago – but there are more options
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now, perhaps fueled by an increased interest in zero-proof imbibing. Sip a Nothing Rhymes with Orange at Blueprint, and you won’t miss happy hour. Made with Penrose espresso, blood orange syrup and mole bitters served over ice and garnished with a dehydrated orange wheel and lemon twist, it looks and tastes full proof. Piquant, sweet-tart and earthy with a hint of rich spice, it’s really a cocktail offering a different kind of buzz.
WHERE TO GET IT Blueprint Coffee 6225 Delmar Blvd., St. Louis; 4206 Watson Road, St. Louis; 314.266.6808, blueprintcoffee.com Coma Coffee 1034 S. Brentwood Blvd., Richmond Heights, 314.250.1042, comacoffee.com L a n a i C o f f e e 5300 Donovan Ave., St. Louis, 314.899.7905, lanaicoffeestl.com L i v i n g R o o m 2808 Sutton Blvd.,
Maplewood, 314.899.0173, livingroomstl.com The Mud House 2101 Cherokee St., St. Louis, 314.776.6599, themudhouse.com Northwest Coffee R oa s t i n g C o. 8401 Maryland Ave., Clayton, 314.725.8055; 4251 Laclede Ave., St. Louis, 314.371.4600; northwestcoffee.com S u m p C o f f e e 3700 S. Jefferson Ave., St. Louis, sumpcoffee.com May 2019
PHOTO BY IZAIAH JOHNSON
The Mud House’s Dank and Stormy and Lanai Coffee’s Moscow Hurricane take the trend a zingy direction. Nonalcoholic riffs on the rum-based Dark and Stormy cocktail, both drinks offer the sharp, spicy notes of ginger beer grounded by roasty cold brew concentrate.
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Fixations From nonalcoholic beer to a vegan cheese sauce, here’s what’s at the top of our shopping list right now.
The Crusher Cabernet Sauvignon This quaffable cab is the ideal bottle to open when hosting a party. It’s just cabby enough to please the “I only drink big reds” crowd and soft enough for those who prefer a pinot. $10. The Wine Merchant, 7817 Forsyth Blvd., Clayton, 314.863.6282, winemerchantltd.com
Little Wolf Coffee Comet Coffee strives to sling revelatory beans from little-known roasters, and it picked a winner in Massachusetts-based Little Wolf Coffee. Bag: $12 to $14. Comet Coffee, 5708 Oakland Ave., St. Louis, 314.932.7770, cometcoffeestl.com
Core + Rind Cashew Cheesy Sauce The heavy apple cider vinegar flavor of this pumpkin- and cashew-based cheese alternative is a weird-but-good acquired taste. We like it as a unique vegan dip. $11. Mac’s Local Buys Neighborhood Market, 1221 Tamm Ave., St. Louis, 314.479.8155, macslocalbuys.com
Arrabbiata Spice Mix This greatest hits of Italian flavors is intended as a pasta mix, but we use it as a base seasoning in just about everything. $7. Parker’s Table, 7118 Oakland Ave., Richmond Heights, 314.645.2050, parkerstable.com
Block Shop Table Linens Watching artists block-print textiles on Instagram @blockshoptextiles is mesmerizing. We love the table linens’ simple, cool designs, plus, a portion of proceeds benefit the Bagru women’s empowerment program in India. $70. blockshoptextiles.com
WellBeing Brewing Co. Hellraiser Enjoy the party even if you don’t imbibe with a frosty, nonalcoholic Hellraiser from WellBeing. The dark amber beer is our current NA go-to, and it’s widely available around town. Six-pack: $10. Schnucks, multiple locations, schnucks.com
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Paprika Recipe Manager App This app uniformly formats online recipes, making it easy to jump from ingredients to directions, automatically scales ingredients to your desired serving size, creates shopping lists, starts timers with one tap and more. Price varies. paprikaapp.com
Quillo Fried Egg Potato Chips Unlike those Ruffles that claim to taste like biscuits and gravy, these chips actually succeed in capturing the flavor of hard-fried egg. $4. World Market, 24 Brentwood Promenade Court, Brentwood, 314.918.7800, worldmarket.com
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A SEAT AT THE BAR Five experts tell us what Ato sip, SEAT AT stir and shake
Five experts tell us what to sip, stir and shake
TED AND JAMIE KILGORE USBG, B.A.R. Ready, BarSmart and co-owners/bartenders at Planter’s House
Once only made from scratch, pineapple gum syrup is now available for retail purchase. Gum arabic gives this fruity, aromatic ingredient a rich texture utilized in many classic cocktails. The most famous is the Pisco Punch: In an ice-filled shaker, combine 2 ounces Machu Pisco, ¾ ounce lemon juice and ¾ ounce Liber & Co. pineapple gum syrup. Shake vigorously and strain into a chilled cocktail glass. $10. Intoxicology, 4321 Manchester Ave., St. Louis, 314.833.3088, intoxicologystl.com
RYAN GRIFFIN AND JUSTIN HARRIS Co-owners at Saint Louis Hop Shop
Old Bakery Beer Co.’s fresh, new Digital Native Orange embodies everything you want in a tropical ale. Dry-hopped with Azacca, El Dorado and Citra, the IPA has juicy flavors of orange, dank notes of pineapple and a sensational hazy finish. Sip this 5.8% brew slowly for maximum taste bud stimulation. Four-pack: $10. The Wine and Cheese Place, 7435 Forsyth Blvd., Clayton, 314.727.8788, wineandcheeseplace.com
ILLUSTRATIONS BY VIDHYA NAGARAJAN
drink scaia rosato veneto this spring
GLENN BARDGETT Member of the Missouri Wine and Grape Board and wine director at Annie Gunn’s
More Old World orange-pink than red-pink, the exotic visual effect of the 2017 Scaia Rosato Veneto is always enticing. Featuring aromas of spring flowers and notes of cherry, strawberry and watermelon, the beautiful acidity of this Italian pink makes it ready for action 24/7. Slight residual sugar also makes this rosé amazingly compatible with heat and spice by putting out the fire. $13. Local Harvest Grocery, 3108 Morgan Ford Road, St. Louis, 314.865.5260, localharvestgrocery.com saucemagazine.com I SAUCE MAGAZINE I 19
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reviews All Sauce reviews are conducted anonymously.
dishes at elmwood
NE W A ND N OTA B L E
elmwood BY MICHAEL RENNER // PHOTOS BY IZAIAH JOHNSON
The spice-roasted poussin had been on the menu at Elmwood about 24 hours when my server explained it was already a hit. Its just-charred skin holding traces of fragrant dry rub (Aleppo pepper, cumin, coriander), the delicate, plump and tender young bird was served atop a glistening bed of aromatic muhammara â€“ a Syrian spread of roasted red peppers and walnuts enlivened by Aleppo pepper
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flakes and pomegranate molasses. Savory, sweet, smoky, a little spicy, a lot dreamy, it exemplified an elusive balance of simplicity and sophistication. I’d eat this dish every night just to keep it on the menu. That is, if I can resist stuffing myself with the mafalda: tangled strands of rippleedged, springy house-made noodles perfect for twirling, grabbing and holding a vegetable Bolognese so rich and hearty you’d never suspect it’s meatless. Rather than a food processor, grilled vegetables are passed through a meat grinder for a thick, meaty consistency. A touch of cream ties it together, while a fluffy snowfall of shaved Parmesan crowns the dish. Those two dishes alone were worth the visit, but for full appreciation, grab a seat in front of the stylish restaurant’s aquarium-like, glassed-in kitchen to watch the choreographed action. Flames flare and knives flash while cooks crank the red ember-filled grill beds up and down to control the temperature and stoke the oven with chimneys of hot coals. It’s the best cooking show in town. At the center of it all is the magical Josper all-charcoal combination grill and oven, made to order in Spain for the restaurant and the only one of its model in North America. It’s what makes nearly everything on Elmwood’s menu special, like the sweet potatoes that are buried in red-hot coals until charred then pureed for a surprising take on baba ghanoush. Owners Adam Altnether (the chef) and Chris Kelling (the manager) have traveled extensively, and it shows. There are supremely fresh raw oysters to slurp, but when coal-roasted and drizzled with funky, citrusy Thai naam jim, they become otherworldly. Same for a big bowl of rope-grown, Bangs Island, Maine, mussels, grilled smoky and tender with Sichuan spices and served scattered with shoestring potatoes that had a hint of spiciness reminiscent of Red Hot Riplets. A bacon cheeseburger got a hit of Korean barbecue sauce. Even a snack of peanuts spent some time on the coals before getting tossed with lemongrass and sweethot Turkish marash chili flakes.
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the dreamy spice-roasted poussin
the suze and cocchi dopo teatro cocktails
elmwood Where 2704 Sutton Blvd., Maplewood, 314.261.4708, elmwoodstl.com
the dining room at elmwood
Don’t-Miss Dishes Spice-roasted poussin, mafalda, Bangs Island mussels
a bar faces the open kitchen at elmwood
Slicing grilled pork steak and serving it with butter lettuce cups, leek salad and salsa fresca provided an unexpected Asian twist on the backyard favorite, although I found the flavor of an accompanying grill sauce – made from pureeing vegetables with the liquid captured from other grilled vegetables – monotone and oddly too vegetal. Salads were no afterthought: Nuoc mam vinaigrette imparted just enough tart, briny funk to the vibrant endive salad with peanuts and serrano peppers, while dark lacinato kale marinated in olive oil provided a tender base for the Caesar.
The observant will notice menu selections are printed in increasingly larger fonts. The curious will discover the font represents portion size, from snacks through full entrees. The diners over 50 may think it’s an eye exam. You could drink beer with everything on the menu – there is a fine selection – but Elmwood bar director David Greteman has constructed an exciting cocktail menu divided into categories of full proof (heavy on gins and amaros), low proof (essentially aperitifs) and zero proof (fruitbased mocktails). The thoughtful wine list spans Europe while also giving the
Vibe Stylish, on-trend industrial design configured into several seating options, including a communal table, booths, bar seats and counter seating for views of the glassed-in kitchen Entree Prices $15 to $77 When Tue. to Thu. – 5 to 10 p.m.; Fri. and Sat. – 5 to 11 p.m.
attention to California you might expect from Kelling, an alum of The Restaurant at Meadowood in Napa Valley. Four desserts comprise a humble list of sweets, all priced at $10. I liked the idea of the charcoal-roasted whole apple served with caramel and vanilla ice cream, but it came off surprisingly dull, more like a hot apple with scorched skin. However, a slice of charred lemon tart with a dollop of maple-infused whipped cream and a grind of black and pink pepper proved too exquisite to share. Often too syrupy sweet or artificial tasting, lemon desserts can be chancy. Elmwood’s is neither and should not be skipped while it’s still around. You’d expect excellent service and attention to detail from veterans like Altnether (a 2009 Sauce One to Watch and former corporate executive chef for Gerard Craft’s Niche Food Group who most recently served as executive sous for the St. Louis Cardinals) and Kelling (the former general manager for Niche, Sardella and Pastaria). If you eat out often, you’ll recognize a number of servers from some of the better restaurants around town now working at Elmwood. It’s a testament to the duo’s focus on hospitality and how such focus draws top talent. To call what Kelling and Altnether are doing modern American cooking is to grossly underrate their concept. They’ve described Elmwood as “approachable but refined,” but even that doesn’t really capture it as much as three other words: spice-roasted poussin. May 2019
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Acai Bowl This enormous smoothie bowl pleases with spoonful after spoonful of freshly blended organic blueberries, strawberries, acai, bananas and coconut milk. Like all the smoothies here, no ice, dairy or fillers are included. This shines through in the pleasant thickness of the smoothie, which is naturally sweet and satisfying. Piled on top are substantial pieces of more strawberry, blueberry, banana, coconut and a drizzle of honey, along with a hefty sprinkle of local Made Fare Co. granola, blended specially for Hello Juice.
hello juice & smoothie BY MATT BERKLEY | PHOTOS BY DAVID KOVALUK
Business is booming on a Saturday afternoon at Hello Juice & Smoothie. A steady growl of heavy-duty blenders working overtime fills the air. The decor is much like the food concept – everything is clean, simple, earthy and bathed in sunlight. A young crowd of healthconscious diners flock to this laid-back, ultra-hip retreat for a unique menu packed with fresh fruits, vegetables, grains and various superfoods.
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Bone Broth An abundance of rich, meaty flavor is packed into the little cups of fresh chicken bone broth, sourced from Bolyard’s Meat & Provisions. The standard broth, seasoned simply with salt, pepper, garlic, rosemary and lemon, is warm and soothing, akin to the succulent pan drippings of a freshly roasted bird. Add-in options are also available, like the Something Veggie with shredded carrots, zoodles and avocado. I like the broth with Something Spicy, which brings heat with chili peppers and smooth hits of fresh ginger, as well as microgreens and sliced cherry tomatoes for a fiery, healthy soup.
the chicken bone broth with added veggies
the bar at hello juice & smoothie
Avocado Toast A thick layer of creamy avocado is smeared onto a hot, crunchy slice of Knead Bakehouse + Provisions sourdough and topped generously with sunflower and pumpkin seeds. A handful of juicy cherry tomatoes round out the flavor profile, along with red pepper flakes for a nice element of heat. It’s hard to imagine a better avocado toast. Strawberry Toast Meticulouslyw dressed with sweet ingredients, the strawberry toast is a surprisingly healthy indulgence. A thick, crunchy slice of Knead sourdough is toasted and smeared with a hefty base of Nancy’s organic cultured probiotic cream cheese infused with honey and balsamic-fig glaze. Fresh sliced strawberries, along with crunchy bits of walnut, a sprinkle of sea salt and an extra drizzle of balsamic-fig glaze add more sweetness. The Orange Dream Smoothie Pure orange juice blends with coconut milk, mango, pineapple and flax for a thick, gratifying cup of fresh fruitiness finished with a drizzle of bee pollen extract.
Hello Juice & Smoothie 1000 S. Newstead Ave., St. Louis, 314.376.4135, hellojuicestl.com
The Downside While its smoothie game is strong, Hello Juice & Smoothie’s full juice program took longer to get up and running. It hadn’t fully started up when I went, but has since launched.
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the bar at rosalita's
margaritas at rosalita's
nachos at rosalita's
rosalita’s cantina BY STEPHANIE ZEILENGA | PHOTOS BY DAVID KOVALUK
If you think no one parties in the County, you’ve clearly never been to Rosalita’s Cantina in Des Peres. Located in the cavernous space that once housed Casa Gallardo, Rosalita’s is a beautiful place to kick back with a giant, frosty margarita, Mexican fare and endlessly entertaining people watching. Exhibit A: the 50-something couple enthusiastically kissing outside the front door in broad daylight. Exhibit B: the table of adults going full YOLO over May 2019
giant frozen margaritas, gossiping about their children and making summer plans to boat at the Lake of the Ozarks. In case I’m giving you the wrong impression, families and young professionals also come in droves – the place is always packed. The large space is carved into more intimate nooks, creating a sophisticated interior that mostly avoids Mexican restaurant cliches. Leather seating and sun-aged wood create a rich, earthy feel with potted plants and flowers providing bright pops. Twinkling
star lanterns illuminate the large wraparound bar centered on spinning margarita machines, while a large alcove on the opposite wall houses a statue of Our Lady of Guadalupe. The interior is lovely, but you should absolutely request to be seated outdoors. The patio is where all the action is. Take your pick from a mix of small and large tables of varying heights and two reservable cabanas framing the bar. The entire walledin space is designed to protect you visually and aurally from the
Rosalita’s Cantina 12796 Manchester Road, Des Peres, 314.441.7060, rosalitas cantina.com
parking lot just outside. A fireplace made of light brown stone accented by blue and white tiles, along with powerful heat lamps, can add warmth on chilly spring evenings, and giant fans provide relief on scorching summer nights, significantly extending patio season. String lights and pulsing Latin beats enhance the mood. The margaritas are solid. Made with tequila, citrus rum, triple sec, lemon and orange juice, Rosa’s Favorite house margarita is neither too sweet nor too sour. A few top-shelf and specialty margaritas are also available, including mango, pomegranate and blueberry, as well as the Sparkling Margarita, which comes with a small bottle of Korbel Brut. A typical list of beer and wine is also available, as well as a small selection of other cocktails. The sangria was unfortunately a miss, with the addition of peach schnapps giving the drink a cloying, medicinal edge. The menu features TexMex favorites like fajitas, massive burritos and quesadillas. Higher-end dishes like shrimp diablo,
pepita-crusted salmon and pan-seared Oaxacan grouper are also on offer, meaning you can take your night cheap and cheesy or a little more upscale. Overall, the food is fairly standard. Chips and salsa are free. Nachos are always a good idea with margaritas, and the ones here are generously topped with chile con queso, pico de gallo, guacamole and more. One small gripe on the chips: They’re on the delicate side, no match for thick guacamole or a bounty of toppings.
Standouts include the empanadas: fried masa dough filled with barbacoa beef, cheese and black bean pico de gallo. The street tacos and chimichanga were also good – again, nothing unique, but they get the job done if you’re craving TexMex. Service is friendly but a bit uneven. You may have to be patient, depending on how busy the restaurant is. Food and service aside, the real draw of Rosalita’s is snuggling down in a comfy bench seat on the patio with an oversized margarita, melting away the stresses of the day.
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PURPLE The Bao, 14 N. Central Ave., Clayton, 314.899.9089, thebaostl.com
Retreat Gastropub, 6 N. Sarah St., St. Louis, 314.261.4497, retreatgastropub.com
St. Louis bartenders have fallen for the showstopping hue of butterfly pea flower as an alternative to scary artificial pigmentation in cocktails. Indigenous to Asia, the plant is commonly used as an ingredient in herbal teas and as a deep blue food coloring. Several area bars are using the intriguing ingredient to brighten up their spring menus. The Bao beverage manager Kira Webster infuses Plantation 3 Star rum with pea flower to make a vibrant base for the Bao Chicka Bao Wow. “There’s a slight taste change, but it’s very subtle,” Webster said. Any extraneous flavor completely dissipates when the rum is mixed with Contratto bitters, lemon and coconut agave to complete the cocktail. At Retreat Gastropub, pea flower enhances the Queen Frostine, a combination of Plantation
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Dark rum, persimmon syrup, coconut syrup, orange crema, orgeat, lime and a float of Rum Fire infused with dried pea flower. Co-owner and beverage director Tim Wiggins said the resulting color augments the subtle blueberry notes in the rum, giving drinkers a clue to its flavor. Tom Halaska, employs pea flower in a similar fashion at The Monocle. He makes an extract and uses it to top the house Gin and Tonic, made with 1220 Artisan Spirits Origin gin and Top Hat Provisions East Indian Tonic, served on tap and garnished with a dried orange slice. Halaska said the color and garnish give the otherwise clear cocktail some visual taste cues. “I think the color really helps enhance the flavor of the drink,” he said. He keeps the extract on hand for customers who want a splash of color in other drinks.
R E IG N By M at t S o r r e l l // p h o t o s by i z a i a h j o h n s o n
The Monocle, 4510 Manchester Ave., St. Louis, 314.932.7003, themonoclestl.com
Old Herald Brewery & Distillery, 115 E. Clay St., Collinsville, Illinois, 618.855.8027, oldheraldbrewing.com
Old Herald Brewery & Distillery uses pea flower to create an interactive experience for guests. Bar program manager Greg Schweickert uses pea flower simple syrup in the ginbased Tom Collinsville and the Developing Story, made with vodka. Both cocktails come served in two parts â€“ an iced Collins glass with just the syrup, and a smaller glass with the shaken spirit, fresh lemon juice and soda water. The guest combines the two and gets a show as the blue syrup turns vibrant purple due to the change in pH. Local distillery 1220 Artisan Spirits also takes advantage of that colorchanging trick with its new Spring Gin. The spirit features notes of lemon and lavender, along with a deep blue color from butterfly pea flower that changes when mixed with tonic or citrus. In the beverage world, presentation is paramount, and pea flower is attracting attention.
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PHOTO BY CARMEN TROESSER
Our favorite brunch beverage has been around since long before the last time we needed it to nurse a hangover. Most people agree that Ferdinand “Pete” Petiot created the bloody mary just after World War I at Harry’s New York Bar in Paris. He combined vodka with canned tomato juice, which had recently made its way to the continent from the U.S. – simple beginnings for what is now one of the most variable drinks on a cocktail menu. Here, we’ve collected all you need to create your own bloody mary adventure at home or out in St. Louis. B Y
M A T T
S O R R E L L
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The Bloody Basics you’ll probably start subbing or adding ingredients. Try replacing Worcestershire with fish sauce, soy sauce or michelada mix. Every bloody mary needs at least a touch of heat. Having classic hot sauces like Tabasco, Crystal and Cholula on hand is a no-brainer, but expand your heat signature with other sauces like local favorite Hot Charlie’s or Ozark Forest Mushrooms red or green hot pepper sauces.
The bloody mary is a big blank canvas. You can go as easy as two ingredients with a premade mix and vodka, or create your own recipe up to an entree-sized garnish. I prefer the old standby Zing Zang if I’m going the premade route. There’s a reason the bottle with the bright green label is found in so many reach-in coolers. For many, it’s become the bloody base that all others are judged by, but plenty of other good ones are available. Southside Alchemy Sweat & Tears is a new local option with a tart and briny profile.
The bloody mary is to barkeeps what chili is to home cooks – everyone has their own recipe, and of course it’s the best. If you want to make your own, here’s a traditional recipe that makes a solid base for further experimentation.
Once you get started down the bloody mary rabbit hole,
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BASE RECIPE 1 SERVING
4 oz. tomato juice 2 oz. base spirit 2 to 4 dashes Worcestershire sauce 2 to 4 dashes hot sauce ¼ oz. lemon juice Pinch of sea salt Pinch of freshly ground black pepper
Southside Alchemy available at Intoxicology, intoxicologystl.com; Ozark Forest Mushrooms sauces available at Larder & Cupboard, larderandcupboard.com; Hot Charlie’s available at Vincent’s 12th Street Market, vincentsmarket.biz
• In an ice-filled shaker, combine all ingredients. Roll the drink by pouring it from one shaker to another until thoroughly mixed. Strain into an ice-filled Collins glass. Garnish at will.
RED SNAPPER Pete Petiot allegedly created this gin version of the cocktail when he landed at the St. Regis Hotel in New York in the 1930s because vodka was harder to find in the States at the time. Try a traditional, juniper-forward London Dry style of gin, like Beefeater, Bombay Dry or Broker’s, to stand up to all of the other flavors in a Red Snapper.
DANISH MARY Using aquavit as your bloody base yields this tasty Scandinavian variation. Aquavit has spicy notes of caraway and fennel that complement tomato juice and other savory ingredients without overwhelming them. Pick up a bottle of Norway’s Linie aqauvit or North Shore Distillery aquavit from Chicago to give this version a go.
BLOODY MARIA Agave spirits tequila and mezcal, with their wide variety of sweet and savory vegetal notes, are employed in a bloody maria. Often sangrita (a Mexican tequila chaser typically made with tomato, citrus and chili) is subbed out for tomato juice, giving the drink even more depth of flavor. Start with a solid blanco tequila like Espolon Blanco, and work your way from there. May 2019
b.y.o.v, Vodka is the traditional base spirit for bloodies, so it’s imperative to have a couple varieties on hand. For a straightahead version, local 1220 Artisan Spirits' Encrypted Vodka, made from Missouri corn, is a smooth choice. Sobieski, a Polish vodka distilled from rye, imparts a bit more spice, or you can add some oomph with a savory flavored vodka like Spirits of St. Louis Distillery’s cucumber and jalapeno vodkas or Chilled Dills pickle vodka, which brings a new level of tang to the table. You’re not limited to vodka when mixing up a bloody mary though. Try some other spirited possibilities with mary mods based on gin, tequila and more.
PHOTO BY JONATHAN GAYMAN
Cucumber and jalapeno vodkas only available at Spirits of St. Louis Distillery, spiritsofstlouisdistillery. com; Chilled Dills available at Total Wine & More, totalwine.com; remaining bottles available at Randall’s Wine & Spirits, shoprandalls.com
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bubbie's kosher dill pickles
goya pickled green asparagus
It used to be that a celery stalk and lemon wedge could ably serve, but in recent years, over-the-top garnishes have become de rigeur. Everything from pigsâ€™ feet to entire fried chickens have been balanced atop bloody marys. Personally, I like to spice things up with a scoop of kimchi at the bottom of my glass. Here are some more low-key pickle-and-meat stick garnish possibilities for stocking your home bloody bar.
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Bubbieâ€™s Kosher Dill Pickles $7. Whole Foods Market, wholefoodsmarket.com Goya Pickled Green Asparagus $3. Jay International Food Co., Facebook: Jay International Foods
ME AT S
Zerget Pickled Pepperoncini $3.50. Jay International Food Co., Facebook: Jay International Foods
Volpi Salame Stix $1. Volpi Foods, volpifoods.com
Roland Caperberries $3.50. Global Foods Market, globalfoodsmarket.com
Three Spring Farms BBQ Flavor Snack Stick $1.50. Local Harvest Grocery, localharvestgrocery.com
Slim Jim $1.50. QuikTrip, quiktrip.com
Todd Geisert Farms Pork Snack Sticks $5.50. Local Harvest Grocery, localharvestgrocery.com
PHOTO BY JONATHAN GAYMAN
zerget pickled pepperoncini
The salted rim has become a bloody mary staple. Make sure to use a coarse sea salt (not table salt) when trying this technique at home, and instead of dunking the whole rim of the glass, wipe a lemon or lime wedge around the edge, then roll just the outside of the rim in the salt so you don’t get excess salt in the drink. I like to add these spice mixes or use them solo for custom rims.
This spice mix from the folks who created Sriracha Granada has plenty of sweet and savory garlicky goodness. $6. Larder & Cupboard, larderandcupboard.com
MOTHER IN LAW’S GOCHUGARU KOREAN CHILE FLAKES Based on the spices in the popular Mother-In-Law’s Kimchi, this mix brings mild smoke and sweetness. $6.50. Whole Foods Market, wholefoodsmarket.com
RED HOT RIPLETS SEASONING
PHOTO BY JONATHAN GAYMAN
This piquant blend is just as good in a bloody mary as it is on those famous chips. $5. Schnucks, schnucks.com
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Mary on t he Town You won’t have a problem finding top-notch bloody marys around this town – practically every bar and restaurant has their own version. Here are just a few favorites. HIRO ASIAN KITCHEN’S kimchi bloody mary plays with a variety of Asian flavors. It’s based on a house-infused dill pickle vodka and includes togarashi, kecap manis (sweet soy sauce), white pepper and fish sauce. SOULARD FARMERS MARKET is home to two local bloody mary favorites. Julia’s Market Café serves up a slightly sweet bloody complete with a pickled green bean and pickled asparagus spear, while Norton’s Cajun Corner delivers the Rajun Cajun, rimmed with a signature Cajun spice. Using whiskey in a bloody mary is an often-overlooked modification, but it’s business as usual at THE SCOTTISH ARMS PUBLIC HOUSE. Its Smokin’ Mary is made with Benromach single malt scotch and a house-made, peat-smoked bloody mary mix for a big bold wallop of flavor.
If you want the freedom to create your own drink, plenty of places feature DIY bloody mary bars as well: SQWIRES RESTAURANT & ANNEX offers a veritable snack bar of garnishes and accouterments to go with
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its house bloody mary mix including garlic, jerky, cheese, bacon and olives – even chips and candy at times. BOUNDARY at The Cheshire boasts a choice of house-infused vodkas, house-made mixes that include beef broth and Caesar options and a garnish selection with six different cheeses, 20 pickled vegetables and three varieties of bacon, among other adds. At VIN DE SET, guests can choose from rotating houseinfused vodkas and pair them with several different mixes and garnishes that include many house-pickled veggies grown onsite.
HERBIE’S in Clayton offers a bloody bar with a choice of Sobieski or a house-infused pepper vodka. A house-made mix is the backbone of an extensive selection of hot sauces and other condiments.
Hiro Asian Kitchen, hiroasiankitchen.com Julia’s Market Café, soulardmarketstl.com/juliasmarket-cafe/ Norton’s Cajun Corner, nortonscajuncorner.com The Scottish Arms Public House, thescottisharms.com SqWires Restaurant & Annex, sqwires.com Boundary, boundary-stl.com Vin de Set, vindeset.com Herbie’s, herbies.com May 2019
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MIDEAST BY MIDWEST
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At the intersection of eastern Mediterranean, central Asian and Persian flavors, Middle Eastern food defies a single categorization. Far from their regions of origin, many Middle Eastern restaurants in St. Louis feature a range of cuisines and also market themselves as Mediterranean. Here are some of the best in St. Louis that too often fly under the radar. By Heather Parker // Photos by Carmen Troesser
opposte page: from top, the sultan pilau and qali at sultan mediterranean restaurant; sultan owner jenar mohammed
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royal kebab owner pearvz gholina making yogurt
home country of Lebanon. Start with the manakish. Traditionally served as a breakfast item, these tasty little flatbreads can be ordered with an array of toppings. My favorites are the za’atar (a spice mix including dried thyme, sumac and sesame) and the spinach with feta, Lebanese white cheese and mozzarella. A delicious warm appetizer is the foul medames, made with mashed fava beans, chickpeas and garlic topped with olive oil and parsley and served warm with pita wedges for dipping.
ROYAL KEBAB RESTAURANT 3611 Bates St., St. Louis, 314.932.7745 Situated on a humming corner in the heart of Holly Hills, Royal Kebab might be your new favorite spot for Persian fare. Owner Pearvz Gholina will greet you at the door and quietly guide you to your table in the dining room, which only seats about 20. Kickstart your palate with the sambosas – tender layers of phyllo dough brimming with delicately spiced minced beef and baked until golden brown. Next, sink your teeth into the koobideh and barg kebab combo. As the restaurant’s name suggests, kebabs are king; it would be a misstep to order anything else. A rivaling duo of spiced ground beef and marinated steak kebabs is bathed in turmeric and grilled to perfection, served with fluffy basmati rice tinged with saffron and juicy, fire-roasted
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tomatoes. No alcohol is served at Royal Kebab, but you should order the house-made ayran, a salty, savory yogurt drink typically served chilled.
KA SLIK MEDITERRANEAN CU I SINE 7847 N. Lindbergh Blvd., Hazelwood, 314.972.8282, Facebook: Kaslik Restaurant
Opposite a large car dealership in North County, Kaslik Mediterranean is a gem. The interior is cozy and brightly decorated with a relaxing vibe. The menu created by chef Wasam Hamed (the former owner of Layla in The Grove) is both approachable and authentic, expertly covering all the basics. For those with a deeper knowledge of Levantine cuisine, Hamed is happy to take special orders with advanced notice.
Among the mezze (small appetizers), the hummus is on point, and the baba ghanoush is creamy and bright with perfectly charred eggplant, making the dish burst with flavor. The falafel are fried to perfection, leaving the outside crispy and the inside tender. Don’t miss the chicken shawarma sandwich, with sliced chicken marinated overnight in a spice blend featuring black pepper and cardamom then roasted on a vertical rotisserie and served in a warm pita with tangy pickles and zesty garlic sauce.
PHOENICIA MEDITERRANEAN DELI 15344 Manchester Road, Ellisville, 314.764.9222, phoeniciastl.com
This bodega-style restaurant is operated by a husband and wife team paying homage to the food in their
Do yourself a favor and order the sujuk (spicy beef sausage), which can be made into a mouthwatering sandwich or served over baba ghanoush and sprinkled with paprika. Next up – makdous. These mini eggplants are pickled, filled with sundried peppers and toasted walnuts, then finished with an herbed olive oil. For something sweet, it’s hard to choose between the Lebanese or Nabulseyah knafeh, but the owners will probably convince you to order the Lebanese version. This cheesy pastry is covered in a shredded wheatlike dough, soaked in sugar syrup with crushed pistachio and then wedged into a pocket of toasted sesame seed bread.
SULTAN MEDITERRANEAN RESTAURANT 4200 Manchester Ave., St. Louis, 314.390.2020
Sultan is a wonderful new addition to the eclectic Grove neighborhood. Owned by Kurdish immigrants, the restaurant offers a menu featuring much of the Middle East. Catchy Arabic tunes set the mood as you wait for the signature Sultan Pilau. Crack open this phyllo dough potpie to find savory rice studded with morsels of lamb shank, oven-roasted nuts and plump raisins that add a sweet contrast. You should also try the qali: a beef stew slowly simmered with green and orange bells pepper, tomato, garlic and a hint of oregano. Though it’s complimentary, the lentil soup is also worth mentioning. May 2019
from top, lamb shank and sambosas at royal kebab
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Every velvety bite is impeccably seasoned. Feeling indulgent? The house-made coconut and walnut custard paired with a pot of strong Turkish coffee is worth the extra calories.
TROY MEDITERRANEAN CUI SINE dishes at phoenicia mediterranean deli
19 Stonegate Shopping Center, Valley Park, 636.517.1141, troymediterranean.com
The Mediterranean meets central Asia in this diverse Valley Park restaurant. The owners are of Turkish descent and have created a collage of unpretentious provisions that reflect their national identity. The iskender is a dish that has roots in northern Turkey. Tender slices of beef are placed on a pita, dressed with a tasty tomato sauce, a bit of tangy yogurt and covered with lemony sumac. Khachapuri, a traditional Georgian dish, also makes a cameo on Troy’s menu. A delicious cheesy bread that has multiple topping variations, it’s an ultimate comfort food. If you’re looking for some lighter options, try the branzino, a grilled sea bass with little more than olive oil and lemon.
BARG CONTINENTAL RESTAURANT 6417 Hampton Ave., St. Louis, 314.338.1234, Facebook: Barg Continental
Barg is only the second Afghan restaurant to hit the streets of St. Louis, and it’s well worth the trip if only to have a friendly chat with the hardworking and mildmannered owner, Ameen Akbarzada. You must order the pakora: shredded potato, onion and parsley are deep fried and come with a spicy tomato chutney. Melt-in-your-mouth mantu, beef dumplings covered in yogurt, mint and split peas, also hit the spot. Last but not least, the qubuli pilau can only be described as celestial. This heavenly lamb shank is braised until the meat literally falls off the bone and served with fragrantly spiced basmati rice.
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Going where the water tastes like
wine A tour of area wineries BY LAUREN HEALEY
s you plan your summer outings, consider getting out of the city to enjoy some of the most beautiful countryside in the bistate area. If youâ€™re looking for a day trip, weekend getaway or an even longer vacation, the many wineries in the region offer something for everyone, from wines made exclusively from Missouri-grown grapes to farmhouse brewery beers, delectable cuisine and entertainment like live music and festivals. Pack a bag, hop in the car with your family and friends (and a designated driver, if you plan on having more than a glass or two), and prepare to soak up some sun and fun.
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AUGUSTA WINERY Located in the Augusta American Viticulture Area (AVA), the first AVA designated in the U.S. (in 1980), this winery is a vital stop on the Augusta Wine Trail, the closest wine trail to St. Louis. The winery specializes in estatebottled wine, meaning the entire process, from growing the grapes to bottling the blends, takes place on the property owned by the winery and located within the Augusta AVA. The winery is within walking distance to many popular B&Bs. Enjoy live music Friday through Sunday while having a glass and some pizza or weekly specials, then head to Montelle Winery, the sister winery, just a few minutes away. 5601 High St., Augusta, 888.667.9463, augustawinery.com
appetizers like cheese plates and pretzels, or bring your own picnic basket, and groove to live music every Saturday and Sunday. You can also find Noboleis vending at Sauce’s Food Truck Friday all season long. 100 Hemsath Road, Augusta, 636.482.4500, noboleisvineyards.com de soto, missouri
LACHANCE VINEYARDS Located on a picturesque plot just 30 minutes south of St. Louis, this elegant, family-owned winery offers unique, Europeanstyle wines produced with new experimental varieties of grapes,
DEFIANCE RIDGE VINEYARDS Nestled in 42 sprawling acres of vineyards, lush gardens and a tranquil lake just 30 minutes west of St. Louis in the hills of Historic Missouri Wine Country, Defiance Ridge offers vineyard-to-table cuisine, live music and succulent estate wines, as well as exclusive varietals from the West Coast. The winery will host a private exclusive wine dinner with Chuck Wagner of Caymus Vineyards on Friday, June 21. Then get in the groove for Winestock: 50th Woodstock Anniversary Festival Aug. 17-18 for two days of peace,
NOBOLEIS VINEYARDS Enhance your winery experience at this beautiful 84-acre vineyard. New this year, guests may purchase wine flights, which offer a fantastic way to enjoy four different pours while taking in the vineyards views on the tented terrace. The winery is also now offering guided cellar tastings, with a simple online registration process. Nosh on pizza and
HERMANN WINE TRAIL Meandering with the Missouri River for 20 miles of beautiful views, the Hermann Wine Trail features seven award-winning, family-owned wineries, including Adam Puchta Winery, Bias Winery, Hermannhof Vineyards, Dierberg Star Lane Tasting Room, OakGlenn Winery, Röbller Vineyard and
Perfect for romantic getaways or family outings
MONTELLE WINERY Situated 500 feet above the Missouri River within the Augusta AVA, Montelle offers gorgeous 270-degree views of rolling hills, forests and the river valley just a few minutes down the road from its sister vineyard, Augusta Winery. Montelle offers daily lunches with items like fresh salads, sandwiches, wraps and pizzas, and there are dinners every Saturday night. The winery also recently opened its new events center called the Parliament Room, named so because the town’s mascot is the great horned owl (a group of owls is called a parliament). 201 Montelle Drive, Augusta, 636.228.4683, montelle.com
wineries that produce wines exclusively from Missouri-grown grapes. Pack a picnic basket and head west to enjoy a fun, relaxing day at Blumenhof Winery. 13699 S. MO 94, Dutzow, 636.433.2245, blumenhof.com
like Crimson Cabernet and Dore, grown at LaChance. The vibrant, medium-bodied 2015 Cabernet Dore offers green, fruity aromas and flavors of papaya-melon relish, wintergreen and holly, while the 2015 Crimson Cabernet boasts savory, toasty aromas of marinated mulberries and beets, chocolate, cherries and smoked nuts. Both of these wines were deemed “Exceptional” in the 2018 World Wine Championships. In addition, the full on-site restaurant serves lunch and dinner, with popular items like a 12-ounce ribeye and a delectable seared duck breast. 12237 Peter Moore Lane, De Soto, 636.586.2777, lachancevineyards.com
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wine and music. Defiance is also perfect for private events like weddings, private parties and corporate outings. 2711 S. MO 94, Defiance, 636.798.2288, defianceridgevineyards.com dutzow, missouri
BLUMENHOF WINERY Celebrating its 40th year growing grapes, Blumenhof draws inspiration from the Father of Missouri winemaking, Friedrich Münch, who began growing grapes in Dutzow in the mid-1800s. Blumenhof is a thirdgeneration, family owned and operated winery that features free tastings every day, live entertainment every weekend, and the most awards of the
Stone Hill Winery. Hop on the Wild Bacon Wine Trail May 4-5, when bacon and wine pairings are the star of the show. Then celebrate the flavors of summer with juicy berries and savory barbecue pairings during the Berries & BarBQ Wine Trail July 27-28. Advance tickets are required for events and available online. Hermann, 800.932.8687, hermannwinetrail.com ste. genevieve, missouri
CHAUMETTE VINEYARDS & WINERY Located in Ste. Genevieve, once home to the first French colonial settlement this side of the Mississippi River, Chaumette sits on over 300 gorgeous acres just an hour south of St. Louis. Gift your mom with a special day at
the winery’s annual Mother's Day Brunch on May 12. (Reservations required.) Then pack your blankets and lawn chairs to watch the sunset glow through hot air balloons during the free Balloon Glow Sept. 12-13. Reservations are required for Grapevine Grill, but there will be a tent outside for guests to purchase food and drinks. Chaumette also offers villas for overnight accommodations. 24345 State Route WW, Ste. Genevieve, 573.747.1000, chaumette.com hillsboro, missouri
WILD SUN WINERY & BREWERY Head south a short drive from St. Louis to Wild Sun Winery & Brewery, a 10-acre estate in Hillsboro with a gorgeous historic main house dating back to 1870. Wild Sun is a collaboration of co-owners Mark Baehmann and Ed Wagner and opened in 2015. Baehmann has spent the last 34 years working as a winemaker and specializes in dry wines and ports, but they carry a variety to suit all taste preferences. Wagner, a 17-year Anheuser-Busch alum, was proud to announce the recent debut of Wild Sun’s first beers, American Blonde Ale and Sunset Red Ale, and looks forward to additional beer releases later this year. Order a pizza or burger or bring your own snacks, and enjoy live music Friday through Sunday now through October. Open year-round. 4830 Pioneer Road, Hillsboro, 636.797.8686, wildsun.com st. james, missouri
ST. JAMES WINERY Founded in 1970, St. James Winery is Missouri’s largest winery with 185 sprawling acres just a short drive southwest from St. Louis, located conveniently right off I-44. This family-owned operation is internationally awarded and boasts the bestselling Missouri wines. Stop in for complimentary wine tastings daily then relax in The Gardens, May 2019 2019 May
BY REBECCA KOENIG // PHOTOS BY VIRGINIA HAROLD
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You'll find more than wine — delectable cuisine, craft beers and cocktails a beautifully landscaped outdoor area where live music is performed every Saturday. St. James has also partnered with its neighbor, Public House Brewing Company, offering a full food menu, along with plenty of craft beer options. 540 State Route B, St. James, 800.280.9463, stjameswinery.com jefferson county, missouri
JEFFERSON COUNTY WINERY & BREWERY TRAIL Discover central Jefferson County’s Winery & Brewery Trail, where there’s something for everyone just 20 minutes south of St. Louis. Enjoy the fresh country air while getting your fill of food, brews and vino on the trail, which encompasses Russell House Restaurant, Inn & Brewery, Main & Mill Brewing Co., Wild Sun Winery & Brewery, Villa Antonio Winery and LaChance Vineyards, all within a short drive (no more than 30 minutes) of each other. Check each business’ website for more information and location. De Soto, Festus and Hillsboro potosi, missouri
EDG-CLIF VINEYARD, WINERY, BREWERY Pack a picnic basket and head south to this third-generation, family-owned farm, which boasts an array of awardMay 2019
winning vinos along with a farmhouse brewery and plenty of craft beers. New this year, three vintage farmhouses (all over 100 years old and furnished with family antiques) on the property are now available on Airbnb. The estate also features live music every Saturday through October, and there are several wine dinners throughout the summer. Check out the website for details. 10035 Edg-Clif Drive, Potosi, 573.438.4741, edg-clif.com belleville, illinois
THE WEINGARTEN Located just 20 minutes outside downtown St. Louis, The Weingarten is your relaxation destination. With acres of beautiful farm-scape to enjoy, this family friendly Winery and Event Venue is the perfect location for your next celebration or day out! Choose from a list of wines from around the world or craft beer to pair with an offering of delicious lunch and dinner items on the menu. Make sure to try a seasonal favorite, the Strawberry Sangria, while listening to live music every weekend in the indoor tasting room or beautiful patio. The events calendar boasts a variety of fun, like the Catalina Wine Mixer in August! Create some memories this year at The Weingarten! 1780 E. IL 15, Belleville, 618.257.9463, saucemagazine.com I SAUCE MAGAZINE I 51 I 7 saucemagazine.com I SAUCE MAGAZINE
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L A S T B I T E // S T U F F T O D O
BY TAY L OR COU TAIN SAUCE SPONSORED EVENTS
Bagel Brain Pop-Up
Food Truck Friday
South Grand Dine Around
May 4 – 10 a.m. to 2 p.m., Vicia, 4260 Forest Park Ave., St. Louis, 314.553.9239, viciarestaurant.com Vicia’s Michael Gallina and Pizza Head’s Scott Sandler join together for this pop-up event. Show up early to purchase from the limited supply of Sandler’s everything bagels to take home, then brunch on Vicia’s two bagel specials: a classic breakfast sandwich and toasted bagels with spreads and smoked fish.
May 10 – 4 to 8 p.m., Tower Grove Park, 4256 Magnolia Ave., St. Louis, 314.772.8004, saucefoodtruckfriday.com Gather your friends and head to Tower Grove Park to kick off Food Truck Friday season. More than 20 trucks join the festivities, like Seoul Taco, Farmtruk and K-Bop STL. Sip local pours from Urban Chestnut Brewing Co., 4 Hands Brewing Co. and Noboleis Vineyards as you enjoy live music from Tommy Halloran’s Guerrilla Swing. Buy Speed Passes online and pick them up at the Sauce tent.
May 16 – 5 to 10 p.m., Ritz Park, 3147 S. Grand Blvd., St. Louis, 314.772.5750, southgrand.org Pick up your ticket at Ritz Park to eat around the world with 14 countries represented within five blocks on South Grand. Admission includes five tickets to exchange for small plates, desserts or drinks from more than 20 participants, including Rooster, Hotbox Cookies, The Gin Room and more. Tickets available online.
Rosé Day in the Central West End
May 4 – noon to 6 p.m., corner of Maryland Plaza and Euclid Avenue, St. Louis, 314.322.8337, rosedaystl.com Kick off summer early with the second annual Rosé Day. Sip on wine from 10 tasting stations at Central West End businesses like Yellowbelly, Shake Shack and more. Learn about how 10 local nonprofits are working to empower and support women. Tickets available online.
May 11 – 4 to 8 p.m., New Town Amphitheater, 3420 Civic Circle, St. Charles, 636.345.4569, midwestmaifest.org Activities at this German spring festival include beer, wine and spirit samples, live music and traditional German food like bratwurst and sauerkraut for purchase. The dozen participating vendors include Good News Brewing Co., Pinckney Bend Distillery and Petrichor Brewing. Tickets available online.
Taste of Maplewood May 18 – noon to 8 p.m., Sutton Boulevard south of Manchester Avenue, Maplewood, 314.781.8588, midcountychamber.org Now in its 11th year, this free festival featuring Maplewood and Richmond Heights restaurants, boutiques and specialty stores showcases the characteristics of each business. The Crow’s Nest, Traveling Tea, Kakao Chocolate and more sell food, drinks and other wares as live music plays throughout the day.
Dining Out For Life May 2 – participating St. Louis restaurants, 314.754.0114, diningoutforlife.com/city/stl Go out for coffee, a quick bite, family dinner or a nightcap and help the St. Louis community. Around 100 local restaurants participate in Dining Out For Life St. Louis, including Vin de Set, Baiku and Yellowbelly. At least 25 percent of every bill that night is donated to St. Louis Effort for AIDS. A list of all participating restaurants is available online. Laumeier Art Fair May 10 – 6 to 10 p.m., May 11 – 10 a.m. to 8 p.m., May 12 – 10 a.m. to 5 p.m., Laumeier Sculpture Park, 12580 Rott Road, Sunset Hills, 314.615.5278, laumeier.org This Mother’s Day weekend, attend Laumeier’s annual art fair featuring up to 150 juried artists from across the country. Snack on fare from 11 local food and beverage vendors like 4 Hands Brewing Co., Blues Fired Pizza and Mission Taco Joint while enjoying live music. The younger crowd can explore hands-on kids activities. Tickets available online. Lupulin Carnival May 18 – 1 to 5 p.m., Circus Flora Big Top, 3401 Washington Blvd., St. Louis, 314.436.1559, lupulincarnival.com 4 Hands Brewing Co.’s Lupulin Carnival returns with a new venue and more than 50 breweries. Join Blackberry Farm Brewery, Funkwerks, Firestone Walker Brewing Co., Sun King Brewery, Off Color Brewing and dozens more for unlimited beer samples, local carnival fare and one-of-a-kind carnival acts. Tickets available online. Indihop June 1 – 1 to 7 p.m., The Grove and Cherokee Street, St. Louis, indihopstl.com Celebrate two of St. Louis’ iconic neighborhoods at Indihop. Shuttle between The Grove and Cherokee Street to sample more than 50 beers, enjoy live music and support small businesses. Tickets available online.
denotes a sauce sponsored event
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L A S T B I T E // W H AT I D O
N IC O L A M AC ph E R S O N Nicola Macpherson’s office smells like truffles. Some people don’t like it, but she’s a big fan, which isn’t surprising when you consider her entire life has been spent working in nature. Macpherson grew up in the United Kingdom, where she did everything from teaching science and making cheese to tending a vegetable garden and canning produce. Today, she runs Ozark Forest Mushrooms. In addition to growing fungi on inoculated oak logs at her husband’s family farm in the Ozarks and distributing them to countless local restaurants and shops, she also makes products like dried mushrooms, mushroom powders, truffle salts and even hot sauces. Here’s a closer look at how Macpherson has cornered the mushroom market in St. Louis. – Adam Rothbarth
“ I sta r t e d a s a h o b by,
and then it became a commercial enterprise. So, we started off with six logs – mushroom oak logs – and then it went to a hundred. A thousand the next year. This year, we did 6,700 logs. That was more than we’ve ever done.” “ [ T h e u s e o f oa k lo gs ]
is Asian; they’ve been doing it for centuries. It’s not just
Japan – they’ve been doing it in Korea, China. The name is Japanese: shiitake. ‘Shii’ is like an oak tree in Japan, and ‘take’ means mushroom in Japanese, so it means ‘mushroom from the oak tree.’” “ I d o n ’ t t h r ow a n y t h i n g away. If
they get wet in a storm, or something happens and I can’t sell, we de-stem them and put them in dryers. All the stalks, I make into powders. Waste not, want not. I think that whole movement’s going on in the food industry too: not wasting any products, reusing things. I think farmers are having to do it too. We’ve been doing it for years.” “The benefit of g r ow i n g on a full oak log
versus in sawdust is flavor. If I’m a chef, I’d say flavor, by far. The shelf life on them is great, and you can get all these
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Ozark Forest Mushrooms, 314.531.9935, ozarkforest.com
different variations. Right now, we have the donko shiitake, which is that thick cap with a cracked top. You only find those dried in Asian stores – you can’t buy them fresh, but we have them fresh. They’re highly regarded in Japan, they’re like a Grade 1 shiitake.
They’re called the ‘flower shiitake.’ That sets us apart.” “ I a lways say s i m p l e i s b e st. I always say simple
is best. I hate to chop them up. If I can keep them whole, I like to just take the stem off – it doesn’t matter how big or
small they are. I like to saute them in a little butter or olive oil, salt and pepper, and then I love to buy bourbon-smoked paprika and sprinkle a little bit of that on them. I get it at Larder & Cupboard. And I always cook with cast-iron skillets, the Ozark way.”
PHOTO BY VIRGINIA HAROLD
“ I m e t m y h u s ba n d when he was doing a junior year abroad program at the same university I was at in Yorkshire. He was from Tulane University. To cut a long story short, I came over here for a holiday about 10 years later. We really connected, so I flew to St. Louis. I had no idea how big this country was. I thought we could just go to New Orleans for the day. We got married the year after that.”
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L A S T B I T E // L A N D M A R K
SCHNEITHORST’S RESTAURANT & BAR BY A DA M R OTH BA R TH
Schneithorst’s is the kind of place where you go for a drink with your friends and end up running into your grandparents. There is something for everyone – and that’s what makes it great. Traditional dishes like potato cakes, schweine schnitzel and a German sausage platter capture the spirit of Schneithorst’s European heritage, and, of course, it wouldn’t be a biergarten without an impressive selection of German beers.
1600 S. Lindbergh Blvd., Ladue, 314.993.4100, schneithorst.com
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PHOTOS BY DAVID KOVALUK
Although Schneithorst’s as we know it – the iconic timber-framed Bavarian building at the intersection of Lindbergh Boulevard and Clayton Road – has been around since the ’50s, the family has a longer history in the St. Louis industry. Arthur Schneithorst Sr. entered the restaurant game in 1917 with downtown establishment Benish’s Restaurant. After suffering a Depression-era setback and rebounding by taking over the successful Bevo Mill Bavarian eatery, Arthur Sr. passed the torch to Arthur Jr., who eventually moved the operation to Ladue. Schneithorst’s has been a West County beacon of Oktoberfest vibes and warm hospitality ever since.
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