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St Louis suggestions - Clayton/Forest Park area

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Hello all,

I'll be in St Louis for the first time the weekend of July 7- July 9 for an event at the History Museum. I am staying at the Cheshire Lodge, address: 6300 Clayton Rd., St. Louis, MO 63117, as was arranged for me by the museum. I won't have a car, so will need to depend on public transport and taxis. Any reccomendations on places not to miss relatively near my hotel or an easy transportation trip away? I don't want to get lost, so not something with a lot of transfers. I know very little about St Louis, but am looking forward to the visit. If anyone is interested, I'm giving a lecture at the museum on Sunday, and I think it is Free, or at least free with admission.

Thank you. If I can offer any suggestions to anyone coming to Philadelphia, NE Pennsylvania or Delaware, don't hesitate to ask.

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  1. You are within walking distance to DeMun. On that street you will find one of the best coffee houses in town, Kaldi's. Jimmy's on the Park is a very nice place for dinner and Sasha's is a wonderful wine bar. They all sit right next to each other. You will really enjoy that area.

    On the corner of DeMun and Clayton Rd. is Carl's Deli. They have really good pastrami sandwiches. I hope you get to enjoy St. Louis. It is a great city.

    1. My all-time favorite St. Louis restaurant is not too far from you: Harvest. Check out the website. It is on Big Bend, just off of Clayton.

      Link: http://www.harveststlouis.com/

      1. I went to college at nearby Washington Universty. My recollection (from a while back!) is that the Cheshire has a very nice, intimate bar. Don't remember if they have food. If they do have food, see if they have toasted raviolis, a St. Louis twist on traditional raviolis.

        1. I had a nice meal at Almonds in downtown Clayton. They offered some pretty good seafood and Cajun specialties. Dinner should run you about $20 plus drinks.

          8127 Maryland Ave
          Clayton, MO 63105-3720

          1. The Boathouse Restaurant in Forest Park throws down some OK chow. If you sit outside and it's not too bloody hot, the vibe is very pleasant. And it's close to the museum.

            1. - Good recs' in the demun otions and Harvest for a splurge, and the boathouse as long as you have company.
              - the Loop area of University City is just North on Skinker- say, a mile. The bus system here is not well thought of- but a lot of folks do actually use it. The loop area is rich with optons and fun. Given your time frame think about 609 ( on Enright)just West of Skinker North of Delmar- they are open Sundays and Mondays and have a great limited( not in scope, just not huge) menu and an outstanding dessert selection. The prices are reasonable and the bar hopping in the evenings. Went the other day and had a pre-show(5-7) meal that included great 10 dollar entrees.

              1. I am looking forward to this trip all the more now that I know of some good places to eat within reasonable distance. I appreciate everyone's contributions.

                1. There is an Outback Steakhouse on Clayton Road which is just a short distance from Cheshire Inn. Are you in town to talk about Franklin perhaps?

                  1 Reply
                  1. re: Jerry Sale

                    Soory so long to respond, I was away and without email several days. Yes, I am in town to talk about Franklin, specifically about Franklin and 18th century medicine. I am looking forward to the trip.

                  2. You should not visit St. Louis and not at least try their unique version of pizza, with an ultra-thin crust and rich, melty Provel cheese, sliced into squares. Try Manhattan Cafe (or is it Cafe Manhattan) or their sister Uptown Cafe, both a short cab ride away. Be sure to try the house salad and the toasted ravioli (deep-fried, with tomato sauce or dipping).

                    And after your talk or another evening or late afternoon, you have to get to Ted Drewe's for frozen custard. Get a "concrete" milkshake thick enough so that you can hold the cup upside-down.

                    1. Harvest is an excellent choice. if you are a Chowhound, it is not ot be missed. If you crave meat, Mihalis on McCausland, just south of the Cheshire is a great bet. The Cheshire's hotel is closed and a new purveyor is in the offing soon, so I wouldn't try them. The Kaldi's recommendation is very sound. Jimmys on the Park and Sasha's is better known for the ambience and wine rather than for the food.

                      If you are a glutton for punishment, or at least curious, try the St. Louis pizza. I abhor the stuff. I wouldn't serve it to my enemy's dog. Ted Drewe's on the other hand, is a hands down winner.

                      For down home soul food, try Sweetie Pies at the Mangrove. They close early so go for lunch, plus you don't want to be there late at night anyways. Great fried chicken and catfish. It is on Manchester just east of Kingshighway.

                      Both the Central West End and Clayton are a cab ride away, as well as my favorite: King Louie. It is a sublime dining experience. They are just off of Grand and south of I-64, again, just a cab ride away.

                      Well, are you in town for the Franklin Exhibit?

                      1 Reply
                      1. re: Phaedrus

                        Thanks for all the suggestions!! Sorry it has taken me a while to reply, I was away for a few days. Yes, I am in town for Franklin, giving a lecture about Franklin and 18th century medicine. I am hoping it goes well and am looking forward to a short visit to your city!

                      2. I'm a member of the Missouri Historical Society and haven't been to see the Franklin exhibit yet. Also my ancestor was a doctor in the War of 1812. I think I'd be intrested in your talk and hope to show up. A couple of other suggestions. In the Delmar loop there is Saleem's. It's an Eastern Resteraunt (far or near, I don't remember). The slogan is "Where Garlic is King". There is also Balaban's in the Central West End on the East side of Forest Park. I haven't been there in a while but it was excellent the few times I was there. Take either a wad of cash or you Platnum card. If you have a drink or two expect the bill to be around $50. If you are on an expense account, it definately a place to consider.

                        1 Reply
                        1. re: jerry

                          Thanks Jerry, I hope you are able to make it to the lecture and enjoy it. Thanks also for the suggestions. Anywhere "Where Garlic is King" sounds good by me.

                        2. I agree with Phaedrus regarding the St. Louis style pizza. It's worth trying since it's not something that you will see anyplace else in the country, but the cheese is an unpleasant/disturbing experience, so don't expect to be able to eat a full meal of it. Imo's is the standard, there are locations all over the place. If you want St. Louis pizza without the Provel cheese, Pointers on Big Bend is pretty close to the Cheshire, you get the thin crust, but with real cheese.

                          The one positive contribution that St. Louis has to the world of food is Gooey Butter Cake, and Kaldi's carries the best one in town. Warning -- it's so rich that one person can probably not eat a full piece.

                          If you're already getting into a cab, it's a little far, but I think Iron Barley is one of the best restaurants in town. Amazingly delicious, great atmosphere, and quite cheap.

                          If it's an option, you might want to consider renting a car. There isn't much that's within walking distance of your hotel, and as others have stated, public transportation in that area isn't the best.

                          1 Reply
                          1. re: jumpingjack

                            not exactly true re the pizza. in ohio dayton style pizza is the same as the st. louis style, ie. very thin crust, round and cut into squares. however the use of provolone in st. louis sets the two apart. just an fyi for saint louie-ans.

                          2. Back in the day, I remember hanging out at the Fox & Hounds Tavern in the Cheshire. Can't say if it's any good now, but I used to enjoy myself.

                            I second Harvest - love the place. Frank Papa's on Brentwood, a wonderful italian restaurant, isn't too far of a drive away. I love the flash-fried escarole.

                            1. As a former St. Louisian, I can say that I miss the pizza!! Best in the world. It's nice to be unique! Also, miss the toasted ravioli....why aren't these served in the rest of the world?