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St. Louis must eats?

  • m

Going to St. Louis for 2+ days - specifically, for two breakfasts, three lunches, and plenty of time for mid-afternoon or late-night snacks (ice cream, coffee, pastries, whatever). Other than Ted Drewes, I have nothing on my to-eat list. No interest in fancypants restaurants - I have plenty of that here in Boston. I'm staying downtown, will have a car but would prefer to stay in town as much as possible (since I do have to work while I'm there). I have no freedom on dinner, so places like Harvest are off limits.

Also, I have seen some older posts here bemoaning the lack of Q in St. Louis, except for one recommendation for Ropers on W Florissant. If any of that has changed, I'd love to hear about it, as there isn't a single barbecue place anywhere within 45 minutes of Boston that's worth a damn.

Thanks in advance for any recs.

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  1. Lately I've been going to 2 places I like a lot, on opposite ends of the city (one north one south). The one up north is Jadens, at 4251 Martin Luther King Drive. It's a small place with a cafeteria line, really good home cooking - at least I think it is. The other place I visit alot is a small Taqueria stand called "La Vallesanna" (sp?) on Cherokee Street at California. Really good tortas. I like to go to the not so fancy places, and both of these fall into that category. Both are about 10 minutes drive from downtown.

    I also like the White Knight, but it's really smokey.

    I like Ropers BBQ a lot too, but it's more of a carry out place.

    Other posters will tell you to go to Crown Candy Kitchen and get a milk shake and a BLT for lunch. That's always good.

    If you can play hookey from work for a while, I like to go to Milo's Boccee Garden on the hill (grab an Amigetti's "special" for lunch before you go to Milos, just across the street) then go to the Bocce court with some friends, have a beer and play a few rounds.

    Hard to compete with Boston, but hope you have a good time on your visit!

    1. Try the Crown Candy Kitchen- great malts and lunch stuff - http://www.crowncandykitchen.com/

      Pho Grand (if you're into good soups and Vietnamese, plus it's cheap!) - http://www.phogrand.com

      and Hodak's Fried Chicken (walking distance from my old house) that has the best fried chick in St. Louis! http://www.hodaks.com/

      I used to live in St. Louis and know lots of great places so feel free to pick my brains. :)

      1 Reply
      1. re: darkesnow

        Porter's Fried Chicken is bettter. Hodak's is over-rated.

      2. I'm fond of the molasses puffs at Bissinger's. The original location off King's Highway is a nice visit.

        1. For some CH-worthy meals, I would suggest:

          Iron Barley on Virginia just north of Bates in south city. For lunch, get the peppered pork sandwich. For dinner, the zarzuela or schnitzel. Great soups. It's a short drive from downtown on I-55.


          The website says "now open" but they have been open for over three years.

          The Pitted Olive on Hampton between Holly Hills and Eichelberger in south city. Get the chicken and goat cheese sandwich. Great soups. It's the same part of town as Ted Drewes, so couple them in one trip.


          Speaking of Ted Drewes', get a concrete or sundae and not plain custard or you may be disappointed.

          1. Try O'Connell's Pub for a burger or roast beef sandwich and report back as to how it stacked up against your Boston pubs. Definitely not fancy pants.

            1. Ooh, this is good stuff, thanks. That Pitted Olive/Ted Drewes combo sounds like a nice afternoon. Hodak's, Bissinger's, Crown Candy ... that's all what I was looking for and most of these suggestions are close to my hotel (which is where I'll be working during the day). I love local food. Maybe Monday Pitted Olive + TDFC, Tuesday Crown Candy, Weds Iron Barley ... that leaves out Hodak's. I might have to go calvintrillin' and have two lunches one day :)

              Any breakfast rec's? Traditional or healthful breakfasts are fine. My experience with hotel breakfasts is that they're horrible, plus knowing I'm headed out for a great breakfast is good motivation to get me going in the morning.

              3 Replies
              1. re: minsc

                Don't leave out Hodak's, if you can help it. Wonderful fried chicken. When I get back to St. Lou, it'll be my first stop.

                1. re: minsc

                  o.k. Breakfast: a few suggestions:
                  The Majestic Diner: Euclid and Laclede in the Central West End: you can take the Metrolink Light Rail to the CWE station, and walk north on Euclid. Good blueberry pancakes and omelets:Bill's Special, with gyro meat, feta, onions and tomatoes is/was alway good. The homemade rice pudding is warm and tasty. They have outdoor dining, which is nice. A real "neighborhood" place.
                  La Dolce Via: a bakery/cafe in Forest Park Southeast at Arco and S. Taylor(near Sweetie Pies, which is on Manchester). Good coffee, great pastries, omelets. A little more expensive than the Majestic, but excellent quality and friendly service.
                  Have a good visit! p.j.

                  1. I lived in Boston for six years; so, I am thinking of places that are unique to St. Louis.

                    1. The Broadway Oyster Bar - they only use prime alligator meat in their cooking
                    2. Lagniappe - a small Creole place where the husband cooks and the wife serves
                    3. White Knight - I took a Bostonian here, and she burst into applause when she saw it
                    4. Yemanja Brasil - Boston probably has Brazilian restaurants, but Boston does not have a French-born chef who was the cook for the Brazilian national soccer team.
                    5. Do not go out of your way in St. Louis to try the toasted ravioli; just go to The Chateau in Waltham MA where toasted ravioli is a mainstay on the appetizer and the entree menus
                    6. Iron Barley - Boston probably does not have a restaurant that specializes in barley
                    7. Sweetie Pies - this barbeque place is run by a former Ikette

                    All of the above, except the White Knight, will require a car trip from downtown.

                    1. I'm in town now, went to Roper's for takeout lunch ... super-friendly service, great value, but as babyback ribs go, they were so-so. I think I didn't like the sauce. Baked beans were solid, and the breading on the fried shrimp was outstanding. I think tomorrow is TD-day :)

                      1 Reply
                      1. re: minsc

                        Just got back from Ted Drewes ... disappointing. I had a chocolate concrete. Texture was great, but the flavor was awful, like bad chocolate syrup.
                        Lunch was Anthony's, the little offshoot of Tony's, for a business lunch so I couldn't choose the place. Food was fine, though - had a peppered tenderloin sandwich (beef - they didn't specify on the menu but I figured in this part of the country, it had to be beef) with fried onion strips on sourdough.