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Jul 4, 2012 07:23 PM

Between Busch Stadium and Gateway Station (Amtrak) STL

At the end of my upcoming visit to St. Louis, I will be at a baseball game at Busch Stadium that starts 12:45 pm, and then will be taking an Amtrak departure from Gateway Station at 5:30 pm. Baseball games typically last around three hours, start to finish; however, I can't count on leaving the game at a particular time, since it might be an extra inning thriller that goes four hours (or more!), or it might be a blowout which I wouldn't mind leaving before it ends. And I'll need to be at the station 15-30 minutes before the train leaves. Therefore, this will be a two-part question.

1. SIT-DOWN DINING. Let's say I have two hours between the stadium and the station. That ought to be enough time to have a nice sit-down meal in between, along with any travel time (i.e. a ten-minute walk from the stadium to the station, plus whatever's needed to detour to a place to eat). I would need a place that's open all afternoon. It would need to be close enough that it wouldn't add too much walking time to rule it out. (Nearby would work great; a place in the warehouse district by the convention center becomes iffy.) I know Landry's Seafood has a restaurant nearby in Union Station, and that would seem to qualify, although I don't know how good it is. Any thoughts on Landry's, and/or any other recommendations?

2. CARRY-OUT. Let's say I have 45 minutes between the stadium and the station. That wouldn't be enough time to stop and eat anywhere, but I would have time to pick up a meal for carry-out, which I could eat on the train. (If need be, I could phone in the order ahead of time.) Any recommendations?

The time and location requirements are such that I don't necessarily expect to find a place that's amazing and Chowhound-worthy, but I wouldn't mind going somewhere that's at least decent. Oh, and I don't plan on eating much at the ballpark. (I'd actually prefer to eat afterwards, since I have a long train ride home.)


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  1. Hi nsxtasy, an admirer of your many Chicago posts. This is a tricky one. What day is the game?
    Union Station is really pretty much empty, and that is a tragedy. Landry's rarely if ever comes up as a recommended place in my experience. There is a food court upstairs that caters to tourists and office workers, no better than Union Station Chicago, if even. Just adjacent to Union Station is Maggie O'Brien's, and that might fit that bill. It's a little bit of a detour from Gateway Trans. Center, but you could do dine in and I am pretty certain carry-out. Unfortunately, Metrolink will be jammed with people going both directions. Unfortunately, other than at the hotels, the majority of the good places downtown are in the loft district near the Convention Center. Here are some links:

    2 Replies
    1. re: ddfry3

      The game is on a Thursday, later this month.

      I realize that lots of good places are further north in the loft/warehouse district, since I'm planning to eat at several of them during my stay. Normally, the walk (or Metrolink) there wouldn't be a problem, but unless I leave the game early, they won't be an option.

      I'll check into O'Brien's - thanks!

      1. re: nsxtasy

        Other places that might meet option number 1, which assumes I have enough time to dine in, seem to include Broadway Oyster Bar or Lombardo Trattoria, which sound like they might be okay and they're not too far out of the way. Still don't have a really good carry-out option, though. (Some of these places may package food for carry-out, but it's not necessarily the kind of food that travels well.)

    2. Here are some possibilities I've come up with, and I'd love to get some feedback because all I know is from looking at their websites:

      - 1111 Mississippi (I know it's a little further, but...)
      - Sen Thai Bistro
      - Mosaic (except I may go there the previoius day - I LOVE their menu)

      2. CARRY-OUT.
      - Caruso's Deli
      - Sen Thai Bistro
      - Chains (Panera, TGI Friday's)


      13 Replies
      1. re: nsxtasy

        I do like 1111 Mississippi although I would personally find the walk between the ballpark and Lafayette Square a little daunting. The same people also own Vin De Set, (which I think gets a lot of mixed reviews) and they have recently opened PW Pizza. (or something close to that name). They are all three in Lafayette Square.

        I have not been to Bailey's Range but it has some good buzz and is close to the ballpark.

        I am not a Mosaic fan at all, but I have not been for several years, so take my opinion with a grain of salt. In the Washington Avenue area there is also Copia (

        And Pi Pizza has just opened a downtown branch

        Some people like Joe Buck's although it may be more "sports bar" than what you are looking for.

        1. re: shannonstl

          Those are good tips (and I appreciate them) but some of them overlap my other plans. Bailey's Range is a great rec but I'm probably going to hit it between the station and the ballpark on my arrival. I wasn't aware of Copia so I'll look into that, thanks. I'm leery of places with naming rights for local sports celebrities, but aside from that, isn't Joe Buck's primarily a barbecue place? In which case, I'm going to hit Bogart's on the same trip. Thanks again!

          EDIT - Copia sounds good, I'll add it to my options!

          1. re: nsxtasy

            Don't want to monopolize the discussion, but...

            Lombardo's would be ok. BB's and Broadway Oyster are nearby (and very uniquely St. Louis) but I would venture to say very crowded around game times.

            1111 is solid, and on the north edge of LS (and about a 2 block walk from where I am moving in LS!). It's not too far but one has to walk through some industrial areas and it's not pedestrian friendly. I recommend PW Pizza on Chouteau (which is even closer) and Vin de Set is pretty good. Sen would be a decent choice. Caleco's is not far from Busch and like a local TGIF, not a huge fan myself.

            Bailey's is good, but will likely be very crowded. I'd skip Joe Buck's - food not that good. Pi pizza would be good for you Convention Center area travels, and in that area, I'd look at Prime 1000 for some fine meat (though if you are going to Copia that's pretty pricey, as is Prime). I recommend further west on Washington Mango, nice space and good Peruvian cuisine. Hilton at the Ballpark has a swanky rooftop eatery, you might try that at a non-game time, depending on convenience to where you are staying and what you are doing.

            Bogart's is not to be missed...get the smoked prime rib or pastrami. Won't find that many places. Beware that it is crowded during prime hours, and in this heat no one wants to eat outside. Also in Soulard is a new place called Riverbend, Cajun-influenced cuisine.

            I've had decent, if not revelatory, meals at Mosaic. you might also try Lola, or the Bridge, for a more urban dining/wine bar sort of vibe.

            Hope this helps...

            1. re: ddfry3

              Yes, it helps - thanks! I should mention the other places I'm hitting during my trip. (I did so in another STL topic, but not here, so FWIW...) In addition to a possible meal at Mosaic and my arrival meal at Bailey's Range, they include breakfasts at Rooster and Half & Half, lunch at Bogart's (thanks for the tip - I may go on the early side), and dinner at Niche. The meals when I first arrive (Bailey's) and after that last game are the only ones where timing is an issue so I need to keep it downtown, close to the ballpark/station, hence my inquiry here. I'll look into the other places you mention - thanks again!

              Oh, and since you're going to be familiar with Lafayette Square... Seems like a great place for desserts, between Bailey's Chocolate Bar and Rue Lafayette. Any places around LS that are really great for carry-out food? It's not that far of a detour from the ballpark, and if I'm doing carry-out for the train, I might have enough time to make it down there and back...

              1. re: nsxtasy

                I'm glad to see you are planning to get out to some of the neighborhoods. Half and Half is the only place in Clayton you are going, this is an area full of places to eat,some better than others, and accessible via Metrolink. Niche (for now, it will be moving to Clayton) is in Benton Park...I'd check on the timing of that. Not sure if you'll have a car, but I HIGHLY recommend Farmhaus in the Lindenwood Park neighborhood. Very different, but I'd say at the level of Niche at a much more kind price point. It's some distance from downtown however, off I-44 and Arsenal.

                Your other choices look good. There's also a bookstore downtown that deserves our business, Left Bank Books, very near Rooster.

                Please report on your experiences if possible.

                1. re: ddfry3

                  After Half & Half I'll be checking out some of the artsy places along the Delmar Loop north of Forest Park on the way back downtown, so I've got a good sense of where things are and where I'll be. (I won't have a car but I'm really good with maps and public transit.) I looked at Farmhaus but it won't work for me because the lunch menu is extremely limited, and they're not open between lunch and dinner if I wanted to eat early. (My only dinner 5:00 or later will be at Niche.)

                  I'll report back afterwards. Thanks again!

                  1. re: nsxtasy

                    True...the lunch menu at Farmhaus is just one prix fixe special, but worth it. Next time, even if you have to cab it, try to get to Farmhaus. The hours are an issue, and if you don't have a car, it's not accessible by train or probably bus conveniently. Duh, if you are riding Amtrak you won't have a car...sorry!

                    Enjoy....many shops and dining choices in the might try Tavolo V very near the Metrolink stop, Three Kings is also good.

                    1. re: ddfry3

                      Most places in populated areas are not terribly hard to get to via public transit, and Farmhaus is no exception. There are two options: The #16 bus runs along Jamieson Avenue a block west of the restaurant between the Shrewsbury-Lansdowne Metrolink stop and the Skinker Metrolink stop, and the #30 bus runs along Watson Road a block east of the restaurant between downtown and the Shrewsbury-Lansdowne Metrolink stop. It's almost an hour each way downtown, though, vs about 15 minutes by car or cab. That's an extreme example, though, because Farmhaus is not close to the Metrolink and it's right off the interstate. By contrast, it should only take about half an hour from downtown to Half & Half by Metrolink including the 20-minute train ride, even though it's about the same distance as it is to Farmhaus.

                      Information on public transit in the St. Louis area is available at Google has also done a good job integrating the routes and schedules of the major public transit systems into their Google Maps product.

                      1. re: nsxtasy

                        Not terribly hard...agreed. Convenient or a viable option - another story. The train goes to very few neighborhoods , and even bus service is not exhaustive.

                2. re: nsxtasy

                  FWIW, I prefer Rue Lafayette to Chocolate Bar. Rue Lafayette does some savory (or did, as it has been a year or so since I've been there) so that might be an option for your take out.

                  1. re: shannonstl

                    Thanks - yes, I see they have a fax order form on their website!

                    1. re: shannonstl

                      doesn't Rue Lafayette close a little early?

                      1. re: hill food

                        According to their website at , they close at 5:00 Tuesdays through Saturdays (and 3 on Sundays).

          2. Very close to Busch Stadium, on your way to the Amtrak Station:

            1. CLARK STREET GRILL in the Westin. A favorite of mine

            2. J. BUCKS - a favorite of baseball fans

            1. During my trip I had the opportunity to walk around downtown St. Louis and got a better sense of distances. I decided the extra few blocks walk to the restaurants along Olive and Locust wasn’t all that far out of the way, and it was worth it if I had enough time once I left the game (I did) and if I wanted to try one of the more unusual places (I did). I went to Bailey’s Range for a burger and a shake. It was just okay but the location and timing were perfect for my needs. I wrote about it in my detailed trip report at

              Incidentally, I previously said, “Bailey's Range is a great rec but I'm probably going to hit it between the station and the ballpark on my arrival.” As it turns out, the heat sapped any appetite I had for dinner upon my arrival, so I went there on my way out of town instead.

              Thanks for the suggestions!