Sunday, March 10, 2013

A guide to St. Louis

I've spent a lot of time talking about how I'm not adjusting to my new surroundings and how I am going to make an effort to talk about what is working here. Of course, what do I think of? All the places I loved in the STL. I'm not saying I make sense. I put together this what's what of all the places to love in the STL that I want to share, should someone be looking. What I've found here is googling simple terms like "where to eat in Cleveland" OR "things to do in Cleveland" have me coming up empty search cached. 

When it comes to eating, there are some great treats & stand bys. The real question is what are you in the mood for? Broken down by location.

  • Three Kings. Really anything on the menu is delicious. We went every other week, it was close, a great location, it's deceivingly kid friendly, prices are decent, and the food is amazing.
  • For breakfast, this local place is the definition of "hole in the wall" - Boosters Cafe. The pumpkin pancakes are life changing (and honestly I don't even like pancakes). It's PERFECT because it's quick, easy, and the prices are amazing.
  • For burgers there is Cicero's & Blueberry Hill - both right on Delmar. Blueberry Hill is a bit of a tourist restaurant, it's neat, the burgers are good, and it's definitely "something to see." Blueberry Hill has music acts regularly, including Chuck Berry. 
  • Delicious farm-to-table food (breakfast is divine) - but it's all amazing, Winslow's. This is one of our favorites. It's a little crazy in terms of overpriced - but so delish. So fresh. I once saw a review on Yelp.com that sums it up: This place is like the dude who treats you like crap, is always late, and hits on your friends, but is amazing in bed. You hate him you hate him you hate him you hate him and then ohhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhh you love him.
  • Chinese food - Wongs Wok. Another 'hole in the wall' description (right next door to Booster's Cafe) - but the best (and most affordable) Chinese food we found in St. Louis.
  • BBQ, is Pappy's - super long line most days, but it's always worth it.
  • Pizza - here's what you need to know about pizza, especially coming from the Northeast. They use a cheese here- called "provel" - correct me if I'm wrong, but it's a mix of cheddar, provolone and something else. It's really only used in St. Louis, specifically. I'm not a fan, but if you are from St. Louis I'm pretty sure you are conditioned to love it. They put it on EVERYTHING - Mexican food, Italian food, American, salads, really anything. Most pizza is made with it. There are, however, great pizza places that don't use it. Pi Pizza being one or Dewey's they have different locations . The salads are very good as well. The VERY BEST pizza, made by New Yorkers - so I'm partial is: La Pizza. Another 'hole in the wall' - but really the best pizza I've had since moving from NY. 
The Central West End or CWEWe LOVE the Central West End. It's an area of St. Louis that has amazing restaurants, shops, great place to walk around. It's accessibly by metro link which is convenient to our house and there is stop that takes you right in the heart of the "CWE" or Central West End. 
  • Mexican:  Tortillaria Mexican Kitchen Tortill. Really good prices. 
  • American (another farm to table restaurant): Duff's.
  • A personal favorite, a tapas place. Taste.
  • American, more options than Duff's and probably less expensive: Bar Louie. 
The Hill would be a Little Italy equivalent for St. Louis. It's a cute little area where you can't go too wrong for Italian food. Their mozzarella & tomato salad is probably the best thing I've ever ordered. Ever. It sounds so simple, but it is just plain amazing.
  • Italian food - I'm super picky about Italian food- but I think my favorite has been Charlie Gito's. They have two locations. One downtown (more casual) and one in "The Hill." 
We went out a bit. With two young kids, our "activities" are pretty limited. Luckily they are pretty good in restaurants, though some of the above have been "date night, only" destinations.

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