Tuesday, May 7, 2019

PW Pizza Civil Life Beer Dinner 2019

Patience and I had been looking forward to the Civil Life beer dinner the most for this year as her go to beer, the American Brown Ale, was one of the star's of this month's dinner.

We kicked off the dinner with my favorite beer of the night, the light German Wheat, and for the first time I had a Bierbrot! Much like a pretzel, but heavier and it came with a tangy dipping sauce called Obatzda, which is a Bavarian cheese delicacy. I had to research it, but it is made with two thirds aged soft cheese like Camembert and one third butter, along with a small amount of beer. It was heaven!

Bierbrot and Obatzda
The first pizza was a completely new flavor: Carolina BBQ Pizza. I have to admit, I don't think I've tasted too many Carolina BBQ sauces, but I really enjoyed the sweet and tangy flavor on this pizza. Believe it or not, but the pork and BBQ sauce were amazing, although the collard greens slaw was kind of in the way. I prefer my veggies to be more baked into the pizza than just sitting on top.

Civil life is one of the few local breweries that brews an Irish Red, and I almsot finished this beer as well!

Carolina BBQ Pizza
The new chefs are very much into the spicier flavors as for the second month in a row, we got a pizza that I didn't make it past the first slice.

The Rhone Bar Pizza, celebrating their sister restaurant down the street, included jerk chicken, mango, red onion, roasted jalpeno, monterey jack, roasted garlic oil,  mint-pepper puree, and cilantro. That's a lot going on! Appropriately, paired with the hoppier Pale Ale.

Rhone Bar Pizza
I was STOKED to see another chocolate dessert this month, and it made up for the spicy pizza course. Since I didn't fill up on pizza too much, I had room for almost two desserts. I would have loved some more! The American Brown Ale was definitely the perfect, as well as my favorite pairing of the night.

Frangipane Chocolate Ganache Cake
Looking forward to Civil Life's expansion!



PW Pizza = https://pwpizza.com/

Civil Life = https://www.thecivillife.com/

Photos by Patience Scanlon


There is another new restaurant on the corner of Manchester and Sutton and I really hope this one sticks! The space looks completely different...no more stage... and the kitchen is behind glass walls like fishbowl.

We went relatively early and there probably could have been some early bird specials for those who had already started dining before 6pm. It was definitely much quieter when we started than when we finished thanks to the high cielings, but the noise factor was not an issue.

The lighting, however, kept getting darker and darker the later it got, and with the storm outside, it was almost too dark. Great for a date night perhaps? Definitely not so good for our pictures here.

Other than the dark, hipster feel, the food spoke for itself much more brightly...

You must get the Wagyu Beef Jerky Skewers... they're quite addictive! We ended up ordering seconds...while some had thirds!

Wagyu Beef Jerky Skewers
And our other starter...baked and raw oysters... this is definitely the best cooked oyster I have ever had! Another must order!

Baked and raw oysters
I chose the Gnochetti Sardi for my main course. I figured it had to be some kind of pasta and I ordered a side of broccoli (I'm so healthy!) that I cut up and mixed in with the pasta. The broccoli came in it's own cheesy sauce, but I enjoyed the pasta the best.

Gnocchetti Sardi

Grilled Broccoli
Patience was torn between the lamb chop and the mussels. The mussels allowed her to have more beef skewers! hehe

Bangs Island Mussels
And of course we had to get dessert..Elmwood's take on a S'more, but there was a surprising spicy kick to the marshmellow part so I just dug under for the chocolatey goodness using the graham crackers!

I definitely will be making a second trip soon, and I hope this one lasts a while. Just be sure to bring your own flashlight!

Elmwood Menu

Elmwood = https://www.elmwoodstl.com/

Photos by Patience Scanlon

Sunday, April 7, 2019

PW Pizza Modern Brewery Beer Dinner 2019

We were excited about Modern Brewery since it's a city brewery, and I still remember when they came to PW Pizza a couple of years ago.

There were new chefs starting behind this dinner so there were some new flavors and styles for the courses.

The first course was light with the Baggins' Belgin Wit (yes, that is a reference to Bilbo) with Satan's Salad. I thought for sure the dressing would be on fire with that description, but maybe they just meant the egg (evil eye from LotR?) since it was a curried deviled egg that only had a little spice.

Satan's Salad
For the second course, there was a Mexican theme to the Pueblo Pizza and they used Chihuahua cheese! This was MY favorite of the night since there were huge chunks of chicken. I loved the flavors and tried to get extra of this pizza.

Pueblo Pizza
The beer type wasn't listed on the menu and with 30 IBUs, I was able to correctly guess an Ale! Odinson (yes, Thor reference) is Modern's Pale Ale. Slight hops were well paired with this beer.

For the first time ever, I could not eat a pizza. The Viet-Cajun Crawfish pizza had my mouth on fire all the way around. I've had some pizza in the past where I was able to pick off peppers and eat around the spice, but there was no way to avoid it this time.

Everyone else at the table seemed to enjoy it though! I had to stop after one piece! Of course, the "money maker", Citrapolis (yes, Superman reference) was the typical pairing, but it's too hoppy for me. Definitely well paired with the spicy pizza.

Viet-Cajun Crawfish Pizza
I was really impressed with the Rye-Bourbon vanilla ice cream for the dessert course since those flavors really stood out in the vanilla ice cream, but without any chocolate, I gave most of mine to Patience.

Sorry about the picture...we forgot a little too late...but you've all seen vanilla ice cream before...you'll just have to take my word for it that adding rye and bourbon (it was house made!) is a great way to jazz up vanilla ice cream.

WAS Rye-Bourbon Vanilla Ice Cream
I do love the name McFly Rye (you better get that movie reference) ...this stout was not too thick and didn't overpower the ice cream.


PW Pizza = https://pwpizza.com/

Modern Brewery = http://modernbrewery.com/

Photos by Patience Scanlon

Tuesday, April 2, 2019

Frisco Barroom

All of a sudden, I am starting to feel like Webster Groves is the latest hotspot. Olive + Oak and Clover and the Bee took off and then I just stopped by Firenza Pizza last week to try it out.

With all the times I've been to Serendipity Ice Cream, I couldn't believe I didn't notice a new restaurant opening up two doors down! As I was walking up, I saw the new brick and mortar Balkan Treat Box across the street!

Anyway, there was a lot of hype around Frisco Barroom when it first opened, and my friends who dared to try it early on reported back about long waits. So I decided to wait until the hype had calmed down a little bit. It turned out to be the perfect spot for an early Sunday dinner after all.

It really reminds me of an Irish pub and was thrilled there was also an upstairs area and a patio, because I can see the place being really busy come summer time. (Will there be enough parking for all these new restaurants?)

I had fairly low expectations since it just felt like a pub, but the bar food is definitely a little more upscale.

I was impressed with the wide range of items on the menu, but I'm not going to complain since Patience and I wanted to try one of everything. Luckily, our friends were willing to help in our quest and split some of the starters with us.

In the small plates section, the poutine caught my eye right away and it's very traditional! This was amazing!!
Under the "Snacks" section were Deviled Eggs and these were more mustard-y than mayo-y, which gave it a lot more of a zing than I was used to. Soft creamy goodness!

Deviled Eggs
Another "small plate" that I really wanted to try was their Grilled Chicken Wings, but I looked a little further down the menu and they have a couple of Pierogi options!! I went traditional with the Potato Pierogi, but I definitely want to order the Farmers Cheese Pierogi next time!!

Potato Pierogi
Our friends helped us by ordering the Crispy Cauliflower, which were grilled in a buffalo sauce. Not too spicy, but it definitely jazzed up the veggie! You could easily make a meal out of just the small plates, snacks, and Pierogi.

Crispy Cauliflower
Good thing we were all hungry and were ready to take on our main entrees!

I actually ordered the smash burger (of course a double) instead of anything healthy.

Double Smashburger
Well, I did order a side salad, as my side dish, and it was in Italian dressing St. Louis style! Delicious!

House Salad
Patience ordered her favorite, french dip, which came with au jus AND horseradish on the side! Oh yeah...her side was her FAVORITE soup: Italian Wedding Soup. I don't know how they knew!

French Dip
They even let her put a slice of gouda on her french dip too!!

Italian Wedding Soup
Speaking of "on the side", even better than the movie was the "Potato & Cheese Casserole", which is a healthy portion "side dish" that you can get with any sandwich. (Entrees come with two sides but none of us made it that far down the menu.)

Patience calls them "funeral potatoes" since that's often where you see them served, or at other family functions. I really should learn how to make them since I know they'd be a big hit.

Potato and Cheese Casserole
Now I know why it was so crowded for so long! What a perfect "neighborhood joint"! I certainly hope to go back  a lot and I hope it survives for quite a while, especially since there is a lot of competition right there.


Frisco Barroom = https://www.thefriscostl.com

Photos by Patience Scanlon

Sunday, March 17, 2019

Cork & Rind Irish Cheese Class 2019

I was so happy to get the chance to visit Cork & Rind again for another cheese class and to see my former coach and current cheesemonger.

He got into the spirit by wearing a Leprechaun outfit!

Cheesemonger Kevin Kinney
Two of the cheeses were paired with beer and two paired with whiskey!

Cheese Pairing Menu
Starting at the top of the plate, my favorites were the first two Irish cheddars: Truly Grass Fed from Dublin, Ireland and Cahill's from Westmeath, Ireland. (I purchased the former to take home!)

The Cahill's Irish Porter Cheddar  was of course a perfect pairing with a Guinness Extra Stout. The marbling throughout the cheese is just beautiful.

On the left, a blue cheese, Cashel Blue was soft and fairly sweet. Definitely a good dessert cheese, without being overpowering. (I still noticed a few pieces of blue cheese left on plates. hehe)

There was also provided a little chutney, but I just spread it on the homemade bread as a snack.

Cheese Plate
You know I made faces trying to taste the whiskey, Kilbeggan Small Batch Irish Rye Whiskey and Teeling Single Grain Irish Whiskey, so the Smithwick's Irish Red Ale was the winner for me!

I find ryes to be a lot smoother for me, so that was my preference between the two whiskeys.

I love the classes here and I just wish we weren't so far away.


Cork & Rind = https://www.corkandrind.com/

Photos by Patience Scanlon

Friday, March 1, 2019


My "first to try a new restaurant" friends found a winner with 58hundred, which is also its address.  Another bonus is that it's a neighborhood restaurant that's only ten minutes away!

I hope this means we'll go back soon...especially since Patience was sick and I'm not even sure she'll get to enjoy the leftovers I brought her.

I loved the concise menu, focused on locally sourced ingredients.

Something different to start with - Pimento Cheese Toast, which my southern friends say I need to eat more of as the "cheese girl". The toast was thick and hearty and you should probably get some help with this as it could fill you up and not leave you room for anything else.

Nashville's Pimento Cheese Toast
My friends and the servers all said the Braised Beef is their best dish, and I thoroughly enjoyed it on a cold and rainy day. It came with brown butter gnocchi, squash, carrots, sage, in a red wine reduction.

Braised Beef
My friends ordered all appetizers for their meal, and split everything. So wise. Without my photography assistant, I missed capturing the nachos, but managed to get the shrimp.

Spicy Buffalo Fried Shrimp
I finished up the night with a large lemon bar, while my friends opted for a piece of banana cream pie. Of course the lemon bar couldn't stand up to my stepmom's, but I had to try it for myself.

Lemon Bar
I can't wait to go back and bring more friends here!

This place does not take a reservation, but there are several tables in the bar half of the building along with seating at the bar.


58hundred = https://www.58hundred.com/

Saturday, February 23, 2019

Grand Tavern

I can remember sitting in the original Dark Room looking up at the building that is now the Angad Arts Hotel and hoping that it could be put to good use someday.

Well, the building is finally finished and on the main floor is the Grand Tavern by David Burke - a fancy NY chef. I knew I had to try it and the Sorrells were kind enough to take me there for my birthday.

I was excited about the high-end restaurant, but with it comes high-end expecations and I'm not quite sure all the kinks are worked out just yet. Since the restaurant is in the arts district, theater timing is very important. Another issue I found is the high ceilings in the main room, which leads to a loud dining experience. And in our situation... a large and obnoxious birthday party sitting next to us caused our server to have to apologize. Even the table behind us requested to move to "the red room", which seems to be a far more intimate area.

Other than not being able to talk to each other, our courses were pretty amazing. And I do mean "courses" because the food just kept coming.

There was a small cocktail list, but the prices were a little higher than we prefer.  I did enjoy the garnishes for the cocktails...my Bee's Kneeds is so pretty!


Bee's Knees
We got to start with an amuse bouche...I believe there is lobster on top there.

Amuse bouche
Even the bread service was "big", since we each got a popover the size of our heads!

Patience and I were very curious about the Emotional Lobster Dumplings. athough I'm not sure which emotion we were supposed to be feeling.

Lobster Dumplings
Of course we HAD to get David Burke's "famous" Clothesline Bacon, where they torched it by hand at the table. Entertaining if nothing else!

Clothesline Bacon
Finally on to the main courses...I played it safe with the branzino (white fish) on the menu, but Patience ordered the steak special.  We both added on a vegetable on the side since they are all a la carte. I ordered the Angry Brocoli...angry because they were spicy!


Steak Special with Pasta
Angry Brocolli
And Pai got to load up on Brussels sprouts. Both are shareable for probably two people.

Brussels Sprouts
Beth went all out with the Saturday special: Surf and Turf on a bed of polenta

Surf and Turf
I believe Matt chose a clams and linguine dish.

Clams and Linguine
Special thanks again to the Sorrells, since the desserts never stopped coming!

Dessert Tray
We each got our own "dessert tray": Strawberries, small cake, a David Burke Cheesecake Lollipop, cotten candy, and a gooey butter donut!!! All of these were amazing!!

Although it couldn't top my personal "birthday dessert"!!!!!!!

Chocolate Peanut Butter Mousse
On the menu for anyone, birthday or not, I was very blown away by the Chocolate Peanut Butter Mousse - "radio city rockette style" with raspberries. Isn't she sexy??

Then we got to have a complimentary macaroon along with our bill. SO! STUFFED!

Coffee Macaroons
This is definitely a special occasion type of place, but probably not before a theater show unless you go very early. Check out the menus before you go...

Dinner Menu

Drink Menu

Dessert Menu

Grand Tavern = https://grandtavernstl.com/

Photos by Patience Scanlon