Friday, September 30, 2022

Cork & Rind Cheese Class - Show Me the Cheese

Now that my work schedule has changed, I was free to go to another cheese class! This one was even better than the last! That may have been due to being able to round up several of my friends to join me since quite a few of them live on "THAT side of the river".

Not only did Flory's Truckle appear again, there were TWO amazing cheeses by Green Dirt Farms. And I think I had the best cheese by Baetje Farms that I have tried.

Show Me the Cheese List

We started off light with the German Quark by Hemme Brothers Creamery. I thought quark was more like ricotta or mascarpone texted, but this was more like a spreadable goat cheese. Either way, it was a delicious spread.

Cheese plate

Next up were the two Green Dirt Farms cheeses: Ruby an Aux Arcs, which is pronounced "Ozarks"! I love the play on spelling there.

The Ruby had a texture of a brie but had way more funk to it and the Aux Arcs was more firm, closer to a cheddar. You can thank the sheep / cow blend for that bit of funk to their cheeses.

Flory's Truckle, I talked about in my previous cheese class post here:

TLDR: One of the best cheddars I have ever had.

The last cheese was pretty amazing as the Miette by Baetje Farms was the funkiest of them all. A goat cheese with a white bloomy rind on the outside. It just melts in your mouth. 

All the funky cheese came home with me that night!


Cork & Rind =

Photos by Lara Struttman

Salve Osteria

Savle Osteria, pronounced "saul-VEY" because I know you were wondering, has replaced Cafe Natasha. While I'm sad to see it go, I understand that it was time and I like to support all the new and fresh concepts that come out in the STL.

Luckily, I went in August, better known as BethFest, so Beth and her husband were able to join me so we could celebrate her birthday. This also helped in trying a variety of dishes!

With the Gin Room right next door, of course I got a cocktail. It was almost impossible to choose, but I went with my original first choice: Icelandic Pear. (Check out the restaurant's cocktail list below, although the Gin Room has so much more!) 

Icelandic Pear gin cocktail

Matt ordered a specialty Gin & Tonic, which was mixed by Natasha herself.

Natasha mixes a Gin & Tonic

Beth wanted to start off with a salad, and she's the birthday girl, so this is the Salve Cesar... it had a lot going on without the heavy dressing.

Salve Ceasar

I did help out, but I preferred to have room for the good stuff, so my starter was the Arancini. These were giant!


Of course all these dishes are shareable and I highly recommend doing so.

And oh yeah...Natasha says you must try the Bacon Fat Carrots. So we did and she was RIGHT. You must.

Bacon Fat Carrots

As for the main course, I knew I was going to pick a pasta after hearing early birds rave about it, but I was torn between the Pappardelle and the Tagliatelle. Beth was a good sport and split them with me!



I did add a meatball to the Tagliatelle too, although the Pappardelle was my favorite by a little bit since it was more savory. Not sure if the was the mushrooms or mascarpone or both! All winners though.

And you can't have a birthday without a dessert! I appreciated that the dessert list was included on the menu so you could plan accordingly.

This is the Cannoli Cheesecake and I didn't let one chocolate chip get left behind!

Cannoli Cheesecake

Impeccable service as always Natasha. I can't wait to come back.

Beverage List

Food Menu


Slave Osteria =

Thursday, August 11, 2022

Lucky Accomplice Dinner

Right now, this has got to be one of the best restaurants in the STL.

I don't think I can really describe these dishes because of all the layers of flavors and textures, not to mention that the menu constantly changes. So you should probably just enjoy the beauty of the dishes and get yourself there as soon as you can.

Bring friends so you can try lots of things!

We started off with some smaller plates...

Hummus and homemade bread

Melon..with a kick!

Hominy with raclette cheese on top

Missouri Rice


Then a couple of larger plates...

Pork dish that I did not try but the squash on top is just beautiful

Quark favorite and almost too pretty to eat

And we had to get both desserts! Luckily, pun intended, they always have the Lil John and it's the best .(Because it's chocolate!)

Rhubarb dessert

Lil John


The Lucky Accomplice =

Photos by Patience Scanlon

Wednesday, August 10, 2022

Cork & Rind Cheese Class - Kevin's Favorites

While Patience was out of the country, I decided to treat myself to a cheese class up in St. Charles County at Cork & Rind. I'm a big fan of Kevin, the cheesemonger, and I used to know him in a past life as he used to coach football at my high school. Kevin knows cheese and therefore has my utmost respect.

I believe the theme of this class was his favorites and he picked all winners.

Kevin's Favorite Cheeses

One of my favorites was Flory's Truckle, the lone Missouri cheese, which I first tasted at the American Cheese Conference several years ago in Des Moines. I was blown away at how complex this cheddar tastes so look for it at specialty shops.

Kevin's favorite cheeses with green olives and crackers

Another complex cheese, and most interesting visually, is the Irish Porter. The porter gives the cheese a hoppy flavor with hints of chocolate or caramel.

You can sign up for Cork & Rind's mailing list to learn about future classes. Unfortunately, I am sick this week and couldn't make it to this month's cheese class.


Cork & Rind =

Sunday, July 31, 2022

Menya Rui

I couldn't WAIT to take Patience to this new ramen shop that recently opened nearby and it's quite the experience!

We got there a few minutes after they opened for the evening, and there was already a line. I was confused by this, but once we got inside, I understood there is VERY limited seating. This restaurant felt very "big city" ramen shop.

They seat you wherever there is a stool available and we shared a table with some strangers. While there is maybe one or two other tables, the rest is bar style seating. 

At the time we went, there were two appetizers to try in addition to the ramen, so we got both! 

The first was Karaage, Japanese fried chicken served with Kewpie mayo.


The pickled cucumbers were delicious. Definitely recommend this one as an appetizer.

Pickled Cucumbers

But the ramen was beautiful. Pork for Patience, chicken for me.

Pork Ramen

If you're a ramen fan, be sure to put this one on your list, but make sure you have enough time to wait for it. 

NOTE: They do NOT do take out! 


Menya Rui =

Photos by Patience Scanlon

Wednesday, July 27, 2022

Bluewood Brewing and Burger 809

Late June, I had a friend come in town to visit, and he regretted not making it to Bluewood Brewing as he tried to cram in as many St. Louis breweries as he could while he was here. Then I realized I forgot to make a reservation for a scheduled dinner, and luckily, the brewery name was still fresh in my mind!

As soon as we pulled up to Bluewood Brewing, I knew exactly where I was... it's the old Table! No wait, the old Stable! I miss both of the previous restaurants, but excited to try this new version.

Bluewood Brewing

If you've never been, this brewery / restaurant, it has an incredibly large space with a small stage and patio attached. Be sure to add it to your list of breweries to check out!

In the little kitchen window space, near the bar, Burger 809, has taken up residence serving sliders. What a perfect match with beer! 

We tried several sliders and I was filled up on two! (I had to take the third one home.) 

Sliders from Burger 809

My favorite was Hey Henry! - it was topped with their Baked Mac and Cheese!

Hey Henry! - Your mac n cheese is on my burger!

Not to mention full size sides - Onion Rings for Patience, but Cheesy Fries for me!!

Onion Rings and Cheesy Fries



Bluewood Brewing =

Burger 809 =

Photos by Patience Scanlon

Monday, July 4, 2022

Rock Star Tacos

Cheers to Dan!

I ran into Wil Pelly at a salute to a friend's passing and that was the final sign I needed to get over to Rock Star Tacos. Now that they've moved to the city, I had no excuse.

Luckily, it was also my turn for selecting Take Out Friday!

The best part is reading all the taco (band) names, and we'll definitely have to go back to try more of them. 

Pai wanted to try the Skinny (Hush) Puppies (I guess they couldn't call them Sick Puppies, which is one of my favorite bands), so we got the starter size! 

Skinny Puppies

Pai and I stuck with our favorites...I ordered the Fish You Were Here and the Thunder Cluck, while she chose the Shrimp Bizkit and the Birria Dollar Babies.


Pai raved about the Birria so special close up on that one!

Birilla Taco 

And I couldn't stay away from the Mac and Diane side... it had green chilis in it, but it wasn't too spicy for me at all! It was definitely ooey and gooey as stated on the menu!

Mac and Diane

I also got to see Naomi behind the bar when I went to pick up the food so be sure to make it TO the restaurant so you can have a proper drink with your tacos.


Rock Start Tacos =

Photos by Patience Scanlon

Sunday, June 26, 2022

PW Pizza Mother's Brewing Beer Dinner

I THINK I've had Mother's Brewing beer before, but I can't find any record of it, and I think that's crazy because they're located not that far away in Springfield, MO!

I love the "tatoo-esque" labels on the beer too.

Mother's Brewing Beer Dinner

There was another unique appetizer for this PW Pizza beer dinner...Italian Nachos! Can't go wrong with anything smothered in mozzarella cheese! There was also pepperoni, sausage, and pepperoncini with a marinara sauce on the side to make it like a pizza on tortilla chips.

Even with all these Italian flavors, this was paired with a lighter beer, the Lake Break, which is a Golden Ale. So smooth.

Italian Nachos

The first pizza, The Bard, (the pizza on the left below), had gruyere, ground beef, mushrooms, onion and spinach. So much going on! This was paired with the Super Solid, a citrusy IPA.

The second pizza, The Tiger, also had a lot of cheese, mozzarella and Monterey jack, but this had chicken and caramelized onion, basil and came with a buffalo sauce drizzle. Another IPA was necessary to cool off the buffalo sauce and this one was a bit bigger at 6.0% ABV.

The Bard and The Tiger Pizza

Dessert was my second favorite course since it was a Chocolate Chip Cookie Cake! It was very dense though and was paired with Three Blind Mice, which was a stout with mild notes of caramel and toffee.

Chocolate Chip Cookie Cake

Hopefully we'll see more Mother's Brewing beer since they're not too far away! 

Mother's Brewing Menu


PW Pizza =

Mother's Brewing Company =

Photos by Patience Scanlon

Monday, May 30, 2022

Little Fox

I forgot to ask what the "Little Fox" says, so I guess I'll have to go back!

Seriously, I finally found a friend willing to celebrate their birthday with me, giving me an excuse to get to try out this well-hyped restaurant. My coworker rehabbed a home in the Fox Park area during COVID and constantly raved about this place to me. It was at the top of my list for my birthday back in January, but I think this worked out better to wait, as dining on the patio area made the experience top-notch.

I was really torn about the menu...normally I prefer to try as many small plates as possible, but they seem to be more "side dishes" to go with the entrees. Regardless, we picked something from each section of the menu.

I let the birthday girl pick a "snack", the 'Nduja Croquettas.

'Nduja Croquettas

I immediately knew I wanted the Green Tomatoes from the Small Plates section, while Patience just had to get the Short Ribs. These two together would have made a nice meal together.

Green Tomatoes

Short Ribs

Patience couldn't get enough beef apparently and ordered the Flatiron Steak entree.

Flatiron Steak

The birthday girl chose the Pork Chop.

Pork chop

I picked the Pan Roasted Cod, which covered three out of four entrees!

Pan Roasted Cod

Desserts were quite pretty as well...

Strawberry layered dessert

Interesting cocktail list with something for everyone. Here is my Little Fox Martini.

Little Fox Martini

My favorite, Love Shack, was fun and fruity and I could down these easily.

Love Shack

Pai's Corner Office and Pink Negroni definitely had a lot going on!

Corner Office

Pink Negroni

Be sure to plan in advance and make a reservation if you want to get in here!

Cocktails and more...

All the dishes...


Little Fox =

Photos by Patience Scanlon