Monday, September 11, 2023

Pan Pa'ti

After a couple of friends were inducted into Les Dames d'Escoffier International, I noticed that they offered a few fundraising events open to the public. I usually jump at all the opportunities to learn about small businesses who are bringing new food and drink concepts to the St. Louis area.

I did not know anything about Venezuelan bread, but quickly learned from a young couple who created a company called Pan Pa'ti. 

They make sweet treats...

Bread with fruit filling and coconut on the outside

And savory breads...

Small, hand pocket - almost too pretty to eat

Savory ham and cheese inside!

But they are best known for their cachitos! Look how beautiful this is! Hand rolled with smoked ham or turkey, cheese, raisins, and olives. 


For now, you can find them every Saturday morning (from April through October) at the Lake St. Louis Farmer's market and you better get there early before they sell out.


Pan pa'ti =

Lake St. Louis Farmer's Market =

Les Dames d'Escoffier International =

Wednesday, July 19, 2023


My friends had raved about Nippon Tei for years, but since the restaurant was out of our typical driving zone, we just never had the desire to make it there. 

Then when I heard that the restaurant was moving to the city, I had hoped that I'd get my chance, but strangely, it didn't last long. 

So when everyone started raving about this NEW restaurant, Sado, I knew I had better not snooze for a third time. 

For my pick for "date night", I knew exactly where I wanted to go. Normally, this would be a special occasion kind of place, and looking at the final bill would agree with me, but I'm glad we didn't wait and miss out either.

From what I had read online, it appears that Sado is the place to order nigiri, but the "Cold Starters" list was lengthy and I didn't want to miss out on those either. There were several items I wanted to choose, but I knew I had to save room for the nigiri. 

I ordered the Seaweed Salad, since it's one of my favorite Japanese dishes, and Patience picked out the Pork Belly Steam Bun, which was also delicious. I wouldn't have minded one of my own honestly.

Seaweed Salad

Pork Belly Steam Bun

To add to the difficultly of ordering, there were daily specials tucked into the front of the menu. I figured we should order some of those as they were limited in availability.

Daily Specials hidden in the front pocket of the menu

The list of nigiri and sashimi on the specials menu was also lengthy as they were on the main menu, so I thought we could pick one from there. (These were a bit pricier than what was listed on the regular menu.) We ended up ordering two servings of the Hamachi Tataki, seared yellowtail belly, since it was so good.

Hamachi Tataki

From the regular menu, Patience picked the best nigiri by far, Daiba Hotate, which is dayboat hokkaido scallops. Again, we ordered a second set of these.

Daiba Hotate

My selection was a salmon nigiri since that's one of my favorite fish and it melted in my mouth.

Salmon nigiri

We did ball out once as Patience wanted to try one of the "high end" nigiri called "Ito" from the Specials Menu, which is Wagyu beef. Again ,melted like butter!

Wagyu nigiri

I figured we should at least order one roll each to cover the last area of the menu, and the Shibo Maki had to be one of the best rolls I have ever had.

Shibo Maki

Patience's Old Yokai Maki was just as beautiful.

Old Yokai Maki

We still ordered a couple more nigiri since we had a little bit more room. Although I lost tracked of which nigiri was which at this point. They're all so beautiful, but boy did our bill get out of hand quickly! LOL

Wild Caught Yellowtail Nigiri

Hirame Nigiri

The staff is highly attentive and it was nice that any of them could deliver an order as soon as it was ready so we could keep the stream of courses coming.

We also opted for the cocktails, since we relied on the restaurant to create drinks that would pair with the courses. I picked a winner, as my drink was very smooth. The cocktail list was more manageable when compared to the rest of the menus and I still tried something new! This is the Seoulful, a soju-based cocktail. 


Definitely put this restaurant on your special night out list!


Sado =

Photos by Patience Scanlon

Wednesday, July 12, 2023

Deli Devine

I went opening day to the new Jewish deli because I couldn't wait. I was that excited. Ever since Pumpernickel's closed, the addition of a new Jewish deli became even more critical to my world.

Now, I was not expecting to actually order food that day, but I at least wanted to see where it was and how it worked. That first day was quite chaotic, so even though I feel like I am one of the last to actually try it out, things were a lot more calm the second time around. This time, on a Wednesday afternoon several months later.

Deli Devine is actually a small restaurant inside the larger Delmar Devine building, tucked on the side. There is not much parking in front of the deli, so I just immediately drive past the building and park on Belt Ave down the street. I do feel for those homes who now will probably have cars constantly parked out front. (I'm still not sure why people put up buildings without considering the parking since this IS St. Louis.)

Anyway, just head to the doors under the beautiful neon lit sign...

Shalom! (Photo by Amy Burdge)

Even though it's an "order from the register", the service was incredible from a one-man-band host that was working the floor. As soon as I walked in, he gave me the tour of the menus (there are for sandwiches and one for bagels) as well as where to order. While I sat and studied the menus, he promptly arrived with a cold glass of ice water, perfect on a overly hot day. 

It was a very tough pick, but since I was there for lunch, I was going sandwich with sides! There are cold and hot sandwiches, and I always prefer hot. Turkey Reuben on Rye AND pickle spear.

Turkey Reuben on Rye

I HAD to order a knish since you don't come across them too often. This one is potato. Ditto for noodle kugel...although it'll never be as good as Mom used to make.

Noodle Kugel (top) and Potato Knish (with gravy at bottom)

But if you want a bagel or bagel sandwich, you do like Amy, and order from the register on the left as opposed to the main register in front (right).

Even the Matzah Ball soup was the proper density! (SINKER ALL THE WAY!)

Matzah Ball Soup and more pickle spears

Then the wonderful floor host collected our trash from the table.

The highlight of our visit was seeing Maxine Clark eating her lunch in the corner that day and visiting with other guests. She pointed out the pictures of her family that help decorate the walls, and you could see how much it meant to her. 

If you want to hear more about Maxine Clark's genius idea, you can listen to her story here:

I hope this is the start of more good things to come for the city of St. Louis.

Sandwich Menu

Bagel Menu


Deli Devine =

Saturday, June 24, 2023

Annie Gunn's Lunch

I have not been to Annie Gunn's since May of 2014, to celebrate a friend's birthday. I had never been for lunch either, so it was awesome to just go on your average Saturday for a ladies get together!

Needless to say, we won't be needing dinner and I had already skipped breakfast...

Patience and I started with oysters, which were a bit on the small side, but tasty nonetheless.


Babsy is more of a regular and she wisely encouraged me to check out the cheese sampler board and the smoked fish sampler board, instead of looking at the entrees. We got one of each and shared!

Cheese Sampler Board

Smoked Fish Sampler Board

In addition, we split an heirloom tomato and goat cheese dish. The tomatoes weren't super ripe, but they were the perfect vehicle for the large amount of goat cheese slathered all over the place.

Heirloom Tomatoes with goat cheese, onions, and balsamic

Patience was told with NO hesitation that the French Dip was where it was at and she devoured it.

French Dip and fries

Julia ordered the highly recommended burger, and I'm a little sad I didn't get a bite.

Cheeseburger and fries

Even though she was totally stuffed, Patience somehow made room for Creme Bruelee. 

Creme Brulee

This place is always busy, but always a special treat. Worth going for a special occasion or just a Saturday!


Annie Gunn's =

Photos by Patience Scanlon

Wednesday, June 14, 2023

Katie's Pizza and Pasta Ballpark Village

I cannot tell you how many times I have written about Katie's Pizza and Pasta since I used to regularly attend their "passport dinner series". Before that I found my first post from the original Clayton location in 2011 and my first time at the Rock Hill location in 2013. Ah, the good ole days!

And those that know me are well aware that it's one of my most favorite restaurants in the STL, so of course I had to go "opening day" last month. The weather was perfect for patio seating too!

Most exciting about the Ballpark Village location (other than the view...)

The view from Katie's Ballpark Village Patio that there are a few new "special items" on THIS menu, which I had to try:

My appetizer...Beef Tartare... a treat I don't order too often...

Beef Tartare

Then for my main course...

Chicken Parm

Katie's version of "Chicken Parm" with fresh greens and tomatoes piled high on top. (It took me three nights to eat this!)

I also hope to go back as they have a salmon dish and a couple of steaks as well.

When you're downtown for a game, just take a walk though the restaurant as it is GORGEOUS.

Life goal: to sit at the corner booth.


Katie's Pizza and Pasta =

Bulrush Tasting Menu

I didn't realize Bulrush was one of the last restaurants I went to before "the lockdown" also known as "the before times". We had an amazing meal as back then and you could order a la carte. Feel free to enjoy the nostalgia along with me here: 

It's now a distant memory since Bulrush only offers their Ozark Tasting Menu due to cost limitations as Rob Connoley explained to me. (BTW, he's a super nice guy and you get to chat with him during the tasting.) 

We had purchased a gift certificate for a friend since we had food cheated behind her back, and she held onto it all through "the lockdown", hoping for the chance to get to use it. Now, having to make a set reservation and commit to a full tasting makes it a little more difficult, but we finally made the plan to go for her birthday this year.

While the food is incredible, it is a set menu, so there were items I'm just not a fan of such as piggy, beets, and brussels sprouts. Regardless, it is worth it for the experience.

Acorn Explosion

Acorns "three ways" with a surprise "cold soup explosion" inside the round ball. I love the creativity and interesting presentation.

Asparagus Soup with pork belly

The soup was very mild and well balanced for those piggy lovers.

Smoked catfish ice cream 

I admit this one was pretty strange for me as I never had "fish ice cream" before, but I was really impressed by all the different textures from one course to the next, and even within each dish.

Grilled rhubarb bacon and roasted beet

I would label this "the red course" with rhubarb and beets. I liked how you could build the perfect bite or eat the items separately.

Satin white turnip and goat cheese mousse

This "yellow course" was more up my alley as the turnip and cheese melted in my mouth.

Beef short rib

While the other dishes were more "tastings", this was the highlight course for me. The mic drop. One of the best short ribs I have ever had. I was feeling full after this one. It was so soft that it melted in my mouth, just as the mousse had before.

And there is always dessert... too bad we don't grow chocolate in the Ozarks!

Granma Helen's rhubarb crumble with buttermilk ice cream

There is a wine and beer pairing that goes with each course, but we all preferred the cocktails. The cocktails are fantastic on their own.

My gin cocktail was just adorable with this pickled onion on top!

Gin cocktail

Cheers to Rob Connoley for keeping his restaurant going through these difficult times! Be sure to schedule a visit for a special occasion. Especially if you haven't been since "the before times".


Bulrush =

Photos by Patience Scanlon

Friday, February 24, 2023


I have been reading about Jalea in the local foodie magazines for some time and then a friend went out there and vouched for it. I finally got the opportunity to go when I realized I had a friend that work out that way, so I used her as an excuse to meet up after work.

I admit that I don't know much about Peruvian food, but I was told the Ceviche was excellent. I may have made the mistake of telling my friends what I had heard since we all ordered the same thing! 

Ceviche with battered shrimp on top

Sorry there aren't too many varied pictures to show off their menu, but this would definitely be my recommendation as well.

I also read this month about their yucca fries so I ordered that as an appetizer. Way less greasy than usual French fries! 

Yucca Fries with dip

My Pisco Sour was also delicious.

Cocktail Menu

I am a big fan of simple menus so your choices are not overwhelming. I was very curious about the rest of the menu.


Definitely a reason to drive out to St. Charles Main Street!

Note: You must make a reservation as this place fills up fast and they only have one large table. 


Jalea =

Seoul Garden

Babsy wanted Korean. I am still not sure why, but Patience was immediately on the case. 

I knew Korean BBQ was a thing, but I hadn't tried a place like Seoul Garden before, where you cook your own food in a grill in the middle of the table! (I still need to tip my friend who did all the work for us.)

I'm hoping they don't let customers mess it up, but I guess you're on your own to decide if the meat is done? It's a lot of money to spend if you end up burning it too. Although I'm hoping that is why the servers walked around and seemed to keep an eye on things.

Starting out...

Anyway, it reminded me of a Brazilian churrascaria, where there is a large amount of meat that just kept coming. Since there were four of us, we each picked a meat, although we would have been better off stopping at two or three meats. (The bill was much easier to split this way though.)

I enjoyed quite a few of the sides, which are lined up in the small white bowls. My favorites were the broccoli, pickled cucumbers, and potatoes, but you got to be careful because they fill you up when you should be eating the meat! 

By selecting the Classic order, it came with two soups, and these were amazing. (In the black bowls in the picture below.) My favorite was the beef, which was perfect on a chilly night. The kimchi was super spicy if you are into that.

Just about done cooking! Also, delicious soup in the black bowls

Warning! You WILL overeat! Make sure you stretch properly and do not order more until you have finished the earlier rounds as you cannot take the rest home. Your stomach will thank you for this.

For a taste of Korean, this was a winner.


Seoul Garden =


Press had been on my list for some time as I was curious about it and well, I love pizza. We were ready for a new food adventure!

This place is small and filled up quick after 6pm, so be sure to get there early on the weekends or be prepared to sit at the bar. We were lucky to get a table for four.

Honestly, we all were blown away by the draft cocktails so even if you don't like pizza, or their version of it, go to the bar!! Look how beautiful my Lavender is!


And Patience ordered two Wisconsin Old Fashioneds.

Wisconsin OF

I was relieved that the pizzas were individually sized, but plenty of food, so that we could each try our own.

I chose the Mushroom pizza, since I'm not a big fan of meat pizzas, and it was quite simple. The mushrooms were big and filling, which I loved, although I was so afraid the kale would get stuck in my teeth. 

Mushroom Pizza

Yet, I have to admit that the actual meat pizzas are the real stars here as Patience's BBQ Kimchi and Duck pizza had so many flavors going on. To take it to another level, she added a chunk of Burrata on top. (Becoming not such a cheap pizza in the end.)

BBQ Kimchi and Duck

Looking back, I almost don't recognize the pizzas since they're cooked more like a quesadilla and the toppings are in the middle. I do like how they do top each pizza with some kind of vegetable and sauce. 

But this is such a fun concept, I hope to go back a few more times. The cocktails alone are worth the visit.


Press =