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Mar 21, 2018
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Liederkranz cheese returns – and St. Louis has it

Wednesday, June 23rd, 2010

062310_Wine&CheeseLiederkranz, a famed American cheese out of production since 1985, has just returned to the market in limited quantities, and The Wine and Cheese Place plans to stock it.

“We are expecting Liederkranz on Thursday, keeping our fingers crossed,” Paul Hayden, manager at the Clayton shop, notified us by e-mail today. “I cannot wait to taste it myself. I have been at The Wine and Cheese Place for 23 years, and production of Liederkranz stopped two years before I started.”

Earlier this year, DCI Cheese Co. of Richfield, Wisc., began to reintroduce Liederkranz to the market in specialty retailers across the Midwest. Hayden described it as “an American re-creation of Limburger cheese, made subtly different by the use of a different bacterial culture for ripening – cow’s-milk cheese, with an edible pale yellow-orange tan crust and a semisoft, pale interior with a mildly pungent flavor and distinct aroma”

Everything’s beachy in the Grove

Wednesday, June 23rd, 2010

062310_SanctuariaBeachcombers here have it tough – no one will ever mistake the Landing for Saint-Tropez. But this Saturday, June 26, Sanctuaria and Erney’s 32 are seeking to fix that with their inaugural Beach Bash on Boyle.

Starting at 6 o’clock that evening, the two Grove establishments will host a gonzo gala on Boyle Avenue, which will be closed between them. The event will include a hula-hoop contest, a dunking tank, a tug of war, a sand-volleyball tourney and – ladies, take note – both female and male swimsuit contests. At 10 p.m., hula dancing will also start, noted Sanctuaria front-of-house manager Virginia Miller. A DJ will provide music, and the event will include a shrimp boil and tropical cocktails. (When Miller chatted with us, by the way, Sanctuaria’s master mixologist, Matt Seiter, was still mulling what surprises to concoct for thirsty attendees.)

The event’s $10 cover charge includes a ticket for a complimentary drink. Part of the proceeds from the event will benefit The BackStoppers, the nonprofit devoted to providing support and financial assistance to the spouses and children of area police officers, firefighters and similar individuals who die in the line of duty.

For more information on the Beach Bash on Boyle, phone 314.535.9700.

Resetting the GPS on a frozen “mmm”

Tuesday, June 22nd, 2010

062210_DetersSummer’s arrival makes it integral to stay abreast of changes at area malt shops and similar oases. In that light, visitors to St. Charles County might need to consult their Garmins regarding Deters Frozen Custard. The shop – a 2003 outgrowth of a family dairy founded in Quincy, Ill., all the way back in 1892 – relocated from WingHaven to 804 O’Fallon Road in the Westwood Center in Weldon Spring roughly a month and a half ago, a call there confirmed. So if you find yourself adventuring in that vicinity and craving Deters’ Mill Creek Turtle (caramel, hot fudge and pecans) or Maple Petootie (Vermont maple, pecans and marshmallow), double-check your GPS readout. Then plot a course accordingly – and get set for some frozen relief from the heat index.

iTAP kicks off its World Cup celebration

Monday, June 21st, 2010

062110_itapSoccer fans, take note! In cooperation with Sauce, the new Soulard location of the International Tap House, at 1711 S. Ninth St., will be welcoming you to World Cup coverage not only with hundreds of thirst-quenching quaffables, but also with cuisine from local restaurants all this week for the 1:30 p.m. games. So today, as Spain and Honduras hit the field, Modesto will be providing tapas for fútbol fans – and iTAP itself will be discounting Barcelona’s Estrella Damm and Estrella Galicia. Save us a seat, will ya?

Local chef takes part in first lady’s program

Thursday, June 17th, 2010

061710_mealthymesEarlier this month, chefs from 37 states visited Washington to participate in the launch of Michelle Obama’s Chefs Move to Schools program. The only area chef included: Lauren McCabe.

McCabe – who operates the MealThymes personal-chef service in Augusta, Mo. – passed a whirlwind 36 hours in the nation’s capital for the June 4 conference after being nominated to attend by Operation Food Search, where she volunteers.

“The first lady’s goal is to really eliminate or reverse the childhood obesity epidemic within one generation,” McCabe told us. Chefs Move to Schools, which the Department of Agriculture will oversee, will pair schools with local chefs, who will try to educate children about the benefits of a nutritional diet, she noted.

“Government can’t dictate this – we have to change this locally,” said McCabe. “You can’t legislate a healthy lifestyle. … It’s not part of our national culture to legislate those things, so we really have to change a belief structure.” The Agriculture Department should be pairing chefs and schools in late summer or early fall, McCabe estimated, although she herself has already informally spoken to one school district in St. Charles County, where she lives.

Other shoppers’ supermarket purchases often astound her, McCabe noted. “If people read what was in this stuff, if they took the time to learn it, then most people would never eat it again,” she said. “And I’m not one of those people that says you can’t ever have a bag of potato chips or you can’t ever go to a fast-food burger place. I mean, let’s be realistic. But know what you’re eating and know what’s in it so you can make the decision. And certainly don’t eat it every day.”

McCabe expressed great enthusiasm for Chefs Move to Schools. “The program is something that’s really, really very close to my heart,” she said, “because I’ve been a volunteer for Operation Frontline for about a year and a half now and teach classes in a classroom environment and work with economically disadvantaged families to try to teach them to eat healthy on a budget.”

Photo courtesy of Lauren McCabe

For Father’s Day, burgers and … butterflies?

Wednesday, June 16th, 2010

061610_ButterflyHouseDuring late spring and summer, surely your poor pop sucks in more than enough smoke over that wicked ol’ Weber. So cut the geezer some slack – and treat him to Father’s Day Build-a-Burger at the Sophia M. Sachs Butterfly House.

The grill-tastic bash at the Missouri Botanical Garden facility will run from 11 a.m. to 2 p.m. this Sunday, June 20. It will allow area paters to put together their own gourmet burgers with all the fixin’s – and without a spatula in hand. They can also enjoy diverse side dishes, desserts and drinks (including brewskis, natch) while admiring the view from the pavilion of the Emerson Lakeside Terrace at the Butterfly House’s southwest edge. After that, they can marvel at the multitude of colorful winged wonders in the conservatory, as well as take in the Chesterfield facility’s displays and exhibits.

Father’s Day Build-a-Burger costs $21.95 for adults and $12.95 for children 3 to 12. (That cost includes admission to the Butterfly House, a $4 to $6 value.) To make a reservation to the limited-attendance event, phone 636.733.2339. And it might be nice if you paid your pop’s way, y’know?

TripAdvisor praises Baileys’

Tuesday, June 15th, 2010

061510_ChocBarA Saucy congrats to Baileys’ Chocolate Bar, which TripAdvisor just lauded. More specifically, the site – which provides user recommendations on hotels, vacations, travel packages and other subjects – ranked the Lafayette Square favorite in third place on its list of top 10 meccas for those seeking to sate their sweet tooth.

Nightline sponsors chef contest

Tuesday, June 15th, 2010

061510_platelistGot a fave St. Louis chef? Wanna potentially land him or her on network TV? Fab – all you have to do is revisit Freshman Comp.

Nightline, the long-running late-night ABC News program, is sponsoring an online essay contest to nominate a local chef to be the subject of its Platelist, which showcases “behind-the-scenes access to chefs, their restaurants, recipes and food influences.” By July 9, participants should write 500 or fewer words on why their favorite culinary professional warrants such attention, including intriguing details about the chef, the originality of his or her cuisine and what distinguishes the chef from others.

Nightline will then choose 10 finalists from the nominated chefs and have its audience vote on a winner. “If your submission gets the most votes from viewers across America,” the program’s Web site uncharacteristically gushes, “the chef that you entered may be featured on national television!”

St. Louisans interested in participating should click here for the contest’s full rules. No word yet on whether Nightline co-anchors Martin Bashir, Cynthia McFadden and Terry Moran will be grading essays on grammar, usage, punctuation and spelling.

Brunch-plus debuts at the Market Pub House

Monday, June 14th, 2010

061410_MarketPubThe Market Pub House launched its Sunday brunch menu last weekend, as planned since it opened early in May – and The Loop restaurant’s already upgraded that menu.

“We’re offering all-you-can-eat [baby back] ribs for $10, which is a big item,” executive chef Shawn Isbel told us yesterday morning over two orders of the restaurant’s sinful Cheesecake Lollipops. “We’re gonna switch that up monthly – I think next month we might do prime rib.” Servers there will deliver the initial platters, he explained, and then replenish all-you-can-eat items as desired by the customer.

The regular brunch menu, to which the all-you-can-eat deal was an 11th-hour brainstorm addition, features the restaurant’s take on standard items like buttermilk flapjacks and omelets. It also includes surprises like the daunting Pub House Hangover Slinger, a dish hearty enough to feed two. From the brunch menu, Isbel himself expressed fondness for the corned beef hash, prepared with house-made meat. “Our Mama’s Coconut Focaccia French Toast is going really well,” he added. “We’ve got a lot of good feedback on that.”

The Market Pub House serves Sunday brunch from 9 a.m. to 2 p.m.

Edwardsville grocery throws grand-opening bash

Friday, June 11th, 2010

061110_townshipTownship Grocer, which launched a bit more than a month ago, will celebrate its grand opening next Friday.

The Edwardsville store, at 102 N. Main St., will host a ribbon-cutting and reception from 5:30 to 7:30 p.m. on June 18. Attendees will be treated to herbal sodas and snacks from Township Grocer’s shelves.

Karen Bailey and Amy Zupanci co-own it. Zupanci – who also serves as chef and owner of Fond, the adjoining restaurant – told us, “Hands-down, the best-selling item in the store that Fond makes is our hummus. Also, people have been thrilled with our beverage selection, particularly the varietal-specific grape sodas and ‘real’ Coke with sugar.”

The two co-owners already plan to expand the product line, she noted. “Increasing the amount of Fond items on the shelves is our next move,” said Zupanci. “I would love to be able to have over half of the store stocked with Fond food. I’m truly surprised with how well our retail line has sold.”

In that respect, Zupanci expressed amusement at some customers’ shock that the shop also stocks non-house-made wares. “Those people have missed the point,” she said. “I’m not reinventing the wheel. Sriracha [hot sauce] is the best, in my opinion. It’s in my pantry at Fond – get it? ‘Township Grocer, an everyday pantry by Fond.’

“Making everything from scratch isn’t practical in this global society,” Zupanci continued. “Buying everything in a box filled with who-knows-what isn’t practical for your health. How do we move forward while being socially responsible, supportive of local farmers, yet practical for every day? By choosing wisely, buying smarter, asking questions and thinking outside of the extremes. Have fun with it. Enjoy life. It’s just food, folks. We need it to live. It’s that simple.”

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