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Mar 21, 2018
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The Scoop: Neapolitan pizzeria Pizzeoli set to open in Soulard

Tuesday, August 5th, 2014



Neapolitan pizza fans can soon get their fix in Soulard when pizza enthusiast Scott Sandler opens Pizzeoli in early to mid-November. Located at 1928 S. 12th St., Pizzeoli will specialize in traditional Neapolitan pies cooked in the restaurant’s 800-degree wood-burning oven. “It’s sort of an art,” he said. “It’s my favorite type of pizza. It’s the original pizza.”

Sandler will also serve as the head chef. Pizzeoli is his first foray into the restaurant industry, but he said he has cooked pizzas at home for more than 10 years. Next week, he flies to Los Angeles to train at Accademia della Pizza Napoletana run by the Associazione Verace Pizza Napoletana, an international nonprofit dedicated to teaching the art of traditional Neapolitan pizza-making.

Pizzeoli’s small menu will reflect the simple, traditional offerings at pizzerias in Naples, including a classic Margherita with house-made mozzarella, basil and tomato sauce. Sandler also hopes to carry one or two vegan-friendly options and is currently on the hunt for a vegan mozzarella substitute. To cap off the dining experience, Italian wines and local craft beers and Budweiser will be served.

The new space, formerly Arcelia’s Mexican, will seat approximately 25 people inside and 30 people outside. He believes Pizzeoli will fill a void in St. Louis city for high quality pizza. “It just happened to be the location that clicked and just everything worked,” he said. “And I’m really happy to be there because it’s such a strong community and really supportive, even already.”



The Scoop: Unkle Munkey’s arcade, restaurant and bar to open in Edwardsville

Tuesday, July 8th, 2014


Get your quarters ready; Unkle Munkey’s Coin Club opens doors Saturday, July 12 at 1027 Century Drive in Edwardsville. Owner Ryan O’Day renovated the 3,200-square-foot space into a restaurant/bar/arcade just a few doors down from his other restaurant, Wang Gang, which serves Asian fusion cuisine.

O’Day said he was inspired to open an arcade and restaurant about eight months ago after seeing similar venues in Chicago and New York City. “I thought it was pretty interesting with the dynamic of not only are you out with your friends, but you also have a nice and friendly competitive thing going on with the games and the pinball,” he said. “It provides a little more fun stuff to do.”

O’Day hunted down more than 40 classic arcade games such as Ms. Pacman, 1972’s Pong and a Jurassic Park pinball machine now installed at Unkle Munkey’s. With the wide variety of games, he hopes to attract an equally wide range of clients, from gamer teens to baby boomers recalling their Pinball Wizard days. “The overall experience is (meant) to strengthen the bond between people of different generations,” O’Day said.

The restaurant, which seats about 64, will serve up classic bar fare with a twist like hot dogs topped with slaw, pineapple-jalapeno sauce or Korean barbecue; hot and cold sandwiches loaded with meats and cheeses between Companion bread; and sides including the pimento cheese potato salad made with russet potatoes, cheddar cheese, red and green onions and diced pimento.

Unkle Munkey’s beverage menu includes five draft beers, 15 to 20 bottled beers and a small selection of wine. Nine specialty cocktails are also available, including The Superman, a fruity mix of Malibu rum, peach schnapps, triple sec, pineapple juice and grenadine.

Unkle Munkey’s will be open daily from 11 a.m. to 11 p.m. Sunday through Thursday and until midnight Friday and Saturday. After 5 p.m., it’s 18 and older only, but don’t worry, baby gamers – Sunday is Kids’ Day, when everyone can play all day.

Can’t wait until Saturday to get your Pacman on? Unkle Munkey’s hosts a soft opening tomorrow, July 9, from 6 to 10 p.m. All ages are welcome for a $10 buffet of menu items and a cash bar, and proceeds benefit Partners for Pets.

The Scoop: Two new food trucks get ready to roll this summer

Friday, June 13th, 2014


Two new food trucks, Finger Foodies and Graze, will soon join St. Louis’ fast-growing mobile restaurant industry. Esther Kim is set to open Finger Foodies Monday, June 16, while Amelia Timms has moved her Memphis-based food truck Graze to her native St. Louis.

Finger Foodies will specialize in fried Korean dumplings and other Asian fare, as reported by St. Louis Magazine. Kim grew up in the restaurant industry; her family has operated multiple restaurants over the years, including one currently located in Springfield, Missouri. Kim is the first one in her family to step into the food truck business.

“There’s not a food truck here that really focuses on Korean dumplings,” she said. “Everything is handmade, and they’re traditional recipes. We made a little bit of an adjustment, but they’re all my mom’s recipes.”

After debuting in Ferguson on Monday, Kim said she plans to make arrangements with Scott Air Force Base in O’Fallon, Illinois, and various spots downtown. Patrons of Finger Foodies can expect a diverse menu including the traditional dumplings; an Oriental chicken salad with lettuces, crispy noodles, tomatoes and house-made Asian dressing; and a breaded chicken dish tossed in sweet-spicy red sauce and a creamy white sauce sitting atop a bed of rice.




While Finger Foodies focuses on Korean, Graze specializes in global street food inspired by what Timms and her husband Rick experienced around the United States and Europe during his service in the Navy. As reported by the Riverfront Times, Graze emphasizes fresh, locally sourced ingredients, and menu items include a turkey and artichoke panini and grilled chicken served on naan doused with Creole sauce.

Timms, who has worked in restaurants, catering and as a personal chef, frequented several food trucks during her family’s time in San Diego, California. When they moved to Memphis, Timms decided to open a mobile eatery of her own, and Graze rolled out in late 2012. Now, their truck is making the move north. Both Timms and her husband were born and raised in St. Louis and wanted to come home.

“We love Missouri,” Timms said. “It’s beautiful. You know, when you haven’t lived here in a long time and you come back, you see it with a new set of eyes. I love it here. Midwest people are like no other.”

Timms hopes to being serving in Franklin County in July and hopes to obtain permits for St. Louis County by the end of the summer.



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