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Aug 23, 2017
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Old North Provisions wins Fantasy Food Fare Competition, restaurant space in Old North

Saturday, August 19th, 2017

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{ the future home of Old North Provisions, the winner of the Fantasy Food Fare Competition } 

After months of planning, presentations and competition, Old North Provisions has been declared the winner of the Fantasy Food Fare Competition.

The winner was announced today, Aug. 19, at the Rise Up Festival downtown. James Forbes, who also operates urban farm Good Life Growing in north St. Louis, owns Old North Provisions.

The five-month long competition, sponsored by Equifax, Rise, the Missouri Small Business Development Center and the North City Business Development Center, was intended to attract a culinary entrepreneur to the Old North area.

Twenty-five semifinalists competed for a prize package worth $100,000 that includes two years rent-free at a fully-equipped kitchen space at 2720 N. 14th St., in Old North; a catering contract; the services of a business consultant and a restaurant mentor; website design services and maintenance for six months; logo and design services from Firecracker Press; and a $2,500 mini-grant, among other benefits.

The group of semifinalists, all of whom must have been in business at least one year or had at least one year of restaurant experience, was pared down to four finalists through a series of challenges, including business plan reviews and pitches. The final challenge on Tuesday, Aug. 8, included a food tasting with the four finalists: Old North Provisions, Rhythm & Thyme, The Jar Bar and Layla North (a second location of Layla in The Grove).

The judges included Jessica Payne of Old North Restoration Group, Stephen Acree of Rise Community Development, David Stiffler of Equifax, Robyn Heidger of Enterprise Bank, Kevin Wilson of Mission Small Business Development & Technology Center, Dara Eskridge of Urban Strategies/Choice Neighborhood Group, Jim Ottmer of Rapids Foodservice and Sauce Magazine publisher and founder Allyson Mace.

Forbes pitched Old North Provisions as a “multi-use social enterprise” that aims to unite the Old North community by providing local, affordable food.

In addition to a retail element supplying locally sourced food and other items, Old North Provisions will have a comfort food buffet for dine-in or carryout, plus a rotating menu of items from local chefs, among other amenities. It will also serve as a hub for some of Good Life Growing’s operations.

Photo: Google Earth 

Matt Sorrell is staff writer at Sauce Magazine.

First Look: Katie’s Pizza & Pasta Osteria in Town & Country

Friday, August 18th, 2017

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Owners Katie and Ted Collier have opened the much-anticipated second location of Katie’s Pizza & Pasta Osteria in Town & Country at 14171 Clayton Road. The restaurant opened its doors Wednesday, Aug. 16.

The menu at Town & Country is the same as the flagship Rock Hill restaurant’s menu, featuring a seasonal array of house-made pizzas and pastas, so regulars are assured to get their favorite dishes, all crafted in an open kitchen.

The bright, airy space used to house an Einstein’s Bros. Bagels. Plenty of natural light floods the interior thanks to the abundance of windows, while the decor features mismatched chairs and tables, including some tables from the original Katie’s Pizza in Clayton.

Artwork by Ted Collier and Belinda Lee, Katie’s mother, adorn the walls, while unfinished concrete floors and exposed brick add a touch of industrial chic to the design. The restaurant seats 90 and includes an expansive patio area dotted with planters, some of which are full of herbs and peppers for use in the kitchen.

According to Katie Collier, the 2017 Reader’s Choice Chef of The Year, the opening has been hectic, but has gone well.

“It’s been busy,” she said. “But I have to give props to Jake (Sanderson), my chef de cuisine, and the crew. So far, we haven’t had any hiccups.”

She said employees at the new location trained for a month at the Rock Hill location, which helped the opening go smoothly.

Katie’s Pizza & Pasta’s Rock Hill location hosts a Giveback Tuesday event on the second Tuesday of each month, donating a portion of each sale to a nonprofit. The Town & Country location will host the same event fourth Tuesday of the month to support another area nonprofit.

Hours are Monday through Thursday from 11 a.m. to 10 p.m., Friday from 11 a.m. to 11 p.m., Saturday from 10 a.m. to 11 p.m., and Sunday from 10 a.m. to 10 p.m. Here’s a first look at the newest location of Katie’s Pizza & Pasta Osteria:

 

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Space photos by Michelle Volansky; pizza photo by Greg Rannells

Matt Sorrell is staff writer at Sauce Magazine. 

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Readers’ Choice Chef of the Year: Katie Collier

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Frankly Sausages announces details, location on Cherokee Street

Thursday, August 17th, 2017

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Frankly Sausages now has an official address for its new concept: 2744 Cherokee St.

As The Scoop reported in July, Frankly Sausages co-owners Bill and Jamie Cawthon announced their intent to open a brick-and-mortar location somewhere on Cherokee Street. Now, the concept and the exact location have been revealed, as reported by St. Louis Magazine.

Jamie Cawthon said the restaurant will be called Frankly on Cherokee in the space that once was home to Calypso Cafe. The space will have 38 seats.

“It’s an expansion on the concept,” Cawthon said. “We’re going to have shareable plates, and Bill is going to do a weekend dinner plate that will be completely different from us before, and it’ll be different every weekend.”

There will also be a monthly featured sausage made with ingredients from a local farm.

Frankly fans can get a taste of the new menu at Cherokee Beach this Saturday, Aug. 19 from 5 to 10 p.m., including a duck sausage from Grand Army Farm and desserts.

There will be additional pop-ups scheduled leading up to the grand opening, which Cawthon said should be in early October.

 

Photo by Michelle Volansky

Matt Sorrell is staff writer at Sauce Magazine. 

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• Best New Food Trucks 2016

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Seoul Taco will open new location in Chesterfield

Tuesday, August 15th, 2017

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Seoul Taco continues to grow, and this time it’s headed to West County. The popular Korean-Mexican eatery will open its fifth location in Chesterfield at 46 Four Seasons Shopping Center later this fall. In addition to the Seoul Taco food truck and the original brick-and-mortar location in the Delmar Loop, Seoul Taco has locations in Columbia, Missouri; Champaign, Illinois and Chicago.

“I grew up out here,” owner David Choi said of Chesterfield. “More than anything, I’m familiar with the area, and there’s not much food like ours out here. We thought it’d be a good fit.”

Choi said the space, which used to be a Panera location, will seat approximately 100. Alex Morales of Smartmouth Design in Chicago will design the interior of the restaurant, and local company Shellback Iron Works will design the furniture.

“Having been an existing restaurant, [the space will] be easy to transition into what we do,” Choi said. “We’ll need to put in new hoods, but it’s nice that a lot of the plumbing and mechanicals are intact.” He said construction is scheduled to begin next week.

Choi said the Chesterfield menu will be basically the same as the other locations.

“We’ve been messing around with some menu concepts that we could add across the board,” he said. “Anytime we launch a new store, we review what we want to do with the menu. As of now there’s nothing concrete, but we’ll have a little bit of change. If we change in one, we like to change across the board.”

Choi said he hopes to open the doors in November, before the holiday season.

Photo by Michelle Volansky

Matt Sorrell is staff writer at Sauce Magazine. 

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Nixta earns spot on Bon Appétit’s top 10 new restaurants list

Tuesday, August 15th, 2017

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{ from left, Nixta executive chef Tello Carreón and owner Ben Poremba} 

The hits just keep on coming for the St. Louis restaurant scene.

As The Scoop reported earlier this month, Nixta and Vicia earned slots on Bon Appétit’s Top 50 Best New Restaurants in America list. Today, Bon Appétit announced  Nixta had earned the No. 9 spot on its coveted Top 10 Best New Restaurants in America list.

“I’m shocked,” said Nixta owner Ben Poremba. “I did not see that one coming. In my mind I knew we were top 10 quality, I won’t deny that. I knew we were doing something unique and special.”

Poremba, who also owns Elaia, Olio and Parigi, said Nixta executive chef Tello Carreón was also excited about the accolade, but typically humble in his response.

“I called him, and in typical Tello fashion, he was excited, but he was grocery shopping, and said ‘I have a 100 people to feed tonight, so…’”

Carreón could not immediately be reached for comment.

Bon Appétit senior editor Julia Kramer lauded Nixta’s popular octopus dish, the space’s fun vibe and heralded Carreón’s knack for creative flavor combinations in his Mexican fare. “They could easily have used this fun, colorful space as home to a crowd-pleasing, money-printing taco bar,” Kramer wrote. “Instead, Carreón turns out an ambitious menu that doesn’t limit itself to any particular region of Mexico.”

Poremba said his team will put together some sort of celebratory event to commemorate the honor in the near future.

It’s the latest in a slew of national honors for St. Louis restaurants and chefs. In May, Sidney Street Cafe chef-owner Kevin Nashan brought home a James Beard Foundation award for Best Chef: Midwest, and in July, Eater listed Vicia among its top 12 best new restaurants in St. Louis.

Photo by Carmen Troesser

Matt Sorrell is staff writer at Sauce Magazine.

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Blueprint Coffee will open new location in Lindenwood Park

Friday, August 11th, 2017

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{  Blueprint co-owner Kevin Reddy }

 

Lindenwood Park will soon become a destination for those in search of a quality cup of coffee. As reported by the St. Louis Post-Dispatch, Blueprint Coffee co-owners Mike Marquard and Kevin Reddy have announced they will open a second location at 4206 Watson Road this November.

“The two things that attracted us to the space is its an area that we feel is pretty primed for specialty coffee, and it’s an area where some of us live,” Marquard said. “I’m over there a lot for my kid’s soccer tournaments at Lindenwood Park or Francis Park.”

Marquard said the building, which used to house a brake repair shop, measures approximately 1,100 square feet and will have 20 to 30 seats inside with an additional 10 to 20 seats outside. Marquard said it won’t take much work to get the building coffee-ready, since there won’t be roasting facility at this location, unlike Blueprint’s original spot on Delmar Boulevard.

 

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{ Blueprint’s original location on Delmar Boulevard } 

 

“It’s kind of a blank canvas right now,” he said. “It’s just a matter of digging some trenches to run plumbing and drainage and building the bar and adding the bathrooms. There’s not too much structural work we’ll be doing to the building. We’re going to try and keep it an open and breezy space.”

The breeziness should be facilitated by the building’s five garage doors, two of which will open onto the bar to facilitate walk-up service and one that will become the entrance to the rear patio space. Marquard said he’s particularly excited about the patio possibilities, something the Delmar location lacks.

The coffee and food menus will also be different than those at the Delmar location.

“We won’t have a full kitchen, but we’ll have some good prep equipment and be able to do some food,” he said. “We want to make sure we’re capturing what is and isn’t in the neighborhood, so we’re not overstepping too much on things that are already there and also bring in something new.”

Construction is scheduled to begin next week.

Reddy photo courtesy of Blueprint Coffee; Delmar photo by Jonathan Gayman

Matt Sorrell is staff writer at Sauce Magazine. 

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Sweet Dreams: Beyond Sweet builds Instagrammable monster milkshakes

Friday, August 4th, 2017

While a normal milkshake might be topped with a modest dollop of whipped cream and perhaps a daintily placed cherry, Beyond Shakes from Beyond Sweet in The Loop are Instagrammable monsters topped with baked goods that loom precariously over their cups and ooze enticingly down the sides. Perhaps the most impressive is the Chocoholic.

“This is for someone who really likes to indulge in chocolate,” said owner Dallas Holland with admirable understatement. “We decided to put in everything a person who loves chocolate might crave.”

And she means everything. This Frankenstein’s milkshake begins with a 16-ounce cup dipped in chocolate and coated with sprinkles. Then it’s filled with vanilla ice cream and fudge and topped with all manner of sweetness. The result – a confection of monumental proportions that’ll please even the most rapacious cocoa fanatic.

 

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First Look: Baileys’ Chocolate Bar in Lafayette Square

Friday, August 4th, 2017

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Earlier this summer, restaurateur Dave Bailey announced he would shut down Baileys’ Chocolate Bar, at 1915 Park Ave., in Lafayette Square, and reopen the space as two new, completely separate entities – a new version of Chocolate Bar and a Cajun-Creole restaurant called L’ Acadiane.

The later is still a work in progress (look for an opening later this month), but the new Baileys’ Chocolate Bar reopened yesterday, Aug. 3, after just three weeks of frenzied activity.

The latest incarnation of Chocolate Bar is located on the second floor of the building. The space features a separate lounge area in front of the bar with a larger dining room in the back of the space, for a total of around 70 seats. The more vibrant colors of the original interior have been replaced with muted tones of black, white, green and gray, and the kitchen, which formerly served as a backup, has been expanded to support the space solo.

Subtle accents abound, such as the white marble bar top that matches the tables, and the Spanish tiles that adorn the front of the bar. The overall feel is a cross between a refined French bistro and a Victorian parlor, a vibe Bailey said makes for a perfect date night.

In addition to the space, the menu has received a complete overhaul as well. Guests can choose between a couple of cheese boards and an array of desserts, as well as dessert cocktails like Lavender, a mix of Hayman’s Old Tom gin infused with cocoa nibs and maraschino liqueur.

A tight list of beer, wine and spirits are also available, and the bartenders can replicate some old favorites from the first Chocolate Bar era, like the chocolate martinis, or any favorite classic cocktails, upon request.

Baileys’ Chocolate Bar is open from 5 p.m. to midnight Wednesday and Thursday, 5 p.m. until 1 a.m. on Friday and Saturday and 5 p.m. to midnight Sunday. Bailey said to look for lunch and brunch service in the future as well.

 

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Photos by Michelle Volansky 

Matt Sorrell is staff writer at Sauce Magazine.

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First Look: Good News Brewing in O’Fallon, Mo.

Friday, August 4th, 2017

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The St. Louis craft beer boom continues, and it’s finally starting to take root out west. Case in point: Good News Brewing Co., which opened a brewpub in mid-July at 330 Sonderen St., in O’Fallon, Missouri.

As The Scoop reported in January, co-owners Dan Tripp, Josh Miller and Matt Fair announced they would turn their homebrewing hobby into a full-time business venture.

Good News brews 10 different beers from a crisp Citra Wheat IPA to an earthy Smoked Cherrywood Wheat. The brewery utilizes a one-barrel system, so what’s on tap changes up often and beers must be enjoyed onsite (no growlers for now). Several guest taps are also available, and customers can try all of the offerings by the pint, 10-ounce glass or 4-ounce sampler.

The Good News folks are tightly focused on their mission of brewing beer, so the food menu is limited to a handful of rotating personal pizzas cooked in brick oven on a sourdough crust made daily in-house. No appetizers, no kid’s menu and no takeout. “We’re a brewery that makes pizza,” Tripp said.

Good News seats 44 inside, including bar seats and communal tables, and the covered, pet-friendly patio boasts 11 picnic tables for al fresco dining and imbibing.

Good News is open Wednesday and Thursday from 4 to 9 p.m., Friday from 4 to 10 p.m., Saturday from 11 a.m. to 10 p.m. and Sunday from 11 a.m. to 5 p.m. Take a first look at what to expect from O’Fallon’s newest brewery:

 

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Photos by Michelle Volansky 

Matt Sorrell is staff writer at Sauce Magazine. 

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Ari Jo Ellis to open The Cut inside The Fortune Teller Bar

Thursday, August 3rd, 2017

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Ari Jo Ellis has worked in some of the top kitchens in town, including Quincy Street Bistro, Southern, Bolyard’s Meat & Provisions and Kitchen Kulture. Now Ellis, a member of the Ones To Watch class of 2016, is striking out on her own.

As reported by St. Louis Magazine, Ellis will open The Cut, which will replace the recently closed Little Dipper inside The Fortune Teller Bar at 2635 Cherokee St., at the end of August.

“I would be stupid to pass up this opportunity,” Ellis said. “It just all came together. The stars aligned and I had to do it.”

The Cut will focus on sausages. Ellis intends the initial menu to feature four bratwursts and sausages and a fifth vegetarian option featuring Mofu Tofu, along with a monthly special and several sides, including cole slaw, potato salad and baked beans. She also plans to carry chips from local favorite Rap Snacks.

“I feel that if I do bratwurst, I have to do a straight-up OG bratwurst with grain mustard and sauerkraut that I plan to make in house” Ellis said.

In homage to the Mexican influence on Cherokee, she plans on making chorizo. Ellis intends to break down whole pigs on site and hopes to source most of them and the rest of her ingredients from Such & Such Farms and other local purveyors.

To that end, Ellis said The Cut will be open Wednesday through Sunday from 5 p.m. to midnight. She also plans to keep The Cut a simple proposition.

“I’m determined to start small and expand, rather than start bigger than I think I can do and contract,” she said. “I’m not necessarily going to be exploring anything far from what I know. I want to make this work in this spot more than anything.”

Photo by Carmen Troesser

Matt Sorrell is staff writer at Sauce Magazine.

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