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Nov 24, 2015
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First Look: 801 Fish in Clayton

Friday, November 20th, 2015



The surf joined the turf on Thursday, Nov. 19 when 801 Fish opened at 172 Carondelet Plaza across the street from its sister restaurant, 801 Chophouse, in Clayton. Seafood dominates the menu in the 210-seat, upscale establishment. More than 2,500 wine labels arrived earlier this week and were placed in the floor-to-ceiling wine case so tall that retrieving bottles on the top shelf requires a ladder.

Daily shipments of fish and other undersea ingredients feature in the menu from tartare and crudo to pasta and entrees. The expansive raw bar showcases fresh oysters, shrimp and fish, while the cocktail bar offers wine, spirits and beer including Civil Life and Modern Brewery options on tap. The dessert menu is exclusive to 801 Fish’s St. Louis location and is under the direction of former Farmhaus pastry chef, Sarah Mispagel.

801 Fish is open Tuesday through Saturday at 4 p.m. The restaurant will add lunch service next Tuesday, Nov. 24 p.m. Here’s a look at what to expect when you dive in:


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-photos by Michelle Volansky 



Sneak Peek: Modern Brewery in Dogtown

Friday, November 13th, 2015



After brewing beer for over a year in an industrial space in at 5231 Manchester Ave., in Dogtown, Modern Brewery opens its tasting room today, Nov. 13. The crew, including president and CEO Beamer Eisele and head brewer Ronnie Fink, all had a hand in renovating the space that will host thirsty suds lovers on weekends and serve as storage for empty kegs and pallets of ingredients the rest of the week.

The newly fashioned bar and bar back boasts 12 taps that feature Modern’s best-known IPA, Citrapolis, as well as a rotating seasonal selection like the Arkham’s Finest and the Golf Bag Special. Two tap lines will be dedicated to barrel-aged beers available only at the tasting room. Modern will serve full and half-pint pours on site, and growlers of most brews will be available.

While Modern Brewery’s renovations did not include a kitchen space, guests can bring their own nosh or grab a bite from a rotating group of food trucks that will park outside during operating hours. There is space at picnic tables or around the bar to grab a beer and enjoy conversation or get up and play a round of bags.

Modern’s tasting room will be open 4 to 10 p.m. Fridays and Saturdays. Here’s a sneak peek at what to expect when doors open this evening:


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-photos by Michelle Volansky 

First Look: Copper Pig in South Hampton

Tuesday, November 10th, 2015



Doors are officially open at Copper Pig, owner Nhat Nguyen’s newest venture at 4611 Macklind Ave., in the South Hampton neighborhood.

As The Scoop reported in March, Nguyen aims to serve gastropub fare with Asian influences. He brought on executive chef Tudor Seserman, who created a menu of pork-centric (though not exclusive) starters, sandwiches, entrees and desserts. Nguyen said the menu reflects his Asian heritage and travels. Look for everything from chao tom (shrimp meatballs skewered on sugarcane) and a rotating poutine to a pork belly Cuban with plantains and whole red snapper, fried and served with a chile-tamarind sauce.

The 50-seat space features a modern, sleek interior, including single hanging bulbs, wooden light fixtures created by local artists and floor-to-ceiling windows that open to create an alfresco dining experience in warmer months. Behind the gleaming copper bar, 12 taps pour several local brews and more are available via can or bottle. Patrons of Nguyen’s former South Grand bar, Urban, will recognize a few of their old favorites on the Copper Pig’s tight house cocktail menu. Wine lovers can select from five red and five white by-the-glass options.

Copper Pig is open Monday to Saturday from 4 to 10 p.m. Here’s a first look at what to expect when you step inside South Hampton’s newest restaurant:


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-photos by Michelle Volansky 

First Look: Brickyard Tavern on South Grand

Thursday, November 5th, 2015



When Absolutli Goosed shuttered its doors last month, its owners took just two weeks to turn their space at 3196 S. Grand Blvd., into Brickyard Tavern. Though the layout remains the same, patrons shouldn’t ask the bartender for a favorite Goosed martini. Co-owner Robin Schubert and her partners wanted to launch a new venture: a warm, approachable neighborhood restaurant where locals could catch the game, play music on the new juke box or hang out on the patio.

The menu, created by Pittsburgh native Jon Homer, includes traditional pub fare like chicken wings and spinach dip to unexpected offerings. Case in point: the chicken-and-waffles sliders served on cinnamon roll-waffles with Jim Beam-maple icing. Fried fare is nowhere to be found – even the chicken wings are baked – and all of the menu items are less than $11.

The bar features eight taps, six of which currently feature Schlafly brews, and there are dozens of bottles and a rotating list of seasonal craft cocktails is available. Brickyard Tavern is open Wednesday through Friday from 4 p.m. to 1 a.m. and Saturday and Sunday from 11 a.m. to 1 a.m. Here’s a First Look at what’s in store at Brickyard Tavern:


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-photos by Michelle Volansky 

First Look: Edibles & Essentials at St. Louis Hills

Thursday, October 8th, 2015



Part cafe, part market, Edibles & Essentials opened its doors at 5815 Hampton Ave., this Monday, Oct. 5. Chef-owner Matt Borchardt said his aim is to create a comfortable atmosphere and support regional and national artisans.

On the edible side, the menu offers six small plates of salad and meat options, as well as eight large plates of sandwiches and banh mi tacos. Charcuterie boards can be customized at a per-person price with a regional rotation of salumi, cheese, nuts, pickles, olives, fruit and bread.

The essentials are displayed on shelving around the perimeter of the store and feature a blend of international sauces like Korean Yuzu mayonnaise and Italian olive oils. Domestic offerings like a white Alabama-style barbecue sauce from Lillie’s Q. Also scattered on the shelves are locally handmade cutting boards and pottery made by Borchardt’s brother, Anthony Borchardt.

The back patio accommodates three dozen diners who have an unobstructed view across the field of Bishop DuBourg High School. The market and cafe also offers catering and private parties.

Edibles & Essentials is open Monday to Saturday from 9 a.m. to 9 p.m. and Sunday from 11 a.m. to 4 p.m. Here’s what to expect at South Hampton’s latest eatery:


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-photos by Meera Nagarajan

First Look: Robata in Maplewood

Wednesday, October 7th, 2015



Church’s Chicken flew the coop at 7260 Manchester Road in Maplewood, and Robata swooped in to take its spot. Thom and Emily Chantharasy, former owners of now-shuttered Sekisui on South Grand, opened their ramen, sushi and yakitori restaurant Monday, Sept. 28.

The newly remodeled space features bar-height seating and dining tables to accommodate approximately 30 dinner diners. The sushi menu offers single servings of both cooked and raw nigiri, five- and six-piece sashimi and two-piece tempura styles, as well as 30 fully cooked maki rolls and 28 rolls with raw or partially cooked ingredients.

Steaming bowls of ramen can be built to order, starting with the noodle (fresh imported Japanese thin cut, regular cut, fat cut or a rice noodle), then the style (variations of pork, chicken or vegetable broth with toppings), and finally the option to add more vegetables or protein to your bowl.

The yakitori menu offers 16 chicken, pork and seafood skewers and nine vegetable skewers meant to be mixed, matched and shared around the table (the same goes for the sushi). The meat may be ordered plain (shiro) or marinated in a sweet, savory sauce (tare).

Robata is open Monday through Thursday from 5 to 11 p.m. and Friday and Saturday from 5 p.m. to midnight. Here’s a first look at what’s in store at one of Maplewood’s newest eateries:


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 -photos by Meera Nagarajan

First Look: Union Loafers Cafe and Bread Bakery in Botanical Heights

Thursday, October 1st, 2015



After years of planning, renovating and baking, Ted Wilson and Sean Netzer quietly opened Union Loafers Cafe and Bread Bakery yesterday, Sept. 30, at 1629 Tower Grove Ave., in Botanical Heights. As The Scoop reported in June 2012 and July 2013, this highly anticipated bakery will turn out naturally leavened, hearth-baked breads. The small team at Union Loafers includes Brian Lagerstrom, formerly of Niche and a member of the Sauce Ones to Watch class of 2015.

Union Loafers serves up a lunch menu of sandwiches, open-faced tartines, soups and salads. “Everything’s made from scratch. Especially the bread,” Wilson said, and he means everything – including pickles, mayonnaise, jams and even butter, all made from Missouri dairy. “The only thing we’re not doing is curing meat – yet.”

After the grand opening this Sunday, Oct. 4, drop in for lunch from 11 a.m. to 3 p.m. or buy a loaf of fresh bread from 3 p.m. to 6 p.m. (or until supply runs out) Tuesdays through Sundays. Union Loafers is currently waiting on a liquor license, but Wilson hopes to stock a bar with a selection of beer, wine and whiskey.


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-photos by Meera Nagarajan



First Look: Brasilia on South Grand

Wednesday, September 30th, 2015



South American fare has joined the international strip of South Grand. Brasilia started serving up Brazilian and South American dinner at 3212 S. Grand Blvd., on Saturday, Sept. 19. Owners Jorge and Rachel Carvalho are restaurant veterans having owned both Café Brasil and Côco Louco, as The Scoop reported in April.

For their South Grand venture, the Carvalhos have created a brightly painted, relaxed eatery that seats around 50 inside with about 16 seats available on the patio.

Beef, chicken and seafood dominate the menu. Nine shareable starters include Brazilian-style chicken croquettes and marinated beef short ribs. Mixed greens tossed with ranch-like house dressing and can be topped with chicken, beef or a seafood mix for a large dinner salad. Fifteen entrees features three grilled chicken dishes, two beef offerings and the rest a mix of seafood, fish and combination plates most of which see accompanying rice, sauteed collard greens and sauteed seasonal vegetables.

While dessert is not currently listed on the menu, Brasilia does offer vanilla and chocolate Brazilian-style flan, a denser and more textural version of the more common Mexican flan. Two Brazilian beers and several cachaça (a spirit distilled from sugar cane and a national product of Brazil) cocktails.

Brasilia is open Tuesday through Sunday from 5 to 10 p.m. Here’s a first look at one of South Grand’s newest restaurants:



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 -photos by Michelle Volansky 

First Look: Wild Sun Winery in Hillsboro

Wednesday, September 30th, 2015



Pack a picnic and hit the road – Wild Sun Winery is now open at 4830 Pioneer Road in Hillsboro. As The Scoop reported in June, respected Missouri winemaker Mark Baehmann fulfilled his lifelong dream when he left Chaumette Vineyards to open Wild Sun with business partner Ed Wagner.

Along with swarms of volunteers, the pair transformed an 1870s home into a 4,400-square-foot winery with a tasting room, production building, expansive patio space and event amenities. Wild Sun sits on 10 acres, but events will be capped at 125 people. “We want to be known as a winery,” Baehmann said. “It’s all about the quality of the experience, the quality of the wine.”

Wild Sun is open for tastings, picnics and yard games, if you bring them. Customers can also bring their own food or order from a small menu of pizzas and snacks to enjoy on a three-level patio. Sip and wander around the pond or the barn they plan to transform into a brewery this spring.

Wild Sun opens with nine wines all made with Missouri grapes, except for a cabernet sauvignon, which is made with grapes from Washington state. Grab a bottle of that or a Missouri favorite like chardonel, Norton or chambourcin to bring home.

Wild Sun is open Wednesday through Friday from noon to 6 p.m., Saturday from 11 a.m. to 5 p.m. Saturday and Sunday from noon to 5 p.m. Here’s a first look at what to expect when you make the drive to Hillsboro:


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-photos by Meera Nagarajan


First Look: Milque Toast in South City

Tuesday, September 15th, 2015



Breakfast and lunch eatery Milque Toast has opened doors at 2212 S. Jefferson Ave., in South City, serving up big flavors in a teeny space. Co-owners Colleen Clawson, Rachel Moeler and Amanda Verauld launched their cafe Saturday, Sept. 12.

The 600-square-foot counter-service restaurant holds just 16 seats inside, but there’s ample room to roam on the side patio. The menu features an array of options, from simple toasts like a thick slice slathered with a seasonal jam or cinnamon sugar to more elaborate options like an apple and cheddar melt or house-made gravlax and cucumbers. The trio locally source as many ingredients as possible; toast is made with Companion or Breadsmith loaves and a house-made gluten-free option is in the works.

Taking a tip from a favorite childhood book, Clawson created the George & Martha soup of the day, simmering quietly in countertop slow cookers. Rotating salad options and side options depend on the day’s produce. Saturdays and Sundays are for sampling. Customers can choose three or five different toasts served with side dishes, part of the Danish-inspired Smørrebrød brunch from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m.

Beverage options include whole milk, coconut milk and house-made nut milks like cashew and almond. All are customizable with house-made syrups in flavors including mint, peach, malt and ginger chai. For a caffeine boost, look for Mississippi Mud Coffee, Japanese cold-brew coffee and several tea options.

Milque Toast is open Monday, Tuesday, Thursday and Friday from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. and Saturday and Sunday from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. Here’s a first look at what to expect when you step inside this petite eatery:


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-photos by Michelle Volansky 

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