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Jul 01, 2016
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The Scoop

The Scoop: Twisted Tree to open in Sunset Hills

Thursday, June 30th, 2016



There will once again be a dining option at the corner of Lindbergh Boulevard and Watson Road when Twisted Tree Steakhouse opens July 14 in Sunset Hills. As reported by Feast, Twisted Tree will be located at 10701 Watson Road, the space was most recently home to Mile 277 Tap and Grill.

The Syberg family, which also owns the eponymous restaurant group, owns Twisted Tree and brought on Mike Abbadessa of the former Pear Tree Restaurant to help with menu development and opening. “We’ve all been in the business for a long time,” said Syberg’s marketing director Tracy Stamper. “The Pear Tree had a great menu, and we have seven restaurants. We’re excited.”

Stamper said Twisted Tree will aim to create a rustic, comfortable steakhouse featuring traditional cuts like prime rib, filet mignon and rib-eye. A signature item from Pear Tree, the battered, fried lobster tail, will be on the Twisted Tree menu, as well.

The 9,100-square-foot restaurant holds 200 seats inside with an additional 50 seats on a patio. When it opens, Twisted Tree will initially serve dinner from 4:30 to 10 p.m. Tuesday through Saturday, with plans to add lunch service in August.


The Scoop: The Wheelhouse in Clayton to close July 1

Thursday, June 30th, 2016




After nearly three-and-a-half years, The Wheelhouse in Clayton will close its doors tomorrow, July 1. As reported by St. Louis Magazine, The Wheelhouse location in downtown St. Louis will remain open, and co-owner Stephen Savage’s next project, Start Bar, is still slated to open this summer.

“The biggest reason we’re closing the Clayton location is to put all of our efforts into our downtown projects and focus on the future of the company,” Savage said.

The group is also looking down the road to expand its brands outside of the St. Louis market, but no specific city has been chosen. “We love where we’re at in the downtown location,” said Savage. “We’re between Busch Stadium and Scottrade (Center), so we’d love to go to a city with another hockey and baseball stadium nearby.”


The Scoop: The Wandering Sidecar Bar offers mobile beverage service

Wednesday, June 29th, 2016



A chic, new way to host an open bar at your next event has hit the pavement. The Wandering Sidecar Bar, brainchild of co-owners Tiffany and Dave Unger, is a souped-up camper customers can rent for beverage service at private event. Tiffany Unger said she discovered the concept last November in a magazine and wasted no time in replicating it. The couple bought a 1960 Avalon camper, renovated it and hosted their first event June 10.

The operation is simple. With 18 years of bartending experience behind her, Unger helps clients build a beverage menu for their event and gives them a shopping list of alcohol and mixers for that menu. At the event, she bartends and while Dave Unger barbacks. They provide the drinking vessels, ice and drink garnishes and additional services as needed.

“It’s a unique, one-of-a-kind service,” said Unger. “We take over and take care of everything. The venue we provide is an added perk, something that draws attention.”

Unger thought their concept would attract primarily weddings, but requests to work events from birthdays to block parties have pleasantly surprised her. She would also like to see their camper used in unintended ways like a retail cart or to serve as a water and lemonade stand for large events.

“Being involved in the community is very important for us,” said Unger. “We don’t want to be pigeonholed as a wedding vendor. We want to be out in the community doing things like food truck events, getting out there and being seen.”

Unger said a renovated 1967 horse trailer will soon join the mobile fleet. “We’re a new company ready to explore options,” she said. “We feel like we have a really cool product and give really good service. I don’t think we have limitations to what we can do.”


The Scoop: Ownership changes at Thurman Grill, Winfield’s Gathering Place and Melt say farewell

Wednesday, June 29th, 2016



For 10 years, Thurman Grill & Provisions has served the Shaw neighborhood, but tomorrow, June 30, the pilot lights will go out – at least for a time.

Thurman Grill owner Larry Weinles is selling the business to Doug Fowler, who is keeping tight-lipped about his plans for the restaurant. Fowler said he hopes to reopen on Aug. 1 as Thurman’s in Shaw.

Weinles’ said he plans to catch up on some sleep. “I’ve been in the business since 1981,” he said. “It’s not that I don’t enjoy doing this but 72-hour work weeks are hard. I’m tired and ready to enjoy my life.”

This weekend also marks the last meal at Winfield’s Gathering Place in Kirkwood. As reported by St. Louis Magazine the restaurant will close this Saturday, July 2. The sports bar, located at 10312 Manchester Road in Kirkwood, opened in January 2015.

Owner Mark Winfield thought it was time to move on. “Twenty years in the food industry is a long time,” said Winfield, who also co-owned The Precinct Sports Bar & Grill and Jim Edmonds’ 15 Steakhouse. He will take a sales position and spend more time with his daughters. “We appreciate your business, and we’re sad to go, but everyone at the restaurant we’ve found jobs for, so everyone is taken care of,” he said. “The future is bright.”

Other recent closings include Melt at 2712 Cherokee St., which announced its closure June 6 on its Facebook page. “We had hoped to be open longer, but due to circumstances beyond our control, and because it was only fair to our staff to be properly staffed, as well as our patrons to get the service they deserve, this is effective immediately,” the announcement read. Melt ownership did not return request for comment.


Mitch Mackowiak contributed to this report. 

The Scoop: Pastaria’s Ashley Shelton wins Eater Young Guns competition

Wednesday, June 29th, 2016



Ashley Shelton of Pastaria took the top prize in Eater’s Young Guns competition, becoming the first St. Louis chef to win. The winners were announced on June 28, 2016.

“It’s inspiring,” said Shelton. “It’s great to be noticed and it’s humbling because it takes a whole team to do what we do every day. I have to thank them the most.”

Shelton was one of 4,000 nominees in this year’s competition. The nomination process is open, with anyone invited to send in a name for consideration.

All the vetting and judging for the contest was done via email and personal interviews. As Shelton moved into the final rounds, she answered questionnaires and submitted references.

“I got the email [notifying the first place win] at home and the dog started freaking out because I was screaming,” she said.

Shelton spent the weekend in Los Angeles where the 19 finalists, their families, media and industry pros were invited to a party celebrating the best of the best. It only took two hours for Shelton to run out of the 700 portions of the andouille arancini she cooked for the occasion.

With recognition on a national stage, this is not the last we’ll hear of Shelton.

-photo by Carmen Troesser

The Scoop: Gezellig Tap House & Bottleshop to replace The Demo in The Grove

Tuesday, June 28th, 2016



{Gezellig Taphouse & Bottleshop owner Brandon Cavanagh} 


Hop heads will have a new hangout when Gezellig Taphouse & Bottleshop opens its doors in late September or early October at 4191 Manchester Road in The Grove. Currently the home of The Demo, co-owner Brandon Cavanagh plans to shutter the music venue on July 9 and renovate the space with a beer selection partially inspired by his European travels.

“We want to capture the feeling of Amsterdam,” said Cavanagh. “On a trip abroad, I visited Cantillon Brewery. It’s a special place, and some of their beer makes it here. I’m looking forward to getting our hands on it.”

The 30 beers on tap and more in bottles will be a mix of local beers and rare, international beers. “The focus is on large-format specialty beers from around the world,” he said. “We’re not trying to pigeonhole into any one niche area.”

Accommodation is the name of the game for Gezellig, which will be both a bar where suds seekers can hang out and sample or a bottle shop where a brew hound can swing in, grab a bottle and head home.

Food offerings are currently in the works and Cavanagh hopes to add a full kitchen in the future.

The Scoop: Fort Taco to open another location in St. Charles

Monday, June 27th, 2016



St. Charles will have a new fast and easy taco joint this summer. Fort Taco, slated to open July 1 will be located at 3788 Elm St., in the old Daylight Donuts space.

Co-owner Elizabeth Sedlock said there was high demand for the Mexican-American eatery. “We got tons of requests to open a location in St. Charles,” she said.

The menu will feature the same three signature items as the flagship location in Brentwood: a Puffer Taco (a fried flour shell filled with ground beef or chicken), an Enchee (an enchilada-like pocket stuffed with potatoes, peas and cheese) and a tamales with house-made masa, chicken and ancho chile sauce.

The 1,000-square-foot space holds 20 seats inside, while there are 16 seats available outside and a drive-thru. Fort Taco will be open Monday through Saturday from 10:30 a.m. to 9 p.m. and Sunday from 11 a.m. to 9 p.m. The drive-thru will be open until 10 p.m. in the summer through September.


The Scoop: Seoul Taco rolls out second truck

Friday, June 24th, 2016


Seoul Taco is on a roll this year. Owner David Choi opened the fourth Seoul Taco location in Chicago just three weeks ago, and announced today that a second food truck will hit the streets in STL this Monday, June 27. The popularity of the original truck at private events, food truck events and lunch service made a Seoul sister the most logical expansion step.

“The (food truck’s) whole summer was fully booked by February,” Choi said. “We’ve been to some really good lunch spots with the blue truck, but with our bookings could only make it to those places every other month.”

The menu at the new red truck will feature Choi’s signature Korean barbecue street food with the potential for some additional creativity. And that creativity is not confined to the menu: Choi has partnered with The St. Louis MetroMarket, a nonprofit mobile food market bringing fresh food to our city’s food deserts. On MetroMarket Mondays, all proceeds from the red Seoul Taco truck will benefit the mobile market.

“Relationships are so important,” Choi said. “The partnerships we have and being involved in the community is part of what’s helped us grow. It’s about connecting with people and the community.”

Weekly schedules for both Seoul Taco trucks will be announced Sundays on Twitter and on Seoul Taco’s website.

The Scoop: The Sweet Tooth opens a brick-and-mortar in Belleville

Friday, June 24th, 2016



If you’re hankering for a dose of sweets, The Sweet Tooth opened its first brick-and-mortar location on Saturday, June 18 at 4004 W. Main St. in Belleville.

The Sweet Tooth began as a candy van, then a food truck doling out chocolate-covered strawberries and funnel cakes. Owner Jeff Green was ready to expand. “In a food truck you only have so much room,” he said. “I wasn’t allowed to have candy apples. It’s hard to keep temperatures on all that stuff.”

The 2,000-square-foot restaurant will seat around 35 for sweets, lunch and dinner. The menu features tacos, loaded fries and nachos like the signature Hell Yeah Nacho, with up to eight different kinds of meat, a chipotle-based spice blend, sauteed onions and toppings over tortilla chips. Green also hopes to offer a Jersey burger – two glazed donuts sandwiching a beef patty – and ice cream.

In the next four weeks, the Belleville location will sport a 6-foot stage and outdoor seating for 125 for live music on the weekends.

The grand opening of The Sweet Tooth will be on Halloween. In the meantime, you can stop in Monday to Saturday from 11 a.m. to 9 p.m. and Sunday from noon to 6 p.m.

The Scoop: Nourish by Hollyberry to launch meal delivery service

Wednesday, June 22nd, 2016



Nourish Market is launching a meal subscription service this fall. The Kirkwood cafe, owned by Hollyberry Catering, will offer weekly pickup and delivery options.

“I wanted to create a program that was flexible and catered to different lifestyles,” said owner Holly Cunningham. “We’ll also provide vegetarian and gluten-free options.” Cunningham said there will be three subscription options ranging from $50 to $75 a week: Health Conscious, Family-Friendly and Entertaining Foodie.

Eight local chefs collaborate on the weekly menu. Expect to find dishes like pulled pork enchiladas with green chile salsa, butternut squash mac and cheese bites and edamame succotash. Each plan comes with an appetizer, main dish, side and dessert, which are frozen to be prepared at home.

When the service is up and running, customers can place their orders online or via a downloadable mobile app. They can then schedule delivery or pick up their order at 10037 Manchester Road.

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