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Nov 23, 2017
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Budget Crunch

Budget Crunch: 7 delicious deals to devour now

Thursday, November 9th, 2017

Got $10 and a friend? Then contributor Kevin Korinek has seven tasty deals to try now.

 

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1. Guerrilla Street Food is making friends this month, offering weekly collaborations with a few St. Louis favorites, including farmers market favorite, The Tamale Man. This week, $4 gets you the Tamale Man’s take on a bubuto – the Filipino tamale– that includes roast chicken, coconut milk, annatto seed, rice flour, masa, dried shrimp and a hard-cooked egg wrapped in a banana leaf and corn husk.

2. The Royale launched a new light lunch menu this month that’s big on taste and Budget Crunch friendly. For $8, pick two items – a main dish and a side – or pick three for $10 and add an extra side. Choose from a mains like a taco, single cheeseburger or a vegetarian hopping John cake, then select sides like a green salad, chips, cup of soup, mac and cheese or a health-conscious Brussels sprout salad.

3. Happy hour is even better at Sardella. Gerard Craft’s restaurant recently updated its menu with some budget-friendly drinks and snacks to enjoy from 4 to 6 p.m. Try a variety of drinks from house red wine to a cold pint of Perennial White Impala, all $5 or less. While you’re there, nosh on $5 toasted ravioli or an assorted array of $6 bruschetta bites.

 

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4. La Patisserie Chouquette goes all out when it come to Turkey Day with its signature Turducken croissants. These warm, buttery pastries are filled with mouthwatering, crispy duck skin, chicken and turkey, surrounded by cornbread stuffing, cranberry sauce and fried onions. With gravy available on the side, it’s a complete handheld Thanksgiving meal. These $7 treats are only available on Saturdays in November, and it’s first come, first serve – so get there early.

5. Get a jump on the Christmas shopping this year and get something in return. On Tuesday, Nov. 14, DiGregorio’s Italian Market on the Hill hosts a free fall wine tasting just in time for the holiday season. Sample more than 25 wines and try delicious hors d’oeuvres and signature entrees while perusing a variety of holiday gift baskets.

 

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6. Coming in at $8, The Goat is a must-have favorite from hip Cherokee Street coffee shop The Mud House. This delicious little veggie sandwich that is sure to have you asking for more. Cold slices of cucumber are stacked atop greens and a creamy goat cheese spread and topped with beet chutney on toasted wheat. It’s a light, refreshing bite for your lunch break.

7. ’Tis the season of giving, and Niche Food Group is looking to reward your generosity during the month of November with its Cookies for Cans drive to benefit Operation Food Search. Dine-in guests can bring a canned good or nonperishable food item to any of Craft’s five restaurants and receive a free banana-butterscotch-oatmeal cookie from Sardella pastry chef Sarah Osborn.

 

Kevin Korinek is a freelance writer and photographer with a passion for making homemade pie.

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Budget Crunch: 8 delicious deals to try now

Tuesday, October 24th, 2017

Got $10 and a friend? Then contributor Kevin Korinek has eight delicious deals to dig into now.

 

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1. 2nd Shift Brewing offers a piece of free glassware on Keep the Glass Wednesdays. Each week, $10 gets you a 12- to 14-ounce pour of a 2nd Shift brew served in that week’s selected glass. Previous offerings included a balloon glass featuring the brewery’s feline mascot, Sunshine, and a coffee mug (perfect for sipping coffee Liquid Spiritual Delight).

2. Known for stellar fare like shawarma sandwiches and house-made hummus, I’ve got my eyes on Layla’s gourmet burger. Dine in on Wednesdays and get Layla’s standard burger and fries (with any drink purchase) for $8. Don’t let the name fool you; this isn’t a standard sandwich: pasture-raised beef on a brioche bun is topped with cheddar cheese, romaine lettuce, tomato, sumac onions and Chartreuse pickles.

3. Square One Brewing Co. has it all – a brewery, distillery and an inspired kitchen to keep things interesting. Square One’s a Build-A-Burger night on Tuesdays from 5 to 9 p.m. mean a single patty starts a mere $3. Choose from a list of add-ons like cheese and tomatoes – but those are extra, so keep it simple to keep it Budget Crunch friendly.

 

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4. Judging from the number of taquerias in St. Louis – both traditional and experimental – this city has a love affair with tacos. Lindenwood Park’s Snax Gastrobar has your back this month with Taco Tuesdays, featuring $2 tacos and $4 margaritas. The rotating selection of traditional and veggie tacos will satisfy, but try a few from the WTF (weird taco filling) menu, where the chefs try out eccentric flavor combinations, like Reuben or meatloaf tacos.

5. If it’s Mexican you crave, Rosalita’s Cantina gets you what you need fast with one of the earliest happy hours in town. It kicks off at 3 p.m. with $3 off appetizers like butternut squash tamales, delicious sopes or a mile-high mound of house-made nachos. Add a $4 Rosie’s Favorite Margarita or a $2.50 draft beer, and the rest of night should take care of itself.

 

The Classic Brew Cheeseburger is topped with American cheese, lettuce, tomato, onion and the house Signature Wheel fry sauce.

 

6. Craft breweries are one of the best kept secrets for lunch specials, and Third Wheel Brewing in St. Peters has one of the best deals around. Head for the The Window Kitchen at this popular brewpub Fridays from 11 a.m. to 2 p.m. for the $8 lunch special that comes with fries or side salad and soft drink. Choose from items like the classic brew burger, chicken or veggie wraps, house-made beer cheese soup or chili, which comes loaded with cheese and red onion. Not enough time to sit and enjoy? Order online for carryout.

7. Pretzels are one of the most perfect foods ever created. The satisfying crunch, the mouthwatering salt – throw-in something sweet, and you’ve got a trifecta of flavor difficult to find elsewhere. In October, celebrate National Pretzel Month at The Fountain on Locust with its pretzel ice cream cone for another $1.50. It’s best enjoyed with a heaping scoop of the delicious Zanzibar chocolate ice cream – some of the richest, creamiest chocolate ice cream I’ve experienced.

8. Unlike its name, the kitchen at Boundary seems to have no limits on shareable comfort foods. In addition to an assortment of great happy hour goodies from 4 to 6 p.m., Boundary now offering its classic burger and fries for only $5. The burger is a house blend ground of ground chuck topped with aged white cheddar on a brioche bun, and it is not to be missed. While you’re there, take advantage of a $3 draft of 4 Hands Incarnation IPA or the Charleville Tornado Alley Amber – perfect compliments to the perfect Budget Crunch.

Beer photo courtesy of 2nd Shift; taco photo courtesy of Snax Gastrobar; The Window photo by Michelle Volansky

Kevin Korinek is a freelance writer and photographer with a passion for making homemade pie.

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Thursday, September 7th, 2017

Got $10 and a friend? Then we’ve got eight delicious deals you must try now in St. Louis.

 

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1. Turning your favorite food into an ice cream counterpart is a fun game. Choco Tacos. Ice cream cookies. Boozy floats. But now we have doughnuts. Swing by Vincent Van Doughnut in The Grove and magically turn any of its house-made doughnuts into a ice cream sandwich for around $7.

2. Now through October, sample the new fall lunch and dinner menus at The Presentation Room, the student-run restaurant by L’Ecole Culinaire. For $10, enjoy a three course-meal that includes appetizer, entree and desert, all inspired bites from culinary students and future chefs in the making. Choose from flavors like chicken white-bean cassoulet, black and white pasta with steamed mussels or a juicy bourguignon burger, and don’t forget about the vanilla bean ice cream with port wine glaze.

3. Cantina Laredo in downtown Clayton is featuring half-price combination steak and chicken fajitas on Wednesdays after 5 p.m. While you’re there, enjoy a 3 G’s Please cocktail made by bartender Lucero Ortiz, the recent winner of the 2017 National Tequila Day competition.

 

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4. 4204 Main Street Brewing in Alton recently changed its name to The Perfect 10 Pub and Grill, and it’s everything you could want in a hangout spot – literally, everything on the menu is $10 or less, including daily specials, like its Monday steak and beer night – an 8-ounce sirloin with one side and a 4204 beer.

5. If you’ve got a taste for something light and fruity, check out the wild flavors of Bissinger’s Gummy Pandas. At $4 a package, electrify your taste buds on the cheap with flavors like Strawberry Mango and Blackberry Hibiscus. They’re perfect for late-summer campouts or between sets at LouFest.

 

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6. School is back in session, and hungry college students can get their fix of sweet and savory Italian treats at Piccione Pastry on College Night. Every Wednesday from 5 to 9 p.m., college students with an ID get 25 percent off just about everything in the store. That’s a lot of panini and cannoli, kids.

7. Every home cook knows the important of taste testing before you serve the meal. Lend a hand (and your taste buds) to Kakao Chocolate in Maplewood on Taste Test Tuesdays. Watch the chocolate shop’s Facebook page for the daily code word, then utter it at the counter for a free tasty treat. “Classic” for a milk chocolate-sea salt caramel? “How do you like them apples?” for an apple caramel? Yes, please!

8. Can’t make it to the Grafton Apple Festival this weekend? Get a taste of the season with The Daily Bread’s apple pie. Each pie is filled with more than 2½-pounds of apples, and you can snag a slice for a few bucks in Des Peres.

Photos courtesy of Vincent Van Doughnut, Cantina Laredo and Piccione Pastry 

Kevin Korinek is a freelance writer and photographer with a passion for making homemade pie.

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Wednesday, August 2nd, 2017

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1. Why grill at home during the week when Gerard Craft and his crew will do it for you? Each week Brasserie by Niche elevates a basic brat and fries for $8. A recent special featured raging, Buffalo sauce-inspired bratwurst topped with Frank’s Red Hot aioli, blue cheese and celery. They’re available every day except Saturday – but you were probably going to do your own cookout then anyway.

2. 1818 Chophouse in Edwardsville offers an assortment of Budget Crunch-friendly snacks during happy hour. Indulge in the lobster salad sliders and the grilled beef tenderloin kabobs for $4 each. Or load up on the $2 tomato-avocado bruschetta, made with fresh pico de gallo, avocado and balsamic vinegar. Combined with $5 martinis on Thursdays, you’ve got yourself a fine first-date spot.

3. Try your luck at Sanctuaria Wild Tapas’ Thursday night cocktail roulette. Five bucks gets you a randomly selected cocktail from Sanctuaria’s heavily curated list of 150 libations. Just head to the bar and let President Lincoln do the rest. You may lose money at the casino, but everyone’s a winner here.

 

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4. Yemanja Brasil in Benton Park is one of the few places in The Lou where you can sample authentic Brazilian cuisine. The flavors are intense, and during happy hour, you can enjoy a plate full of its famous Brazilian-style chicken wings for $9. Fried in a Brazilian hot sauce and served with a side of blue cheese, they’re crispy, spicy and satisfying.

5. Dine in at Stir Crazy for an all-you-can-eat vegetarian feast at its $10 market bar. Fill your bowl with fresh crisp veggies, pick your sauces and base (noodles, rice or soup), then hand it to the staff who prepare and deliver it to your table with a hot bao bun. If it’s protein you’re after, add tofu or meat for an additional cost.

 

 

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6. At Hendricks BBQ in St. Charles, Thursday is $5 nachos. All. Day. And if you’re sporting 10 bucks, that’s dos orders of crispy cheesy nachos, my friends. Smothered in barbecue queso, pulled pork, baked beans and jalapenos, these are a meal and a snack all wrapped up in one.

7. St. Louis’ home for Cuban-inspired eats, Boogaloo in Maplewood offers a slightly earlier happy hour Monday through Friday from 3 to 7 p.m., where you can get 25 percent off tapas and wine by the glass. Try the Cigarro Cubanos –braised, flash-fried flank steak served with an avocado-ranch dipping sauce for around $7 and change. Get there early to get a swing at the bar (yes, they have those).

 

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8. No better way to beat the summer heat than with some seriously cheap eats at Buzz’s Hawaiian Grill, a new food truck that makes scheduled stops all over St. Louis. A standout is the traditional Hawaiian plate lunch: two fish tacos with a macaroni side salad and a side of creamy slaw for $7. Check out Buzz’s Twitter feed for locations and don’t forget to say mahalo.

9. Aside from the occasional Steve Ewing performance, Kirkwood Brewing Station hosts a wicked early weekday happy hour that kicks off at 2 p.m. and ends at 5 p.m. Enjoy $4 draft beer and half off apps, like $7 nachos or hot pretzels for $4.50.  You might even be able to make this happy hour on a late lunch break. It probably won’t make you more productive, but you’ll be happier.

Kevin Korinek is a freelance writer and photographer with a passion for making homemade pie.

 

Budget Crunch: 10 delicious deals to try now

Thursday, June 29th, 2017

Got $10 and a friend? Then we’ve got 10 tasty deals you must try now.

 

BudgetCrunch_03_Jun17

{ EdgeWild’s burger }

1. If you’re jones-ing for a great burger, EdgeWild Bistro & Tap in Creve Coeur has saved you a seat. On Tuesdays from 4 to 10 p.m., check out its $5 burger night, where they serve a traditional hamburger with fries, chips or creamy coleslaw. This thing comes fully loaded with toppings piled sky-high on a juicy, mouthwatering all-beef patty.

2. Closer to the city and still want to get your burger fix? Tucker’s Place in Soulard has you covered. Every Monday through Friday until 4 p.m. you can get its signature, charbroiled 9-ounce Tucker Burger, complete with a side and beverage for a hard-to-beat $6. Think it might be a late night with friends? Take advantage of the late-night happy hour from 9 p.m. to midnight and save on $2 bottles, pints and well drinks.

3. Take a deep dive into the farthest recesses of your couch and you can swing Syberg’s $7 blue plate specials like a culinary Jacques Cousteau. The plates change daily to the whim of the head chefs, but regular recurring items have included a Buffalo shrimp wrap with a side of fruit and country-fried steak with mashed potatoes and green beans. Sometimes there’s even a helping of fried chicken.

 

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{ selections from Pastaria’s new Aperitivo Menu } 

4. Pastaria is ramping up its happy hour by introducing a new Aperitivo Menu, which includes colorful, $7 summer cocktails and table-sharing snacks like the $9 ’nduja risotto balls and the $7 fried potatoes with salmoriglio sauce. The new bites are perfect for unwinding and noshing with friends, but keep in mind, this menu is only available Monday through Friday from 3:30 and 6:30 p.m. Plan to get there on time by leaving work early. (You were going to anyway.)

5. When you find yourself in the valley after a sprint of power shopping, visit Brick House Tavern & Tap during its lengthy happy hour Monday through Friday from 4 to 7 p.m. for a few good eats like soft pretzels, deviled eggs or spiked calamari for a mere $5 each. Toss in an extra two bucks and go for the specialty snacks like crispy ducks wings or Buffalo chicken meatballs. Add a $3 domestic draft on top of that, and you’ve got yourself a mini-meal.

 

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 { Dollar Express Chinese chicken }

 6. Sure, you can splurge for the fancy stuff, but this super cheap Chinese food has got us all aflutter. At the recently opened Dollar Express Chinese Restaurant in Overland, traditional Chinese fare is $1 per scoop. Yes, you read that right. Throw down a couple bucks for some spicy Kung Pao chicken, egg rolls and crab rangoon, and you’ll still have cash for a second helping. If you’re looking for a king’s feast on a commoner’s budget, you’ve come to the right place.

7. Start your week off right at Bella Milano for Martini Mondays, where you can get martinis and select appetizers for $5. Think of it as good motivation for a hectic workday. If you need more than an appetizer to fill you up, stick with $10 lunch specials offered weekdays from 11 a.m. to 3 p.m. With items like the Thai chile pasta or the honey pecan white fish, you won’t regret it.

8. Soulard restaurants are rocking lunch deals like nobody’s business. At Epic Pizza & Subs, splurge on a generous slice of cheesy, pizza goodness with a side salad and drink for $9.09. Known for their New York-style slices with thin crust and fired in the brick oven, just the way a pizza pie should be.

 

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{ T-Ravasaurus Rex Dog at Steve’s Hot Dogs }

9. Almost everything on Steve’s Hot Dogs menu is Budget Crunch friendly, but for a real treat, watch for the weekly specials like this week’s T-Ravasaurus Rex Dog: a quarter-pound Nathan’s hot dog with Anthonino’s Taverna toasted ravs and mac n cheese. The dog is complete with red sauce and Parmesan cheese. Mention the weekly word (check social media), and get $1 off your total.

10. Fried chicken takes a long time to prep, so avoid messing up your kitchen and check out Helen Fitzgerald’s in Kirkwood on Sundays and Mondays, where you can get a colossal four-piece fried chicken meal and side for a cool $8. That’s plenty of yardbird to split between you and a friend and still have money to tip.

Kevin Korinek is a freelance writer and photographer with a passion for making homemade pie.

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Thursday, May 25th, 2017

Got $10 and a friend? Then Kevin Korinek has 8 tasty deals you must try now.

 

Gioia’s original hot salami is sliced to order.

 

1. In honor of its 99th anniversary today, May 25, Gioia’s Deli treats its customers to tasty treats. Its renowned hot salami sandwiches for just $5 all day. There’s a limit of two per customer – so you can eat one there and eat the other on the way home. Support the St. Louis institution that was recently named an American Classic by the James Beard Foundation.

2. Thursday night is burger mania at Satchmo’s Bar & Grill in Chesterfield, where you can try a 6-ounce version of its juicy burger and a side of fries for only $4. You do have to purchase a drink to get the deal, but that’s pennies compared to the how full you’ll be when you’re finished.

 

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3. VietNam Style exists to challenge your conceptions of Vietnamese food. The recently opened restaurant on Delmar Boulevard is has nabbed Asian cuisine enthusiasts with fresh fare and a regular lunch special. Get a drink, an appetizer and a traditional Vietnamese sandwich for a mere $7. Try the spring rolls with the Egg and Shredded Pork Sandwich and feel your taste buds do a happy dance.

 

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4. Fondue sounds fancy, but not at Bella Vino Wine Bar & Tapas in lovely downtown St. Charles. Every Thursday, check out a delicious $5 four-cheese fondue with rolls for dipping and sopping up cheesy goodness. It’s a perfectly sized appetizer for sharing with a friend or enjoying all by yourself. While taking in the scenic Main Street views from the beautiful patio, you can also take advantage of the happy-hour drink specials.

5. A word of warning: nothing on the menu at The Taco & Ice Cream Joint is Whole30 compliant. Two of the best foods ever devised by man are found within this new shop on Cherokee Street, just waiting for us to gorge. The curious, incredulous Vaso Loco might be the most audacious menu item to appear during your lunch hour. It’s a 16-ounce plastic cup filled with candy, cheese balls, corn chips, wasabi peas and gummy worms, and shaken (not stirred) with a bit of tomato juice and hot sauce. It’s a trail mix with no redeeming health qualities, and we can’t take our eyes off of it.

 

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6. If you’re the type to rock ’n’ roll all night and part of every day, check out the newest chain brewpub making some noise. Rock & Brews is owned by legendary Kiss frontmen Paul Stanley and Gene Simmons – another business venture the marketing geniuses are trying to capitalize on. They may be onto something with their Wednesday deal for Buds & Burgers. For $10, you can get the Ultimate Burger and fries and an ice-cold 16-ounce Budweiser product. The Starchild approves.

7. Adrianna’s On The Hill known for some stellar pasta and sandwiches, and it has a solid reputation for a good daily lunch special, too. Every day, the team posts new, exciting specials on its Facebook page and while they have a few different regular specials to choose from, you really can’t go wrong with the $8 pasta special, which includes a full-sized plate of penne smothered in tomato-basil sauce and served with soup or the house salad and bread and butter.

 

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8. St. Louis has some tasty taquerias, but you can still find some crunchy deals at nontraditional spots like The Crow’s Nest, where you can get a banging Taco Tuesday deal and side for around $10. Try your luck at the Maplewood hangout with a different weekly special, like sweet and spicy chicken enchiladas with cheddar and grape tomatoes or Hawaiian pulled pork tacos with pineapple-cantaloupe Sriracha salsa. If you can spare the extra change, they also offer $4 margaritas and $1 pints of Stag (on draft!) after 10 p.m.

 

Kevin Korinek is a freelance writer and photographer with a passion for making homemade pie.

 

Budget Crunch: 10 delicious deals to devour now

Wednesday, April 26th, 2017

Got $10 and a friend? Then Kevin Korinek has 10 tasty deals you must try now.

 

BudgetCrunch_Apr17_03

{ Empanadas at Tango }

 

1. If you’re feeling a taste for exotic locales and exciting flavors, try a taste of South America. Head to Tango in St. Charles and enjoy traditional Argentine spicy beef empanadas cooked to order for $3 each. On Wednesdays and Thursdays, you can get 10 percent off your entire order. There are also vegetarian options, like the empanadas de humita, filled with creamed corn, Romano and Parmesan cheeses. Save on the plane ticket and travel time – splurge on some amazing Argentinian eats.

2. If South America isn’t your ideal vacation spot, try a taste of the Mediterranean. Go to Aya Sofia in Lindenwood Park, serving up exceptional Turkish fare and a perfect $10 lunch special – one chicken or beef kebob served with tabbouleh, rice pilaf and some of the tastiest in-house hummus you’ve had. These colorful plates are sure to fill your eyes and, subsequently, your stomach.

3. Case of the Mondays? Not anymore. At Mona’s on The Hill, get your week started with its $10 burger and beer special. Enjoy its new burger – a juicy, beefy single patty, topped with provolone fondue and hardwood smoked bacon. Wash all that loveliness down with a local draft while you enjoy springtime vibes on the patio. Take that, Monday.

 

 

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{ Cannoli at Piccione Pastry }

 

4. Pretty soon you’ll can catch a trolley and peruse the best that The Delmar Loop has to offer, grab a half-priced drink Tuesday through Friday from 2 to 4 p.m. at Piccione Pastry. My money is on a refreshing Italian cream soda or a delectable iced mocha. If you can’t make it that early, stop by from 7 to 9 p.m. for half-price cannoli. Nab yourself a sugary treat like a birthday sprinkle cannoli. It’s somebody’s birthday somewhere, right?

5. For those on the Illinois-side, make a plan to visit The Wine Tap in downtown Belleville on Wednesdays for burger night. From 4 to 6 p.m., you can have a gorgeous, gourmet burger with all the fixin’s, served with a heaping side of loaded potato salad for only $4. Just remember, you can’t enjoy a burger without a tall, cold draft. Luckily, you’ve got extra pocket change now.

6. One of the best happy hours in St. Louis goes down at HandleBar in The Grove. Every Tuesday, happy hour lasts all night – yes, you read that right. Enjoy half-off heavenly 12-inch pizzas and $1 off draft beers and signature cocktails. With a pool table, outdoor patio and a rotating list of DJs and events, you have several happy hours in store.

 

 

BudgetCrunch_Apr17_02

{ Spicy crab beignets at Vin de Set }

 

7. For classier digs in a relaxed atmosphere, check out Vin de Set in Lafayette Square. From 2 to 6 p.m. Tuesday through Friday, the classic, French-inspired bistro offers $3.25 drafts and $6 glasses of wine. But the real crème de la crème of this deal is in half-priced hors d’oeuvres and crepes. You can’t go wrong with spicy crab beignets or the butternut squash crepe, a perfect summer dish. Get there early and enjoy great views of the city from their amazing rooftop patio. Bienvenue!

8. Bonefish Grill in Brentwood is rocking a great daily special from 4 to 6:30 pm. Enjoy $5 cocktails and signature martinis alongside a satisfying menu of $6 bar bites. I’ve got my eyes (and taste buds) on the Blueberry Lemon Drop martini and wagyu beef sliders, served on a potato bun with a signature sauce.

9. Anytime you can combine cocktails and dessert, you get the best of both worlds. I’m glad The Fountain on Locust feels the same way. Stop by the Midtown dessert shop and café during the workweek from 3 to 6 p.m. and get a $6 ice cream martini. The Toblerone martini with coffee and hazelnut liqueurs and luscious, Zanzibar chocolate ice cream is the best way to have your cocktail and eat it, too.

10. I’ve saved the best for last, even though this one breaks the rules for coming-in $1 more than my Budget Crunch limit, but all-you-can-eat fried chicken is a huge deal – I challenge you to pass it up. On Wednesday nights, Two Shamrocks in O’Fallon, Missouri is giving us our fried chicken fix for $11, so we might as well get with the program. Served with hearty portions of mashed potatoes and green beans, this is a meal that is sure to fill you up until the next day. Prepare for a fried chicken food coma. And for leftovers.

Photos courtesy of Tango, Piccione and Vin de Set

Kevin Korinek is a freelance writer and photographer with a passion for making homemade pie.

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Wednesday, March 22nd, 2017

Got $10 and a friend? Then contributor Kevin Korinek has 9 tasty deals you must try now.

 

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1. The new Boardwalk Waffles & Ice Cream in Maplewood is offering a special $9 chicken and waffle deal Thursdays from 4 p.m. until sold out. And yes, it will probably sell out, so make sure you’re first in line. While Boardwalk supplies the delectable waffle, the fried chicken slingers at Byrd & Barrel supply the Chicken Nugz. Adding hot sauce gets you to Flavortown fast, but a little maple syrup goes a long way.

2. A classic Italian bistro that is always adding good times and new flavors, Mangia Italiano might just be one of the best post-work spots for a good deal. Just in time for warm weather and patio dining on South Grand, you can get half off appetizers and a well-made $3 rail cocktail every weekday. Your best bet is the Honey-Cayenne Wings – a generous $5.50 pound of mouthwatering wings in Mangia’s signature sauce. They’re crunchy, spicy and oh, so satisfying.

 

BudgetCrunch_1_Mar17

 

3. Every taqueria in St. Louis claims to have the best fish tacos, but The Red Shack in Dogtown may have the best monthly deal to prove it. Fridays during Lent, the Tex-Mex haven has a killer special of two, scrumptious salmon tacos with house-made chips and salsa for a mere $5.50.

4. Of course life isn’t all about tacos. It’s also about pizza. If you find yourself near Lafayette Square during the week, run (don’t walk) to happy hour at Eleven Eleven Mississippi, where you can snag a gorgeous, Tuscan-inspired flatbread for $6 to $7 each Monday to Thursday. Try the Italian sausage for authentic Old World flavor or the poached pear and fig if you’re feeling adventurous.

 

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5. Craft beer has turned a scientific corner, and we are now seeing an explosion of flavors that would make Eberhard Anheuser and Adolphus Busch do a double take. One of the more recent highlights to hit our beloved craft scene is sour beers. Retreat Gastropub in the CWE wants you to get more acquainted at its Thursday Sour Hours. In March, select sour beers are only $5 from 4 to 7 p.m., giving you the chance to pucker-up buttercup and experience some new flavors. Rest assured, the craft beer revolution carries on – what a time to be alive.

6. Back to tacos, because tacos. If you’re eating lunch in Brentwood and looking for a quick fix, Whole Foods kitchen now has you covered. The market recently opened up a lightning fast taqueria where you can grab a made-to-order burrito or three tacos for $8. Where else can you get Mexican food and finish grocery shopping on your lunch break?

 

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7. Copper Pig in beautiful Southampton has an amazing happy hour this month. Weekdays between 4:30 to 6 p.m., appetizers are $6 bucks and most drafts are a cool $3. The deal does not include its famous winter app, bacon jam and Brie (bummer!), but I’m sure you can find something to love between the General Tso’s cauliflower or the duck confit poutine.

8. Ramen is all the rage in St. Louis these days, and Hiro Asian Kitchen aims to keep it that way by offering a Ramen Happy Hour Tuesday through Thursday from 3 to 6 p.m. Sample from an assortment of ramen dishes that will make your head spin. If you miss the first window, don’t worry – the deal also happens for evening diners from 8:30 to 9:30 p.m. Two ramen happy hours in one day is one way to keep customers happy.

9. Again, life is nothing without damn good pizza, and Plank Road Pizza has them in spades. The Cottleville pizza den offers lunch special: an 8-inch pizza and side salad for $10. My go-to: the honey-bacon-chicken pizza. It’s a work of art – house-made crust topped with olive oil, brown sugar, roast chicken, bacon, honey, red onion and bubbling mozzarella. The lunch special is good from 11 a.m. to 4 p.m. and also comes with a side salad.

 

Kevin Korinek is a freelance writer and photographer with a passion for making homemade pie.

Budget Crunch: 6 delicious deals to try now

Thursday, December 22nd, 2016

Got $10 and a friend? Then contributor Holly Fann has six delicious deals you need to devour this month.

 

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1. The burger at Ruth’s Chris Steak House in Clayton is a glorious, meaty, satisfying sammy. Usually priced at $16, the restaurant offers its massive 10-ounce burger with seasoned house-made chips for $10 Thursdays in the bar – a perfect opportunity to indulge in some of the city’s best beef at a budget-friendly price.

2. There are still a few more days to enjoy Anheuser-Busch annual holiday lights display through Dec. 30. After you stroll through the self-guided tour, head to the Biergarten where guests 21 and older can enjoy five 5-ounce samples of A-B beers and ciders. Food stations offer hot snacks; opt for $2.50 s’mores kits ready for the nearby fire pits.

 

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3. Sriracha Granada is a glorious green, locally made hot sauce popping up all over city. With a touch more heat and slightly sweeter than the red Sriracha we are all familiar with, this sauce is delicious on anything from eggs to burgers to pho. Bottles sell for around $6 local shops including Edibles & Essentials and Fields Foods.

4. New to Laclede’s Landing, The Roaring Twenties fills you up on Tuesdays with a Two Dog Tuesday special: two of their loaded hot dogs or sausages, fries and a drink for $10. Try the heart stopping Cuckoo Dog, a beer-battered, deep-fried dog with beer-battered bacon, jack cheese sauce, caramelized onions and mustard, and pair it with the healthier Russo Dog, a veggie dog with cucumbers, tomato, red onions and basil relish.

 

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5. The complex Spiced Caramel Spread sold at the Nathaniel Reid Bakery in Kirkwood is pure velvety caramel flavor. Reid suggested pairing it with fresh fruit, on ice cream, drizzled on pies and tarts or even in savory preparations like on a roast pork or duck breast. For $8.50, you may also enjoy a spoonful of it straight from the jar.

6. The $10 khao soi at Fork & Stix is the perfect remedy for wintertime woes. A gorgeous bowl is filled with a curry broth, egg noodles, red onions, crispy noodles and addictive pickled mustard greens and is perfect to cure what ails you.

 

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Budget Crunch: 8 delicious deals to try now

Friday, October 7th, 2016

Got $10 and a friend? Then contributor Holly Fann has eight delicious deals you need to devour this month. 

 

 

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1. Throwback to your arcade days Wednesdays at Start Bar. Hump day includes happy hour specials including half-price pizzas, milkshakes and slushies from 4 to 7 p.m., and all the games are set to free play until close. Ready for endless rounds of Galaga, Mario Kart or skee-ball? Game on!

2. Celebrate the harvest of healthy, gorgeous apples by smothering them in sugary goodness Oct. 8 and Oct. 29 at Whole Foods in Town & Country. Naked apples wait to be dipped, rolled and dotted with caramel, nuts and candies for $5 each. Adults and children are welcome to make and decorate caramel apples from noon to 3 p.m.

3. After a summer of competitive cook-offs at area farmers markets, five chefs have made it to the final round of the Chefs Cook Real Challenge. The Dam’s Matt Galati, Byrd & Barrel’s Ryan McDonald, Bon Vivant Catering’s Wayne Judge, Olive & Oak’s Jesse Mendica and 1818 Chophouse’s Antoine Moussali create delectable bites with goods purchased from Midtown Farmers Market on Oct. 8. Purchase a taste of each for $5 and cast your vote before 1 p.m.

 

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4. With just a ten spot, you can make a night of it at The Silver Ballroom. Play any pinball machine for a couple quarters and have a drink in its Retox Center. Feeling peckish? Grab a substantial $5 to $6 Australian meat pie; flavors include classic beef and cheddar and specials like chicken fajita or a slinger pie.

5. Take a scenic drive the last weekend in October to Kimmswick for two days of apple butter-centered fun. The town’s annual Apple Butter Festival draws thousands of attendees each year with local food booths, crafts, free tastings and live entertainment. The festival runs from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. Oct. 29 and 30 and makes a tasty weekend getaway.

6. Listening to new tunes and drinking craft beer is always pretty great way to spend a few hours. Music Record Shop on Washington Avenue offers just that and more with their New Music Fridays in-store events. Owners play brand new vinyl releases and serve free Urban Chestnut beer to browsing customers.

 

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7. There are plenty of places in St. Louis to get a cheap tasty burger and crispy fries, but there is nowhere quite like Carl’s Drive In. When a loaded double cheeseburger, fries and a frosty root beer add up to less than $10, Carl’s is a Budget Crunch-approved destination.

8. Doughnuts and beer collide in the ring during Wresting at 4 Hands Brewing Co., a free event on Oct. 22 from 1 to 5 p.m. Local Dynamo Pro wrestlers divide into teams representing 4 Hands and Strange Donuts and take to the mat for a throwdown. Bring a chair and claim your spot, then grab a bite from Seoul Taco, Gioia’s Deli, Slide Piece, Southern and The Fifth Wheel. Wash it down with Apricot Slam, 4 Hands City Wide made with apricots.

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