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May 26, 2017
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Intelligent Content For The Food Fascinated
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SERVING SAINT LOUIS SINCE 1999
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Budget Crunch

Budget Crunch: 8 delicious deals to try right now

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.

 

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{ 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.

 

 

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{ 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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Budget Crunch: 9 delicious deals to devour now

Budget Crunch: 9 delicious deals to devour now

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.

 

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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.

Extra Sauce: In case you missed it…

Sunday, September 18th, 2016

From upcoming breweries in St. Peters to a new face on familiar diner space in Grand Center, here’s what went down this weekend in the St. Louis restaurant scene, ICYMI…

 

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1. Third Wheel Brewing is rolling into St. Peters in March 2017. Co-owner Brad Wheeling said the ownership group recently signed a lease for 4008 N. Service Road.

2. Barbecue is hitting the road in Illinois. Owner Kattie Goodwin, along with husband Randy Goodwin and brother Charles Williams, will launch Good Heavens BBQ & Bakery food truck on Oct. 1.

 

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3. From matcha cocktails to East Coast IPAs, here’s what’s trending now in the St. Louis beer, wine and cocktail scene.

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

 

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5. Stage Left Diner is currently in dress rehearsals at 541 N. Grand Blvd. As The Scoop reported earlier this week, the former City Diner in Grand Center underwent a concept change after owner Steve Smith bought out the former owners.

 

Budget Crunch: 8 delicious deals to devour this month

Thursday, September 15th, 2016

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

 

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{From left, Nudo House’s pork tonkotsu and chicken schmaltz ramen}

 

1. Construction is still ongoing at Nudo House, the hotly anticipated ramen restaurant from Mai Lee’s Qui Tran and Marie-Anne Velasco, but the duo hopes to reward eager patrons’ patience with a taste on Sept. 26. Tran and Velasco host their next ramen pop-up at Mai Lee in Brentwood, offering two options for $10 each: a pork tonkotsu or a chicken schmaltz version. This cash-only event takes place from noon to 9 p.m., so grab your friends and slurp to your heart’s content.

2. Whether you have little ones at home or are up for some old-fashioned hooky, skip the school bus and head to Eckert’s Millstadt Farm. Normally $12.50 on the weekends, the cost of admission drops to $6 on Wednesdays and Thursdays. Take in the pig races, a petting farm, an underground slide and a pumpkin cannon, then stroll through the orchards to pick your own apples. Tickets available onsite.

 

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{Urban Harvest STL Food Room Farm}

 

3. If your garden has gone crazy during the last weeks of summer or you couldn’t pass up the flat of ripe peaches at the farmers market, Urban Harvest STL is ready to help during its Preserving the Harvest class at 2:30 p.m. Sept. 17. Learn how best to prepare and keep the season’s bounty at the nonprofit’s Food Roof Farm. The class costs $10; sign up online.

4. While most come to slurp noodle soups at Vista Ramen, don’t neglect the cocktail list. The $9 Cafe Pseudo the perfect sip to say hello to autumn. With flavors that nod toward sweet, roasty Vietnamese coffee, the Pseudo is a combination of Fernet, cold-brew coffee, sweetened condensed milk, coconut milk and Thai basil.

 

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{Martinis at The Fountain on Locust}

 

5. It’s a madhouse at The Fountain on Locust with weeknight specials. On Tuesdays from 6 to 9 p.m., purchase one ice cream martini and receive a second for $1. Wednesdays bring the $2 plus Meal Madness special from 4 to 6 p.m.; purchase one meal and the next one is $2 plus the change that corresponds to the date (so on Sept. 21, your second meal price will be $2.21). Thursdays see specials on Fountain’s Classic Retro Cocktail menu from 6 to 9 p.m.; get one and the second is half price.

6. The Muddled Pig Gastropub in Maplewood now offers a custom 32-ounce growler for $10. To introduce its shiny new bottles, customers who buy a growler in September get their first fill free from any of the 16 beers on tap, including Ferguson Brewing’s Pecan Brown Ale or Modern Brewery’s Pig Island.

 
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{The Royale patio}

 

7. There’s one thing both sides of the ballot can agree on: The upcoming presidential debates will surely be entertaining. The Royale hosts a watch party on its outdoor patio Sept. 26 with a $5 Uncle Salvatore Nicholia Forte drink special: a shot of Old Charter bourbon and a 12-ounce Miller High Life. Royale proprietor Steven Fitzpatrick Smith’s Uncle Salvatore was known to hate politics, and Smith said this particular special is the best way to cope with the madness of election season.

8. Enjoy cooling autumn weather and the sweet boing of a rubber ball off your foot during a pick-up game at Kickball in The Park starting at 11 a.m. Saturday, Sept. 17 in Sublette Park. The first 100 attendees will receive a free hot salami sandwich from the Gioia’s Deli food truck.

 

 

 

 

 

Budget Crunch: 8 delicious dishes and sweet deals to try now

Friday, August 12th, 2016

Got $10 and a friend? Then intrepid Budget Crunch reporter Holly Fann has eight foodie finds you have to try from taco Wednesdays to funky free classes.

 

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1. Oyster lovers should not miss out on Sqwires$1 oyster special Fridays from 5 to 7 p.m. A fistful of singles will buy a freshly shucked feast of rotating East Coast bivalves or peel-and-eat Gulf shrimp.

2. I’m a big fan of two-for-one deals like the one found Thursday nights at the Pulitzer Arts Foundation and Contemporary Art Museum. From 5 to 7 p.m., take in the current exhibits at both museums and enjoy two-for-one cocktail and small plate specials from the CAM Cafe. Mix and match $8 cocktails like a rum-based Cerveza Libre, $7 wine and $5 beers with small plates like tomato bruchetta or pickled vegetable crostini. While you sip and snack, explore contemporary works, all on an artist’s budget.

 

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3. Five tacos all priced at $3 each at the new 4 Hands Brewing Co. tasting room plus a menu of Mexican-inspired small plates $10 or less (most much less) would be enough to make the Budget Crunch list. Add craft beer, free arcade games and skee-ball, and you’ve got a BC-approved night out for a small handful of cash.

4. Bark at the brewery Thursdays from 4 to 8 p.m. when you bring your pup down to the Anheuser-Busch Biergarten for Yappy Hour. With live music, $2 beer specials, $3 pretzel sticks and $5 orders of wings, you will be as fat and happy as your four-legged companion.

 

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5. The pride of Dutchtown, Iron Barley hosts its 12th annual Tomato Fest on Aug. 14 from noon to 6 p.m. Snack on BLTs and barbecue pizzas for $10 or less and enjoy a street party mashup of live music, food, drinks and all things tomato. The festival benefits Lift for Life Gym.

6. Taco Tuesdays are great, but Taco Wednesdays are extra delicious at Muddled Pig Gastropub when tacos al pastor will set you back a whopping 75 cents each. Wash them all down with Muddled Pig’s bourbon-inflected margarita for $5.

 

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7. Summer fruit season lasts through August at Wind Ridge Farm. You can pick your own blackberries for a ridiculous $3 a pound and peaches for less than $2 a pound (not including the ones that make it straight into your belly). Picking dates are announced via its website, social media and on the Picking Hotline: 636.828.5900.

8. Few things are as trendy (and funky) as fermenting foods. The good folks at Gateway Greening host a free Fermenting Class Aug. 17 at Urban Chestnut Brewing Co. in The Grove as part of their Pints N’ Plants series. Learn how to safely ferment and enjoy a variety of dishes over a pint of our favorite fermented beverage.

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Budget Crunch: 8 delicious dishes and sweet deals happening now

Friday, April 15th, 2016

Got $10 and a friend? Then intrepid Budget Crunch reporter Holly Fann has eight foodie finds you have to try, from sloppy hot dogs to fancy seeds.

 

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1. The free mushroom festival at Pere Marquette Lodge on April 17 is the fungus lover’s Coachella: live music, free wine tastings and vendors selling local goods and crafts. The highlight of the festival is Great Morel Hunt, which takes place on the grounds from 11 a.m. to 3 p.m. Seasoned experts and novice hunters alike will forage for nature’s wrinkly delicacies together with a chance to win prizes for the largest mushroom and biggest haul.

2. Clayton’s Craft Beer Cellar is a sort of nirvana for craft beer lovers, and now it’s a democracy, too. Each Wednesday, cast your vote in the Crowdsourced Happy Hour online (check CBC’s Facebook and Twitter for the link) and choose which two brews should be sipped at the evening’s half-price happy hour from 6 to 8 p.m. Winner, winner, craft beer for dinner.

 

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3. Truffles Restaurant in Clayton has a tasty little next-door neighbor – Truffles Butchery, which also serves up ready-to-eat items like sandwiches. A new menu addition, the Black and Blue Steak Sandwich is a hearty $10 pick. Enjoy a healthy serving of finest quality aged beef tenderloin marinated in bourbon and served with caramelized onions, blue cheese and lettuce and tomato stacked on brioche.

4. Black Thorn Pizza and Pub is not only a great South Grand watering hole, but also a pizza lover’s secret spot. For almost 20 years, owner Dave Difani has made pizzas, and for an easy $9, you can nosh on a 10-inch two-topping pan pizza, hot from the oven, gooey with mozzarella and a golden brown crust.

 

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5. Southwest Diner now serves up tamale on (what else?) Tamale Tuesdays. Unwrap the corn husks to reveal steamed masa stuffed with pork or vegetables and topped with red or green chili or a combo “Christmas” sauce. A ten spot will get you four generous tamales, enough to satiate even the hungriest Tex-Mex lover.

6. The horticulture nerds at SeedGeeks are ready to help you kickstart your summer garden. The SeedGeeks sell packets of untreated, non-GMO heirloom seeds to shoppers at the Tower Grover and Schlafly farmers markets. Grab a few packets of vegetable and herb seeds for a mere $1.50 to $3 each.

 

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7. Not ready to fire up your grill just yet? Get a taste of summer at Steve’s Hot Dogs with the Backyard BBQ Dog, is a sloppy mess that sees a quarter-pound smoked hot dog smothered with baked beans, potato salad, bacon and barbecue sauce. Getting a bite with each element is a mighty feat indeed.

8. Dine Out For The Birds at The Purple Martin and support local wildlife on April 21, when a portion of the restaurant’s proceeds will benefit Wild Bird Rehabilitation’s Songbird Hospital. There, ornithologists care for injured, ill and orphaned native wild songbirds and then release them back into their natural habitat once they are healthy. Take a seat at the bar or on the outdoor patio and sip a signature Purple Martin cocktail (a mix of Malibu Rum, vodka, grape soda and a lemon squeeze for $8) and feel good knowing you helped a little bird regain its song.

 

-photos by Holly Fann

 

Budget Crunch: 8 delicious dishes and sweet deals to try now

Tuesday, March 15th, 2016

Got $10 and a friend? Then intrepid Budget Crunch reporter Holly Fann has eight foodie finds you have to try, from Election Day treats to fancy fish fry dates.

 

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1. ArtBar Saint Louis’ Tom Halaska has a special Election Day tradition: a free toasty G&W bologna grilled cheese sammy and a cold can of beer to those donning an “I Voted” sticker. After you perform your civic duty today, grab a free bite for a price that can’t be beat.

2. When the weather can still turn wintery, a bowl of comforting chicken and dumplings at Mama Josephine’s hits the spot. A hearty helping of chicken and tender, rich dumplings take a warm soak in savory chicken stock. The meal will cost you around $9 and will satisfy the hungriest appetite.

 

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3. This Budget Crunch pick can be found at The Muddled Pig in Maplewood: the Tuesday Burger, Beer and Bourbon. Each week, a house burger, choice of 4 Hands brew and a shot of Buffalo Trace will only set you back a 10 spot.

4. The Silver Ballroom might be best known for the walls of pinball games, but owner Steve “Doc” Dachroeden has a delicious secret. He regularly slices up beef top round and creates his punk rock brand of dehydrated beef called Circle Jerky. A snack-sized bag runs $4, leaving enough quarters left for a shot, a few tunes on the jukebox and a game or two of pinball.

 

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5. For more than 60 years, Carl’s Deli has been slicing and stacking deli meats for its inch-thick sandwiches. We’ve already professed our love for its mammoth Reuben, and the hot corned beef sandwich also sets us drooling. A generous in pile of tender, rose-pink meat served on your choice of bread with classic deli condiments will cost you a mere $8.25.

6. If there is such a thing as a classy fish fry, then Holy Trinity’s Serbian Orthodox Church’s fish fry is it. Every Friday through March 25, the church serves up $10 plates of fried catfish, tilapia and shrimp with sides and home-baked desserts for those observing (or not) Lent. Flowers and candles on the table and soft elevator music add to the ambiance.

 

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7. Unlike most coffee varieties which are based on blends of different beans, Sweet Bloom roasters from Denver uses only the single Columbian variety named Pink Bourbon for its San Adolfo coffee. Enjoy a pour-over cup of this singular bean, which has notes of mixed berry, jam and nougat, at Comet Coffee for $4.

8. Italian cheeses are the focus at the free cheese and wine tasting hosted by Whole Foods Town & Country on Tuesday, March 22. From 6 to 7:30 p.m., Whole Food’s cheese expert will sample and discuss lesser known Italian cheeses. A selection of wines will also be available for tasting and pairing with your bites.

 

 

 

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