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Jan 21, 2018
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Posts Tagged ‘Cate Zone Chinese Cafe’

Best New Restaurants: No. 6 – Cate Zone Chinese Cafe

Friday, December 1st, 2017

To be the best, everything matters – atmosphere, service and food. Here are St. Louis’ 12 best new restaurants of 2017.

 

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It takes a lot for a Chinese restaurant to make a splash on Olive Boulevard, but Cate Zone Chinese Cafe’s (8146 Olive Blvd., University City) regional cuisine has attracted lengthy wait times since it opened on the highly competitive corridor last November.

Cate Zone’s interior is casual and understated, adorned with black-and-white photos of NYC and wallpaper crisscrossed with the names of subway stops. The distinct lack of flash, pageantry or stereotypical decor (not a dragon, shrine or fish tank in sight), puts all of the attention squarely where it belongs: on the food.

Your server may not speak perfect English, but don’t be afraid to ask questions and solicit recommendations. The menu has plenty of familiar dishes – the sweet and sour pork, killer stir-fried noodles and crispy eggplant would please any palate – but Cate Zone sets itself apart by offering up a bevy of traditional favorites from northeastern China.

Off-cuts make myriad adept appearances in dishes like pork jelly and tripe in chile sauce. Don’t miss the super fresh and healthy-feeling Korean cold noodle dish in a slightly sweet broth with cucumber and kimchi. Want to expand your culinary horizons? Get in the Zone.

Photo by Meera Nagarajan

Matt Sorrell is staff writer at Sauce Magazine. 

Related Content
• Hit List: 7 places you must try this January

Sauce Magazine: Best New Restaurants 2017

 

Hit List: 7 places you must try this January

Sunday, January 1st, 2017

HitList_Blog_Jan17

 {Lemon Gem owner Beth Styles}

1. Lemon Gem Kitchen Goods
4180 Manchester Ave., St. Louis, 314.696.2744, lemongem.com

The Grove’s new kitchen shop has the hardware you need to whip up a fabulous meal and the Instagram-able tableware you want to present it on. Located in the former home of Rise Coffee, owner Beth Styles stocks basics like Cuisinart pots and Victorinox knives, as well as collectible jadeite cake stands and Missouri oak rolling pins from woodworker Collin Garrity. Head upstairs to peruse Lemon Gem’s cookbook nook for inspiration, then head home to make your kitchen as Pinterest-worthy as the shop you bought it in.

 

2. Cate Zone Chinese Cafe
8148 Olive Blvd., University City, 314.738.9923

Cate Zone offers the warm, comforting dishes we’re craving right now. English translations of the Chinese menu are enigmatic, but offer rich payoff despite a lack of description of the Dongbei regional cuisine. Slice Beef Onion with Special Sauce appears with thin curls of sliced beef and onions in a dark, intensely savory sauce that is definitely special. Served over sticky rice, the dish comes with the unexpected bonus of a sunny egg. Those looking for something more familiar will be delighted by the sweet and sour pork, which is tender under a crunchy crust in a pool of gloriously sticky sauce. Or try the head-on, in-shell Sichuan spicy shrimp, which practically float with the lightness and addictive crunch of a chip.

 

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{ From left, 2nd Shiftcrew includes Mikey Manning, Jake Senn, co-owners Libby Crider and brewer Steve Crider, Becca Senn and Mike Sweeney.} 

 

3. 2nd Shift Brewing Co.
1601 Sublette Ave., St. Louis, 314.669.9013, 2ndshiftbrewing.com

There’s not much to 2nd Shift Brewing’s new tasting room on The Hill: It’s basically a warehouse with some tables and cute orange chairs, separated from the brewing equipment by a rack of barrels. But it’s all you need to enjoy some of the best beer in the city. Right now, there are only a handful of 2nd Shift beers available on draft, alongside guest taps from like-minded locals like Side Project Brewing and Perennial Artisan Ales, and some classic pours like Oskar Blues Pinner Throwback IPA. Look for a fruited variant of 2nd Shift Katy for a sweet twist on the tart and effervescent original Brett beer, or peruse the longer list of bottles available. Until kitchen construction is complete, food is only offered on weekends, catered by Mission Taco’s Tilford Restaurant Group.

 

4. Himalayan Yeti
3515 S. Kingshighway Blvd., St. Louis, 314.354.8338, himalayanyetistlouis.com

The new Southampton restaurant offers a wide array of Indian and Nepalese specialties from skewered meats cooked in tandoor ovens to biryani rice dishes. Start with an order of fried Himalayan Chicken Momo, sturdy dumplings filled with spiced ground chicken and served with a delectable tomato-sesame dipping sauce. Chunks of tender lamb swim in a rich curry sauce in the lamb rogan josh, or opt for the saag paneer, with chunks of the house-made Indian cheese in a thick spinach cream sauce. Whatever you choose, be sure to order plenty of thick, soft naan to sop up every drop.

 

 

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5. Intoxicology
4321 Manchester Ave., St. Louis, 314.833.3088, Facebook: Intoxicology STL

You’re going to need a bigger bar cart after a visit to Intoxicology. The cocktail supply store aims to be a one-stop shop for the home bartender, offering artisan sprits, liqueurs, shrubs, barware, recipe books and more. We were particularly impressed by Intoxicology’s bitters selection: 60 varieties from classic Angostura and Peychaud’s to peppercorn-bacon, cherry-cedar and chile-chicory. Step up to the bar to sample the shop’s latest acquisitions, then stock up with everything you need to tend bar at home – right down to the Boston shaker and delicate vintage coupes.

 

6. The U.R.B
4501 Manchester Ave., St. Louis, 314.222.0143, urbanchestnut.com

Thanks to Urban Chestnut Brewing Co.’s new consumer research bar and pilot brewery, anyone 21 or older can be a beer critic. Open daily, The Urban Research Brewery (or U.R.B.) offers tastings Wednesday through Saturday evenings, and $1 gets you a flight with up to four 2-ounce pours of experimental beers as long as you provide feedback online. Order a slice or two of New York-style pizza while you judge. Try the sunchoke pizza with jalapenos and Frank’s Hot Sauce for an extra kick, or go traditional with the house-made sausage and mushroom pie. The crust’s sourdough-like tang cuts through the rich cheese to add a boost you didn’t know you wanted.

 

7. Gezellig Tap House & Bottleshop
4191 Manchester Ave., St. Louis, 314.833.5532, gezelligstl.com

The Grove’s newest beer destination is named for the Dutch word gezellig, meaning a cozy, convivial environment or a sense of togetherness among loved ones. It’s a spirit owner Brandon Cavanagh hopes patrons feel as they settle in at the bar with friends and enjoy a beer from the 28-tap list displayed on two large TVs. Look for seasonal and special releases like 4 Hands Brewing Co. Bonafide or Stone Brewing Xocoveza Mocha Stout, available in full or 5-ounce pours. Or head to the wall of refrigerated bottles and cans and choose from hundreds of options from here to Belgium. Non-beer fans can enjoy bottled classic cocktails like Negronis or gin martinis, as well as straight spirit pours served neat or on the rocks. Rather gezellig at home? Grab bottled brews to go for 20 percent off the list price.

 

Photos by Michelle Volansky 

 

Related Content
• Sauce Magazine: January 2017

Sneak Peek: 2nd Shift Brewing on The Hill

First Look: Lemon Gem Kitchen Goods in The Grove

First Look: Intoxicology in The Grove

 

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