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Feb 24, 2018
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Posts Tagged ‘Jamie Kilgore’

First Look: Small Change in Benton Park

Friday, February 2nd, 2018

small change in benton park

Small Change, the neighborhood bar from the folks behind Planter’s House, opened quietly on Thursday, Feb. 1, at 2800 Indiana Ave. in Benton Park.

Small Change, named after a Tom Waits record, combines qualities of a dive bar and a cocktail bar. There’s no food per se, just a couple vending machines to dispense bar snacks – all the better to focus on the drinking.

The cocktail menu features seven drinks named after Tom Waits songs or lyrics like Chocolate Jesus and Waltzing Mathilda, along with a couple of shot options: Little Drop of Poison, a rotating amaro shot, and PBJ Time, a combo of peanut butter fat-washed cognac and Manischewitz grape wine.

As at sister bar Planter’s House, Small Change focuses on fresh juices, house-made modifiers and select spirits. There’re also canned beers to choose from, along with a couple draft options.

Inside, Small Change is decorated with vintage bar signs and liquor-related novelties. Small Change has 49 seats, and when the weather starts cooperating on a regular basis, there’ll be an additional 40 to 50 seats outside.

Small Change hours are Monday through Thursday from 4 p.m. to midnight, Friday and Saturday from 4 p.m. to 1 a.m., and Sunday from 4 p.m. to 10 p.m.

This slideshow requires JavaScript.

Photos and captions by Caitlin Lally 

Matt Sorrell is staff writer at Sauce Magazine and occasionally bartends at Planter’s House. 

Related Content
• Planter’s House owners will open Small Change in Benton Park

• Chef Sam Boettler steps into the kitchen at Planter’s House

• Review: Planter’s House

Planter’s House owners will open Small Change in Benton Park

Tuesday, November 21st, 2017


 { from left, Ted Charak, Jamie Kilgore and Ted Kilgore }

Big news for cocktail aficionados: Planter’s House owners Ted Kilgore, Jamie Kilgore and Ted Charak will open their second bar, Small Change, in mid-January at 2800 Indiana Ave., in Benton Park.

More minimal than Planter’s House, Ted Kilgore said Small Change, named after a Tom Waits tune, will feature canned and draft beer, a small selection of spirits and a tight menu of five to six rotating cocktails, along with some bartender’s choice specials. There won’t be a formal menu per se, just a chalkboard with the day’s featured drinks.

“We’ll still have quality ice and fresh juices and some geeky stuff, but also beers and shots of quality whiskey that won’t break the bank,” Kilgore said.

Small Change won’t have a kitchen, though there will be a vending machine and a microwave on hand for those who crave some low-brow, late-night eats. “Think truck-stop sandwiches and noodle bowls, some healthy stuff, and some not-so-healthy stuff,” Kilgore said.

The trio intends for Small Change to be a neighborhood joint where guests can unwind without pressure or pretense. “The space is comfortable and laid back,” he said. “It’s similar to Planter’s House, where it feels like it could’ve been around for a while or brand-new at the same time.”

The “hobo chic” interior, which seats 49, includes repurposed chairs, tables and doors. The ancient Falstaff sign outside above the entrance, though, will eventually be replaced with the Small Change logo.

Planter’s House vet Harrison Massie will helm Small Change, and Sam McCulloch, who has previously worked at Cleveland-Heath and Niche Restaurant Group, will serve as assistant bar manager. The space will be open Sunday through Thursday from 4 p.m. to midnight and Saturday from 4 p.m. to 1 a.m.




The Kilgores and Charak are warming up the space Friday, Nov. 24 when Miracle, the Christmas-themed pop-up cocktail bar franchise, returns with a few changes. This year, Miracle will remain open through Dec. 31 (the last day of service in 2016 was Christmas Eve), only closing on Christmas Day.

Reservations will also be available this year via Tock, and bar seats and standing room will be available on a first-come, first-served basis. Miracle will be open from 4 p.m. to 1 a.m. Monday through Saturday, and 4 p.m. to 11:30 p.m. on Sunday.

Kilgore said Miracle is also partnering with Tom’s Town Distillery. A portion of the sales of drinks featuring Tom’s Town gin and vodka will support Santa’s Helpers, an area nonprofit that assists families in need.

Owners photo by Michelle Volansky, Miracle photo courtesy of Jamie Kilgore

Matt Sorrell is staff writer at Sauce Magazine. 

Related Content
• Chef Sam Boettler steps into the kitchen at Planter’s House

• Review: Planter’s House

• Drink This Weekend Edition: Miracle on Chouteau Pop-up Bar

The Scoop: Chef Sam Boettler steps into the kitchen at Planter’s House

Tuesday, September 29th, 2015



There’s a new top toque in the Planter’s House kitchen. Chef Sam Boettler stepped into the role today, Sept. 29, replacing former chef Bradley Hoffmann, who fired his last dish at Planter’s Friday, Sept. 25.

“Sam brings a log of great experience managing a kitchen,” said Planter’s House co-owner Jamie Kilgore. “We’re looking forward to working with him.”

Boettler brings 23 years of culinary experience to the table, including six years as the executive chef at The Vine in St. Charles. He most recently spent two years at Element as one of four chefs helming that kitchen when it first opened in 2013.

Describing his cuisine as “simple comfort food” with some French bistro influences, Boettler aims to roll out the fall menu at Planter’s House by mid-October. “The staff at Planter’s House is amazing,” he said. “I’m super excited to work with them.”


Editor’s note: This post was updated at 2:45 p.m. to correct chef Bradley Hoffmann’s name spelling.  

The Scoop: Chef Bradley Hoffman leaves Planter’s House

Monday, September 28th, 2015



Planter’s House chef Bradley Hoffman worked his final shift on Friday, Sept. 25 after heading the kitchen since its inception and opening in 2013. Hoffman is currently keeping mum on his new endeavor, but he said his departure from the Lafayette Square bar was an amicable split.

“I had a blast,” Hoffman said. “I learned so much from working with Ted (Kilgore), Jamie (Kilgore) and Ted (Charak). It was like family in the kitchen and in the restaurant. I’ll have nothing but great memories forever from working in that kitchen.”

Co-owner Jamie Kilgore said the Planter’s House team was sorry to see Hoffman go but wished him well. “Bradley was a real asset to Planter’s House,” she said. “He’s going to do great things. We are happy for his continued success and the continued success of Planter’s House.”

Planter’s House has not yet announced Hoffman’s replacement.


Editor’s note: This article was updated at 4:30 p.m. Sept. 29 to clarify information about a replacement chef at the time of publication.

-photo by Carmen Troesser 


The List: A Staff of Superstars at Planter’s House

Sunday, April 27th, 2014

Welcome to The List, our annual homage to the people, places, dishes and drinks we love in St. Louis. Don’t miss a single pick; click here to read the whole List and share your thoughts on Twitter with #thesaucelist.



Yes, the cocktails are top-tier. Yes, the food is great. Yes, the décor makes you feel like a million bucks. But the real reason we love to take a seat at the hottest bar in town is the staff: a lineup of seasoned professionals who always keep their cool. From left to right: Kate Kinsey, Matt Sorrell, Ted Charak, Mandi Kowalski, Jamie Kilgore, Ted Kilgore, Leslie Gillette, Bradley Hoffmann, Matt Obermark and Travis Garner.

1000 Mississippi Ave., St. Louis, 314.696.2603, plantershousestl.com

-photo by Carmen Troesser

In This Issue: The story behind the glass

Friday, January 24th, 2014

All Sauce’s beverage writers enjoy a good drink, but we each have our preferred vessel. Here, the stories behind some of our favorite glassware:

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-photo by Jonathan Gayman



Sneak Peek: Planter’s House

Tuesday, December 3rd, 2013

120313_PlantersHouse_06{From left, Planter’s House co-owners Ted Charak, Jamie and Ted Kilgore}


Even if Jamie and Ted Kilgore did not write about spirits and cocktails for Sauce Magazine, we’d still be buzzing over Planter’s House, the cocktail bar that the husband-and-wife bartending team, along with business partner Ted Charak, are opening in Lafayette Square. Located in a historic building at 1000 Mississippi Ave., at the corner of Chouteau Avenue, Planter’s House has been highly anticipated since Kilgore announced the concept a year ago.

The powerhouse bar team at Planter’s includes Matt Obermark, Travis Garner, Matt Sorrell, Mandi Kowlaski, Will Fischer and Ted Kilgore. “It’s a badass staff for a badass place,” said co-owner Ted Kilgore.

The wait is nearly over. Planter’s House will open to the public Thursday, Dec. 5. Fittingly, that date is also Repeal Day, which marks the end of Prohibition. When doors open, hours will be Tuesday through Thursday from 5 p.m. to midnight, Friday and Saturday from 2 p.m. (yes, 2 p.m.) to 1 a.m., and Sunday from 2 p.m. to 11 p.m.

As you wait for the cocktail shaking to commence at Planter’s House, get a glimpse of what’s in store on our Facebook page.



In This Issue: Guide to Drinking – What’s Hot Right Now

Tuesday, October 1st, 2013

The beverage scene is buzzing with action – from our ever-growing local brewing and distilling community to award-winning arrivals from Missouri wine country, as well as hot spots from around the globe. Read on for the beers, wines and liquors to put on your must-try list.



In Good Company
Elaia is in the company of celebrated restaurants like Eleven Madison Park, Jean-Georges and The NoMad Hotel in being one of just nine restaurants in the country to carry wines by Element Winery. Element, one of the most exciting wineries in the Finger Lakes region of the Empire State, was co-founded in 2005 by recently minted Master Sommelier Christopher Bates.

Show-Me Whites
“Last year’s harvest was incredible,” said Mount Pleasant Estates president Charles Dressel regarding white grape varietals grown in Missouri. Keep an eye out for the just-released 2012 chardonnays, vidal blancs and chardonels by Missouri wineries, including Chardonel by Montelle Winery and an unoaked chardonel by Chaumette Vineyards & Winery.

Triple Crown Winner
At this year’s Missouri Wine Competition, Stone Hill Winery took not one, but three, top honors for its Estate Bottled Norton 2011: Best of Class in the dry red category, C.V. Riley Award for Best Norton, and the Governor’s Cup, aka, Missouri’s best wine of the year.

Big Ms in MO
Among names new to Missouri is Santa Barbara County-based Margerum Wine Co. Look for the winery’s flagship M5, a Rhone-style blend made from five red grape varietals, at area restaurants and stores. Additionally, French wine magnate Bernard Magrez has more of his wines available around town. New arrivals include two French wines – Château Des Muraires, a beautiful rosé, and Château Plaisance, a fabulously structured red blend – plus Kahina, a Moroccan blend of syrah and Grenache, which surprises with its mint finish.

Etna Erupts
“This is cutting edge stuff in the wine industry,” said A. Bommarito Wines’ Denny Campo in regard to the wines made from grapes grown in the foothills and slopes surrounding Mount Etna in Sicily. “Etna could be another Burgundy because of the diverse micro-climates that exist in the appellation.” Try Tascante, an Etna Rosso (or red), by Tasca d’Almerita, or Prephylloxera, an Etna Rosso from producer Tenuta delle Terre Nere.




Bitter Before Dinner
You’ve become acquainted with Campari and Aperol. It’s time to meet Suze. Now that this French aperitif liqueur has arrived stateside, we’re itching for Suze to reach our neck of the woods where we predict bartenders are going to use it in some mean cocktails. At home, we plan to sip spicy, fruity and delicately bitter Suze on ice and to combine it with tonic, crème de cassis and, yes, even Coke.

Local Spirits Take Flight
New Haven-based distiller Pinckney Bend is already distributed in seven states. Its next market may well be overseas. The small-batch distillery recently participated in a trade delegation to China to explore market opportunities for Missouri agricultural products in the northern provinces of Xinjiang and Shandong. And while Mastermind Vodka is on shelves and behind bars in Illinois, Missouri and Nebraska – with Kansas coming soon – the company’s new LPR Moonshine is in negotiations with Latin America.

RTD Cocktails
Ready-to-drink cocktails are everywhere. For convenience and quality, try Fluid Dynamics bottled cocktails or The 36th Vote, a barrel-aged Manhattan by High West Distillery. While St. Louis has yet to see a local bartender launch a line of bottled cocktails (like Charles Joly of Chicago’s The Aviary just did with his brand Crafthouse), local spots Little Country Gentleman and Cielo are bottling some crafty ‘tails in-house.

Japan on the Rise
The Land of the Rising Sun is heating up with all things alcoholic. Hard-to-find Yamazaki is a favorite to wet your whiskey whistle, but if you’re willing to break the bank, try Nikka Yoichi. The Wine Merchant’s Dave Davis called this 15-year single malt, aged in bourbon and sherry casks, his whiskey of the year. And while you’re there, wow your sake off with light and fruity market newbie Ichishima Silk Deluxe Junmai. Beer? Hitachino Nest White Ale. Order it at Mai Lee and Hiro Asian Kitchen. Kanpai!

Boilermakers Go Highbrow
A beer and a shot of whiskey is a time-honored combo, but we’re seeing the boilermaker (Yes, the one-two punch does have a classy name.) get classed up on both coasts as bartenders put some creative brew-and-spirits couplings on drink menus. What whiskey pairs best with 4 Hands Brewing Co.’s Divided Sky Rye IPA or Schlafly’s Black Lager Schwarzbier? We’re waiting for Show-Me guys and gals behind the stick to show us.



You-Brew Rescue
Help is on the way for aspiring homebrewers. J2 Brewing, opening soon in Chesterfield, lets you brew on-premise and lends a hand with the entire process, including storing your beer in a temperature-controlled room and even labeling your concoction, until you return to bottle those suds and take them home to swig ‘em.

You Say You Want a Revolution
With the recent openings of Alpha Brewing, Excel Brewing, Kaskaskia Brewing and Scratch Brewing, there are now 23 breweries within 75 miles of downtown St. Louis. But the revolution is hardly over. Look for Heavy Riff, Side Project Brewing and Modern Brewery to open in the near future, while Urban Chestnut’s second brewing facility is expected to open in The Grove early next year.

Old-World Styles, New-World Interest
The Brewers Association recently added some old, almost forgotten styles to the judging categories at this year’s Great American Beer Festival, including Grätzer and Adambier. In addition, the common sour (acidic beer of the past), is enjoying a renaissance both locally – Schlafly’s Oud Bruin, Perennial Artisan Ales’ Kriek and Urban Chestnut’s Ku’Damm – and nationally – Odell’s Friek, Gueuzerie Tilquin’s Gueuze Tilquin and Goose Island’s Juliet.

Hopping from Number to Name
Experimental hops are labeled by generic numbers when they first start out, but once they’re proven performers, these hops are given a name to make them easier to remember. Citra, El Dorado and Mosaic are popular hop varieties that were baptized with a nom de brew and put into production within the last several years. Taste them in Sierra Nevada Torpedo, Firestone Walker Sixteen and Deschutes Hop Henge.

Beer-Style Barn Raising
Farmhouse ales – earthy, bright and session-able – were brewed on the farm to serve to the hands. Now, they’re the hottest category in beer. The light, dry body of these saisons, bière de gardes and other Belgian ales is offset by big, bold flavors, making them extremely enjoyable, approachable and popular with all beer drinkers.

-Additional reporting by Jaime Kilgore, Ted Kilgore and Cory King



In This Issue: A Seat at the Bar

Wednesday, September 11th, 2013



Pull up a seat at the bar as four experts tell us what to sip, shake and stir this month. Click here for more.

-Illustration by Vidhya Nagarajan


The Scoop: Planter’s House names Bradley Hoffmann exec chef

Tuesday, July 30th, 2013

073013_bradleyhoffman{Bradley Hoffmann}


Bar and restaurant Planter’s House has been the talk of the town since it was announced in December last year. While there is still much the ownership group of veteran bartenders – husband and wife Ted and Jamie Kilgore, and their business partner, Ted Charak – have to do to ready the space at 1000 Mississippi Ave., in Lafayette Square, one more item can be crossed off the checklist: a chef.

Bradley Hoffmann has been named executive chef at Planter’s House. Hoffmann comes to the bar and restaurant off the heels of the sudden closing of Salt, where he worked as executive chef since December 2012. (Hoffmann was also among the Sauce Ones to Watch class of 2013.) Hoffmann stated that the Planter’s House menu, still in development, will be “bar-centric,” but there will be options for sit-down dining “where you can still have a really nice meal.”

“We’re pretty excited,” said Ted Kilgore about bringing Hoffmann on board, but admitted, “we have a lot more work to do” before Planter’s House unlocks its doors this fall. An opening date has not been announced.

-Photo by Carmen Troesser

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