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Apr 24, 2017
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Posts Tagged ‘The Scoop’

The Scoop: Pastaria’s Ashley Shelton is named Sardella exec chef

Thursday, April 20th, 2017

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Chef Ashley Shelton’s star continues to rise at Niche Food Group.

On Monday, Niche Food Group owner Gerard Craft announced that Nick Blue was stepping down as Sardella executive chef, and Craft wasted no time filling the role. Luckily, he had in-house talent to fill the bill.

Shelton, Pastaria executive chef and a 2017 James Beard Rising Star semifinalist, will take over the Sardella kitchen – and continue to helm operations at her current restaurant.

“Ashley is super talented, so that was easy,” Craft said. “She’s worked at Niche, Pastaria and in Italy, so I think that helps give her a distinct point of view. And she’s an amazing leader and operator. Honestly, it was an easy choice to make.”

In addition to her Beard Foundation nod, Shelton is also a member of the Sauce Ones to Watch Class of 2016 and won Eater’s Young Gun competition in 2016.

“I’m always ready for the next challenge and always ready to keep pushing and keep learning, so (Craft) asked me to do it, and how could I say no?” Shelton said. “I’m super excited about it.”

Logistically, Shelton said it will be easy to divide her time between the two locations, which are connected at their Clayton location in the Centene building.

“I’m in the building already, so I’ll be able to oversee everything on both sides on a day-to-day basis,” she said.

Shelton said she’ll start menu development and changes slowly, but she is excited about where Sardella is heading.

“Chef just got back from Italy, so he’s been spewing ideas and we’re playing with those,” Shelton said. “The kitchen staff at Sardella now has tons of ideas, so I’m just hearing everything out right now, and we’re trying to focus all of the creativity and come up with some great new dishes. But I’ve only been in the kitchen two days, so there’s nothing concrete yet.”

Photo by Carmen Troesser

Matt Sorrell is staff writer at Sauce Magazine. 

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The Scoop: Farmtruk’s Samantha Mitchell named executive chef at The Libertine

Wednesday, April 19th, 2017

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{ Samantha Mitchell, Farmtruk chef-owner and new Libertine executive chef }

 

Big changes are afoot in The Libertine’s kitchen. Farmtruk chef-owner Samantha Mitchell has been tapped as the Clayton restaurant’s new executive chef.

The Libertine co-owner Nick Luedde said the change has been in the works for a while. “Matt (Bessler, former executive chef), has a project he’s been working on that he’s not quite ready to announce yet, so I’ve been looking around town to see who’s available,” he said. “I’ve had my eye on Samantha for a long time. She’s so smart and so together. She has a lot of great ideas. I’m super excited.”

Mitchell said she’s excited to return to the restaurant world. “I’m stoked,” she said. “I miss it; it’s who I am. It’s what I’ve done since I was a teenager. It’ll be nice to have a home base and get back to my roots.”

 

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{ The Libertine chef de cuisine Wil Pelly } 

 

Mitchell’s arrival isn’t the only change in The Libertine kitchen. Sous chef Wil Pelly, formerly of Sanctuaria Wild Tapas and Sugarfire Smoke House, officially steps up as chef de cuisine. To round out the roster, Derek Northway, former executive chef at The Scottish Arms, joins the team as executive sous chef. Luedde said Mitchell and Norwood step up to the stoves full-time this week.

The Libertine recently debuted a new spring menu, so Mitchell will gradually add menu items over the next few weeks. Luedde said she will continue the restaurant’s focus on local, sustainable ingredients, but definitely put her own stamp on things.

But don’t despair, Farmtruk fans. Mitchell intends to continue as chef-owner of the truck and will still be onboard working the window three days a week. “I’ll just be working a lot of doubles,” she said.

Mitchell recently partnered with fellow food truck proprietor Paul Listenberger. The chef-owner of Steak Louie announced the opening of a food truck food court in South City in the former Annie Moons Bakery, which serves as a commissary kitchen for his truck, Farmtruk and Go! Gyro Go!

Mitchell said more changes were in store at The Libertine with a plan to introduce a “whole new format” – though she remained mum on the details.

Mitchell photo by Jonathan Gayman; Pelly photo by Jennifer Silverberg

Matt Sorrell is staff writer at Sauce Magazine.

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The Scoop: Salume Beddu to move inside Parker’s Table

Wednesday, April 19th, 2017

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{ The Beast Sandwich at Salume Beddu } 

 

Salume Beddu will soon stack its signature sandwiches at a new location and embark on a new partnership. As reported by the St. Louis Post-Dispatch, owner Mark Sanfilippo will move the retail sandwich portion of the business to Parker’s Table at 7118 Oakland Ave., leaving behind its current location at 3467 Hampton Ave.

“We’re going to start rolling out sandwiches (at Parker’s Table) in the next few weeks, just to make sure everything’s tight and working well,” Sanfilippo said. “The last service at the Hampton location will be Saturday, May 13.”

Salume Beddu moved its wholesale production and curing operations a larger facility in Olivette last year.

“The wholesale business has grown to a point where I really need to hunker down and focus in on it,” he said. “I’m just spread really thin between the two places, and the staff is pretty lean. In talking to Jonathan (Parker), we both thought it seemed like a great fit and a great way to keep the sandwiches going and allow me to focus in on the wholesale side more.”

Parker said he looks forward to the new addition to his Richmond Heights specialty shop. “I think it’s going to be great,” Parker said. “We’ve been friends for years. It just makes sense.”

Sandwiches will be available roughly around the same hours as the Hampton location, 11 a.m. to 3 or 4 p.m., but there won’t be seating inside. Most Salume Beddu products will be available to purchase at Parker’s Table as well, and Sanfilippo said he’ll periodically do salumi pop-ups, where he’ll bring with a slicer to offer specialty cuts like coppas and culatellos. He also hopes to do pop-up family-style dinners at Parker’s Table this summer, focusing on regional Italian cuisine.

Photo by Holly Fann

Matt Sorrell is staff writer at Sauce Magazine. 

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The Scoop: Spice of India opens in Olivette

Friday, April 7th, 2017

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Restaurateur Sukhjinder Singh has added a third restaurant to his portfolio of eateries. As first reported by St. Louis Magazine, Singh opened Spice of India in Olivette last month at 10633 Page Ave., in the space that formerly housed Peshwa. Singh also owns Aroma Indian Grill in Hazelwood and Taj Indian Cuisine in Edwardsville.

Singh said the location was a logical choice for another restaurant. “We have an Indian store next to us, and there is a large Indian population in the area,” he said.

Spice of India specializes in cuisine of northern India, and the expansive menu is loaded with appetizers, street food items, soups, salads and a host of larger plates. Beverages include a small selection of beer and wine, plus a couple of lassi variations.

The restaurant also has a daily lunch buffet and an all-day Sunday buffet for those who want a smaller selection to choose from. The space seats approximately 55, and catering is also available. Spice of India is open daily from 11 a.m. to 3 p.m. and 4 to 9:30 p.m.

Photo courtesy of Spice of India

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The Scoop: Sophie’s, an artist lounge and bar, to open in .ZACK space

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The Scoop: Sophie’s, an artist lounge and bar, to open in .ZACK space

Thursday, April 6th, 2017

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Grand Center will welcome a new addition to the neighborhood next week when Sophie’s Artist Lounge & Cocktail Club opens its doors on Friday, April 14.

The club will be located on the second floor of the .ZACK multipurpose arts venue at 3224 Locust St., the former home of Plush, which is owned by the Kranzberg Arts Foundation. Other .ZACK tenants include the restaurant Turn by David Kirkland, a 200-seat theater, an art incubator, a record store, a ballroom and a variety of offices and commercial spaces.

“Sophie’s Artist Lounge & Cocktail Club is meant to be an amenity for our resident organizations and their cast, crews and patrons to come together to connect and celebrate their work,” said Chris Hansen, executive director of the Kranzberg Arts Foundation, adding that the club will also be open to the general public.

The interior of the space, which seats approximately 50, was designed by SPACE Architecture & Design. It will be open Wednesday to Saturday from 4 p.m. to 1 a.m. Sophie’s patrons can indulge in a selection of cocktails, beer and wine, along with a small menu of bar snacks and play classic board games. Hansen said the venue will also play host to networking and connectivity events designed to help bring together the arts community.

Logo courtesy of Kranzberg Arts Foundation 

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The Scoop: Food truck food court to open in South City

Thursday, April 6th, 2017

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A new “food court” for area food trucks is in the works in South City.

Earlier this year, Steak Louie owner Paul Listenberger bought the 2,200-square-foot building at 4001 Utah St., which formerly housed Annie Moons Bakery. The space has served as a commissary kitchen for Steak Louie, as well as fellow trucks Farmtruk and Go! Gyro! Go! Now, Listenberger plans to turn it into a one-stop shop where food truck fans can indulge in their favorite fare in one central location.

According to Listenberger, the actual rehab of the space will be minimal. “It’s a great building as-is,” he said. “We’re just doing basically cosmetic changes.”

Listenberger said the plan is for customers to order at a counter, and then food will be brought to their tables. Inside and outside seating will be available, and he plans to serve beer as well.

Steak Louie, Farmtruk and Go! Gyro! Go! have all signed on to participate in the venture, and Listenberger said he hopes to have Holy Crepe on board soon, as well. He also intends to eventually bring in other trucks for collaborations and events.

Initially, Listenberger said the food court would be open for Friday dinner service, and breakfast, lunch and dinner service on Saturday and Sunday. The space, which has no official name as of yet, is about four to six weeks from opening. “We want to get the patio open as soon as we can,” he said.

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The Scoop: Patois to open in former Rustic Goat space downtown

Wednesday, April 5th, 2017

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Downtown’s The Rustic Goat will soon be replaced with a new, multifaceted concept. As reported by the Riverfront Times, the restaurant at 2617 Washington Ave., will close and reopen as Patois Eatery & Social Lounge on Saturday, April 15.

“We’re rebranding and going in a different direction,” said Johnnie Franklin, marketing director for the restaurant’s new management team. “We’re going to change the whole concept to more of a Caribbean-Creole-American fusion eatery and social lounge.” Franklin said ownership hasn’t changed, but the restaurant is under new management.

The Patois menu will boast a wide variety of items from jerk chicken and oxtail to seafood and pasta. Weekday lunch and Sunday brunch service will also be available.

The new direction will also include a hookah lounge and live entertainment. On Fridays, Patois will host After Work Office Lounge, or AWOL, which will spotlight live Caribbean music and a DJ playing between sets. On Sunday evenings, the restaurant will play host to live comedy acts. Franklin said only minor cosmetic changes will be made to the space.

Franklin said in the interim before the official reopening, The Rustic Goat will remain open for previously scheduled private events, but regular service has ceased.

Photo courtesy of Patois

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The Scoop: Russell’s to open third location in Chesterfield

Wednesday, April 5th, 2017

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Restaurateur Russell Ping will soon open a third bakery and restaurant to complement his other two locations, Russell’s on Macklind and Russell’s Cafe & Bakery in Fenton. The new spot, which will also be named Russell’s Cafe & Bakery, is slated to open later this fall (hopefully September) at 14888 Clayton Road in Chesterfield.

“We’ve been looking for a while at opening a third store, and weighing our options on whether another city location would be good, or something else out in the county,” Ping said. “And it really came down to the space being a good fit.”

The 4,000-square-foot space, formerly a St. Louis Bread Co. location, will receive a complete gut rehab, including a full kitchen and a bakery production area. Construction is slated to begin in the next few weeks.

Ping said initially the cafe will be open for breakfast and lunch, and there will be items from both the Fenton and Macklind menus available. He said there are items, like biscuits and cinnamon rolls, which are available only on Sundays at Russell’s on Macklind that may make regular appearances on the Chesterfield menu as well.

“Having the bigger kitchen will allow us to expand,” Ping said. “So we’ll start out with the things everyone loves, and then add to the menu as we grow and expand.” He said the beverage program would be ramped up as well.

“We’ve worked with Kaldi’s for a very long time, but we’re looking to add to our coffee program,” Ping said, adding that Kaldi’s is in the process of refurbishing an antique espresso machine for the new location. Beer and wine will also be available.

Photo by Dustin Bryson 

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The Scoop: Alpha Brewing Co. to open second location

Tuesday, April 4th, 2017

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Another local brewery is getting ready to expand. Alpha Brewing Co. will open a second location in Tower Grove in late fall. “We’ve closed on the building, ordered the equipment and construction has started,” said head brewer Derrick Langeneckert.

Langeneckert plans to announce the exact address at the brewery’s fourth anniversary party this Saturday, April 8, but he said the 13,000-square-foot space will house a 15-barrel system that should produce 1,000 barrels in the first full year of production. The brewery’s downtown facility at 1409 Washington Ave., currently produces 200 barrels annually.

“The first year we were open we made 200 barrels, and we’re still making 200 barrels a year,” Langeneckert said. “We just don’t have the space to make one more drop of beer.”

The second Alpha location will also feature a taproom with 100 seats inside and a 200-seat Biergarten outside. Langeneckert said there will also be a kitchen, and he plans to partner with a local restaurant for food service.

Photo courtesy of Alpha Brewing Co.

Editor’s note: This article was updated at 1:35 p.m. to correct the size of Alpha’s brewing system. 

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The Scoop: The Fryer’s Daughter opens in the former Wood Cask space

Monday, April 3rd, 2017

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Kirkwood has a new destination for fried chicken. The Fryer’s Daughter opened doors yesterday, April 2, at 10332 Manchester Road, the former home of The Wood Cask. As reported by the St. Louis Post-Dispatch, owner Dan Marten wasn’t throwing in the towel on his former eatery after its last day of service on March 22 – just switching gears.

Most of the renovations to the restaurant were cosmetic, Martin said, and the concept has received a complete facelift. The compact menu is focused on fried chicken by the plate or the piece, and it also includes five sandwiches that can also be ordered as a salad or wrap. Available sides include slaw, three-bean salad, fries, sauteed spinach and cream corn. The full bar is still available for those who’d like some booze with their yard bird. “It’s still probably the best whiskey selection in Kirkwood,” Marten said.

Marten said he rebranded the restaurant after customers couldn’t quite grasp The Wood Cask’s concept. The whiskey bar and restaurant opened in 2015. “I loved the Wood Cask concept,” he said. “We went through a couple of menu changes, and I think maybe it confused customers slightly. You could call it an identity crisis. I also had people who came in and said ‘We thought you were a liquor store for the first year-and-a-half, so we just didn’t come in.’”

The new name is an homage to Marten’s daughters, who helped him start the business, as well as an unambiguous announcement of the restaurant’s new culinary direction (the words “chicken restaurant” are also prominently displayed after the name, just in case). “You read it, it’s catchy, and you immediately know what it is,” Marten said.

During the day, orders are taken at the counter, and Martin said speed is the focus of lunch service. “The goal is to have someone in and out in 30 minutes, max,” he said.

Table service takes over in the evening, and carryout is always available. Marten said a catering menu is in the works as well.

The Fryer’s Daughter will be open Tuesday through Thursday and Sunday from 11 a.m to 9 p.m. and Friday and Saturday from 11 a.m. until 10 p.m.

Photo courtesy of The Fryer’s Daughter

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