12 reasons we love Sugarfire Smoke House

Sure, the barbecue at Sugarfire is pretty awesome, but it's only one of the reasons we can’t stay away. Here, 12 ways to hook a foodie.

1. There are smoked sea salt-chocolate chip cookies.

2. From beer to ice cream to meat to sodas, everything is sourced locally whenever possible.

3. The chicken wings: smoky, delicious and not always available (which makes us crave them even more).

4. The chocolate-peanut butter-bourbon shake is our idealized childhood and adulthood blended into a glass.

5. The always-changing sides are both mouthwatering and surprising, like the vegan barley salad with candied mango, orange peel, fennel fronds, pepitas and a lemon-orange vinaigrette. Who does that at a barbecue joint?

6. The walls are decked in pork-worshipping artwork.

7. The food trays look like cookie sheets.

8. When we talked to Clint Whittemore, he said, "I'm one of the chefs ... maybe a sous? I don't know."

9. Pork belly hush puppies with neon green jalapeño jelly exist here.

10. At any given time, there are at least eight house-made condiments on rotation, including Twerk sauce.

11. A la mode becomes so cliché when a piece of pie blended into a milkshake is an option.

12. The chefs’ bios on Sugarfire’s website are really, really funny.

And a bonus No. 13: In case you missed it, Sugarfire's new location in St. Charles opens today at 3150 Elm Point Industrial Dr., just in time for the restaurant's TV debut tomorrow, April 26 at 8 p.m. on "BBQ Pitmasters," a competitive barbecue program on Destination America.

9200 Olive Blvd., Olivette, 314.997.2301, sugarfiresmokehouse.com

-photo by Jonathan Gayman