the kaslik veggie platter photo by carmen troesser

6 places to try in Florissant

Editor's note: De.lish, DeLeo’s Cafe & Deli and Yacovelli’s Restaurant have closed.

If you can’t remember the last time you dined in Florissant, you’re overdue. With longstanding eateries and underrated newbies dotting Old Town and the strip malls along Highway 67, this city gives adventurous palates numerous reasons to head north. Locals might have told you to hit up Florissant City Diner for your short-order fill or Pearl Café for a Thai fix, but have you tried the caramel-bacon long john at Old Town Donuts or popped into De.lish for a sweet-and-salty cookie? Meet a few more fleurs of Florissant. Whichever of these doors you enter, we guarantee that service is attentive, folks are friendly and the bill doesn’t kill your pocketbook.

Yacovelli’s Restaurant
You can laugh at the big ol’ “Yac’s” sign (readable driving 65 miles per hour eastbound on I-270) or at the foyer that feels more like a funeral parlor, but the joke is on you if you pass up the Sundays-only, all-you-can-eat, family-style fried chicken dinner, priced at a mere $14. Prime rib is the specialty, but did you know those beef, spinach and feta ravioli are made in-house? Founded in 1919, still family-owned and calling Dunn Road home since 1967, Yacovelli’s isn’t a Florissant founding father, but it may as well be.
407 Dunn Road, 314.839.1000

cajun carbonara from hendel's market café & piano bar // photo by carmen troesser

Hendel's Market Café & Piano Bar

Once a general store, this 140-year-old building houses the fanciest dining gem in historic downtown Florissant. Serving a decidedly older crowd, it’s the place to go for a dose of quaint fun. The piano bar is a draw on Thursday, Friday and Saturday nights, while a brick-lined patio – complete with a fish pond – beckons during warm weather. Steak, seafood and pasta are solid staples. Our must-try list includes the Pasta Fleurissant, Cajun Carbonara and Loaded Kale Salad.
599 Saint Denis St., 314.837.2304,

hendel's market café & piano bar // photo by carmen troesser

Kaslik Restaurant
Doors may have just opened at this dinky eastern Mediterranean restaurant, but the appetizer menu is far from commonplace. Why pick between foul moudames, warek inab, makdous, pickle-happy kabis and a spot-on spicy, oily Turkish salad when you can sample them all in the Kaslik veggie platter? If lunch must be carryout, let it be a lamb shish kebab, beef shawarma or falafel sandwich with just the right amount of tahini. What Kaslik lacks in décor, it makes up for in the authenticity of its crazy-good, affordable food.
N. Lindbergh Blvd., 314.972.8282,

vegan moroccan lentil bisque from deleo's cafe & deli // photo by carmen troesser

DeLeo’s Cafe & Deli
Just over a year old, DeLeo’s offers the kind of bright atmosphere, contemporary décor and spacious seating you don’t expect from a strip mall cafe. The broad menu of sandwiches, wraps, salads and soups are accessible to even the pickiest eaters. Go for the Double Feature and order half of the signature sandwich, Big Reuboni, and a bowl of one of eight rotating from-scratch soups like the vegan Moroccan Lentil Bisque, which impressed for its heft and flavor. Don’t leave without dropping a buck for DeLeo’s soon-to-be-famous chocolate chip cookie.
2782 N. US Hwy. 67 (Lindbergh Blvd.), 314.839.3880

max's meats & deli // photo by carmen troesser

Max’s Meats & Deli
Sausage is king at Max’s (Gummy bear-filled sausage – who knew?), but this mom-and-pop butcher shop can fill your fridge with custom cuts of any fresh meat. Max’s takes the notion of buying in bulk to hoarding-for-the-Apocalypse heights with its meat variety packages that enable you to stock up on fresh chuck roast, chicken, ground beef, bacon, pork chops, shoulder roast, sirloin steak and more at bargain prices. Oh, and snag a package of house-made beef jerky. Better yet, grab all four flavors.
432 Howdershell Road, 314.831.6164,

house-made tamales // photo by carmen troesser

Ruiz Mexican
In business for nearly six decades, this family-owned restaurant still packs the house. Yet with service this fast, the wait is still short. Nods go to recent seasonal, weekends-only specials – ceviche tostadas, carnitas and posole rojo – and to the moist masa on house-made tamales. How many times will your server refill the tortilla basket and bowls of green (our pick) and red salsa? We finally gave up counting.
901 N. Lindbergh Blvd., 314.838.3500,