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Saturday, January 3, 2009

I am returned to New Orleans once again.

Another fantastic trip back home; a feeling of belonging that bores further into my skull. Sigh.

As regular readers of this blog know, when I return home, I hit up all those restaurants, etc. that opened up in my absence. I also, this time, was able to get to some I had never been to despite being fixtures of the St. Louis dining scene. Lacking money, I must thank my newly minted lawyer-brother for some of these meals. Thanks Josh!

As far as oldies-but-goodies, I went to both Modesto (the Hill) and Yemanja Brasil (Benton Park). Both are colorful and lively dining experiences. I would have to say, though, that Modesto provided some of the best food I've experienced in quite a while. Try the chicken croquettes! We must have had seven tapas portions of food that were all excellent. I give Yemanja more marks on its ambiance, which is as lively and festive as Copacabana.

I returned to a couple places, too--The Wedge (Bates/Virginia), Hodak's (a Benton Park classic), Hartford Community Coffee (Tower Grove South), Three Monkeys (Tower Grove South), Murdoch Perk (Southampton), and Pi (East Loop), to name a few.

I was extremely pleased to finally experience Urban Eats (Dutchtown), at Meramec and Virginia. I had a flatbread pizza that was extremely fresh and delectable. The place is a step up, for sure, in the decor department as well, especially compared to previous attempts at tackling the space. I would highly recommend this place if your desire is quick, relatively inexpensive, healthy food. Plus, you can overlook the sidewalk activities of a very urban neighborhood as you dine. As it turned out, I ran into 25th Ward Alderman candidate Shane Cohn and had a brief conversation with him at the establishment as well. I wished him luck in his campaign. He, like Steve Patterson of Urban Review St. Louis, who ran and lost in this same Ward against Dorothy Kirner, supports term limits for alderpersons. I could not agree more that this is a huge issue in St. Louis governance. [Wow...Urban Eats became surprisingly political].

Triumph Grill in Midtown/Grand Center is a superb addition to the neighborhood's growing repertoire of eateries (though I've still not been to The U or Pappy's, both having earned critical acclaim). I stayed somewhat conservative with my food choice (old fashioned fish and chips), but our party ordered an appetizer sampler that was simply delicious. Flash-fried asparagus with a soy-based dipping sauce? Count me in!

BoBo Noodle House (Skinker-DeBaliviere) was a pleasant surprise as well. Its ultra-contemporary/Euro design is surprisingly rare in St. Louis and is welcome in my opinion. I forget the name of my dish, but it contained beef and, go figure, noodles. Spicy and wonderfully tasty.

SweetArt in Shaw (on 39th) opened on the 26th, so I was actually able to make it to this highly anticipated spot. A husband and wife duo, painter and baker, respectively, have turned a vacant storefront facing the beautiful St. Margaret of Scotland Church into an urbanite's paradise. Within easy walking distance of thousands of Shaw residents and scores of visitors to the Garden is this pleasant bakery (which, of course, serves coffee). I tried the red velvet cupcake (all natural, by the way)--and it did not disappoint.

What's next on my list when I return?

Velocity Cafe and Cyclery (DeBaliviere Place)

Fritanga (Nicaraguan, on Jefferson near Russell)

One of the Mexican restaurants on Cherokee (...I've never been. I know. Shame. Anyone have recommendations?)

Taft Street Restaurant (Bosnian, in my parents' neighborhood, Bevo)

Also, I snapped a couple more pictures that I have yet to dump onto Skyscraperpage, and so may just make them Dotage exclusives. I was able to walk the length of the Macklind Avenue Business District and snap a bunch of photographs, so look forward to that post coming soon!

Thanks, all. My New Year's resolution is to post more often while I have a lull in my workload.

Happy New Year!

[Linkage to come soon...]


Michael R. Allen said...

SweetArt quiche -- so good.

SweetArt tart -- so good.

Must return.

citizenshane said...

it was great meeting you, and i enjoyed our conversation! thanks so much for the 'shout out' on your blog!

Keep up the good work!



Matt M. said...

^ To Michael--

I hope the Urban Studio in ONSL can mimic the urbane feeling of SweetArt!

^ To Shane--

It was great meeting you, too. To reiterate, good luck on your campaign! Dutchtown/Mt. Pleasant deserves a dedicated person like you.

Unknown said...

Hello! I work for an architecture company in St. Louis doing historic preservation, including some of the buildings you have mentioned. I also have a blog called St. Louis Design Community Connections. Will you check it out, and if you like what you see let me know; we can help each other gain visibility by blogrolling each other's site. Thanks! Donna J Gamache

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