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May 06, 2016
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Intelligent Content For The Food Fascinated
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SERVING SAINT LOUIS SINCE 1999
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By the Book: Cuban Cocktails by Ravi DeRossi, Jane Danger and Alla Lapushchik

May 6th, 2016

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On a recent trip to the U.S. Virgin Islands, I made sure to drink cocktails out of coconuts as often as possible. I also learned that Coco Lopez is the bartender’s preferred brand to use when making coconut-based cocktails. In Cuban Cocktails: 100 Classic and Modern Drinks, the authors also praise Coco Lopez as the first mass-produced coconut cream, making tropical fruity drinks like this much simpler to make. It was a tough to find this brand (It wasn’t in regular or specialty grocery stores.), but I eventually found it at Randall’s.

Get a taste of summer at bars all over St. Louis. Click here for our Summer Drinking Preview.

Quality coconut cream necessitates a piña colada. It turned out well, though it’s a very sweet drink that didn’t need the additional simple syrup the recipe called for. Fresh lime juice also would help to balance that sweetness. The authors do offer a Cuban take on a piña colada that added lime juice, but it cut the coconut cream. Still, when you pour this frothy cocktail into a coconut adorned with a paper umbrella, pineapple wedge and a bendy straw, quibbles like these don’t seem to matter much.

Skill level: Easy. Most recipes require only a few ingredients.
This book is for: People who really want to be on vacation right now.
Other recipes to try: Isle of Manhattan Fizz – a mix of gin, rum, coconut cream, orange flower water, club soda and pineapple and lime juices.
The verdict: Check back next week, when this piña colada takes on the next summer cocktail.

 

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Piña Colada
1 serving

2 oz. white rum
3 oz. coconut puree
1 oz. simple syrup
2 oz. pineapple juice
½ cup crushed ice
Pineapple for garnish

• Combine all ingredients in a blender and blend for 15 seconds. Pour into a tiki bowl or frozen pineapple shell. Garnish with a pineapple wedge or a cocktail umbrella. For more of a kick, whip shake ingredients and serve over crushed ice.
• To make the Cuban version, omit the coconut puree and add ¾ ounce lime juice

Reprinted with permission from Sterling Epicure

 

Tweet Beat: The week’s top tweet from #STL foodies

May 6th, 2016

Are you following us on Twitter? Come on, get Saucy @saucemag

 

 

Think you should be on this list? Follow us and let us know @saucemag

First Look: Stubborn German Brewing Co. in Waterloo

May 6th, 2016

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Call it tenacity, determination or plain old stubbornness. After months of demo, construction and brewing, co-owners Chris and Tammy Rahn opened Stubborn German Brewing Co. in downtown Waterloo on Wednesday, April 27.

As The Scoop reported in April 2015, Chris Rahn was a homebrewer for more than a decade before deciding to open his own brewery. Named as a tribute to their (and Waterloo’s) German heritage, Stubborn German offers a portfolio of seven year-round, German-style beers like the Waterloo Wheat, Fountain Creek Kölsch and a Munich dunkel named Schitzengiggles. The brewery also features seasonal brews like Mom’s Irish Red and Bean Tree Coffee Stout, made with beans from Bean Tree Cafe down the street. Beers are poured in delicate Spielgelau glassware with each style of beer in its appropriate vessel. Flights and to-go growlers are also available.

The Rahns worked on the construction of the tasting room along with friends and family, who helped build a bar made partially of barrel staves and high-top tables. No food is served at the brewery, but customers are welcome to bring in food or order delivery from area restaurants. They can pull up one of the 100 seats indoors or enjoy the 25-seat Biergarten out front.

Stubborn German is open Wednesday and Thursday from 4:30 to 11 p.m., Friday from 3 p.m. to midnight, Saturday from noon to midnight and Sunday from noon to 6 p.m. Here’s a first look at what to expect when you head over the Mississippi River to Waterloo:

 

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-photos by Michelle Volansky

Hit List: 5 new places you must try this May

May 5th, 2016

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1. Weber Grill Restaurant: 1147 Saint Louis Galleria St., Brentwood, 314.930.3838, webergrillrestaurant.com/location/st-louis

Firing up the backyard grill is as sure a sign of spring as Cardinals baseball, but if you’d rather leave the job to professionals, then head to the Saint Louis Galleria, where Weber Grill Restaurant has opened its first St. Louis-area location. Here, almost every item on the extensive menu takes a pass over a ripping hot Weber kettle. If barbecue is your preference, check out the hickory-smoked baby back ribs with a smoky char and a gentle brush of Weber’s sweet hickory barbecue sauce. Order it with a side of creamy blue cheese-pecan coleslaw. For a lighter meal, try the meltingly tender salmon, grilled on a cedar plank and touched with a bourbon sauce for smoky, caramelized edges.

 

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2. Shift, Test Kitchen & Take Out: 313 N. 11th St., St. Louis, 314.932.7443, shifttestkitchen.com

Forgetting your lunch doesn’t mean scrounging for day-old doughnuts in the conference room. Drop that stale tiger tail and head to Shift, Test Kitchen and Take Out, the latest concept from restaurateur Dave Bailey. This carryout-only eatery serves as a test kitchen for forthcoming Bailey concepts. Barbecue is the fare of the moment, as well as grab-and-go snacks. While the menu changes daily, keep an eye out for the tender, smoked brisket served with a sweet Kansas City-style sauce and a side of creamy mac and cheese with a kick of jalapeno. The chopped pork belly sandwich is a fatty, smoky indulgence that comes with spicy firecracker sauce with cherry notes and crunchy purple cabbage slaw. Grab a cup of ice cream on your way out (look for the blueberry pie), write your name on the lid, and hide it in the freezer for an afternoon snack.

 

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3. Farm to You Market: 5025 Old Highway 100, Washington, 844.682.2266, farmtoyoumarket.com

Soup from Wentzville, honey from Fulton, rice from Braggadocio and pork from Washington all get a spot on the shelves at Farm to You Market. Todd Geisert Farms co-owners Todd and Katie Geisert take the idea of a farmers market to another level, stocking seasonal produce, farm-fresh eggs, bacon, ice cream, milk, pasta and more from Missouri farmers and vendors from primarily within a 200-mile radius. After all that shopping, grab a seat in The Barn Yard Cafe for a deli sandwich or reserve your seat for a monthly chef’s dinner.

 

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Don’t miss two food trucks that recently hit the streets, too. Angie Saville rode her winnings from July 2015’s Budweiser Bud & Burgers competition all the way to her own food truck, Angie Burger. Samantha Mitchell left the hallowed kitchens of Annie Gunn’s and now revs the engines – and the flattop – at Farmtruk, offering locally sourced, farm-fresh fare. Find out why Angie Burger and Farmtruk made the Hit List and our rundown of the best St. Louis new food trucks.

 

Drink This Weekend Edition: Luca Wine Dinner at Annie Gunn’s

May 5th, 2016

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There aren’t many resumes as complete as Laura Catena’s. She’s a fourth-generation winemaker, holds degrees from Harvard and Stanford universities and has (literally) written the book on Argentine wine, Vino Argentino: An Insider’s Guide to the Wines and Wine Country of Argentina.

Catena, who will host her only U.S. wine dinner at Annie Gunn’s this Monday, May 9, is both owner-vintner of Luca Wines and managing director of her family’s Botega Catena Zapata vineyard. Here, she shares her thoughts on the growth of Argentine wine and the growing international market for malbec.

You have a family history in wine, but you pursued other careers before this one. Why did you return to the wine industry?
When I was deciding what to study, my vision was to do a profession that could help people. At that time I thought, “How can you possibly help people by making wine?” I’ve changed my mind (since then). This wine revolution has brought about great prosperity to Argentina and the region. It’s helped people have better schools and roads. I’ve gone full circle from wanting to leave the nest to making something as beautiful as wine and knowing it is an important contribution.

To what do you attribute the increased popularity of Argentine malbec?
In the late 19th and early 20th centuries, Argentina had this huge wave of immigration that multiplied the population by four or five times. Most immigrants were Spanish or from the Marche region in Italy. They were used to drinking European style, having wine with lunch and dinner.

My father, in the 1980s and 1990s, was a visiting scholar and saw what was going on in Napa, with people making wine as good as the French. He said, “I want to make great wine in Argentina that can compete with the best in the world.”

What is the most common misconception about Argentine wines?
For one thing, many people think that malbec just showed up. Not only is it an ancient grape, it’s the principle grape in Argentina. It’s not some kind of brand-new thing. We’ve been making since 1800s. The second thing is that malbec can be very diverse. It can be aged or blended and can taste totally different depending on where it comes from.

How do different malbecs taste?
If it’s from cool climate, it will taste more mineral with more violet-black fruit aroma. They’re more elegant than jammy (when grown in a) high, cool climate. Grown in warmer climates, malbec is syrupy with more ripe fruit aroma. They’re equally delicious but in a different way … but all malbec is aromatic and smooth.

How do you describe your Luca Wines?
I work really hard to make wines that have exuberance but are not too syrupy. I want it to be exuberant and elegant at the same time, and (I want it to) go well with a lot of different kinds of food. I’m not big on picking ideal food and wine pairings. You should go with drinking what you feel like drinking that day.

Where do you see the wine industry as a whole ,and specifically the Argentine wine industry, going in the next five to 10 years?
People will learn more about malbec and be able to taste from different regions. It’s like cheese. Once you get into cheese, you want to try different kinds of cheese. People will get into different regions of malbec. … If drinkers start asking for and buying these other varieties, places will carry them.

 

 

 

 

First Look: Sym•Bowl in Chesterfield

May 4th, 2016

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The latest build-your-own eatery has come to Chesterfield. Sym·Bowl, a rebranded second location of The HotPot in Kirkwood, opened on Wednesday, April 27. Co-owners Becky Schoenig and Gregory Owens not only wanted to open another location, but also have their eyes on franchise opportunities. As The Scoop reported in March, Sym·Bowl opened in the old Surf Dogs building at 137 Chesterfield Town Center.

Like other customizable dining options, Sym·Bowl lets diners choose a protein, vegetables, sauces and style (in warm broth or as a salad) and welcomes different dietary needs. Chef and manager Robert McClellan, formerly of now-shuttered Gringo, and has created paleo, gluten-free, vegetarian and vegan-friendly options.

HotPot regulars will recognize the numerous proteins including chicken, beef, tofu, shrimp, pork or vegetables. As in Kirkwood, they can choose from an additional 11 vegetables or add them all with the “rake it through the garden” option. All bowls are available warm with one of seven sauces like green curry, lemon-mango or bone broth and choice of noodles, quinoa, rice and more. Diners can also cool things down with one of five cold dressings like cilantro-lemongrass or ginger-sesame in a grain-free wrap or atop greens or grains. These “chill out” options will soon be available at The HotPot.

Smoothies, fresh juices and desserts are also offered, and Schoenig hopes to add carryout family meals in the future. Sym·Bowl is open Monday through Friday from 10:30 a.m. to 8 p.m. and Saturday from 10:30 a.m. to 3 p.m. Here’s what to expect when you step inside The HotPot’s newest location, Sym·Bowl :

 

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-photos by Michelle Volansky 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Extra Sauce: Food Truck Friday Speed Pass Giveaway

May 4th, 2016

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Calling all food truck fanatics: Celebrate our best new food trucks and the start of Food Truck Friday season with a month of Sauce Speed Pass Giveaways!  Six Best New Food Trucks means six chances to win!

What’s a Speed Pass? These $10 tickets allow you to use an expedited line at one food truck during Food Truck Friday. We’re giving away 6 pairs of Speed Passes throughout May. Here’s how it works:

Staring May 4, we’ll announce the Best New Food Truck of the Day on Instagram and Twitter. Grab lunch from that truck, and while you’re there, look for the Food Truck Friday logo hidden nearby. (Hint: Check trees, benches, parking meters, etc.) Then follow these instructions:

1. Snap a photo of yourself with the logo and your meal from our Food Truck of the Day.

2. Post it to Instagram or Twitter and tag @SauceMag and #SauceFoodTruckFriday. We will reply to confirm your post.

3. Present the logo at the Sauce tent at Food Truck Friday to claim your Speed Passes.

Good luck!

 

Edible Weekend: 3 more food-filled events this weekend

May 4th, 2016

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Don’t sit at home and miss out on the food and fun this weekend. Get out and experience these yummy events:

1. Maplewood gets in on the Cinco de Mayo festivities with five full days of food and drink specials at Maya Cafe, including discounted margaritas, sangria, tequila cocktails, tacos and live music. May 3 to 7, mayacafestl.com

2. Join the fiesta on Cherokee Street at the neighborhood’s Cinco de Mayo celebration. Enjoy the parade, then grab food from stands outside La Vallesana, Taqueria el Bronco, Don Carlos, Byrd & Barrel and newly opened Mezcla. May 7, cincodemayostl.com

3. Stroll through restaurants in the historic Hill neighborhood at The Hill Wine Walk. Fill your commemorative glass with samples at participating locations and enjoy entertainment. Tickets available online. May 7, shopthehill.com 

Still hungry? Then sign up for Edible Weekend, our newly redesigned weekly newsletter, and get the weekend’s top four foodie events delivered directly to your inbox every Wednesday. Click here to sign up now!

The Scoop: James Beard award eludes Willmann and Nashan

May 2nd, 2016

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Local restaurant enthusiasts hoping one of its own would take gold again this year were disappointed as a James Beard Foundation Award has eluded two St. Louis chefs. Kevin Nashan and Kevin Willmann were two of five finalists in the Best Chef: Midwest category, with the top prize going to Paul Berglund of The Bachelor Farmer in Minneapolis.

Nashan is the chef-owner of Sidney Street Café, and Willmann is the chef-owner of Farmhaus. This was Nashan’s second time being named a finalist, while it was Willmann’s first finalist nod.

Meatless Monday: Strawberry, Melon and Avocado Salad

May 2nd, 2016

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The first sweet red strawberries have arrived at the farmers market, and we’re welcoming them with a vibrant salad. Sliced ripe strawberries, bright cantaloupe and creamy avocados are tossed with feta, peppery arugula and sweet, minty vinaigrette for a fresh bite and playful texture. Get the recipe here.

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