Five Star Burgers!

by Stephanie on July 18, 2014

in American, Burgers

Hello and happy Friday! Unlike last week, this week has absolutely zoomed by. Does anyone else agree? Why can’t every week be like this? Smile

As you all (hopefully) know, I love a good burger. I feel like I’ve written at least a dozen blog posts about burger joints. I don’t know what it is – I think it’s just the satisfaction of biting into a juicy, perfectly cooked hunk of meat. It feels so wrong…but oh so right! Diets? Yeah, I don’t do those. Winking smile

So it goes without saying that when I found out about Five Star Burgers, I had to try it.

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This little burger joint has been around for a few years at least, and it’s located in Clayton, a (really) nice suburb of St. Louis. Even though Clayton is not too far from where I live, I rarely venture out that way; I’m definitely more of a city girl. But I heard good things about this place, and I’ll travel just about anywhere for good food.

I arrived on a quiet night and had the whole place pretty much to myself.

 

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Super cute!

Before I made my decision on what to eat, I had to start with a drink. I settled on the Last Word: Gin, maraschino liquor, green chartreuse, and lime.

 

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It was perfect! A little sweet, a little tart, and all around delicious.

I took a look at the menu to decide what I would feast on.

 

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All of the burgers sounded delicious, but the Breakfast of Champions burger really caught my eye: A sunny side up egg, American cheese, roast tomato-bacon jam, and hollandaise sauce? Sold! I went with a mixed basket of russet and sweet potato fries as my side.

 

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As usual, I ordered my burger cooked medium rare, and while 5 star didn’t quite hit the mark on that, the burger was still delicious. It was juicy, flavorful, and all around delicious. The fries were a winner too – crispy and tasty!

Service here was attentive and speedy. My drink and food came out in record time!

I’m really excited to come back and try more items on the menu – hopefully they measure up to my great first experience!

See you next week. Smile

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Gringo!

by Stephanie on July 11, 2014

in Dessert, Mexican

Hola, amigos! Sorry I missed ya last week – I was on vacation in Malibu, enjoying the beach and pretty much loving life. I wasn’t ready to come home, but alas…here I am. I miss the beach, but it really is good to be home in good old St. Louis. Smile

I’m sure most people would agree that the first week back to work after a long vacation is really really hard. It took me a little longer than I would have liked to get out of vacation mode! In between meetings and projects and other worky things, all I could think about was how badly I wanted to go back to the beach, relax, and drink a margarita the size of my head.

Thankfully, I won’t have to fly all the way back to Cali to make this happen.

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Hola, Gringo!

This restaurant is fairly new, or new to me, at least. It opened while I was away in Virginia, and when I came back to St. Louis, it’s one of the first places I visited with friends. They know me well. Winking smile

Gringo is located in the Central West End neighborhood of St. Louis, in a pretty prime location: right in the middle of all of the action!

The inside of the place is beautiful:

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I visited with my friends Joselyn and Christine. I won’t embarrass them with pictures this time. Just trust me on this one!

We grabbed some seats at the bar, and the friendly bartender immediately handed us menus.

We weren’t super hungry, so we decided to stick with the essentials:

 

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Cocktails and desserts, baby!

I went with the Gringo Margarita. Jos and Christine went with the El Camino Margarita and Mexican Sangria.

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My Gringo Margarita (Exotico Blanco, triple sec, fresh lime and orange) was delicious. I tasted the El Camino and Mexican Sangria, and those were tasty as well. Winners all around!

For dessert, we decided to share churros:

 

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And tres leches cake:

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I thought both desserts were good, but I was more drawn to the churros. Anything topped with cinnamon and sugar = instant winner in my book!

Service at Gringo was great – our bartender was super attentive and kept our drinks filled. Prices were reasonable, and the atmosphere was awesome.

I’m looking forward to coming back to try their lunch or dinner menu. And I’ll definitely be back for more margaritas!

See you next week! Smile

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Uptown Café!

by Stephanie on June 27, 2014

in American

Happiest of Fridays to you all! It’s a very happy Friday for me; I leave for California tomorrow! I’ll be there for a week, and I absolutely cannot wait. Bring on the sun and sand! Smile

This week’s review takes us to Uptown Café, in the lovely suburb of Clayton.

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I met up with my friend Holly for a quick lunch. Fun fact: we met up here just a few days after I came back to St. Louis (after almost 2 years of living in Virginia). It was a super happy reunion with one of my best friends in the world. Smile

And you know what? In searching through the pictures on my camera, I realize I didn’t take any pictures of us during this outing. That’s completely unlike me, as I love embarrassing my friends by including pictures of them on the blog. What kind of friend am I? The worst kind. Winking smile

Anyway, I dug through my old photos on my computer and found a few:

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2007 vs. 2014. We really haven’t changed too much in 7 years!

Enough of that. Let’s talk food!

Uptown Café has a pretty decent menu, with a large variety of pastas, pizza, and sandwiches to choose from. Their Thai Pizza sounded amazing; this New York style pizza included grilled teriyaki chicken, green onion, sweet peppers, chili peppers, and spicy Thai-peanut sauce.

The Mostaccioli also sounded amazing, and I have to admit, I almost ordered this classic dish, just because it is SO St. Louis. Mostaccioli itself is pretty simple: it’s basically just noodles mixed with marinara sauce, topped with cheese, and baked. But go to any wedding, barbeque, or work potluck, and it is always there. Someone always brings Mostaccioli. Just don’t ask anyone from St. Louis to pronounce it. Spoiler alert: we completely butcher the pronunciation.

However, I decided to go with the Seasoned Beef: this sandwich consists of roast beef topped with melted provel (another St. Louis thing), green peppers, and onions, and served on toasted garlic bread with a side of au jus.

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Speaking of provel cheese, remember when I used to hate the stuff? That reminds me – I should probably write another review of Imo’s. My tastes have changed a lot since 2010. Winking smile

Anyway, the seasoned beef sandwich. It was super tasty! The beef was flavorful and juicy, and I loved the added flavor that the garlic bread added to the sandwich. I will admit, the bread was a little hard (I should have asked for it untoasted!), but the delicious au jus definitely fixed that problem.

Service at Uptown Café was quick, efficient, and friendly. The prices were more than reasonable, and the atmosphere of the restaurant was nice, even though the size of the place is pretty small.

Uptown Café is nothing to squeal about – I save my squealing for very special occasions – but it’s a good place to visit if you’re in the Clayton area and need a quick bite to eat.

See ya next time!

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Bailey’s Range

by Stephanie on June 20, 2014

in American, Burgers

Oh. My. Goodness. You all…I’ve been a terrible food blogger lately. Life has been really crazy lately – work, running, and my social life have literally taken over my life, and my poor little blog is the victim of that. I apologize! I’m back to my once-weekly blog posts now, I promise! Winking smile

So what better way to come back than with an old favorite?

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Bailey’s Range!

You may remember that I’ve blogged about this place before. But that was three years ago! Today is a new day.

I came to Bailey’s Range with my friend Joselyn. Even though it’s been three years since I last visited, once I walked in, it felt like home.

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Clearly, I’m not the only one that enjoys this place. Smile

We were seated pretty quickly, and I immediately began to peruse the menu. The boozy lemonade menu was something new to me, and I studied it carefully.

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I went with the El Diablo: Aguila tequila, Gosling’s ginger beer, lemonade, and crème de casis.

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Calling this creation ‘delicious’ would be a gross understatement. It was INCREDIBLE. The perfect blend of sweet and tart, and the kick of ginger was definitely there. I loved it!

Every week, Bailey’s has a little competition that they call the Burger Battle. They come up with two creative burgers, and whichever burger gets the most orders that week moves on to the next round to challenge a new burger. I think that’s pretty neat!

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This week it was the Baa Baa Black Sheep (lamb patty, black peppered goat cheese, anchovy caper aioli, fresh sage) vs. The Big Kahuna (smoked beef patty, hazelnut butter, pickled pineapple, relish, arugula).

The Baa Baa Black Sheep was calling my name, so I went with that.

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I think I made the right choice. Look at how amazing that looks!

Joselyn and I also split a huge order of fries:

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Bailey’s has a wide variety of sauces for fry dipping, and we went with the queso and ‘rooster sauce’ – think of it as a kicked up version of ketchup. Both sauces were delicious!

And the burger? It was perfect. It was flavorful (lamb is super tasty!), juicy, and delicious. I ordered it cooked medium rare, and it was spot on. This was very impressive, as most restaurants get it wrong and end up cooking my burger until it’s a dried up hockey puck. Winking smile

After my burger, I wasn’t super hungry, but Bailey’s ice cream menu sounded awfully tempting:

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They make all of their ice creams in house, and I just couldn’t resist. I went with the cookies and cream.

 

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Fantastic! It was rich, creamy, delicious, and I felt like I needed to run 10 miles afterwards to burn off the calories. Worth it, y’all. Worth. It.

All in all, Bailey’s Range continues to impress the heck out of me. It’s a solid burger place with a wide variety of things to choose from on the menu, and great service as well. This is definitely one of my favorite fast-casual places to eat downtown, and I highly recommend it!

See you next week (and I really mean it this time)! Winking smile

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Sauce on the Side

by Stephanie on May 9, 2014

in American

I should really start thinking about beginning my blog posts with something other than my typical “Happy Friday!”. But until then, I’m going to say it: Happy Friday!

My latest foodie adventure happened at this little place:

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Sauce on the Side! It’s walking distance from my place, and I had heard nothing but good things about their calzones, so of course I had to visit!

The inside was super sleek and modern.

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And check out the presentation of their menu!

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So neat!

Sauce on the side has lots of tasty calzones to choose from. Each calzone is prepared with oil (Garlic Honey, Smoked Chili, or Garlic) and a sauce is served on the side. The sauce choices? Red sauce, meat sauce, spicy red sauce, BBQ sauce, queso, garlic butter sauce, or salsa verde. Whew! So much to choose from!

Thankfully, Sauce on the Side does the pairing for you; the calzones are each matched with oil and sauce, although you can substitute if you’d like. I was happy to let the restaurant do the work for me. Winking smile

As I was checking out the menu, I was torn! Everything sounded so good. I didn’t know whether I wanted the Fatty B (pepperoni, meatballs, onions, provolone, roasted garlic, mozzarella and ricotta), the Which Came First? (roasted pulled chicken, applewood smoked bacon, jalapenos, egg, onion, and mozzarella), or the Pancho Villa (chorizo, jalapenos, yellow peppers, smoked cheddar, and mozzarella). Decisions, decisions!

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After staring at the menu for what seemed like forever, I settled with the Pancho Villa. The cashier handed me a number, and I headed to a table to wait for my calzone to come out.

Okay…so I may have left something out. I also ordered a beer. Winking smile

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With a beer list like this, how couldn’t I? I went with the Urban Chestnut STLIPA. Keepin it local, baby!

My calzone came out pretty quickly, and…well…I’ll just let the picture speak for itself.

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I have a really clean computer monitor, and you know why? Because I’m constantly licking my computer screen. You know why my friends think I’m weird? Because I’m constantly licking my computer screen.

I’ll let you decide if I’m kidding or not.

Back to the food! Let’s take a closer look:

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YOU GUYS. I can’t even.

After I snapped about a million pictures of my food, I finally dug in. I wish I could accurately describe the wonderful burst of flavors that exploded in my mouth: the spicy chorizo, the delicious smoked cheddar, the flavor (and pop of color!) from the yellow peppers…everything was perfect.

Oh!

And the queso dip. The queso dip! It complemented the calzone perfectly. It added just a touch of flavor without overpowering any of the components of the calzone. You really can’t go wrong with queso dip.

Ahhh…queso dip. I wish I could float in a huge vat of it. And there would be an inner tube made of calzone dough that I would float on, and I’d munch on calzones all day, and dip them into the lovely pool of queso that I was floating in.

Aaaaand this is why I should stop writing blog posts at 2am.

Anyway, it was good. Really good. The calzone itself was huge and definitely enough for two servings, but I powered through and ate the entire thing. I feel like I should get some sort of award for that.

All in all, Sauce on the Side is incredible. Everything, from the relaxed environment, to the décor, to the service, and of course, the food – was fantastic.

Go here now. I promise it’s worth it.

See you next week!

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