St. Louis eateries

One of my best friends, her husband and two small children are moving to St. Louis for a year. I want to put together a guide of sorts for them of fun things they can do while they're there. I'm looking for hidden gems, "a place only the locals know," "if you go to one restaurant it should be..." -- that kind of stuff. They don't have to be kid-friendly, although some kid-friendly options would be great. They're pretty adventurous eaters, so nothing is off the table (haha). Thanks!



MTMitchell June 19, 2015
Garlic Fiend, you're a hero! Thank you. You've hit on all kinds of places I think my friend and her family will love and you've helped me put some ideas together that will hopefully lead them to some new adventures in their new home. She's a really special and important person in my world and I'm so glad to be able to give her all these great ideas!
Garlic F. June 19, 2015
You're welcome! I hope they enjoy the food as much as we did. There are also lots of fun free things to do there that they should take advantage of--Forest Park and all the museums there (my favorites are the art and science museums). MO Botanical Gardens is amazing. They have free concerts there in the summers. They also have the largest Japanese Garden outside of Japan. The zoo is also awesome. It is one of the largest free zoos in the US. For a price, the MUNY is an outdoor theater that puts up Broadway type shows. If they don't mind the heat, the shows are very good. A lot of professionals kind of do those production during.their summers off. And they certainly make use of the fact that they are outdoors (example: saw Miss Saigon there and during the evacuation scene, they actually borrowed an army helicopter from the base nearby, flew it in and flew it out.) Anyway, they are lucky to have you as a friend.
Garlic F. June 18, 2015
Sorry. I promise last one. Mai Lee for Vietnamese. If I remember correctly, the food was great but it was a long wait for a table.

And anywhere on "The Hill" for amazing American Italian fare. Our favorite restaurant is Pietro's (NOT Del Pietro's) and favorite Italian grocery is DiGregorio's.
Garlic F. June 18, 2015
I can't believe I forgot to include World's Fair Donuts. It is probably on your way to the Mo Botanical Gardens. Cash only. Very tasty. The sane family has been running the shop forever.
MTMitchell June 18, 2015
Yay! thank you, friends. This is exactly the kind of intel I was looking for.
Garlic F. June 17, 2015
Oh! And you must hit Ted Drewes for frozen custard. I know it's not "hidden," but one cannot live in St Louis without experiencing it
Garlic F. June 17, 2015
Lulu's seafood restaurant on Olive has the best dim sum and I'm speaking as a person who grew up on that stuff. Get there by 11:30 on weekends to get a seat.
Monica P. June 17, 2015
Oh wow! What a great question. There are so many great places to eat in St. Louis these days, but your request for hidden gems adds a fun twist to the question! For the sake of time and clarity, I will just list a few here:

Fork & Stix (Thai)
Spice-n-Grill (Indian)
Water Street (for cocktails and dinner)
La Pizza (Best New York style pizza in St. Louis)
Black Thorn Pub (Best St. Louis style pizza)
U-City Grill (Excellent Korean food at a tiny one-man diner operation)
Gulf Shores (Cajun/New Orleans)
Bistro 1130 (Moroccan/Mediterranean)

I'm sure I will come up with many more under-the-radar gems as I think longer. I was trying to stay away from the more obvious suggestions. Hope this helps!
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