Boiled Peanut Hummus at Saw’s

My family always parched peanuts at our house. When I moved back to the South in the mid-80’s, I became aware of boiled peanuts.

Near my radio station on Jacksonville, Florida’s west side was a tacky-looking roadside stand that sold boiled peanuts. When we vacationed in the Smoky Mountains we saw boiled peanut stands in several spots in North Carolina.

I finally tried them and did not like ’em. Why would someone boil peanuts and make ’em mushy? I always liked my peanuts crunchy.

Boiled Peanut Hummus

Last weekend, on Easter eve, a friend and I stopped at Saw’s Juke Joint in Birmingham where they offered Boiled Peanut Hummus (pictured above). It was delicious! (Yes, those are bacon bits on top of the hummus.)

The peanut flavor was perfect and went great with both stout and saison craft brews. (It might’ve been a better idea to have offered pita bread or toast points—something less flavorful and salty than potato chips—on which to spread the hummus.)

We also enjoyed Saw’s Sweet Potato Fries which were among the best I’ve ever had. They are big.

Sweet Potato Fries

Of course, this is a BBQ joint, so on my next visit, I’ll be tasting some of their ‘cue. Maybe the Chicken Stuffed Tater (a baked potato with green onions, bacon, chicken and BBQ sauce). The guy sitting next to us at the bar was digging into one and it was huge.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Kaldi’s Coffee Dinner at the Ritz

Many restaurants have spectacular wine dinners. Some offer intriguing beer dinners. We’ve even seen the occasional whiskey dinner recently. Now, here comes a Spring Coffee Dinner at the Ritz-Carlton on Saturday, May 17.

Ritz

The meal will feature Kaldi’s coffees in each course. Menu items include coffee-glazed pork belly, coffee-rubbed beef tenderloin, halibut sauced with coffee beurre blanc and coffee créme brulée. Click HERE for the complete menu.

Kaldi

Paired coffee cocktails and Urban Chestnut beers will accompany the meal.

Cost is $150/person plus tax and tip. A portion of the evening’s proceeds will go to the Ronald McDonald House. For reservations, call the Ritz at 314-719-1433.

The Ritz-Carlton, St. Louis is located at 100 Carondelet Plaza in Clayton.

Even MORE BBQ for St. Louis

Restaurant owners Dave Bailey and Tom Schmidt engaged in a clever Twitter chat yesterday afternoon that revealed their respective new BBQ plans.

At 5:50 p.m. @BaileysinSTL tweeted to @FrancoSTL: “Hey, Tom, a little bird told me that you were opening a BBQ restaurant.”

bbq

In the next few minutes, beans were spilled via Twitter that Schmidt’s Nico (in the Loop next to the Chuck Berry statue) would be retooled into Salt + Smoke and would open in May.

Bailey shared word that his yet unnamed BBQ joint downtown at 1011 Olive would open next winter.

At 6:08 p.m. the P-D’s @ianfroeb noticed the chat and tweeted: “Dave Bailey and Tom Schmidt are either breaking news together or trolling all of us brilliantly.”

Congrats to both for using Twitter to bypass the local foodie media and take their news straight to the whole Twitterverse. Whether they plotted the exchange on their own or were guided by an unseen hand, it was nicely done.

Is there room for 2 more BBQ restaurants in town? I say yes. We may have enough Walgreen’s locations and a sufficient number of Starbucks stores to take care of our needs. But the saturation point for BBQ—while getting closer—is still a ways away, in my opinion.