The Dark Room on Grand Boulevard in St. Louis has a new chef, Samantha Pretto, who joined recently from the Scottish Arms. One big way she’s put her stamp on the menu is with a weekly gnocchi program featuring fresh house made gnocchi with a variety of ingredients.
She hand rolls and hand cuts the thick, soft dough dumplings, mixing in featured ingredients. The 1″-2″ gnocchi pieces are pan-seared to the desired texture.
Among the ingredients she adds to her gnocchi are sweet potato, carrot, parsnip, spinach, and roasted red pepper. Chef Pretto (pictured below) then adds various butters, wine sauces and creams, topping it all with seasonal vegetables, artisan cheese and local greens.
Along with gnocchi, The Dark Room’s food choices include appetizers (featuring charcuterie and cheeses) and an assortment of flatbreads. Also: Catalan meatballs, vegetable curry and desserts. To see The Dark Room’s menu, click HERE and scroll down through their extensive wine list. (The proper billing for the place is The Dark Room Wine Bar and Photo Gallery.)
The Dark Room is located at 615 North Grand Boulevard, between the Fox Theatre and Powell Hall. Call 314-531-3416.
Social links: Twitter: @TheDarkRoomSTL
Cooked, a four-part documentary TV series based on Michael Pollan’s 2013 book, is coming to Netflix. All episodes will be available for streaming on Friday, February 19. Here’s a preview:
Click HERE to read my review of Pollan’s Cooked book. (“In Cooked, Pollan suggests that cooking was one of the greatest, if not the greatest, boon to human civilization.”)
(Thanks to Mike Emerson for sharing this info about the show on Facebook.)
Companion Baking has opened its new café in the Westport area. The location is 2331 Schuetz Road in Maryland Heights. Hours are Monday through Friday, 6:00 a.m. to 3:00 p.m. and Saturday and Sunday, 7:00 a.m. to 3:00 p.m.
The new restaurant Boundary is set to open February 8 at The Cheshire. It replaces the Restaurant at the Cheshire. Click HERE for more. The name is inspired by the Cheshire’s location on Clayton Road which straddles the city/county boundary.
A fast-casual Mexican restaurant will open in Clayton in spring. Located at 7810 Forsyth in a former Quizno’s space, Wet Burrito comes from the folks at Rock Hill’s landmark Hacienda. Wet Burrito will cater to the Clayton lunch crowd and promises “to serve virtually every customer from start to finish in less than three minutes.”
The Anheuser-Busch Biergarten is hosting a buffet breakfast on Saturday morning, February 6, 8:00 a.m. to noon, before the Soulard Mardi Gras parade.
After the parade, the Biergarten will have live music from North Of The Quarter, performing from 2:00 p.m. to 5:00 p.m.
During the Bud Light Grand Parade, which begins at 11:00 a.m., the A-B Tour Center will have its trolley (with a beer/burgers/baseball theme) in the parade.
The Biergarten will be serving $2 Bud Lights, Bloody Marys and Bud Light Mixxtails Hurricanes on Saturday. A special Mardi Gras themed menu is being offer through Tuesday, February 9, at the Biergarten featuring New Orleans style dishes such as Jambalaya, Apple Beignets and Shrimp Po’Boys.
The Biergarten is located at 1200 Lynch Street in St. Louis. If you’re going to visit on Saturday, February 6, your best bet for access is the Pestalozzi bridge over I-44.