2014 Faves

Here are a few of my favorite foods I enjoyed during 2014.

Family circumstances prevented my wife and me from having a large number of dining out opportunities, but I did enjoy some good grub during 2014. Warning: This is not a haute cuisine, fine dining list.

Some of my highlights:

1. My wife’s Shrimp and Grits. A preparation she picked up during her tenure at Dierberg’s School of Cooking.


BBLT

2. The BBL & T (above) at the new Rooster on South Grand. Two B’s indicating a double dose of bacon. Also their sweet house-made ketchup for my fries was a treat. Speaking of fries…

 

Sweet Potato Fries

3. Sweet Potato Fries (above) at Saw’s Juke Joint in Birmingham. I like the ones at 5 Star Burgers here in town, but the ones at Saw’s are bigger and very tasty.

 

Bacon Maple

4. Bacon Maple Doughnut (above) from the Ex-Cop Doughnut Shop (on Telegraph Road), sampled at the Baconfest downtown on a rainy August Saturday.

 

Torta

5. Choro Huevo Torta (above) at Mission Taco on Delmar. Chorizo, egg, cheese, beans on a nice piece of bread.

6. Sushi from Drunken Fish at Ballpark Village. I’m not a sushi expert but everything from Drunken Fish I sampled at a media event at BPV in June was delicious.

7. Pulled Piggy Pizza at PW Pizza. Tasty pizza made better because my grandkids were with me!

8. Crabcake sandwich at The Crossing (a client). With a wonderful pesto sauce.

9. Barbecue. Pulled pork from Super Smokers and ribs from the SLOBS competition teams. (I worked with Terry Black at Super Smokers during 2014 and became reacquainted with his consistently good product. I also worked with the Tom Coghill and Bill Kunz and the SLOBS group and sampled many beautifully smoked ribs.) Additionally, I really liked the ribs from The Precinct downtown and dug the pulled pork from Hendrick’s BBQ in St. Charles and Highway 61 Roadhouse in Webster.

 

Waffle

10. Waffle (above) from the Waffle House in Fultondale, Alabama. Perfectly cooked, promptly served and just what I wanted that morning.

 

5 Star Burgers Now Open in Kirkwood

My wife and I checked out the Garden Glow at Missouri Botanical Garden Thursday night—we loved it, by the way—and afterward decided to stop at one of the casual spots in Kirkwood. We drove by the new 5 Star Burgers location and, to our surprise, there were people inside, eating! So, we stopped and went in.

5 star room

After being seated, we chatted with proud owner Steve Gontram (pictured below). He told us that final inspections had just been completed that morning. Thursday night was practice night, the shakedown cruise for the staff before official opening day on Friday, December 20.

Steve Gontram

Our food and service were perfect. My wife had a salad and I had the 5 Star Burger, shown below. (Pic shot with bite taken so you can see that it was cooked medium, as ordered.) We shared a basket of sweet potato fries.

My burger

The bar poured me a tasty Civil Life Brown and appeared to be making first night visitors happy. They have a good selection of local craft beers.

5 Star bar

And for Slinger fans, this month is a good time to visit. See below.

Slinger

5 Star Burgers in Kirkwood is in the old Culpepper’s location at 312 South Kirkwood Road. Now open and ready to rock! (5 Star Burgers also has a location in Clayton, which opened last year, at 8125 Maryland.)