Helpful ReplyHot!April 2017 St. Louis and Kansas City Roadfood Crawl

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JRPfeff
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Re: April 2017 St. Louis and Kansas City Roadfood Crawl 2017/04/29 16:21:01 (permalink)
The Rye Bagel was even better.

Excellent report David. I think you may be the first person to ever complete a Trip Report for one of the spring crawls. (Did you hear that DannyBear15?)  
 
p.s. David , Bobbi is very flattered by your praise of her baking.
post edited by JRPfeff - 2017/04/29 16:31:39
#31
JRPfeff
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Re: April 2017 St. Louis and Kansas City Roadfood Crawl 2017/04/29 16:24:06 (permalink)

#MustTryRoadfood 
#32
BuddyRoadhouse
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Re: April 2017 St. Louis and Kansas City Roadfood Crawl 2017/04/29 17:00:44 (permalink)
JRP,
You should do a copy and paste of the photos you already posted on the trip thread.  Add in a little more commentary (and pics if you've got 'em) and you'll beat both the Bear and the Diner in this report thread.
 
Buddy
#33
Sfreader
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Re: April 2017 St. Louis and Kansas City Roadfood Crawl 2017/04/29 18:18:33 (permalink)
Thanks so much for the report!
 
If you still wish you had bought povitica, you can have it shipped to you. I think these people have an even better bread than Strawberry Hill: http://www.oldcountrybakery.com/    When we are dinner guests, I often take a loaf as a host gift.

#34
BuddyRoadhouse
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Re: April 2017 St. Louis and Kansas City Roadfood Crawl 2017/04/30 02:06:00 (permalink)
Sfreader,
is Old Country Bakery open to the public like Strawberry Hill?  Is it worth paying them a visit next time we're in town?
 
Buddy
#35
TnTinCT
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Re: April 2017 St. Louis and Kansas City Roadfood Crawl 2017/04/30 09:17:13 (permalink)
Great report, looks like you all hit some great places, and a number of personal favorites. Sorry we couldn't join this year, waiting for the decision for next year!
#36
Uncle Groucho
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Re: April 2017 St. Louis and Kansas City Roadfood Crawl 2017/04/30 11:25:46 (permalink)
WOW! That was a lot pictures of some good looking food. Thanks for sharing.
#37
ChiTownDiner
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Re: April 2017 St. Louis and Kansas City Roadfood Crawl 2017/04/30 12:20:35 (permalink)
Tuesday, April 18th
 
Joined by Danny “If you do these 99 things, I’ll start the trip report” ChiBears15, we departed my house at about 5:50am.  We would have left 5 minutes earlier but decided to give David a head start.  First stop was fuel and we choose a wanderingjew exclusive…
 

 
Many of you have probably never heard of Starbucks as it’s a small shop, custom brew kinda place.  We walked in and I immediately was greeted and ordered a Fine Special or Venti Black!  And it was fine cup of coffee.  ChiBears, unfamiliar with the Starbucks menu ordered an Americano.  Fueled up…we were off! 
 
I had done considerable planning for this trip….
 

 
…and we had the trusty spreadsheet ready to guide us to both points unknown as well as several versions of the promised land.   First up and about two hours out, Bloomington IL’s very own Shannon’s Five Star
 

 
Their original restaurant was housed in the old Federal Café from which an old menu is posted here.  there's actually much more to this story and the website has it all: http://www.shannonsfivestar.com/home 
 

 
Nowadays, the restaurant is located on the site of the old Five Star Truck Stop on historic Route 66 and is a sprawling place that locals frequent in droves occupying their favorite tables and punctuating the morning with lively conversation.  This place is huge and could easily hold over 150+ diners.  Blue plate specials are available every day of the week.
 


 
Breakfasts are old fashioned and hearty.  I went old school with a sausage and cheese omelet, Danny biscuits and gravy.  The food was not earth shattering but solid.  Service was extra friendly with coffee filled every few sips.
 

 
After departing Shannon’s, I had wanted to stop at Green Gables in Hudson IL for a burger.  While they open early, they were not willing to make a burger even after telephone negotiations took place.  As I hung up, I felt I had a better chance with North Korea.
 
Instead, we headed for Buddy Roadhouse’s adopted home town of Springfield IL.  Buddy loves the solitude of an abandoned city and the picturesque splendor of boarded up and neglected properties…and Springfield’s got it all. Having planned our visit to minimize covering the same route repeatedly, we began with Mel-O-Cream Donuts.  Arriving at our destination, we were somewhat surprised to see an empty lot.  Pulling off into a vacant former parking lot, we located another location, readjusted the GPS and off we went losing approximately 10 minutes in the transaction.
 
                                                                         
 
We ordered three for ala-trunk dining choosing a cream filled which turned out to be fake whipped cream and not custard – there should be a whipping for this transgression – a glazed and a raspberry filled.  These were the one bite and done variety….and there were no regrets. 
 

 
Departing Mel-O-Cream, we tipped our forks to the old spot previously occupied by the venerable Dr. of BBQ.  Our next stop was a research project and turned out to be the star of the first half of Day 1 – Incredibly Delicious.  We drove into the medical district and were surrounded by nondescript office and hospital buildings.  The sterile campus with little to no landscaping matched perfectly with the spirit of Springfield.  As we turned our final corner, we saw the diamond in the rough.
 

 
Located in a Historic Registered building, Incredibly Delicious is housed in a two-story old brick mansion.  As the street is one-way and we had never been there before, we parked just short of the front of the building and got out for a few photos.  There are two lines on the front sign that are not visible due to small print.  One says “Pastries Inside” and the other now says “ChiTownDiner Approved”!!!! 
 

 

 
Walking up the front steps and approaching the huge front door, I remarked to Danny that it didn’t seem like a normal entrance.  We went in and found ourselves in a foyer with presumably the living room on one side and the dining room on the other side of the this long hallway.  The two rooms were very large and had been redone to have half dozen or so tables in each.  Several folks seemed to be enjoying a lazy mid-morning breakfast. 
 
We continued back past a beautiful staircase (maybe there are additional rooms or offices or banquet seating upstairs) and found ourselves mid-building in the display and counter service part of the home.  We could also see an active, more casual back dining area. 
 







 
 
Display case photos were a little short as I got overly excited and wanted to get right down to business.  I missed my friend buffetbuster who might have pulled back on the reins a bit for better photos. 
 

 

 
We choose three items…Cherry Almond Tart, Apple Cherry Blueberry Tart and a large cookie.  The two tarts were superb, perfect TENS!!!  The cookie was the crisp variety of which I am not a fan so a donation was made in support of the local rabbit and raccoon population. 
 
Not everything goes right on Roadfood tours and had we known what the next 60 minutes would hold, we would have stayed here and enjoyed a midmorning meal instead of opting for carry out and trunk dining.  After numerous trips to Springfield, I promise to never be fooled again. 
 







 
After grabbing the goods, we exited a side door and were deposited onto a split outdoor porch with lots of seating.  The side yard was attractively landscaped befitting a Historic Registered home along with a water element and gorgeous clock tower.  Looking back, I would have enjoyed breakfast in the back room or the side porch and still taken our to go order. 
 

 
After enjoying our Incredibly Delicious baked goods, it was off to the downtown area.  Continuing with our Springfield Surprise, we parked on the street in the middle of the morning with no problems and started walking around.  Vehicular traffic was nil and strange as it may seem, there were no pedestrians around either.  Having been to several capitals, I’ve never seen one so dead.  We were across the street from Norb Andy’s, our next stop but as they open at 11am, we continued our walk up the street the 3 blocks to the State Capital. 
 

 
As we closed in, we took several photos pausing only to allow David Sanders to finish his photos!  Seriously, we both took similar pictures and by my calculations, we must have been minutes apart.
 



 
We paused in front of the Supreme Court building speaking in hushed tones so as not to wake anyone inside.
 

 
Walking back, we had about 2 minutes to the opening of Norb Andys.  Not wanting to be fashionably early, we waited until 11:02am to try the door.  Locked!  And even worse, no interior lights were on.  We walked around the building looking for signs of life but there was nothing.  At 11:15am I called and the continuous ringing without an answer became the death knell…not even an answering machine or taped message.  The only light was the LED window board with the days of the week and hours of the day which indicated 11:00 – 12:00.  Thinking back, maybe those are the hours they are closed as we did see two ladies leave at 10:45am as we walked by across the street.  Anyway, being TTM'd keeps one humble! 
 

 

 
We were both happy to have Springfield in our rear view mirror and for me, a veteran of STL, I knew we could easily fill the dark void created by Springfield.  The first 30 minutes of the ride out was memorable as I spent a lot of time talking Danny down from the horseshoe ledge.  Having had a half dozen or so over the years, it is a mandatory experience (once) but not destination worthy.  I was able to finally convince him that better stops lied ahead and after another 15 minutes of whimpering, he regained control and was immediately placed on Arch Watch which represented a significant promotion. 
 
I’ll add the rest of the day in STL and finish Day #1 in a bit….
 
post edited by ChiTownDiner - 2017/04/30 12:51:40
#38
joerogo
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Re: April 2017 St. Louis and Kansas City Roadfood Crawl 2017/04/30 13:44:09 (permalink) ☄ Helpfulby ChiTownDiner 2017/04/30 16:47:28
Great start!!! I think everybody has a pic of CTD whipping it out!.....the SPREADSHEET!
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joerogo
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Re: April 2017 St. Louis and Kansas City Roadfood Crawl 2017/04/30 13:48:27 (permalink)
ScreamingChicken
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I think there might have been two of us who ordered the salad. I liked it very much.

 

I'll bet I can guess who the other person was...
That would be the WanderingSaladGuy seated next to me......it was quite embarrassing. :)
#40
lleechef
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Re: April 2017 St. Louis and Kansas City Roadfood Crawl 2017/04/30 14:38:20 (permalink)
Good stuff, CTD!!!!  Especially you and your now famous spread sheet! 
#41
Davidsanders
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Re: April 2017 St. Louis and Kansas City Roadfood Crawl 2017/04/30 15:10:09 (permalink)
What a great start to your report. It sounds like you had much more fun than I did. I completely forgot about Incredibly Delicious for my return trip, since I didn't stop. I'll have to go back someday.
David
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BuddyRoadhouse
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Re: April 2017 St. Louis and Kansas City Roadfood Crawl 2017/04/30 16:42:35 (permalink)
David,
No need to ponder about "someday"; you can make that visit next spring if you vote for Springfield as next year's Crawl destination.  Just kidding, I know there are other cities near and dear to some Roadfooders' hearts.  But sooner or later, we'll work our way through all those cities and Springfield will rear it's unexpectedly delightful (but sometimes hard to find) head.  Someday.
 
CTD,
There's frequently great history and even beauty to be found among those boarded up buildings.  Unfortunately, as you were in a hurry and on a mission, you were unable to find it.  I understand and forgive you.
 
Sorry you were unhappy with the Mel-O-Cream Donuts.  I made the mistake of assuming we had the exact same taste in donuts, so didn't think to recommend specific varieties.  I think if you'd gone with the Old Fashioned Cake Donuts or any of the Fritters, you would have had a better experience.
 
Also sorry you were out of luck at Norb Andy's.  Seeing as how it was my recommendation, I'm a little surprised you didn't rub it in my nose more.  Everything alright there, buddy?  I did recommend it with the caveat that they seemed a bit wobbly on the consistency of their hours, and specified it would be a good idea to call ahead.  I also maintain my assertion that, when they're actually open for business, they make the best Horseshoe in Springfield.  But given the circumstances you were presented with, wanderingjew's favorite, Corner Pub, would have provided an acceptable alternative.  No worries Danny, we'll get you that Horseshoe on next year's Crawl.
 
On the upside, you found Incredibly Delicious.  That's another well researched and reliable choice to add to the list for the future Springfield Crawl.
 
Buddy
 
 
post edited by BuddyRoadhouse - 2017/04/30 16:43:46
#43
BuddyRoadhouse
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Re: April 2017 St. Louis and Kansas City Roadfood Crawl 2017/04/30 18:25:42 (permalink)
Our Kansas City Crawl story also starts several days before the official event.  We kicked things off Monday evening with our favorite Canadians (other than Martin Short and the super dreamy Justin Trudeau), nagle & Wawa Mama.  John & Jen headed south on Easter Sunday from Ontario to Columbus.  The following morning they enjoyed a rare non-Waffle House breakfast with lleechef and Michael Hoffman before heading back north and west to Chicago.
 
When they got in Monday night, they stopped by Roadhouse World Headquarters to pick me up and drop off a selection of exclusive Canadian treats, including Montreal Bagels and Smoked Meats, a pint of REAL Canadian Maple Syrup (my fave, how did you know?) and all the fixin's (except the vodka) for a pitcher of Blood Caesars.
 
With my new treasures safely deposited in the house, we headed off to local favorite, Nancy's for a Stuffed Pizza.  Unlike the deeply misunderstood Chicago Style Pan Pizza, this actually is a casserole-like dish, and a darned good one to boot.  We enjoyed an adult beverage or three as we discussed plans for a pre-Crawl tour of Chicago the next day.
 
It was agreed we would skip breakfast on Tuesday so we would have more room for the important stuff later in the day.  chicagostyledog was kind enough to invite us to the Vienna Beef factory where he graciously bought us lunch (two properly prepared Chicago Style Hot Dogs, fries, and drinks) and turned us on to a cooler full of bargains from the outlet store.  Who knew Canadians were wacky for Vienna Beef products?
 
From there we headed north to one of our favorite Polish Restaurants, Smak-Tak (translates to "Delicious-Yes!") where we split a Hungarian Pancake (a huge Potato Pancake folded over a Goulash filling and topped with dollops of Sour Cream) and a gorgeous plate of Cabbage Rolls.  Even with four of us sharing, we had to show restraint and not clean the plates.  There was more to come.
 
The next part of our journey was a quick tour of the Mexican "Pilsen" neighborhood. Our first stop was the National Museum of Mexican Art.  John & Jen thought we'd be taking a short break from eating at this location, but, bless the entrepreneurial hearts of Chicago's Mexican community, there was an older couple selling street food from a cart.  It was clear what needed to be done: "One order of Elotes, please."
 
The Mom in this mom & pop business quickly threw together the ingredients, stripping corn from the cob into a cup, then adding mayo, squeeze margarine, Cotija Cheese, Crema, Chile Powder and a squeeze of lime.  Four spoons later we were enjoying this "light" snack on a brilliant spring day, in one of our city's most vibrant neighborhoods.
 
The Museum was the perfect way to walk off a few calories and make room for what was coming next, Contingent favorite, Carnitas Don Pedro.  We passed the two pink neon piggies in the window and quickly found a table (Tuesdays at Don Pedro are a lot quieter than the weekends).  Our waitress took our order for what I thought was a half pound of inside and outside meat.  When it arrived, either I made a mistake, or they have a faulty scale.  The full sized dinner plate was filled to overflowing with succulent pork.  That was soon joined by bowls of pickled jalapenos and lime wedges, a plate of chopped onion and cilantro, and a basket of fresh hot, locally made, tortillas.
 
Again, restraint was exercised knowing the day was only half finished.  After wrapping up the leftovers, we made the long drive south and east to another Contingent hot spot, Calumet Fisheries.  ChiTownDiner and I brought the 2015 Chicago Crawl here to enjoy the house specialty of Smoked Shrimp.  Naturally, they were out of Smoked Shrimp that day and we were forced to suffer through the 30 or 40 other smoked and fried delicacies on their menu.
 
I played it smart this time; calling ahead, and was assured there was plenty in stock.  We parked at the low end and walked the steep climb of the 95th Street Bridge to Calumet's tiny building.  John was all keyed up for the Smoked Shrimp, but also wanted an order of the delicious Deep Fried Stuffed Shrimp.  The last time I visited, Calumet had finally decided to set up picnic tables.  Unfortunately, they hadn't set them up yet for this season, so we walked all the way down the 95th Street Bridge to dine ala trunk. Once settled in, we greatly enjoyed the shrimp feast and, in spite of a few errant hot sauce spills, the car came away relatively unharmed.
 
We took the long way up to our last destination, giving our Canadian friends a driving tour of Chicago that, in their words, was "way better" than the one they'd paid good money for on past visits to the Big Windy.  I guess nagle & Wawa Mama qualify now for honorary Contingent membership, since four of our stops are past tour components, and because abe_froeman and Mr. Maki met us at our last stop, Sun Wah BBQ.
 
The dish of choice is the Peking (Beijing?) Duck.  It's delivered to your table as a whole duck and expertly carved by the staff.  You're then presented with a plate of succulent bird, and an array of ingredients to create your own Bao Bun Sandwiches.  The remaining carcass is then whisked back to the kitchen where the remaining meat is stripped off and put into a stir fried noodle dish.  But wait, there's more!  The bones and whatever meat is left, are then cooked into a meal ending Duck Soup which was barely touched, but went home as leftovers.  Unlike the rest of us, abe and Mr. Maki hadn't been eating all day, so a couple of additional entrees were ordered, but i have absolutely no memory of what they were.
 
After that, we dropped off our guests at their hotel and made final preparations for the next day's long drive to KC.
 
Buddy
 
 
post edited by BuddyRoadhouse - 2017/04/30 19:38:22
#44
Davidsanders
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Re: April 2017 St. Louis and Kansas City Roadfood Crawl 2017/04/30 19:24:41 (permalink)
Great Buddy!
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wanderingjew
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Re: April 2017 St. Louis and Kansas City Roadfood Crawl 2017/04/30 19:59:45 (permalink)
Davidsanders
wanderingjew
David
 
Great report. I was hoping you would have included the Cortado Summit in your report. Although I didn't join everyone till Saturday morning, I did manage to stop at a few places after our final official gathering at Stroud's that I missed including Slap's and Ricky's (and my off the plane meal late Friday night was Town Topic). I'm glad I'm not the only person that preferred Danny Edwards over Slaps however the sleeper we passed up on Saturday due to
Chi Town Whiner's complaints that we were eating too much was simply the best  burger I've had all year (not that Hayes or Town Topic were slouches)

Yes LC's Hamburgers has a new sterile building
 

 
 

but who cares when their burgers make good on the fact that the burger belt our great nation is truly in the midwest.
 
 

 
Not quite as onion heavy as Hayes and as rugged as Town Topic but this burger was not only oozing with juice, but with incredible big beefy flavor as well. a return visit LC's Hamburgers will be in order when we stop in Kansas City for a day and a half of eating and sightseeing next year.




Dale,
 
I'm hoping that others will add to my report. There was so much going on constantly that I missed the Cortado Summit (and have no idea the significance, since it seemed to stem from something in the past).
 
By the way, it appears you added pictures to your reply, but they're not showing up. Is there something I need to do?
 
I am sorry we missed LC's Hamburgers, but the thought of adding another double (I would never get a triple, unless they're the size of Blimpy's in Ann Arbor) was overwhelming on Saturday. Maybe we should have gone to LC's, then Betty Rae's, then met up at Hayes at 1 a.m.! 
 
David
 
 
 




David
 
I just changed over from flickr to google photos so I'm getting the hang of it. I think you can see the photos now. 
Please let me know otherwise.
 
I enjoyed seeing everyone again and, David I was glad I finally met you. Another new face was Sfreader,... And I was glad to finally meet him too. His knowledge for Kansas Roadfood is endless and very helpful.
#46
Davidsanders
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Re: April 2017 St. Louis and Kansas City Roadfood Crawl 2017/04/30 20:36:44 (permalink) ☄ Helpfulby wanderingjew 2017/04/30 21:33:31
David
 
I just changed over from flickr to google photos so I'm getting the hang of it. I think you can see the photos now. 
Please let me know otherwise.
 
I enjoyed seeing everyone again and, David I was glad I finally met you. Another new face was Sfreader,... And I was glad to finally meet him too. His knowledge for Kansas Roadfood is endless and very helpful.

Dale, the photos are now showing up.

David
#47
BuddyRoadhouse
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Re: April 2017 St. Louis and Kansas City Roadfood Crawl 2017/04/30 20:57:18 (permalink)
Still not seeing wj's photos here.
 
Buddy
#48
ChiTownDiner
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Re: April 2017 St. Louis and Kansas City Roadfood Crawl 2017/04/30 21:43:55 (permalink)
Tuesday, April 18th con’t…
  
Regaining control of himself after the Horseshoe incident, Danny and I hit STL in about 90 minutes with the STL Arch popping into view as we rounded the turn between landfills on both sides of I-55.  Our first STL stop would be the Legendary Crown Candy Kitchen.
 





 
While the neighborhood is slowly undergoing gentrification, it is a rough looking area with Crown Candy bringing in a steady flow of outsiders.  The line was short by the usual standards and only extended into the double door area.  Inside are ancient booths that quite cozy.  Expecting a 30 minute wait, I was happy that it ended up being 10. 
 

 
There are basically three areas; the candy counter, the to go area (with park seating across the street) and the actual table area.  I had a pretty good idea where this order was headed, but there were still a few details to work out. 
 
 
 

 
We ordered the Heart Stopping BLT and sided it with a grill cheese sandwich.  If you’ve had one of their shakes, you know there’s enough for two, so we split the Johnny Rabbit Special which is a fresh banana malt with nutmeg, nuts, whipped cream and a cherry.  It was an excellent choice by Danny
 
 
 

 
 
The BLT comes with a pound of bacon so splitting a BLT and a Grilled Cheese sandwich was perfect.  Chips and a pickle complete the plate and provided some serious mopping for all the bacon bits that escape.  It was truly good to the last crispy piece!  The bacon is fried in thick clumps so it is extremely dense and requires a knife and fork at least until the three quarter mark.  
 

 
Danny sharing with his new friend his disappointment over missing his Horseshoe got nothing but silence. 
 



 
Departing CCK, we headed to Ferguson for relaxation and a little dessert.  Our stop, Natalie’s Cakes & More is a simple sidewalk store front.
  

 
Entering the storefront, we were warmly greeted by a young girl and steered to a rack with individual slices of some of the finest looking cakes around.  There were three flavors available that day and we picked…
 
  


 
….two!  The Sock It To Me Cake and the Legendary Caramel Cake.   While the Roadfood Book describes the Caramel Cake in great detail, I’ll just say that the words heaven on earth come to mind. 
 

  
After Natalie’s, we headed to Delmar Blvd and the famous Delmar Loop.  This is a happening area frequented by Wash U and SLU students.  Shops, bars, restaurants, a concert venue, hotel…the Loop has it all.  We timed our arrival to be earlier so that we wouldn’t have to deal with crowds.  Parking was a snap and we decided to enjoy a short break at Blueprint Coffee.
 
 
 
Most of the tables were taken by parties of one complete with laptops and headsets. 
 

 
We grabbed a window table and I went with the iced coffee of the day. 
  



 
Blueprint Coffee was about the halfway point on our mile walk and after coffee, we continued our tour.  We walked to the western end where there is actually a loop.  Here, we saw a very cool building which we later found to be the Village Hall.  The stairs remain to the former front door but the walk way is no longer there as the new entrance is now on the parking lot side.
 
Danny went up the hill to the loop and snapped some photos of the statuary.  Perhaps he’ll awaken and post a photo or two. 
 

 
Walking back to our next stop, we paused at the statue of Chuck Berry.  His recent memorial service in STL drew thousands of fans and they have been dropping off tokens of love and appreciation for some time.
 

 
 
Another block and we arrived at our early dining destination, Salt + Smoke.  This was a new venue for me and I was looking forward to it.  As a senior, I felt right at home with dinner #1 being at 4:15pm.  Our group was about to grow by one as we saw Big_G, Gary from Sweetwater TN standing in the doorway. 
 



 
The venue was empty and we had our choice of tables, indoors or out.  After checking out the menu, we opted for a 4-meat sampler…brisket, pork, ribs and bologna.  The pulled pork was average, the ribs a step up and the brisket Texas good.  But the Bologna, infused with jalapenos and cheddar and then smoked was the star of the show, absolutely perfect.  A big hunk was cut and spent some time on a flat top and became the crowning touch on our platter.  The beans and mac n cheese were both superb sides.  Agreeing with David, the popover was the low point and we thought perhaps it was left over from lunch service.   This was a very high level bbq stop and I’d strongly recommend it.
 
We departed for our hotel which was located in the West End District.  I had always wanted to stay at the Chase Park Plaza and when I saw a sizable discount on Priceline, I snapped up a couple of rooms.  The grand lobby is filled with photos and a decade by decade historical timeline.  It was fascinating and I was so interested, I didn’t take one photo….sorry!  In addition to the several bar areas, there is a five screen movie theater as well as viewing area for the beautiful outdoor pool and surrounding patio. 
 
One quick hotel story.   After completing my registration, I elevatored up to my floor and headed down the hall.  Just before inserting the key card, I heard voices coming from within my assigned room.  It almost sounded like an argument as one voice was much louder and deeper.  Hesitating a moment, I knew I had a spreadsheet schedule to keep so I readied the key card, and just as I was grabbing the handle, the room door opened from within.  I was surprised but the women standing in my doorway was shocked.  This was choreographed as well as a Fred and Ginger dance routine.
 
Turns out, the check in process activates the floor housekeeping supervisor to take a quick and final peak at your room before you arrive.  Our mutual surprise was interrupted by the loud conversation on her waist band walkie talkie.  Mystery solved, but not after a good laugh between us. 
 
As Danny hadn’t been to STL before, I picked several old favorites and few new stops.  No visit to STL is complete without a visit to The HillThe Hill is a large area of residential homes with Italian businesses interspersed throughout.  Restaurants, coffee houses, bocci clubs, delis, bakeries, olive oil stores…they’re all there.  They are all mixed in with the houses, which all front the sidewalk providing a very urban, yet old world feel.  There is red, white and green in all quadrants.
 

Guido and I about 10 years ago...
 

My pizza back then...
 

My older son and I 10 years ago at Guido's...
 
I’ve dined at 15 or 20 of the restaurants on The Hill and selected Guido’s Pizzeria & Tapas for our dinner.  As the evening was a perfect 72, we requested an outdoor table from the owner.  Our group was now four as Roadfooder Davidsanders, aka David Sanders joined us. 
 
After a few stories which is pretty common among Roadfooders, we settled on a shared menu of Italian small plates, Spanish tapas and a pizza. 
 

 
Toasted ravioli with sauce...


 
Meatballs under the potatoes...


 
Smoked salmon crostini...


 
A pepperoni pizza...


 
 
Veal canneloni...
 
Our waiter spotted the spreadsheet and after a few questions told us how much he enjoyed St. Paul sandwiches.  I could see the gleam in Danny’s eyes get brighter with each passing sentence. 
 
  
 
Dusk had just settled in as departed for another legendary STL stop, Ted Drewes Frozen Custard.  Parking is always at a premium at Ted’s and you move very slowly as kids dart in and out, cars are always backing up and no one is really paying attention as they are all eating custard.   
 



 
If you’re not familiar, Ted Drewes is home to the concrete, made so thick they will turn them upside down if you ask.  I went with a chocolate cherry combination and then joined the horde standing streetside and enjoying their custard. 
 

 

 
After finishing, we walked a few doors west for the much anticipated ChiBears15 vs. the STL St Paul sandwich showdown.  We ordered up the supreme which is basically an egg foo young patty with everything thrown in and served between two slices of white bread.   Our waiter shared with us several times how it was one of his favorite drunk night meals.  At this point, Danny was probably wishing he’d had a few belts. 
 

 
The St Paul is constructed from scratch and therefore takes about 10 minutes to prepare.  This gave our group ample time to encourage Danny and share his raw anticipation. 
 





 
At the ten minute mark, his prayers were answered and one hot from the fryer St Paul was placed in front of him!  After a few photos and some curious examination, he dug in and was rewarded as only a St Paul can reward.  Claiming he was full from the custard, he got though about a quarter of the St Paul.  This one, even the squirrels and raccoons said no to! 
 
Time to call it a night so we split up and headed to our respective hotels….but we’ll be back again tomorrow.   
 
Days 2 – 6 still to come…
 
post edited by ChiTownDiner - 2017/05/01 20:12:44
#49
ChiTownDiner
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Re: April 2017 St. Louis and Kansas City Roadfood Crawl 2017/04/30 21:52:56 (permalink) ☄ Helpfulby joerogo 2017/05/01 06:46:44
BuddyRoadhouse
Still not seeing wj's photos here.
 
Buddy




His Roadfood credentials have been pulled for Regionally Inappropriateness as well as false Bierock reporting.  
#50
Davidsanders
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Re: April 2017 St. Louis and Kansas City Roadfood Crawl 2017/04/30 22:13:03 (permalink)
ChiTownDiner
BuddyRoadhouse
Still not seeing wj's photos here.
 
Buddy




His Roadfood credentials have been pulled for Regionally Inappropriateness as well as false Bierock reporting.  


His photos are showing up in his original post, not in the ones that were quoted.

David
#51
BuddyRoadhouse
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Re: April 2017 St. Louis and Kansas City Roadfood Crawl 2017/04/30 22:23:19 (permalink)
David, you must have a fancier computer than me, 'cause none of his photos are there, whether it's his original post or the quotes.
 
Buddy
#52
Davidsanders
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Re: April 2017 St. Louis and Kansas City Roadfood Crawl 2017/04/30 22:38:42 (permalink)
BuddyRoadhouse
David, you must have a fancier computer than me, 'cause none of his photos are there, whether it's his original post or the quotes.
 
Buddy

Well, they're showing up on my phone right now, so I don't know what's going on. It's post number 18.
David
#53
Sfreader
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Re: April 2017 St. Louis and Kansas City Roadfood Crawl 2017/05/01 00:06:17 (permalink)
BuddyRoadhouse
Sfreader,
is Old Country Bakery open to the public like Strawberry Hill?  Is it worth paying them a visit next time we're in town?
 
Buddy




They have a small counter in the front of their facility. Not much to see besides purchasing.
 
 
#54
mhill95
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Re: April 2017 St. Louis and Kansas City Roadfood Crawl 2017/05/01 00:34:09 (permalink)
RE: Old Country Bakery
 
According to their Facebook Page They "Closed Down"
last week.
 
mike
#55
BuddyRoadhouse
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Re: April 2017 St. Louis and Kansas City Roadfood Crawl 2017/05/01 01:46:10 (permalink)
Wednesday’s travel day started out wet and dreary.  Looking at the forecast, it looked like we were facing bad weather all the way to Kansas City.  Hoping to lift up our spirits, our international brigade started with breakfast at a Roadhouse family favorite, L&L Snack Shop.
 
This is a tiny family run diner, discovered by my son-in-law, Mr. Maki, back in his high school days.  He’s been going there ever since and systematically introduced the rest of the clan to their simple, well prepared fare.  It’s the kind of place where two eggs equals four and sweet hunks of ham, cut from the bone, accompany every order, whether you ask for it or not.  Roadfooder joerogo became equally entranced with L&L’s charms during a visit to Chicago several years ago.
 
I went with my usual order, a short stack of pancakes and a side of Corned Beef Hash.  Mrs. Roadhouse got a Sausage & Mushroom Omelet and a side of Hash Browns.  nagle opted for (I believe) Eggs Over Easy and more Corned Beef Hash, while Wawa Mama won the prize for best pick of the day with a plate of French Toast and Blueberry Compote.  Corned Beef Hash must be at a premium up north.  Our Canadian friends were astounded by the “huge” size of our two orders, which appeared to be just "normal" to us.
 
Bolstered by multiple cups of coffee, we headed back to Roadhouse World Headquarters to finish loading up for the trip.  The miserable weather, combined with a hold up at a long train crossing, put us well behind schedule.  This was especially annoying to our special guest passenger, Pie Diva, who had been waiting for us for a good half hour or more.  Bobbi had driven down from Wisconsin to ride with us, while husband JRPfeff would fly into KC to join the group on Friday.
 
With everything in place, we set out in our two vehicle caravan for the land of Barbecue Dreams and Fried Chicken Promises.  It was tough staying together at first, since our I-Pass transponder let us go through tolls without stopping and John & Jen had to pay every toll in cash.  Once we broke free of the shackles of the Illinois Tollway system it was easy sailing.  Our first stop was in a little Route 66 town called Funks Grove.
 
This side trip was just a short diversion to see the original church and surrounding cemetery, filled primarily with Funks and Stubblefields, the town’s founding families.  By now the wet weather had passed and we enjoyed strolling the grounds on a now perfect spring day.  The church is an austere, stern, Protestant affair, more reminiscent of a New England church than something you might find in the Heartland.   The back wall is graced by the portraits of four very unhappy looking church elders.
 
The scenic ride back to the main road took us by the actual Funk’s Grove of maple trees which, to this day, are still tapped every year to make some very good local “Sirup”.  The Funks say this is the proper spelling of their product.  You can read about the difference here.  If you’d like to argue over the issue, I suggest you contact the Funks directly and leave us clear headed Roadfooders out of the fray.
 
We made a quick pit stop at the Dixie Truckers Home before jumping back onto I-55.  The Dixie used to be a reliable place for a good meal for both truckers and civilian travelers alike.  They also used to house the Illinois Route 66 Museum, filled with wonderful artifacts from businesses that populated the road during its heyday.  A corporate takeover of the restaurant, and a new, more extensive Route 66 Museum up in Pontiac have left both those attractions obsolete.
 
Next stop was the Cozy Dog Drive-In in Springfield, previously established as a horrible place to visit (Springfield, that is, not the Cozy Dog).  The five of us split a basket of Cozy Dogs, a fabulously greasy Griddle Burger, and piles of Onion Rings and Fresh Cut Fries.  That, on top of the big breakfast at L&L, pretty much filled us up for the remainder of the trip.  We skipped the CheeseBurgers at Booches Billiard Hall in Columbia, MO and drove straight through to KC, making one quick stop to move Bobbi from our car to the Canadian’s pickup truck.  This was purely for convenience as she was staying out in suburban Overland Park near John & Jen, while we had an apartment in downtown KC.
 
After dropping off our stuff, we then headed up to the airport to pick up our apartment–mates, Ralph Melton and icecreamchick, who had a late arrival from Pittsburgh.  There was brief discussion about a late night snack, but we all agreed it was better to get some rest in anticipation of an early start the next day.
 
The players are all coming together folks.  Next stop: Breakfast at Happy Gillis!
 
Buddy
#56
ChiTownDiner
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Re: April 2017 St. Louis and Kansas City Roadfood Crawl 2017/05/01 08:26:39 (permalink)
Buddy
 
Nice continuation...and a few comments...
 
Still have not made L&L...need to put it on my list.
 
So weather and a "train crossing" were the only things slowing you guys down?  How about the time of day!
 
As we passed Dixie Truckers, I mentioned to Danny about its inclusion in a previous Roadfood list but totally concur with your present assessment...it sucks!  
 
I also concur with your agreement regarding Springfield "as a horrible place to visit."  So true!  
 
I totally understand a stop at Cozy Dogs especially with guests but that burger at Booches was top shelf good!  
 
See ya at Happy Gillis
 
#57
lleechef
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Re: April 2017 St. Louis and Kansas City Roadfood Crawl 2017/05/01 11:27:00 (permalink)
BuddyRoadhouse
David, you must have a fancier computer than me, 'cause none of his photos are there, whether it's his original post or the quotes.
 
Buddy


They're not on my laptop or MH's desktop either.
#58
JRPfeff
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Re: April 2017 St. Louis and Kansas City Roadfood Crawl 2017/05/01 11:31:52 (permalink) ☄ Helpfulby ChiTownDiner 2017/05/01 11:56:32
Has ScreamingChicken had the film developed yet?
#59
lleechef
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Re: April 2017 St. Louis and Kansas City Roadfood Crawl 2017/05/01 12:01:07 (permalink)
JRPfeff
Has ScreamingChicken had the film developed yet?

He didn't take the Kodachrome to the drug store until Saturday.  His horse needed new shoes.
#60
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