Archive of ‘St Louis’ category

St Louis Days 3 and 4

The last day and a half of my stay in St Louis had to bring us to the other Rooster location, as I had to have the Bloody Fairy. When I saw this listed on their website, there was no choice. If I had no other drink on this vacation, it had to be this one. I can’t say I was looking forward to it, or that I thought it was going to be delicious. But there was no way I could pass it up.

A Bloody Mary made with absinthe.

I’ll let that sink in for a moment.

I have a bit of history with absinthe. I am attracted to the history of the drink and the myth that surrounds it. I invested in a bottle while it was still illegal, and I struggled to find a way to successfully drink it, as it is rather difficult to choke down. The traditional way, with water and a sugar cube (do not light it on fire you noobs!), is still quite wretched. I’ve had an absinthe frappe in New Orleans. I had it in a layered shooter style drink with sambuca and baileys in Kiev, called a Hiroshima (I really ordered it for the name haha), and I’ve drank it straight. It’s just difficult to drink. I really couldn’t imagine what it could possibly taste like mixed with a tomato base. But I knew I couldn’t pass it up, because when would I ever see an absinthe Bloody Mary again?

So we made it to Rooster downtown right before it closed so I could order the Bloody Fairy. The bartender questioned my choice, asked if I liked licorice flavor and I assured her I knew what absinthe was. She said she was making sure because the Bloody Fairy was the most often sent back drink on the menu.

bloodyfairy

The small size was $5, with a salt and chili powder rim. This time I got the 2 olive and peperoncini garnish with a lemon stuck in there that was missing from the day before. This drink definitely wins the award for Most Unusual Bloody Mary in the world. There is such a strong taste of absinthe it drowns out almost all of the tomato taste from their 17 ingredient house mix. It was not at all spicy, as it seems their house mix is not spiced (they offer a Bloody ‘ell spicy Bloody that I didn’t have the opportunity to try), and I’m not sure adding spice to the flavor of absinthe would be a good idea. It was just so bizarre! So much herbal licorice flavor! Strangely it wasn’t bad though. I really didn’t think those flavors would mix well, but it turns out it might be the only tolerable way to drink absinthe. It definitely has been the best absinthe cocktail I’ve had.

The bartender was surprised I drank it all, she can’t even stand the smell of absinthe when she’s mixing them!

Later on that day we swang by Barrister’s, also on the Best Of list I found before I traveled. Also known for their Make Your Own bar during brunch, we had to settle for a bartender made drink since it was Wednesday.

barristers

Served in a pint glass with a salt and chili rim and 2 olives, a lemon and lime garnish, they use a house made mix which was very thick and chewy. There was visible pepper and not at all vinegary. The spice lingered quite a bit and clearly was not from a generic hot sauce like Frank’s. It tasted good, but was just so thick and chewy it was like drinking spicy pasta sauce. I couldn’t quite get past it, it was just far too thick for me. As the ice melted and it got less chewy it was more enjoyable. But I couldn’t order one from there again knowing how thick they are.

My last Bloody Mary in St Louis was nicely prepared for me by my aunt’s personal trainer Kelly. She mentioned my quest to him while working out, and he claimed he made the best one in St Louis and invited us over to give his a try.

kellys

(My aunt with Kelly….I mean Kelly’s dog)

Kelly starts with a large jug of Mr and Mrs T’s bold and spicy mix, removes a bit and adds in some of Mr and Mrs T’s horseradish mix, and mixes in some creamy horseradish and even more raw horseradish from a jar. He shakes that up, adds in bacon bits and svedka vodka and voila. Garnished with peperoncini and blue cheese stuffed olives (I passed on the olives), the Bloody had a good taste and spice level from the horseradish. It had a good liquidity and wasn’t chewy at all, and after the last one, that was a welcome change. He said he made them strong and he wasn’t lying, we needed lunch after that! Thanks Kelly!

St Louis Day 2

Day 2 brought us to the other restaurant from the Best of St Louis list that I really wanted to go to, Rooster. Rooster is a breakfast restaurant often voted “best breakfast in Missouri” as well as “best crepes, bloody marys and brunch in St Louis”. They were part of the Best Bloodys in St Louis list, and their menu offers 11 different kinds of Bloodys. I narrowed down the list to 3 or 4, and then down to just 2 that I felt like I just HAD to try. They make their own mix featuring 17 different ingredients, it has to be good, right?

So my aunt and I headed out to their new location on South Grand because it had longer hours than their downtown location, only to find out that their menu is different, and they didn’t have the one Bloody Mary I really had to have – the Bloody Fairy. And the bartender didn’t even realize the 2 locations had different menus. What?? Ok, fine, I settled for my 2nd choice, the Bloody Samurai.

roostersamurai

Made with wasabi, soy sauce and sake instead of vodka, the small size was $5 and garnished with wasabi peas! The photos from the Best Of article showed the drink also garnished with olives and peperoncini, clearly they were missing in mine. Perhaps a difference in location as well. My initial thought was that it was delicious, but then I thought it was a little weird. I think it was the sake, as in general I’m not a huge fan. The mix seemed to have a good taste, a nice spice level and good flavor from the wasabi (which I love). In the end, though, I thought it was pretty good. I had to get used to the difference in taste from the sake is all.

roosterlunch

My food was pretty delicious too – a southwest scramble with eggs, black beans, spinach, cheese, onion and salsa.

My aunt and uncle recently moved to St Louis, which was the reason for visiting, but I planned it around a Buffalo Sabres game, which was on Day 2. So before heading out to the game we stopped into The Scottish Arms. My aunt knew they had a nice Sunday brunch with a make your own Bloody Mary bar, but being a Tuesday, they of course didn’t offer this. They did have their mix made though, however I was not ready for another one yet, but my aunt was, so she ordered their Smoky Bloody Mary.

scottisharms

I did taste it, and it did indeed have a very smoky taste. Very Very smoky. And pickle-y. And very smoky. Did I say smoky? Served in a pint glass with 2 olives and a lime garnish for $7. It was smoky. Haha.

The Buffalo Sabres lost. Badly. Of course, because they are terrible this year. And that’s ok. One game closer to McDavid!

St Louis Day 1

I have returned from St Louis, unscathed. The trip was a bit touch and go for a moment, as the verdict in the Michael Brown case was initially going to come in the day I was traveling to the city, and some…trouble…was expected, but the verdict was postponed so, game on!

I was going to post from the road, but it seems the tumblr android app does not allow for posting photos inline, so I decided to just save it all for when I returned.

So let’s go!

I had some free drink tickets for Southwest Airlines that had expired in December 2013 that I brought along with me, because I figured it couldn’t hurt to ask if I could use one. They’ll say no, and I’ll have my water and continue with my craps class homework, or they’ll say yes and I’ll have a dreadful Bloody Mary. At first the flight attendant said no, but on second thought, I guess because I did ask, she said yes, and took all 5 of my tickets in exchange for one Bloody Mary.

southwest

There we go! An airplane Bloody Mary. Made with Mr and Mrs T’s Bloody Mary mix and Finlandia vodka with a lime garnish – a bigger slice of lime than you get in most bars. It was pretty dreadful of course. You have to be pretty desperate to order one on an airplane, but I figured it had to be done for the sake of the website. It was pretty damn strong though and gave me quite the headache almost immediately.

My aunt and uncle picked me up at the airport, we caught some dinner, and in the evening headed to the first destination on my list of Bloody Mary bars I wanted to try while I was visiting. I had googled “best bloody mary in St Louis” and Sub Zero came up. Voted the best vodka bar in America, they have the largest selection of vodka in the country and boast a menu featuring all sorts of creative cocktails and several different kinds of Bloody Marys.

subzeromenu

They don’t make their own Bloody Mary mix, they use Zing Zang’s, but I had only just recently heard of this brand so I was interested to try it. They don’t seem to sell it around here, or at least not where I’ve looked. The best of list recommended their Pepper-infused Mary featuring their house made 4 pepper infused vodka.

subzeropeppers

subzero

$9 in a pint glass with a salted rim. Garnished with 3 olives and a lime wedge. The Bloody had a strong celery taste and was very salty, and very pickle-y. It had a good strong spice level with visible black pepper. It was a bit thick and needed some chewing. It was good, but I didn’t find it mind blowing. I think the Bakon Bloody might have been a better choice, but I stuck with the Pepper-infused since the article had recommended it. If you go here you won’t have gone wrong, but I think I expected more. And if you like vodka, this is the place for you. They have a club which keeps track of all the different types of vodkas you drink, and you earn points and prizes including a jacket when you’ve tried all the vodkas they offer.

Before the night was over we also stopped into their favorite neighborhood restaurant, the West End Grill and Pub, for a quick snack and one more Bloody Mary.

westend

This Bloody was quite the opposite of Sub Zero’s. Served in a pint glass with 2 olives and a salt rim, the flavor and spice came strictly from horseradish as opposed to peppers or hot sauce. It was very liquidy, but not too much so, and since I like horseradish I found it to be quite good. I found a couple limes hiding at the bottom as well.

And so ends day 1. Stay tuned!