Melt – St. Louis, MO – Waffles Aren’t Just for Breakfast Anymore

Looking for something completely different?  Melt on Cherokee street could be just what you are looking for.  Melt specializes in waffles, but not your frozen Eggo waffles.  They serve both sweet and savory types of waffles.

From my preliminary research, I was set on getting the Wake ‘N Bake.  The Wake ‘N Bake has bacon or sausage cooked into the waffle.  It’s topped with cheese and an egg, cooked to order.  The server stated that it was a “safe choice” for a first visit.  She also shared that repeat customers quickly start to trust them and move on to something more adventurous.  DAMN…I think she was trying to pull my man-card.  I quickly changed my order to the Little Piggy.  Not only that, but I had her throw an egg on top!  The challenge was on!

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The Little Piggy is a waffle topped with pulled pork, homemade coleslaw, and cheddar cheese.   While the BBQ sauce was sweet, the green onion really shined on the dish.  One piece of advice; just because there is syrup on the table it doesn’t belong on all waffles!  Luckily that was only a one bite mistake so it didn’t ruin my meal.

Melt has an exciting selection of waffles.  The combinations range from fruit or chocolate on some of the sweet waffles to chicken, pork, or brisket on some of the savory varieties.  I look forward to exploring the menu more on future visits.  How brave will you be?

Dive 2 Five Scale: 2.  Time for me to step on my soapbox.  Cherokee Street is a great area in St. Louis.  I recently was discussing this restaurant and I instantly received an eye-roll when I mentioned its’ location.  I don’t understand people who limit their options by singling out an area for one reason or another.  What a waste!  Stepping off soapbox…

When I walked in, I can honestly say the eclectic atmosphere and mismatched furniture was overwhelming. There was a lot to take in, including pinball and shuffleboard! However, once I was settled at the table, the atmosphere was very laid back with a knowledgeable and helpful staff. If this is your first visit to Cherokee Street, take some time and explore! STL Style  and Firecracker Press are just two of the fun stores that have a lot of St. Louis pride.

Melt on Urbanspoon

Sugarfire Smoke House, St. Louis, MO – New BBQ on the Block

Clearly, I love to try new restaurants.  Tonight I tried the grand opening of Mike Johnson and Carolyn Down’s Sugarfire Smoke House in Olivette.  If Mr. Johnson’s name sounds familiar, it should.  Maybe you have heard of Cyrano’s or Boogaloo?  Additionally they use the same model smoker as Pappy’s and how could I not give it a try?

When you walk in you are greeted by a strong smokey aroma.  This is the type that will stay on your clothes the rest of the day.  Unfortunately they were already out of ribs and brisket.  Bummer.  Not being one to give up so easily, I went for the 8 oz pulled pork sandwich with a side of green chili cheese fries.

Pulled pork and green chili cheese fries

First sign that it was a new place: the timing.  The sandwich was ready and waiting before the fries were cooking.  So the meat was a little cold by time I was at my table.  They also had issues with the register.  Only one was working and it took a minute for someone to let me know to go to the take out line to pay.  Neither of those are a big surprise for night one.

Now let’s focus on the food.  The pulled pork was tender and had a good smokey flavor. They had several different types of sauce.  By serving the meat without any, you get to choose. The sauces ranged the gambit from white BBQ to Carolina mustard.  My two favorites were the sweet and coffee.

The green chili cheese fries were not very spicy.  This is likely to make sure they don’t “overheat” a typical midwest palate.  The fries themselves were crispy and well seasoned.  It made for an ok side dish.

The staff was very friendly and helpful.  They all seemed very excited about the food that they were serving.  If BBQ isn’t your thing, there were many other choices.  The burger sounded really good and they offered a wide choice of toppings.  There were also some interesting sounding sandwiches, shakes, and home-made pies.  I was surprised and the variety for such a small place.

My visit to Sugarfire on their opening night offered some positives and negatives.  With positives involving the food and negatives typical opening night jitters, I think this new restaurant has a lot of promise.  Since I was unable to sample their fall off the bone ribs or brisket as originally planned, I will leave this as to be continued…

Sugarfire Smoke House on Urbanspoon

Lil’ Mickey’s Memphis Barbeque – What a Sauce!

When people think of BBQ, most will mention the big 3:  Kansas City, Texas, and Memphis.  A few others may mention the Carolinas.  With St. Louis being centrally located to all these BBQ Mecca’s, we are fortunate to live in hot bed of fantastic BBQ.  Most everyone in the area has heard of Pappy’s.  It has gained a lot of national exposure over the last few years.  This review focuses in on Lil’ Mickey’s Memphis Barbeque in St. Peters, MO.

Recognize that familiar building shape?

This is a small family business in St. Peters located in an old Taco Bell building.  However this restaurant has an impressive pedigree in the world of BBQ.  For those of you that are fan’s of the Food Network, this restaurant is owned by relatives of the Neely’s.  If that isn’t enough to tempt you, let me jump right into the food.  I cannot lie, this is not my first trip to this restaurant.  It definitely won’t be my last.  I want to try other things on the menu but I can’t stray away from the pulled pork shoulder sandwich.

The picture doesn’t do this sandwich justice

As you can see, it’s a large sandwich with plenty of juicy pulled pork.  You can get it wet or dry (with or without sauce).  It comes with cole slaw on it unless you request otherwise.  I suggest getting it the way it was intended; wet and with the slaw.  Clearly you are going to get messy eating this sandwich.  You are going to eat BBQ; what did you expect?  Here’s the breakdown on the sandwich:

  • Over-sized bun – nothing fancy here.  It’s just a way to hold everything together.  It serves its’ purpose.
  • Pulled pork – juicy, tender, and plenty of it.  There is a nice hint of hickory smoke.
  • Cole Slaw – It adds a crunch to the texture and a tang to counter the sauce.  If you order it without the slaw, you are missing out.
  • Sauce – They are known for their sauce.  It’s sweet and will leave your hands sticky.  This is a condiment that makes all others jealous.  It’s an all around BBQ sauce that I would use for any type of meat.

I also had the fries.  They were crispy and salty with a creamy center.  Nothing out-of-this world about them, but I’m here for BBQ.  I do recommend dipping them in the BBQ sauce.  I can’t get enough of that stuff!

Lil’ Mickey’s Memphis Barbeque is a highlight for the St. Peters area.  I would put their pulled pork sandwich up against any others in the St. Louis area and beyond.  It’s well worth the drive to get some quality barbeque.

Dive 2 Five Scale –  This is a 2.  It has to be the best use of Taco Bell building ever!  They used to serve their refreshments in cans but have upgraded to fountain drink machine.  The decorations are of blues musicians and there is usually blues music in the background.  When I went for lunch almost every table was packed.  You are eating BBQ so plan on getting messy and enjoying every minute of it.

Lil Mickey's Memphis Barbeque on Urbanspoon