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St. Louis Eats

What's your favorite place (aside from your backyard) to eat BBQ?

Post Sun Apr 15, 2007 11:01 pm
smokin' ed medium-well
medium-well

Posts: 202
Location: Iowa
Triple Threat wrote:
Hey stlbbq, there is a place nestled between I-40 and the Chesterfield Mall, I think it was called the Smokehouse or something like that. Nice large looking place from the outside. Worth checking out for your list. Maybe next time down I can check it out.


If I was you, I'd make more of an attempt to go to Ethyl's than I would the Smokehouse. Many years ago, it was simply a meat market with no name. Then it got into smoking meats for their customers and the customers started calling it the "smokehouse", so the name stuck. After about 4 different sets of owners, a couple minor floods and one really bad one in 1993, the place has no semblance of what it once was and now caters to the uber-yuppie in Chesterfield with average (at best) BBQ and smoked items that are way, way over priced. My $0.02 is go there only if you want to go away unimpressed and a lot poorer for it.

Post Mon Apr 16, 2007 7:51 pm
Triple Threat well done
well done

Posts: 1384
Location: Chicago
Ed - thanks for the input. Like I said, it looks interesting from the outside, but never been in there. We drive past it a dozen times on every visit down there though. My in-laws are in Chesterfield.
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Post Tue May 01, 2007 4:54 pm
stlouBBQ well done
well done

Posts: 561
Location: St. Louis

I just saw that a place called "Masterpiece BBQ" will be opening in downtown. I was skeptical because the location they have has no room for smoking their meat. So, I checked out the website they listed on their "opening soon" sign. Link below. As it turns out, one of the guys who worked with the KC Masterpiece founder is opening the shop. He worked at KC Masterpiece for 13 years. Evidently, they already have a couple around St. Louis, and downtown will be their latest opening, coming soon. They will just bring in their meat that is smoked off premises. It is co-owned by local sportscaster Malcolm Briggs. I plan to stop by after it is open and I will let everyone know.

Here's the link: http://www.masterpiece-bbq.com/
"How many grills do you NEED?!"

Some people just don't understand

Post Wed May 02, 2007 3:58 pm
toasty medium
medium

Posts: 160
Location: St. Louis
I honestly find a lot of St. Louis BBQ joints to be pretty underwhelming -- which is why I normally prefer doing it myself -- but there are a few standouts. Supersmokers is a given for their ribs.

Another place that I haven't seen mentioned, though, is Lampert's Plush Pig in Clayton -- yes, Clayton!!! Really outstanding brisket that is incredibly moist and flavorful, and they serve slaw on a number of their sandwiches, which you don't see in too many places outside of the Carolinas.

Post Wed May 02, 2007 4:01 pm
toasty medium
medium

Posts: 160
Location: St. Louis
stlouBBQ wrote:
I just saw that a place called "Masterpiece BBQ" will be opening in downtown. I was skeptical because the location they have has no room for smoking their meat. So, I checked out the website they listed on their "opening soon" sign. Link below. As it turns out, one of the guys who worked with the KC Masterpiece founder is opening the shop. He worked at KC Masterpiece for 13 years. Evidently, they already have a couple around St. Louis, and downtown will be their latest opening, coming soon. They will just bring in their meat that is smoked off premises. It is co-owned by local sportscaster Malcolm Briggs. I plan to stop by after it is open and I will let everyone know.

Here's the link: http://www.masterpiece-bbq.com/


I've eaten at the one at Dierberg's in Brentwood. Pretty good grub. I didn't have anything during my visit that I would consider groundbreaking, but it was quite good and I'd not hesitate to get some food there again if I was in the area.

Post Sat May 12, 2007 10:54 am
stlouBBQ well done
well done

Posts: 561
Location: St. Louis

I just had an INCREDIBLE experience at Mike Mills' 17th St. Bar and Grill in O'Fallon, Illinois. Not only was the food great, but Mike gave me more than 2.5 hours of his time to talk competition BBQ, the restaurant business, and give me a VIP tour of the place, including the pits. I wrote about my experience with Mike on the General Discussion forum here: http://www.barbecuebible.com/board/view ... hp?t=12301

Now, I would like to share my experience with his food on here.

The restaurant is located in the old Super Smoker's location in O'Fallon. Everyone around St. Louis knows that Super Smoker's is awesome, and a tough act to follow. Mike followed a legend, and has done so admirably.

The menu was extensive. It covered all the basics, pulled pork, chicken, ribs and brisket. He also has beef ribs, which was a nice addition that you really don't find here in the Midwest. He also had other grilled meats, such as links, turkey and more. All BBQ could come as plates or sanwiches, and he had smaller or larger portions for dinner or lunch. Additionally, the rest of the menu was even more extensive, including steak, pasta and more so that you can bring people who wanted to order something more than just BBQ.

I had a sampler of brisket, pulled pork and his famous baby back ribs. Baby backs were Mike's original claim to fame, and they did not disappoint. They required a nice tug to remove from the bone, then melted in your mouth. The brisket had a nice smoke ring, was sliced thin, piled high, and tender. To me however, the pork was the best of the three. It was, without a doubt, the best pork I ever had. Lightly smoked and shredded. It was great alone, and even better when dusted with Mikes "Magic Dust" and sauced with his Memphis Championship sauce. The pork was not blonde, which is proof that his method let's the smoke get all the way through the butt.

He had the most extensive list of sides I have ever seen. All the traditionals and then some. When I was there he even had an additional side of cucumber and tomato salad, which I had and loved. I also tried the slaw and his famous beans. Again, they were great as well. The slaw is vinegar based, which I prefer.

MIke explains that he likes aromatic wood, mostly apple but also cherry and other fruit woods. He says that for his recipes, smoke is but an ingredient and not an overwhelming taste. Smoke is something that should be tasted like salt and pepper, not overpowering. So, his bbq is much different from those who cook with only wood using hickory or mesquite. I loved it. The flavor of the meat came through with hints of smoke. Mike explains that, in his opinion, hickory and mesquite are abused. I agree.

The ambiance was nice. Polished cherry wood bar with wood tables and chairs. It is a nice enough place that it "counts" as going out to dinner when you take your wife or other non-BBQ people. The prices are fair and the portions are generous. As a matter of fact, I brought home at least half of my order. Some places give smaller portions when ordering a sampler, but not here. You do not get cheated!

Overall, it was a wonderful experience. Everyone there was so friendly it made the experience even better. The staff is fully aware of Mike's star power, and they make him as available as possible with his customers. Try planning ahead, and maybe you will be able to catch him there! However, he is mostly at his Murphysboro, IL location, which is where he lives. For those in the St. Louis area, the drive to Murphysboro is not that bad.

Even if you don't see him when you visit, it is a MUST try for those who love good BBQ and appreciate good people like Mike and his daughter Amy who is also involved in the operation.

Peace, Love and Barbecue friends!
"How many grills do you NEED?!"

Some people just don't understand

Post Mon May 14, 2007 9:55 am
Bob-BQN User avatar
well done
well done

Posts: 12904
Location: Texas
You got me wantin' to visit the place AND meet Mike. :D

Thanks for the great review. 8)
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Post Tue May 15, 2007 11:49 am
toasty medium
medium

Posts: 160
Location: St. Louis
stlouBBQ wrote:
I just had an INCREDIBLE experience at Mike Mills' 17th St. Bar and Grill in O'Fallon, Illinois. Not only was the food great, but Mike gave me more than 2.5 hours of his time to talk competition BBQ, the restaurant business, and give me a VIP tour of the place, including the pits. I wrote about my experience with Mike on the General Discussion forum here: http://www.barbecuebible.com/board/view ... hp?t=12301

Now, I would like to share my experience with his food on here.

...


I've had food from the original 17th Street in Murphysboro, Illinois, and would agree that it is really, really good Q. Next time you're in there, give the wings a try -- assuming they are the same receipe as they use down south, you're in for great things!!!
"Give me my smoker and a cord of seasoned cherry, or give me death!!"
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Post Tue May 15, 2007 11:55 am
toasty medium
medium

Posts: 160
Location: St. Louis
Believe it or not, the BBQ at Busch Stadium is actually pretty good. Nothing wild and crazy, but they didn't just overcook a pork steak and dip it in ketchup like so many St. Louisians do. Both the pulled pork and brisket are slow-smoked until they get very tender and flavorful, and will satisfy you if you're craving smoked meat at the ballpark. Sides and sauce are OK but uninspired, but you are at the ballpark where they have to cater to the masses, so that's probably to be expected.
"Give me my smoker and a cord of seasoned cherry, or give me death!!"
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Post Tue May 15, 2007 8:26 pm
mhein68 rare
rare

Posts: 33
Location: Southern Illinois
I will agree that the "17th Street" in O'Fallon was a first class place...Loved the beans!!! I wish I could meet Mike, sounds like cool time!!! 8) I am going to try the Murphy store this summer sometime!
Mike H
Southern IL

Post Fri Nov 09, 2007 10:43 pm
stlouBBQ well done
well done

Posts: 561
Location: St. Louis

So, did you get to Murphysboro this summer?
"How many grills do you NEED?!"

Some people just don't understand

Post Sat Nov 10, 2007 10:26 am
mhein68 rare
rare

Posts: 33
Location: Southern Illinois
yes I did...twice actually.. My daughter(3) and I went earlier and me and a freind went later in the summer....Both times really enjoyed the food and looking at all the awards and articles on the walls...Really cool....ready to find some new places to try!
Mike H
Southern IL

Post Sat Nov 10, 2007 10:40 am
stlouBBQ well done
well done

Posts: 561
Location: St. Louis

Awesome! Mike Mills is a great guy on top of making excellent barbecue.
"How many grills do you NEED?!"

Some people just don't understand

Post Tue Mar 25, 2008 8:36 pm
bleujean medium-rare
medium-rare

Posts: 60
Location: MN
Went to Fat Tony's in St. Louis this past week (3/19). WHAT HAPPENED? First of all, the place is all cleaned up, new tables and servers. It wasn't like that last year. Not that it is a bad thing but WOW.

I asked the waiter what is the best time to come in and have a pic taken with Toney because that is one of the things he is known for. He no longer works there! How can you have Fat Toney's without Toney?!!!! I replied to an e-mail I received from Toney last year and got a response from one of the partners confirming he is no longer there.

The food is still good but my bubble has been burst.... :(
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Post Tue Mar 25, 2008 10:18 pm
stlouBBQ well done
well done

Posts: 561
Location: St. Louis

That does stink. I am glad you at least had a good meal. Is there still the letter from Bill Clinton to Toney on the wall, or did he move that out?
"How many grills do you NEED?!"

Some people just don't understand

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