JAMBALAYA

(Comprising a random collection of ingredients from St. Louis food and wine)

TIDBITS:Andrew White is now the executive chef at Provençal-themed Café Campagnard, in the Lafayette Center at Manchester and Baxter in Manchester. One of his first duties was to create a new summer menu, featuring lighter items like crispy duck confit, seafood-mousse terrine and a chilled soup of the day. Summer entrees include trout dusted in pistachio flour and mushroom ravioli with truffle oil. Call 636-256-3949.... Paul's in Clayton, 7814 Forsyth, will host one of its popular New England Seafood Steamer dinners on Sunday, Aug. 8, with seatings at 6 and 8:30 p.m. For $37.95, you get a pound-and-a-quarter lobstah; steamed crab legs, mussels, clams and shrimp; roasted new potatoes, corn on the cob; and Key lime pie. Call 721-3311.... Tomatillo's fast-food Mexican is now available at a fourth location, this one at 7931 Forsyth in Clayton (726-6688), adding to its existing spots in University City, Olivette and Maryland Heights. Recent chatter on the Internet indicates that they may also be looking to open a city location sometime soon.... Yemanja Brasil (2900 Missouri at Pestalozzi in the Benton Park neighborhood, 771-7457) now makes its Brazilian specialties available on an outside patio.

TASTE OF ST. LOUIS: A recent press release from an out-of-town PR schlepper representing a St. Louis hotel restaurant singed my sensibilities somewhat, for several reasons. To be fair — and because the historic hotel itself has endured the repeated delays in the expansion of St. Louis convention capacity and will continue to have to put on a brave face as a massive construction project starts up outside its front door — I note in passing that the charming Alpine-decor restaurant space in the Mayfair Hotel (birthplace of Mayfair dressing) has switched its theme to "authentic Midwest steakhouse."

That said, I have to gently chide the Mayfair and owner Wyndham Grand Heritage Hotels first for not recognizing that downtown is already supersaturated with "authentic Midwest steakhouses" (Dierdorf & Hart's, St. Louis Steakhouse, Al's, J.T.'s) and then for sending the work of promoting a St. Louis institution to a Nashville agency, but probably most of all for not ensuring the local accuracy of the agency's work. Check out this interesting new nickname for St. Louis, from the press release: "The Mayfair Grill ... is the Archway City's answer for people who love steaks and other tried-and-true Midwestern favorites." Uh-huh. Remind me to visit the "Grand Old Opera" next time I get to Nashville.

 
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