Laura Ann Miller

  • Blogs

    June 19, 2014

    The Best Menus at Clayton Restaurant Week: Summer Edition

    It's time for the summer edition of Clayton Restaurant Week, and thirteen neighborhood restaurants are participating to raise money for Operation Food Search. We know it's hard to hit them all, so we've narrowed it down to the five we think are can't-miss. See also: Best Restaurant Neighborhood - C ... More >>

  • Blogs

    June 17, 2014

    Chi Sushi Sake Closed

    It has not been a good month for restaurants. It appears that Chi Sushi Sake (4 North Euclid Avenue; 314-367-2209) in the Central West End is closed. There is no sign on the door, but the windows are completely papered up. See also: West End Wok to Open on Laclede in Central West End

  • Blogs

    May 1, 2014

    10 Best Mexican Restaurants for Celebrating Cinco de Mayo

    Wondering where to go to celebrate Cinco de Mayo? Look no further -- Gut Check's got the guide to the best spots for celebrating the holiday. Hit any or all up for the best tacos, margaritas and sopapillas St. Louis has to offer, not to mention giveaways, special brew releases and more. See also: H ... More >>

  • Blogs

    April 15, 2014

    The Best Easter Brunches in St. Louis: 2014

    Easter Sunday is like the mack daddy of all brunches. We we were kids, it was all about the Easter egg hunt. Now it's waffles, bacon and lots of mimosas. It's also a time for many to get together with family, and brunch is an after-church tradition. There are lots of choices for your holiday brunch, ... More >>

  • Blogs

    January 7, 2014

    Best Places to Get Hot Chocolate in St. Louis

    Coffee isn't the only thing to warm you up. Usually we go straight for the booze, but sometimes you just need to satisfy that sweet tooth. It's the perfect time for hot chocolate, and there are better offerings around the city than Swiss Miss with fake marshmallows. See also: Underrated/Overrated: ... More >>

  • Blogs

    December 27, 2013

    Celebrate New Year's Eve Without Breaking the Bank

    New Year's Eve is quickly approaching. Unfortunately, parties for the night can run you $100 per person at the very least. Sure, you get an open bar, but some of us are looking to be a little more economical. Check our picks for the best New Year's Eve on a budget, and let us know what you'll be up ... More >>

  • Blogs

    December 20, 2013

    The 7 Best Eggnog-Flavored Treats to Brighten Your Holiday

    Sometimes eggnog gets a bad rap. It may be an acquired taste, but there's more to enjoy besides those huge jugs of the pre-made stuff. Even if it's not your drink, plenty of bakeries and restaurants are offering eggnog-flavored treats to get you in the holiday spirit. It's basically the pumpkin spic ... More >>

  • Blogs

    December 2, 2013

    The 5 Best Tapas/Small Plates Restaurants in St. Louis

    No, small plates are not going away. Embrace it, because it means you get to eat lots of different stuff, and it's usually paired with great cocktails or wine. Although some people are sticklers for what actually constitutes tapas, we lost that war long ago. Just go with it. See also: More Than a M ... More >>

  • Blogs

    November 18, 2013

    The 5 Best Wine Bars in St. Louis

    It's no secret that we love wine, but sadly, winery season in Missouri is pretty much over. Instead, we'll be visiting one of the several wine bars St. Louis has to offer. If that sounds overwhelming, Gut Check has got you covered. Try one of our five favorites this week. See also: March 2013 Issue ... More >>

  • Blogs

    October 25, 2013

    Celebrate National Chili Month with the Five Best Bowls in St. Louis

    We don't need a calendar to know it's National Chili Month -- just look outside. The first frost on the ground, which means the time is right to dive into a big ol' bowl of chili and hunker for a hard winter. To help you discover the perfect bowl, here's a list of five great places in St. Louis that ... More >>

  • Blogs

    August 20, 2013

    Five Best Day-Drinking Spots in St. Louis

    Did the Mayans get it right? Did the world really end least year, and are we living in some sort of post-apocalyptic utopia? How else can one explain the weather? Here at Gut Check, we find it unconscionable that anyone has to work on a such a nice August day in St. Louis. For this reason, we are gi ... More >>

  • Blogs

    May 16, 2013

    Soccer Bars and Farmers' Markets: An Updated Guide to Tower Grove

    St. Louis' neighborhoods are gems in their own right: full of history, great people and, as far as Gut Check is concerned, fantastic food. Each week we'll take you into a specific neighborhood and point you in the direction of the best places to grab some bites. View Tower Grove in a larger map Tow ... More >>

  • Blogs

    March 13, 2013

    St. Patrick's Day Poll: Downtown vs. Dogtown

    Forget Chicago and its green river. Heck, move over, Ireland! St. Louis has some of the biggest and baddest St. Patrick's Day celebrations around! With two parades -- one downtown on Saturday and one in Dogtown on Sunday -- St. Louis is the place to knock back a pint of Guinness in your finest gree ... More >>

  • Blogs

    February 26, 2013

    Neighborhood Bites: The Hill

    St. Louis' neighborhoods are gems in their own right: full of history, great people and, as far as Gut Check is concerned, fantastic food. Each week we'll take you into a specific neighborhood and point you in the direction of the best places to grab some bites. The Hill is the classic St. Louis ... More >>

  • Blogs

    December 18, 2012

    Rick's Picks: Six of Coach Majerus' Favorite St. Louis Eateries

    "Some guys smoke. Some guys drink. Some guys chase women. I'm a big barbecue-sauce guy." -- Rick Majerus Rick Majerus loved to eat. That was no secret. But what were some of his favorite St. Louis eateries? Last week Gut Check caught up with several local restaurateurs whose tables often served ... More >>

  • Blogs

    November 30, 2012

    The Ten Best Rock Clubs in St. Louis

    Selecting Riverfront Times' Best of St. Louis 2012 was no picnic. Choosing the winner meant several worthy candidates would go unmentioned -- until now. In this RFT Music series, we're working our way through notable runners up in a number of categories. This week: The best blues clubs in St. Louis. ... More >>

  • Blogs

    January 9, 2012

    The Nine Best Tapas/Small Plates Restaurants in St. Louis

    Selecting Riverfront Times' Best of St. Louis 2011 was no picnic. Choosing the winner meant several worthy candidates would go unmentioned -- until now. In this Gut Check series, we are chewing our way through notable runners up in a number of categories. To see hundreds more winners and finalists a ... More >>

  • Blogs

    December 14, 2011

    House of Savoy at Lumière Place Closes

    Laura Ann MillerInside House of Savoy, now closed​As George Mahe of St. Louis Magazine reported last night, House of Savoy, the Italian restaurant at Lumière Place Casino & Hotel (999 North 2nd Street; 314-881-7777), closed on December 10.Technically, House of Savoy was located at HoteLumièr ... More >>

  • Blogs

    December 13, 2011

    Review Preview: Market Grill

    Laura Ann MillerMarket Grill in Soulard starts anew.​This week, I return to Market Grill (728 Lafayette Avenue; 314-436-7664) a little over a year after my initial visit. Why go back? Big, big changes. A sneak peek of my review is after the jump.

  • Blogs

    December 8, 2011

    Food & Wine Names Taste One of 50 Best Bars

    Laura Ann MillerInside Taste, one of America's best bars​In a slideshow posted this week, Food & Wine magazine named Taste (4584 Laclede Avenue; 314-361-1200) one of the 50 best bars in America. A brief blurb does manage to mention "local hero" mixologist Ted Kilgore and of the dishes from che ... More >>

  • Blogs

    September 22, 2011

    Harry's Bar and Grill to Close Sunday, September 25

    Laura Ann Miller​Harry's Bar and Grill (4940 Southwest Avenue; 314-771-5077) will close after service on Sunday, September 25."We've been here twenty-two years," Mike Thone, who owns the restaurant with business partner Steve Owings, tells Gut Check."It's time to renew the lease, and we can't affo ... More >>

  • Blogs

    September 15, 2011

    Tidbits from Market Grill, Pita Pit

    Laura Ann MillerInside Market Grill in Soulard​A couple of updates to some recent items:- We learned a couple of weeks ago that Jonathan Olson would take over as chef of Soulard's ​Market Grill (728 Lafayette Avenue; 314-436-7664).The restaurant debuted its new menu last weekend, and you can now ... More >>

  • Blogs

    August 17, 2011

    New Owner Seeks the Original Spirit of Arcelia's

    Laura Ann MillerInside Arcelia's (before the rehab)​Pat Shelton loved Arcelia's so much she decided to buy the building.The Mexican restaurant closed at the end of last year after a twenty-year run, first in Soulard, then at 2001 Park Avenue in Lafayette Square. Shelton and her husband acquired th ... More >>

  • Blogs

    July 11, 2011

    New Life for Arcelia's?

    Laura Ann MillerInside Arcelia's, now (temporarily?) closed​Arcelia's (2001 Park Avenue) closed at the beginning of this year, ending the Mexican restaurant's twenty-year run in Soulard and then Lafayette Square. About a week after its closure, the restaurant's website -- now vanished -- suggested ... More >>

  • Blogs

    July 1, 2011

    Ten Best Food Events this Weekend: July 1-4

    Laura Ann MillerVin de Set's rooftop bar​There are plenty of ways to get barbecue and fireworks fixes this holiday weekend. Check out the Red, White and Brew Bash at Llywelyn's in St. Charles or visit Fair St. Louis. Alternatively, avoid the hustle and bustle of big crowds altogether by checki ... More >>

  • Blogs

    June 27, 2011

    Demolished: Five St. Louis Restaurants That Are No More

    Laura Ann MillerDel Taco: Set to join Noah's Ark and the Parkmoor?​We're all abuzz about the possible demolition of the Googie-style Del Taco on Grand, enough to merit Facebook pages and news stories about how outraged -- outraged! -- we are as a city. Were we equally outraged when these othe ... More >>

  • Blogs

    June 21, 2011

    MoKaBe's to be Featured in Documentary by Liza Birkenmeier

    Laura Ann MillerMoKaBe's is ready for its close-up.​Even though she's currently earning a Masters in Dramatic Writing at Carnagie Mellon University in Pittsburgh, St. Louisan Liza Birkenmeier has returned home for her current project - a documentary on MoKaBe's Coffeehouse (3606 Arsenal Street ... More >>

  • Blogs

    June 8, 2011

    Review Slideshow: Taste

    Laura Ann MillerMixologist Ted Kilgore at work behind the bar of the new Taste​Taste (4584 Laclede Avenue; 314-361-1200) has a new location, a new look and a new menu. Does it live up to the reputation established by its previous incarnation as Taste by Niche? My review of Taste is now available o ... More >>

  • Blogs

    May 23, 2011

    Visit Pi Truck, Help Joplin

    Laura Ann MillerEat this to help the people of Joplin.​As you're no doubt aware, a tornado struck Joplin, Missouri, yesterday, killing at least 89 people and causing devastation throughout the town.Pi on the Spot, the food truck of Pi Pizzeria, announced via Twitter this morning that it will donat ... More >>

  • Blogs

    December 3, 2010

    This Week in Gut Check, Regurgitated

    Laura Ann Miller Kakao Chocolate​As we moved into a new month, Gut Check took stock of some changes to the local scene. Among the news, Kakao Chocolate is opening a shop in Maplewood, and Gerard Craft sold Taste by Niche to Adam Altnether. Find a list of the month's openings and closings i ... More >>

  • Blogs

    November 30, 2010

    Kakao Chocolate to Open Maplewood Shop

    Laura Ann MillerKakao Chocolate's original location​Owner Brian Pelletier tells Gut Check that he has signed a lease to open Kakao Chocolate at 7272 Manchester Road in Maplewood. This will be the second location for the shop the RFT named "Best Chocolate" in 2010, following the original at 2301 So ... More >>

  • Blogs

    November 24, 2010

    Top Ten Happy Hours for Foodies

    In this week's hot-off-the-presses print edition, we've compiled the Riverfront Times' comprehensive guide to the finest happy hours in St. Louis. (And no, this wasn't done only as a public service -- we're also bringing to your attention the very cool free smart-phone app that includes our fascinat ... More >>

  • Blogs

    November 15, 2010

    Review Preview: SweetArt

    Laura Ann MillerBaked goods and vegetarian/vegan cuisine are on the menu at SweetArt.​This week I put aside my carnivorous nature and embrace the vegetarian and vegan cuisine at SweetArt. Follow me after the jump for a preview of my review.

  • Blogs

    September 9, 2010

    Eleven Eleven Mississippi, Vin De Set Owners Blog Way Through Tuscany and Provence

    Laura Ann MillerThe rooftop deck at Vin de Set: "I can see my house from here!"​Paul and Wendy Hamilton, owners of the ever-popular Eleven Eleven Mississippi and Vin de Set, have embarked on a trip through Tuscany and Provence to study food and wine for the two restaurants. You can envy follow the ... More >>