Welcome to Hidden Gem, Gut Check's short love letter to restaurants, coffee shops and bars that lie off the beaten path. These places soldier on in relative anonymity, beloved by their regulars, but largely overlooked by the greater populace. Hidden Gem will attempt to rectify these terrible oversights. Have a Hidden Gem of your own to share? Tell us in the comments.
Since June Grove East Provisions (3101 Arsenal Street; 314-802-7090) has occupied a quiet space in Tower Grove East. The European-style corner store offers a selection of fresh produce, snacks and groceries, beer and wine, gelato from the Gelateria and sandwiches made on fresh bread -- the best in St. Louis crafted by resident bakers Red Fox Baking & Catering, at that.
As reported by Gut Check last March, owner Barry Kinder sought to recreate a concept he held dear while living in London as a professional musician: a cozy and convenient neighborhood corner store. Patrons can grab some pantry essentials or simply stop in for a drink and a snack -- how about one of Red Fox Baking & Catering's rustic wood-fired tarts?
The selection of sandwiches features local Wenneman meats, Marcoot Jersey Creamery gouda and Red Fox's country white or wheat bread. Choose from options including a meatloaf melt ($8), pulled chicken and cheese ($7.50), or Kinder's personal favorite: the club sandwich ($8) with turkey, ham, bacon, lettuce, tomato, cheese and aioli. Each comes served with a side of tangy vinaigrette-based coleslaw and pickle -- add chips or a soda for $1.50 or soup for $3.
Grove East Provisions often features live music for casual get-togethers. Its current hours are Monday through Sunday from 11 a.m. to 8 p.m. For more information, follow Grove East Provisions via Facebook.
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