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Monday, July 19, 2010

Review Preview: Mama Josephine's

Posted By on Mon, Jul 19, 2010 at 3:34 PM

click to enlarge Owner Mary Samuelson (left) and daughter Amy Keller (right) posing below a portrait of Mary's mother and restaurant namesake, Josephine. - JENNIFER SILVERBERG
  • Jennifer Silverberg
  • Owner Mary Samuelson (left) and daughter Amy Keller (right) posing below a portrait of Mary's mother and restaurant namesake, Josephine.
Some weeks you splurge on a $45 steak. Some weeks you just want good, old-fashioned home-cookin'. This is one of the latter weeks, as I review Mama Josephine's (4000 Shaw Boulevard; 314-771-4001). Follow me after the jump for a sneak preview of my review.

Mama Josephine's face watches over diners from the wall of her namesake restaurant, but fear not: She is no hectoring mother of dinner tables past. There is no "Sit up straight" here, no "Keep your elbows off the table," no "Clean your plate. Children in Africa are starving." In fact, the sepia-toned portrait photo shows the late Josephine Spallino circa 1940, a young woman -- a teenager -- with a flower in her hair.

Mary Samuelson, Josephine's daughter, greets me as I enter the small restaurant that she opened in March in the Shaw neighborhood. This is a few blocks from where my wife and I recently bought our first house, and while Samuelson and I don't know each other, and she has no idea that I live down the street, she treats me more like a neighbor than a customer -- not falsely friendly but comfortably familiar.
Visit the RFT restaurant page late tomorrow afternoon or check back here Wednesday morning to see what I think.

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