Tasty Tuesday–Beast Craft BBQ: The Brisket Mac Attack!

About two weeks ago, Beast Craft BBQ debuted a new “sammich” on their menu, and it had been a long time since I tried one of their sammiches! So on the way home from the grocery store, we stopped and I got the “Brisket Mac Attack”–Texas chainsaw brisket, smoky bacon mac ‘n’ cheese, shredded cheese, and grilled onions on Texas toast. I also got a side order of the mac ‘n’ cheese, because I don’t think I’ve tried it since they landed on their current recipe.

This sammich is not for the faint of heart…the sauce packs some major heat. But it was the perfect combination, because the mac ‘n’ cheese and shredded cheese helped cool it down some, the onions added a nice flavor, and the bread was toasted perfectly…well, the top piece, anyway. The bottom piece had completely disappeared under the meat and sauce, but I assume it was just as good!

Beast has had some other new menu items recently, as well, including pork taquitos which are AMAZING, and grilled peaches topped with blackberry butter and mint, the perfect summer side dish!

I will warn you, if you want to carry out food, especially on a Sunday in our experience, you need to be prepared to wait. Ryan was in the restaurant for almost half an hour waiting for my sammich and his turkey to be prepared, even though it wasn’t overwhelmingly busy, and he was a little frustrated by the time he made it back to the car. Calling ahead definitely alleviates some of that, but I think that on the weekends, you just need to expect that you’re going to have to wait it out.

A German Feast for the Fourth

I wasn’t really feeling the Fourth of July this year, so I wanted to do something different for our holiday dinner. I decided that a meal that celebrates part of our family’s heritage would work, so I set out to make a German Feast for the Fourth.

We started by making pretzels this afternoon, which is always a family favorite food and activity! In addition to nacho cheese (so not German!), we also had a delicious German pub mustard for dipping.

For dinner, I decided to make pork schnitzel with a Jaeger sauce, German potato salad, gerkensalat, sauerkraut, and homemade spaetzle. The dinner was a big hit!

For dessert, I made a Schwarzwald Kirsch Kuchen. Also a big hit!

This wasn’t our usual Independence Day dinner, but it was festive and delicious…what more can you ask of a holiday meal?

Tasty Tuesday–Three Kings Public House

I have been wanting to go to any of the Three Kings Public House St. Louis area locations for so long. But their prices are high enough that it just wasn’t feasible for our whole family of seven to enjoy a meal there. But when The Bigs were at Kantorei Kamp last week, I realized that Chickadee and I could enjoy a meal out together, without breaking the bank!

We went to the location on Manchester in Des Peres. The interior is just what I was expecting…very pub-like.

The one thing that surprised me, however, was the portrayal of the “Three Kings.” I’m not sure what I was expecting, but it wasn’t the combination of Elvis, Henry VIII, and King Kong!

As I did before we went to Muldoon’s in Wheaton, I studied the menu, so I knew exactly what I was looking for. I wanted to try the house made chips (to compare them with the ones Seamus McDaniel’s makes), along with the Irish cheddar rarebit. They were delicious. For my entrée, I had to try a burger, of course, so I went with the Pogue Mahone, which was topped with a fried egg, carmelized onions, sautéed mushrooms, bacon, and cheddar and Swiss cheeses, all on a pretzel bun. Of course it wasn’t a Seamus burger (what is?), but it was really good. I ordered it rare, and it was almost as rare as I prefer, and the combination of toppings was excellent, if not very messy!

Chickadee and I walked around a bit after we were done eating…the whole restaurant is charming!

There is quite a bar, as well:

I would definitely like to go back to Three Kings. I’ll have to take another look at the menu, though, and see what I would like to order next time!

Tasty Tuesday–Muldoon’s

We just got back from a long weekend in Chicagoland. One of the things I really wanted to do while we were there (if there was time), was eat at Muldoon’s in Wheaton. I’m very happy we found time!

When I was a little girl, this building housed the Wheaton Restaurant, a place where we occasionally went for breakfast after church, because church was just a few blocks away. We were sad when the Wheaton Restaurant closed, but it reopened as Cafe Wheaton, a place we frequented often for dinner when I was in high school/college. It retained the charm of the original restaurant, with an all-new menu (including one of my all-time favorite dishes, Chicken Thomas), and Wheaton history spread throughout the restaurant. There was the story of Wheaton on the menu, a photo gallery of former mayors, autographs from famous Wheaton residents, and photos from throughout Wheaton’s history everywhere you looked. I was even sadder when I heard Cafe Wheaton had closed, but intrigued when I heard it was reopening again as an Irish pub, with yet another new menu, but with the photographic history of Wheaton still on the walls. Ever since I heard about Muldoon’s, I wanted to see it for myself, and I have to say, I wasn’t disappointed. Even though the menu is completely new, there was much of the restaurant that was familiar, starting with the glass fleurs-de-lis in the entrance!

The menus, like the cloth napkins on the tables, felt fancy, but a look inside let you know that you were really in an Irish pub:

We started with an order of “Harp Strings,” which are onion strings with honey mustard sauce. They were delicious…I think I could have eaten the whole order myself! For our meal, I ordered the Dagda’s Harp burger (which had the delicious Harp Strings on it!), with a side of homemade chips. I also enjoyed a drink called the “Dublin Donkey,” which is a twist on the more famous “American Mule.” Ryan had the pretzel bacon melt and Turkey ordered his favorite kind of burger (not pictured), one with a fried egg and bacon on it. Bunny tried something completely different, and had a black and bleu salad. The rest of the children ordered off of the children’s menu, and they enjoyed their dinners, too. Everything was delicious! Turkey said his burger was the second best one he’s ever had (of course, the Seamus burger is number one), and Ryan and I agreed with him…our burgers were excellent. The homemade chips were just as good as the ones Seamus serves, too. And Bunny’s salad was amazing…I think everyone but Turkey and Moose tried it and enjoyed it. The menu was quite extensive beyond these options, including classic pub fare like shepherd’s pie and fish & chips, many kinds of mac-n-cheese, American favorites like meatloaf and chicken, and even taco platters!

I’m so glad we decided to give Muldoon’s a try. I have to admit, I was a little nervous going in, partly because I knew it wouldn’t be Cafe Wheaton, and partly because I knew that there was no way it could be as awesome as Seamus. While it wasn’t quite as good as Seamus (nothing ever will be!), it’s definitely a close second, and even though it’s not Cafe Wheaton, it was still familiar, and brought a flood of memories back. It was a great dinner out on vacation!

Tasty Tuesday–Hi Pointe Drive In

A few weeks ago, I finally had a chance to go to the Hi Pointe Drive In, located next to, you guessed it, the Hi-Pointe Theatre on McCausland Ave. in St. Louis, where the old Del Taco used to be. This is a fairly new sister restaurant to Sugarfire Smokehouse, which has several locations in the St. Louis area. The brightly colored Hi Pointe, built from shipping containers, is impossible to miss…especially with the addition of a spaceship out front!

I loved all the signs inside, both menus and artwork. They also help you figure out what you’re supposed to do. Start by grabbing a drink (great local selection of soda by Excel, as well as local beer), unless you want a draught beer, which you get at the end of the assembly line, and then place your order. After you pay, find a table, and they’ll bring your food to you…pretty simple!

The whole space is full of funky charm:

Of course, the real reason I was there was for the food. While Ryan ordered a standard burger (which is prepared smashed-style) with bacon, and a chocolate shake, I had to try the specials. It happened to be National Pretzel Day, so I got a burger that had gouda cheese (one of my favorites!), beer cheese sauce, chips, and onions, served on a pretzel bun, plus an “Elvis Pretzely” shake, which had peanut butter, bacon, and bananas! The burger was amazing, but the shake was too heavy on the peanut butter for me, so Ryan and I ended up trading. The chocolate shake was perfect (check out the fat straw that came with it…totally necessary, too!), and he liked the one I ordered, since he’s a bigger fan of peanut butter than I am.

This is a fun restaurant with tons of personality. The food is great, and if you follow them on Instagram, you’ll quickly see that while their standard sandwiches and burgers are fantastic, what they really specialize in is coming up with over-the-top specials. Burgers with ingredients you’d probably never have thought of, brunches that will leave you drooling, and other sandwiches that are fresh takes on old standards. It was a bit spendy, so I don’t think we’ll be able to go very often, but it’s great to see another successful restaurant in the Dogtown area!

Tasty Tuesday–Ideas for Cinco de Mayo

Cinco de Mayo is just around the corner! I love an excuse to make a Mexican meal, authentic or Americanized, and my family loves an excuse to enjoy eating it! Here are some of my favorite Mexican recipes (mostly Americanized, I suppose) that I’ve shared over the years…main dishes, a side, and desserts. Some of them even use leftovers!

What are your favorite Mexican recipes?

The Easter Feast

Let’s start by focusing on what I liked about our Easter dinner. I set a very nice table, don’t you think? I love getting out our table linens and china, and making some kind of centerpiece. The side dishes were our standard family favorites: roasted potatoes, carrots, and brussels sprouts, pan-fried asparagus, cherry cola Jell-O, and mini croissants. Nothing terribly fancy, but dependably delicious. And the dessert was great. I tried a new recipe for a lemon curd swirl cheesecake with a homemade strawberry sauce. It took hours to get the whole thing made yesterday, but it looked and tasted great, so it was worth it. Those are all good things about our Easter dinner!

You may have noticed I didn’t mention the lamb. Despite the fact that I followed the recipe exactly (a recipe I have successfully made in the past, for the record), the lamb was way overdone. I don’t care what anybody who was at the dinner table said…it was not good. And since that was supposed to be the star of the meal, that was a huge disappointment to the chef.

Anyway, I’m going to try to focus on what I liked about the meal. And maybe not make lamb again next year.