Saint Louis is famous for many reasons. It is home of the glorious Cardinals, Bread Co. (better known as Panera), the Gateway Arch, and of course, Nelly. Nevertheless, here is a list of specialty foods that placed St. Louis on the map.
1. Gooey Butter Cake
If you have never sampled this melt-in-your-mouth, sugar dusted treat then you are missing out. The legend behind this local delicacy is that it’s creation was purely unintentional. Supposedly, a German baker accidentally created the cake in the 1930’s when he mixed up the proportions of ingredients when trying to make a normal yellow cake.
It’s save to say that St. Louisans couldn’t be more thrilled about that mistake. You can find gooey butter cake all over the city, but the most famous cakes come from Gooey Louie. They serve an original cake, but also sell rotating variations such as chocolate and blueberry butter cakes.
2. St. Louis Style Pizza
St.Louis Style Pizza only has 3 rules. First, the pizza has to be thin crust. No ordinary pizza will ever be as thin as a St.Louis style because typically yeast is not used in the dough. Secondly, Provel cheese is a must. This swiss, cheddar, and provolone hybrid is unique to the area and oh so mouthwatering. Lastly, St.Louis Style is always cut into squares rather than slices.
If you find yourself in the mood for some traditional St.Louis style pizza, don’t hesitate to call Imo’s. This inherently St.Louis pizzeria is always “the square beyond compare”.
3. Toasted Ravioli
Toasted Ravioli, or rather breaded and deep fried raviolis, prove that everything really is better when fried. The local eatery Mama’s on The Hill claims it was the inventor of this savory delight. According to their description, the birth of Toasted Raviolis came about after a chef accidentally dropped the pasta in hot oil, rather than in boiling water.
This accident seems to have been a blessing in disguise. No matter where they actually came from, St. Louis is happy to have them. Once you try them, regular raviolis will never be good enough again.
4. St. Louis Style Barbecue
Typically St.Louis style implies that the meat is grilled and then sauced. Grilling meat, rather than cooking it with smoke and indirect heat, produces a flavorful yet juicy product. Not only does St.Louis has its own technique for grilling, but the city also boasts the use of unique meat cuts.
Pig Snout or as locals call it “Snoot” is not all that unusual. One taste of a snoot sandwich from Smoki O’s will change your life. You cannot visit Saint Louis without trying its BBQ style; that would be a tragedy.
5. Ted Drewes Frozen Custard
Although this is a brand and not a specific type of food, it may as well be the symbol of St. Louis ice cream. Since its opening in 1941, Ted Drewes has opened another location, stocked in grocery stores, and can even be shipped throughout the country. Home of the original concrete, they make custard so thick customers can turn the cups upside down.
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