From prime St. Louis barbecue (a sticking point with the locals) to authentic Cajun-American food, this list of STL diners, drive-ins and dives is finger-lickin’ good.
If you’re looking for a new way to experience the restaurant scene in St. Louis, beyond the Clayton and Central West End usuals, look no further: these restaurants are serving up delicious original recipes in all types of dishes, perfect for a Guy Fieri-sized bite. While the first six STL restaurants have been featured on the show, we think there are five more with major DDD potential, so we included those, too.
Featured on the show:
1. The Shaved Duck
Boasting the ideal combo of “good folk, fresh bbq and honest, soulful food,” the Shaved Duck is home to a variety of meats smoked all day long in wild cherry and hickory woods, sourced right from Perryville, Missouri. The meats are served up along with creative homemade sides, flatbreads and desserts for a hearty American meal.
Average plate: $13
Dishes to try: Slow Smoked Duck Breast, Chili Mac, Smothered Fries
2. Sweetie Pie’s Kitchen
A family establishment run by Mississippi natives Miss Robbie Montgomery and her son, Tim Norman, Sweetie Pie’s Kitchen dishes out made-from-scratch soul food. If you’re ever craving a real taste of the South in St. Louis, this is your place: true comfort food like fried chicken and meatloaf, always served up with a friendly smile.
Average plate: $11
Dishes to try: Fried Fish Dinner, Meatloaf, Peach Cobbler
3. Iron Barley
Known for delicious BBQ and from-scratch cast iron cooking, Iron Barley serves up traditional American food in a homey, family-friendly environment. To complement the wide variety of comfort food classics, Iron Barley offers a full menu of locally handcrafted brews.
Average plate: $13
Dishes to try: Oak Roasted Prime Rib, Pulled Pork Ravioli
4. Highway 61 Roadhouse
The Highway 61 Roadhouse celebrates both the food and the music of the famous highway running from New Orleans to Memphis to St. Louis. Offering dishes from all three cities’ cuisines including shrimp and crawfish etoufeé from Louisiana, BBQ pulled pork spaghetti from Memphis and peppery spare ribs from St. Louis, the Roadhouse is American at its core.
Average plate: $16
Dish to try: “Cajasian” Potstickers, BBQ Spaghetti, Louisiana BBQ Shrimp
5. Dressel’s Public House
A “locavore” take on the traditional pub, Dressel’s serves up farm-to-table pub fare as beautiful as it is mouthwatering. Known for a perfectly seasoned burger topped with aged cheddar and tomato-onion jam, Dressel’s has definitely elevated its food over the past few years to hold up to its selection of local beers.
Average plate: $20
Dishes to try: Burger, Fish and Chips, Truffled Grilled Cheese, Root Beer Glazed Rib Tips
6. Anthonino’s Taverna
Located in the heart of the Italian-American neighborhood of St. Louis, The Hill, Anthonino’s is an authentic neighborhood eatery serving a combination of unique and traditional pizzas, as well as indulgent pasta dishes. A few Greek items also made their way onto Anthonino’s menu including traditional Dolmathes and tzaziki sauce.
Average plate: $17
Dishes to try: Toasted Ravioli, Goat Cheese Pizza, Pasta Carbonara
[Should be] featured on the show:
7. The Kitchen Sink
The best place for authentic Creole, New Orleans style cooking in St. Louis, the Kitchen Sink also prides itself on its unique sandwiches, including the Special Ed (BBQ Brisket, red cabbage slaw, white cheddar cheese and Russian dressing) and the Cajun Gyro (blackened Gyro meat, sauteed peppers and onions, pepper jack and bleu cheese crumbles, tzatziki sauce). Check it out for a menu packed with delicious homemade Cajun-American food.
Average plate: $12
Dishes to try: The Special Ed (brisket sandwich), Seafood Gumbo, Sweet Fries
8. Pappy’s Smokehouse
Pappy’s does BBQ the old-fashioned way: slow-smoked meats (for 14 hours!) over sweet apple or cherry wood. Top them off with one of Pappy’s homemade barbecue sauces for sweet and juicy perfection, including Pappy’s original, Jane’s sweet sauce, Holly’s hot sauce and a special “Hoodoo” sauce.
Average plate: $13
Dishes to try: Pulled Pork Sandwich (or any smoked meat by the pound)
9. The Shack
Perfect for a hearty breakfast like an omelette or biscuits and gravy, the Shack is a family friendly restaurant with a Southern twist. While the Shack does offer dinner on certain days of the week in the Frontenac location, the place is generally known for its stellar breakfast and lunch options – especially the overstuffed sandwiches.
Average plate: $10
Dishes to try: Big Crunch (french toast), Chicken in a Waffle, Cubano
10. The Fountain on Locust
With a hand-painted art deco interior surrounding the entire dining area, the Fountain on Locust is quite the sight to behold. Besides the retro vibes enhanced by the restaurant’s radio comedy serial, Soap Hospital, the menu makes the place a true diner: everything from salads to soups to sandwiches to entrees. But when you go, you really have to try one of the 25 different signature ice cream martinis, freshly blended and garnished to order.
Average plate: $9
Dishes to try: Signature Polish Dill Pickle Soup (trust us on this one), The Fountain Cuban Sandwich, Ice Cream Martini (any of the delicious flavors)
11. Donut Drive-In
Although newer, fancier donut shops are all the rage in St. Louis, the Donut Drive-In is home to old-fashioned fried dough deliciousness. For soft, fresh donuts in traditional flavors, for half the price of some of the craftier donut shops in the area, the Donut Drive-In is your place.
Average plate: $2
Dishes to try: Raspberry Filled Sugar Donut, Buttermilk Donut, Vanilla-Frosted Cruller
Want more St. Louis eats? Check these out: