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BBQ Road Trip Day 3: St. Louis

3 Jul

We couldn’t drive through St. Louis without a stop at the legendary Pappy’s Smokehouse.  Since its founding in the 1960s, Pappy’s has won numerous local and national awards, is listed in Zagat’s American Restaurants edition, and was recently named one of the 101 Best Places to Chow Down in America by The Travel Channel, as well as being featured on Man vs. Food.

One thing that makes Pappy’s Smokehouse unique is that your barbecue meat is served WITHOUT SAUCE.  The owners say that they have nothing to hide, so they don’t need to drown their meat in sauces.  And that way, you get to choose your own sauce.  There were three to choose from: Pappy’s Original (my favorite), Sweet Baby Jane, Holly’s Hot Sauce (too spicy for me that day), in addition to straight-up Heinz ketchup.

When we got to Pappy’s last Sunday afternoon at 2:30pm, there was a line 40+ people long, stretching through the restaurant and, out the door and down the hallway.  We knew we had stumbled onto a great place!  We waited about 30 minutes to order, maybe a little less, but our food came out in less than 5 minutes (typical of barbecue joints) and man, it was worth the wait!  Yum-my!

{Pappy’s Smokehouse, located in an unassuming strip mall in Midtown St. Louis}


{the menu}


{my lunch – pulled pork sandwich with sweet potato fries (my fave!) and beans – sorry for the blurry photo}


{a happy boyfriend}


Bon appétit, yourselves!

À demain,



Gettin’ some lagniappe in the Big Easy

15 May

our friend, the oyster expert

This was the scene at the storied 99-year-old Italian-Creole restaurant Pascal’s Manale in New Orleans.  Three of us – my sister, my boyfriend and I – shimmied over to the famous oyster bar for half-shell starter.  We got more than that.  Yes, we got a history and vocabulary lesson, too.  And a little lagniappe.

Lagniappe (“LAN-yap”).  Noun : a small gift given a customer by a merchant at the time of a purchase; broadly: something given or obtained gratuitously or by way of good measure

Usage.  Example 1: “The hotel threw in some free shampoo as a lagniappe.”  Example 2: “The meal was served with a lagniappe of freshly made cornbread.”

Origin of lagniappe: American French, from American Spanish la nãpa, from Quechua (Native American) yapa, something added.

– Merriam Webster American Dictionary online

you probably guessed it: my sister (because it was her first visit) got an oyster lagniappe

Because I want my readers to be extremely clever and witty, I thought I’d share this little nugget of cultural history.  Use it today and impress someone!

And if you’re in New Orleans, I highly recommend Pascale’s Manale.  In addition to a fantastic oyster bar, they have great classic drinks (my bloody mary was killer!), barbecued shrimp and lots of other great traditional NOLA dishes.

Pascale’s Manale – 1838 Napoleon Avenue, uptown New Orleans, LA 70115; phone 504-895-4877;,

À bientôt,



25 Apr

This post is going to be short, but delicious.  Before heading to Mississippi with my boyfriend for a little antiquing and general exploration, there was only one thing that I had to have while we were there:  GRITS!

I love grits; my grandmother, who was from Mobile, Alabama, used to fix them for us when we visited.  They’re wonderful, but are incredibly difficult to find in the north.


the Southern Breakfast at Monmouth Plantation in Natchez, MS

Bon appétit!

À bientôt,