Thursday, July 16, 2015

Roadfood in Missouri

Eating like a local:
Regional food specialties

- Five Local Favorites in the Show Me State

I have a combo post I've been meaning to get up. This one takes five roadfood type spots from Missouri that I went to on a couple different trips and puts them into one post. Further expanding one of the best databases on the internet for roadfood in the Midwest. Hope you enjoy.

Cree Mee Drive-In

Eldon, MO

While cruising thru the Lake of the Ozarks area last summer I spied this Drive-In on the side of the road and couldn't help but pull over and try this world famous chili dog they claim to serve. The place was popping and most everyone was ordering ice cream and chili dogs. I guess they've been a summer tradition since 1952. The foot long chili dog was unremarkable but still satisfying.

Famous Chili Dog at Cree Mee Drive-In

Steve's Family Style Restaurant

Lohman, MO

On the same trip thru the Ozarks area and then back towards Illinois I spied this place on the side of the road and they were said to serve some top notch fried chicken and also ham off the bone. These are two of my favorite things so how could I not stop? I got a plate and it was pretty good. The fried chicken was above average but just a B- as far as report card score. The ham was a tad salty and the sides were good so all in all this cheap filling meal wasn't anything to be upset about stopping for.

Fried Chicken and Ham Combo Dinner from Steve's Family Style Restaurant

Arris' Pizza Palace

Jefferson City, MO

Should you ever find yourself hungry near Missouri's state capitol building this old time Greek pizza Parlor should hold you over. In 1961 a Greek immigrant named Arris Pardalos decided to bring pizza to the area since it was scarce and the rest is history. They push a pizza unique enough to leave regulars craving for more as well as a sandwich that I couldn't resist myself from trying. Listed under the baked subs section of the menu right on top is Arris' Sub Special. Its made by placing seasoned ground beef, mushrooms, onions, and chopped cotto salami in a baked loaf with cheese and their signature pizza sauce. It actually worked really well, together. I'd stop in again for one.

Arris' Sub Special 

The pizza was also good. I got a sausage and green pepper and really enjoyed this Greek take on a Midwest style pizza pie. Like I said above it had some characteristics that made it unique enough to want it. The Greek spiced sausage and the dough were what stood out to me. Stop in if nearby.

Medium Sausage and Green Pepper Pizza from Arris' Pizza Palace

Ste. Genevieve, MO

Main Street

The connection between St. Louis and Louisiana is deep as they're basically cousins. St. Louis was founded by two Frenchman from New Orleans. About an hour down the river is the old French-Canadian colonial town of Ste. Genevieve. Founded in 1735 it's the oldest permanent European settlement in Missouri. Because of it's French connection and resting place along the river, the town has a little bit of a New Orleans feel to it. To this day they obviously take great pride in their French history. It's an interesting half day trip from St. Louis.

The Southern Hotel - The oldest operating hotel in the United States west of the Mississippi

Actually Ste. Genevieve is full of historical buildings. Three of the last five remaining poteaux-en-terre buildings in the United States reside there. When I was in town a couple years back they were just getting started on a restoration project for the Bequette-Ribault House seen below. It's said to have been built around 1784 but there's evidence that suggests it was built circa 1808 in the exact location of an earlier post-in-ground house. The picture below it is the Amoureux House which was built in 1782. I didn't get a good picture of the third but it's there on Main street.

Bequette-Ribault House

The Amoureux House

Onto the food. The Old Brick House Restaurant sits in the Old Brick House building. The Old Brick House was erected in the year 1780 by a local merchant and ferry boat operator. It's the oldest brick building west of the Mighty Mississippi. So the story goes the bricks were brought from France in boats as ballast.

The Old Brick House (building built in 1780)

The restaurant is about what you'd expect menu wise. The inside of the place was old school with a bar in front and dining rooms with white tablecloths draped over the tables. Foodwise, it was again, about what you'd expect. We started with a Monte Cristo sandwich for the table and it was tasty. If I remember correctly it was chicken and dumplings as well as meatloaf for the AYCE lunch buffet that day and it was something like $7.99. It was comfortable.

Monte Cristo Sandwich

Lunch Buffet Plate

Afterwards we wandered next door to the Anvil Saloon for a beer after unexpectedly finding a spot touting New Orleans style baked goods as well as gumbo was closed. This from the Anvil Saloon website, "The building originally housed a hardware store which was in operation from 1850 to 1855. It became the Anvil Saloon in 1855 when it was purchased by the Vaeth family. It was operated as a gentlemen's saloon and adjoined a barber shop next door. The Vaeth family continued to operate the Anvil Saloon until 1978 when it was sold to Bill and Rene Abel. The Abels did extensive interior renovation, exposing the brick walls on either side, refinishing the maple floors and the bar and back bar. The bar and back bar were moved to this location in 1855, by oxcart, from a steamboat that was stuck on a sandbar and needed to have some weight removed."

The Anvil Saloon

While sipping on some cold ones we ordered up a couple All-American eats in their locally loved fresh battered onion rings and also a slice of homemade apple pie with vanilla ice cream. Both hit the spot as did the history lesson we got that day. With warm weather near I should be getting down this way at some point soon. Stay tuned.

Image Image
Onion Rings and Apple Pie

See ya next time

Cree Mee Drive-In
801 S Aurora St
Eldon, MO 65026
(573) 392-5418

Steve's Family Style Restaurant
8705 State Rte C
Lohman, MO 65053
(573) 782-0102

Arris' Pizza Palace
117 W High St
Jefferson City, MO 65101
(573) 635-9225

Old Brick House Restaurant
90 South 3rd Street
Ste. Genevieve, MO 63670
(573) 883-2724

Anvil Restaurant & Saloon
46 S 3rd St
Ste. Genevieve, MO 63670
(573) 883-7323

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