Friday Notes

You may have heard about the original La Terraza in Peachtree Plaza closing. Turns out the property was recently sold and the new landlord was difficult to deal with. This is unfortunate because Christian and company had put a lot of work into the interior, even recently opening a new section of the restaurant. What you probably haven’t heard is that they will be opening a new restaurant – Mi Tierra – in the former Sky-Hi Grill location on Old Highway 63. I’m told the menu will be largely the same as La Terraza’s and they are hustling to open very soon. Meanwhile, the Forum La Terraza is open for breakfast, so…chilaquiles! Also,

  • There was a great, great review by the NYT’s Pete Wells this week, who you may remember for his demolition of Guy Fieri’s Times Square circusteraunt.ย So many wonderful lines, like,ย “Think of everything thatโ€™s great about fried chicken. Now take it all away.” Enjoy.
  • People seemed kind of jazzed up about the opening of Lucky’s Market this week. The 597 hits this blog received is an all-time one-day high. That said, I’m still running second to Mike Martin for Inside Columbia’s “Best local blogger” category with one week left in voting. Oh well.
  • Sauce Magazine ran a short rib taco recipe from a St. Louis restaurant and we made it this week – it’s brilliant. Go buy some short ribs from Show Me or Missouri Legacy and get busy.
  • I’m a big fan of kids learning early how to behave in restaurants, but I don’t think it would ever have occurred to me to take mine to Alinea. Yeesh.
  • We’re headed to St. Louis for a weekend soon, so if you’ve hit a place we need to check out, please let me know.

Have a great weekend.


Author: Scott

I am a married father of two. I graduated from Rock Bridge High School and then Mizzou before spending six years in the Washington, D.C. area. We returned to Columbia, Missouri in 2006.

18 thoughts

  1. I cannot second Cunetto’s. Nothing unique about it as an Italian restaurant on the Hill. Much better options in the area, such as Lorenzo’s and LoRusso’s.

    Scott, have you been to Joe Fassi’s Sausage on Sublette, or John’s Butcher Shop in Overland, MO?

  2. Are you sure we’re talking about the same Cunetto’s? All I know is, when polling people from St. Louis that I know, the most resounding recommendation is Cunetto’s for Italian on the Hill. Heck, the first time I tried it, I had previously asked a St. Louis group I belong to and it was still the most highly rated.

  3. There’s a really great pizza/Italian place called Onesto. It’s kind of out of the way in a little south city neighborhood, corner of Macklind and Finkman. The pizza and salads I’ve had there were excellent. All local/seasonal, etc. I haven’t tried the pasta.

  4. yes, it’s the same Cunetto’s. if you like to be herded into a crowded bar area to wait for a table for an indeterminate amount of time, then dine in a dimly-lit open dining area with food that is a couple notches above olive garden, then yes, that’s your place. that’s how it seemed to us on our experience there. you’re right: it is widely suggested (is a suggestion the same as a recommendation?), but just because it’s wildly popular doesn’t mean it’s the best….imho, it’s where the sheeple go, like wal-mart. trust me, you will have a much better dining experience (food, atmosphere, and service) at Lo Russo’s or Lorenzo’s, Trattoria Marcella, Mama Campisi’s, Zia’s, or dare i say many other options on the Hill.. i would put cunetto’s near the bottom of that lengthy list. but hey, if you like it, go for it! That’s why there are choices. Cheers! ๐Ÿ™‚

  5. A couple notches above Olive Garden? LOL. I’d love to visit the Olive garden that you compare Cunetto’s to, because that’s gotta be the best Olive Garden in America. ๐Ÿ˜‰

    The choices you list are quite good as well, but you are far too harsh to but Cunetto’s near the bottom. The way I look at it, if locals recommend it all the time, there’s something good going on there. You simply cannot wrote them all off as having bad taste or anything like that. So, I’d say multiple suggestions (recommendations) are worthy of note.

    Oh, well…as you said, there are choices for all out there, and everyone can find what they like. ๐Ÿ™‚

  6. I personally don’t care for most of the Italian options on the Hill. I suspect that the Italian restaurants I grew up going to had owners that originated from a different part of Italy, as the menu options on the Hill are different and disappointing to me. Lots of breading, lots of heavy sauces.

    Having said that, I would not recommend Mama Campisi’s, now known as Mama’s on the Hill. It was recently featured on Restaurant Impossible and not somewhere that I would care to dine based on my viewing of the episode. Cunetto’s is always busy, but I would consider it average on both food/service. Trattoria Marcella is quite good.

    Other places that I would recommend:

    Olio (wine bar and retaurant) or Elaia (fine dining)
    Taqueria Durango (OK yes, it is out in Overland in a crappy strip mall, but its delicious)
    The Libertine
    Sidney Street Cafe

    I’m sure you’ve been to a few of these (plus Niche and Pastaria), but they are some of our favorites.

  7. OK I will stop with this post, I promise. I realized I gave a lot of high end places, but if you have your kids in tow, you may want a little more variety –

    Mission Taco Joint (the lobster taco, which isn’t always on the menu, is amazing)
    The Shack (American)
    Kim Cheese (Mexican-Korean fast food, its interesting. We got enough food for about 4 or 5 people when we went, just to try everything)
    Fork & Stix (Thai)
    Sauce on the Side (calzones)
    Grbic (Bosnian)

  8. That’s one of the best things about the St.Louis food scene…lots of varied (and often strong) opinions about the best places! I love the variety. ๐Ÿ™‚

  9. let’s see, mexican in st. louis: how about Milagro Modern Mexican in Webster Groves, or Atomic Cowboy on Manchester in the Tower Grove nabe? Lily’s on Kingshighway comes highly recommended, and of course, there is a plethora of authentically REAL Mexican eateries on Cherokee Street, such as Tower Taco and La Vallesana, where it helps if you brush up on your Spanish. in the Delmar Loop nabe near Mission Taco is Mi Ranchito on Kingsland and Seoul Taco (Korean-Mexican) on Melville. Heck, when we were in St. Louis, we even loved Nachomama’s on Manchester in Rock Hill.

    Ali, I’m sorry to hear about Mama’s on the Hill. That does sound deplorable. Maybe if Restaurant Impossible couldn’t help, maybe Kitchen Nightmares can…yikes!

  10. Not to nitpick, but the Atomic Cowboy on Manchester is in The Grove, not Tower Grove. Just pointing that out, because it might be confusing. Although there are a lot of great restaurants in Tower Grove as well. On that note, in the Grove/Manchester neck of the woods, Everest Cafe (Indian, Nepalese, and Korean) was excellent. I believe they now have a Jeff City location, and can’t vouch for that, but their STL location is excellent. Everything was very fresh tasting and flavorful without being too heavy.

    I’ve been to Lily’s (it’s close to where I live) a number of times and remain not hugely impressed. In whatever we ordered the meat was dry and flavorless. Might have just been what we ordered. Haven’t been able to get out to the Cherokee Street places yet.

  11. Rachel — I just ran across your post and saw the mention of there being an Everest in Jefferson City! Checked out their website and yes there is one at 2403 Missouri Blvd and it looks like they have a lunch buffet from 11:30 – 2:30 Mon – Sat. Has anyone checked it out yet? I am going to have to plan a trip to Jeff one of these Saturdays and try it!!!

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