Off the Eaten Path

Exploring St. Louis, one meal at a time…

Jeff Ruby’s Steakhouse

So my last post about KFC was sort of lame, right? I know, I know…but I’m making up for previous transgressions by presenting you with my experience at Jeff Ruby’s Steakhouse. Oh, it was EPIC.

My mom treated my sister and I to a dinner at Jeff Ruby’s Steakhouse the night before mother’s day (what’s wrong with this picture? Shouldn’t it have been the other way around? Oops!). I was super super pumped, especially after looking at their online menu. I studied it and knew what I was going to order weeks in advance! 🙂

Anyway, Jeff Ruby’s. It’s in the River City Casino in South County, St. Louis.

First of all, the place was absolutely beautiful. The ambiance was amazing: the lighting was dim and romantic, and there were chandeliers everywhere! My heart was racing in anticipation.

I’m not going to waste any more time. Let’s get on to the food! Are you ready for lots of pictures?

We flipped through the wine menu first and settled on a dessert wine: Moscato. Dessert wine with dinner? Sounds like a great way to start the night if you ask me! I’m not a wine connoisseur by any stretch of the imagination, so I’m not going to pretend to be. All I know is that I like sweet bubbly wines, and this one hit the spot!

guess who drank most of the bottle? *hiccup*

On to the food. We’ll start with appetizers. My mom wanted us to try a little bit of everything, so we ordered quite a few appetizers. We started with the HUGE tiger shrimp cocktail:

This picture doesn’t adequately show just how HUGE these shrimp were. They were gigantic! And the flavor was amazing. Definitely a nice start to the meal.

Oh, but we didn’t stop there. Next on the appetizer list? Pan roasted mussels. They were accompanied with a white wine, applewood smoked bacon,  taragon and lemon sauce. MMM. These were divine. The mussels had a nice, light taste. Not too bogged down with spices. Clean…just the way I like it.

I ate a few mussels before I took this picture! Oops!

Next I wanted to try an oyster on the half shell. I’ve never tried raw oysters before. What the heck…might as well try it now!

I topped it with some cocktail sauce and horseradish before I slurped it down. Not bad! I don’t know if I’d do this again, though. Not a huge fan of the texture of oysters, even though the flavor was crisp, clean, and amazing.

We also had bread. I believe it was Jewish Rye. Not too shabby. The butter was the star of the show for me! There was regular butter (BORING!), and then there was mushroom and truffle butter. Now THAT’S what I’m talking about! It was yummy. I could eat that butter with a spoon. YUM.

look at that butter! Delish. Plain butter on the right, HEAVENLY mushroom and truffle butter on the left.

We noticed that they had sushi on the menu, and as a self-proclaimed sushi snob, I knew we had to try it. We went with the Dragon roll. I don’t remember exactly what was on it, but there was eel involved. And cucumber. And I think there was some crab in there somewhere. It was not bad at all! Quite delicious, actually. It gets the sushi stamp of approval from me!

Can you believe we still had room for our entrée after all of those appetizers? Well, we did. I went with the steak and lobster. 11 ounces of cold water lobster tail paired with 9 ounces of dry aged filet mignon? YES PLEASE! I had my steak topped with crab meat and béarnaise sauce, just because I was feeling a little fancy. 🙂

you can't have lobster without butter sauce!

The food was AMAZING. The pictures just don’t do it justice. The steak was cooked to a perfect medium rare, and it was amazingly tender. It melted in my mouth. The crab and bearnaise sauce were decadent and rich. The lobster was tender and so so SO juicy! I promise you that I will have dreams about this meal. It was cooked to perfection.

Of course I can’t hog the spotlight; my mom and sister’s entrees were fabulous as well:

Mom ordered the U.S.D.A. Prime Dry Aged New York Strip...14 ounces of meaty perfection!

my sister also ordered the steak and lobster. She topped her steak with peppercorn shrimp scampi.

Everything at Jeff Ruby’s is a la carte, so of course we had to order some sides to go with our meal.

We had baked macaroni and cheese:

baked macaroni and cheese

Potatoes Anna:

potatoes anna

Creamed Spinach:

creamed spinach

And grilled bacon (because who DOESN’T love bacon?!?!) :

grilled bacon!

Whew! So how was everything? The baked macaroni and cheese was tasty, although I admit that it looked better than it tasted. The Potatoes Anna were delicious! Think fried potatoes, minus all of the grease that weighs you down. They were delicious, and seasoned with the perfect amount of salt and spices.

The creamed spinach was, well…creamed spinach. Didn’t knock my socks off, but it was decent.

My favorite side by far was the BACON!! Who would have thought, right? It was delicious applewood smoked bacon, and it was thick, thick, THICK! Oh, it was perfection. Chewy, flavorful, salty, spicy…it had it all.

So after stuffing my face with appetizers, entrees, and sides, how in the world did I find room for dessert? Well, my friends…Stephanie ALWAYS makes room for dessert.

I went with the flourless chocolate torte. It was topped with sliced almonds and accompanied with house-made cherry sorbet.

Twas muy delicioso! It was rich and decadent (I’ve been using that phrase a lot throughout this review, haven’t I?) The raspberry sauce that was smeared on the plate was sweet and tart at the same time. The cherry sorbet was SO good, and went perfectly with this cake. It was just delightful. Perfect way to end the meal!

Or did I really end the meal there? Can I tell you a secret? I also had a piece of gooey butter cake and some amaretto ice cream to go with it. I’m so sad I didn’t take a picture, because this was the BEST gooey butter cake I’ve had IN. MY. LIFE. It was freaking fantastic!

So thus ends the journey of a thousand plates. Needless to say, we had plenty of leftovers. I’m munching on a piece of bacon right now. Nomnomnom. So good.

Service was very good. Our waiter was very attentive and friendly. No complaints there!

Ready for some scores?

Food: 5 stars (out of five)

Ambiance: 5 stars

Service: 5 stars

Value: 4 stars

Jeff Ruby’s almost received a perfect score from me. However, one could have easily purchased an iPhone for what our meal cost us. However, good food is worth the money, so I’m giving it 4 stars for value anyway!

I can only hope to be so lucky to return to Jeff Ruby’s again someday. THANKS TO MY MOM FOR TREATING ME TO AN AMAZING MEAL!!

I will have sweet dreams tonight. And then I’ll be hitting the gym HARD tomorrow. Oy vey.

May 9, 2010 Posted by | food, Uncategorized | , , , , , , , , , , | 6 Comments

Murdoch Perk

Every month I get together with my mom and sister for brunch.We take turns picking places to eat. The only stipulation? It has to be somewhere none of us has visited before.  This time around it was my turn to pick, and I really had to rack my brain for someplace new! As a (self-proclaimed) foodie, I really do get around! There was one place on my radar that I had been wanting to try, though: Murdoch Perk.

It’s a cute little corner cafe in the South Hampton area of St. Louis. Sort of in the same area as Ted Drewes. We arrived at 11am, and it was PACKED. I was surprised that we found a corner table to sit in. I recommend coming around noon or shortly after if you want someplace to sit.
I ordered the bacon egg and cheese croissant: the menu described it as ‘fluffy scrambled eggs topped with crispy bacon and american cheese on a flaky croissant.’ Mmm…I do love bacon! I had to try it.  It came with your choice of fruit or potatoes. As much as the fat kid inside me wanted the potatoes, I went with the fruit (I’m trying really hard to eat a little healthier here!).

The sandwich itself was pretty good. Didn’t blow me out of the water, but it was solid. I could have used a little more bacon and a little less egg, but that’s just the bacon lover in me coming out. The fruit? Don’t let the pretty picture I took fool you! It was a mess, simply put. A few apple chunks, some pineapple chunks, a few grapes, and smushed up mandarin oranges.  I LOVE fruit, but this didn’t look appetizing at all! And it wasn’t in a nice little cup or anything, either; it was all over the plate, where the juice from the fruit had the potential to get on the bread for my sandwich! I know…it sounds silly, but I don’t like my wet foods and dry foods to touch. Maybe I’m a little OCD.

My mom ordered the belgian waffles. She really liked them. I tried a bite and they were fluffy and very light.



The service was slow, but that’s understandable since they were SO busy. I would have appreciated a little more friendliness as well, but once again…they were busy. I guess I can understand.

On to the scores!

Food: 3 stars (out of five)

Ambiance: 3 stars

Service: 2 stars

Value: 3 stars

I know the scores are pretty low, but I wasn’t really blown out of the water by this place. I live pretty close, so I’m sure I’ll be back, but I’m not itching for a return visit or anything. Oh well…you win some, you lose some, right?

April 22, 2010 Posted by | food | , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Bittersweet Bakery

Bittersweet Bakery. Ahhh.

It is located in the lovely Benton Park neighborhood in St. Louis, MO, which is a rapidly changing, growing, and soon to be AMAZING neighborhood. Hell, some might say it’s amazing already! It is definitely unique. And filled with little gems like this place.

Before I even get to the food, let’s talk about the space. It’s in a HUGE building. The inside almost looks like a loft, with exposed bricks and ductwork. It’s very very cool. I wish I could have captured that on film.

When I walked in, I noticed something that I’ve never seen in a bakery before. All of the pastries and goodies were out on display. No sneeze guard, nothing to keep you from getting up close and personal with everything on the menu. Of course when you actually order, they give you something fresh that ISN’T sitting out! What a nice way to get a look at everything.

look at all of those treats!

I had to take some close ups of the pastries out on display.

three different types of quiche!

Okay, on to the food. I started with the sauteed wild mushroom and gruyere quiche.

It was topped with a citrus herbed salad (not pictured) that amounted to a few leaves of spinach and a couple of dried cranberries; it was quite forgettable. The quiche itself was creamy, and there were plenty of mushrooms spread throughout. The crust was my favorite. It was rich and buttery. Although tasty, the quiche was honestly too rich for me, and I could only eat half. But it was still pretty to look at.

super close up of the quiche!

this is what it looked like inside. Look at all of those mushrooms...

Next up was the bacon and cheese savory pastry.  It was probably the highlight of my meal. It had a nice flaky crust, and the warm gooey cheese went along nicely with the thick, chewy bacon. It was probably the tastiest thing I had at the bakery. I could have eaten two! Or three! Mmm.

bacon and cheese savory pastry

A view of what's inside...

I saved what I thought would be the best for last. The sticky bun bread pudding. I am a bread pudding FANATIC. I love the stuff. Even when it’s bad, it’s usually pretty good.

Well…this wasn’t BAD, per se…but it wasn’t quite as good as it looked. It was topped with caramel and candied pecans, which were pretty yummy, but it didn’t have that ooomph I’m looking for. Even though the girl working the counter popped it in the microwave, it could have stood to be a little warmer.

sticky bun bread pudding

Even though I was too full to eat the whole thing, I made sure I ate every last one of those candied pecans!

So…would I come back? I’m not itching to come back, but if a friend wanted to go, she wouldn’t have to drag me. Oh, who am I kidding? I’ll be back. I can’t resist a good pastry. Hell, I can’t resist a mediocre pastry either! Yeah…I’ll be back.

March 6, 2010 Posted by | Uncategorized | , , , , , | 17 Comments