Favorite St. Louis "Hidden Gems"

Hey all! Today I thought I'd share the other places I recommended to Country Living as "hidden gems" in our fair city of St. Louis, i.e. places that most out-of-towners might not know about but won't want to miss. It was suppose to include places to go and places to eat, but we get so caught up in the food scene here that most of my suggestions were the latter. Hee-hee.

First up is Crown Candy, which I actually haven't been to yet (I know, I'm a bad St. Louisan), but anyone who has lived here more than a year will have heard about it. I definitely have plans to make a visit this summer and hopefully redeem myself. (Image source)

Carl's Drive-In has particular value to me, as my great-aunts used to take us frequently for foot-long hot dogs and root beer (back in the days when I was a meat-a-tarian). Each time I drive by, I make a mental note to take the hubs there, so I guess that's another one for the summer to-do list. I think my favorite thing about this place is the unwritten code that once you've had your fill, you promptly vacate your seat so one of the many people waiting on the wall behind you can sit down and eat. Old-school manners...very cool. (Watercolor by Marilynne Bradley)

Aahhhh, Sweet Art, how I LOVE your cupcakes. This is one of my favorite places in our neighborhood. It has such a welcoming vibe, and the decor is right up my alley: mismatched vintage chairs and tables and old windows used as a see-through wall on the counter. And they're not just gifted with baking; last year I picked their veggie burger as my favorite of the 15 that I tried at different establishments around town. I actually haven't had anything from here that I didn't like. (Image source)

Missouri Bakery (or Missouri Baking Co., if you want to be precise) is definitely known among locals, but I figured most visitors go to The Hill for the pasta and maybe don't know about this gem. Their cookies and baked goods have been a staple in my life since I was little; I even made my parents haul several pounds of them to California so I could serve them at our wedding reception. Yum...maybe I'll go get some Chocolate Drops this weekend. :) (Image source)

Nora's is a relatively new-to-me place. The hubs introduced me to it, since him and his business partner frequent it for lunch. The decor is simple, lots of dark wood and wooden booths, but I love it (especially that giant chalkboard pictured). They serve salads in stainless steel mixing bowls, and the first time I was there, the server was wearing a vintage apron that looked suspiciously like one I used to have. Turns out she had bought it at my first indie craft show last year, which was fun. But the food! Really tasty and a great lunch spot. (Image source)

This list of places I love to eat around here could really go on and on...and I guess I should have included some fun things people can DO as well (ha), but there is just never enough space, is there?

What are some of your favorite places in St. Louis?


  1. Thanks for some new suggestions!

    1. Glad you found some that are new to you...which ones?

  2. Places I miss from the Lou:
    - Ted Drewes
    - Hullabaloo vintage store (heard it's gone...boo!)
    - the Art Museum
    - Pasta House Co.
    - Mississippi Nights on the Landing (torn down - double boo!)

    1. That is a great list! I actually ran into the woman who used to own Hullabaloo at an estate sale. Apparently she now does that and travels the country selling fine vintage jewelry. But she said she sold the store to her employees...I haven't looked into it since I've been back, but maybe it did close? Also, I have some PH pasta con broccoli in my fridge right now. :)

  3. We visited Crown Candy Kitchen last August and loved it! You need to go. Here's my post about my St. Louis visit.


    1. Oh good! I know I will, too. Just have to find the time to get over there! Thanks for sharing your trip to the Lou...looks like you had a great time. City Museum is awesome...


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