Sunday, July 13, 2014

Finally A Foodie Post

I am going to just go ahead and admit that I kind of stink when I try to blog from the road.  I have a game plan going into vacation and never find time to actually follow through with posting while I am out and about. I would probably do better if I posted a sign around the Bull with a return date on the sign.  If you have come here expecting a post about food, after it was promised in the Ray Lankford post, or if you just came here because you thought you'd see something new on cards, I apologize for the delay.  Here's my food post:

One of the best things about going back home to St. Louis is the food.  There are many good things to eat around Raleigh-Durham and I love living here and experiencing all of the good cuisine around here.  There is just something really special about the food you grow up with though and there are always a few things that you just cannot find another places.

My favorite St. Louis food is St. Louis style pizza.  I guess I could have put down Charlie Gitto's, Old El Paso Ballpark Nachos, Toasted Ravioli, or a half dozen other things.  But, yes I have to do Imo's when I come back to St. Louis.  The best Imos of course is the one in Webster Groves, about ten minutes from downtown St Louis, west of Interstate 44.  It's located in the Old Orchard part of Webster and is just a few minutes from where I lived for a few years.

So, here's the deal with St. Louis pizza.  It's on a flat crust, there is very little tomato sauce, but the star of the show is the cheese.  St Louis Style Pizza uses provel cheese which is a processed concoction cheddar, swiss, and provolone cheeses.  It's gummy, it's gooey, it's delicious.  Honestly, people either love it or hate it.  If you are curious about provel feel free to read this good NPR article on the delicious processed cheese.  Now, onto Imos.

I managed two Imos visits during my week in St. Louis.  My first visit was at my favorite Webster location.  Let me break it down this way: The decor is red, green, or white and they have some awesome vintage Blues posters of Brendan Shanahan and Curtis Joseph on the wall.  The day I went in there were two dozen preschool kids there being taught the finer points of good pizzas.  Here's what I ordered:

I picked up a sausage, I like black olives on it usually, but this is still really good and also picked up a veggie pizza too.  The veggie pizza is my favorite pizza off of the menu, but just ordering a pepperoni, sausage, or what ever topping combo is good too.  I love the square cut to the pizza.  There are a few other pizza places in St Louis that try to imitate, but Imo's has St Louis style pizza down to a science.  Here's a look at a slice of the veggie....

I spent the second half of my week in Columbia, Missouri which is about two hours west of St. Louis, or half way in between St Louis and Kansas City.  Columbia has their own pizza place, Shakepeare's, which is very good.  It's located in downtown Columbia and is a few minutes away from the University of Missouri.  It's the popular place to hang out before football games, but difficult to find a seat in on Saturdays.
I went to Shakespeare's for lunch with my parents after a hanging out at the school my son affectionately calls "The MIZ school".  Again a close walk from campus and there are plenty of cool things to see around the school.  Even if you're three there are things to climb on, sit in, and you can always walk around campus shouting "M-I-Z" hoping that some college kid will take the bait and shout back "Z-O-U".  Next time we won't mix in "WOLF" "PACK" chants and see if it goes better.

The downtown Shakespeare's was really crowded for lunch the day we tried to go for lunch, so we ended up going to another location in Columbia away from campus.  The pizza is basically the total opposite of Imo's.  Thick, tomato sauce, and real cheese.  It's pretty good.  

The slices are big and filing, but at lunch you can order by the slice.  If you go there for dinner there is nothing wrong with having leftover pizza hanging around.  Definitely the favorite of people in Mid-Missouri and I know a lot of Mizzou people who swear by this pizza.  I did not go to Mizzou and my college had an Imos across the street from it.  I had a second chance to visit Imo's in Columbia later in the week.

The parents offered a little free babysitting, which I don't turn down, and had a chance for another lunch out.  The Columbia Imo's is literally in the middle of nowhere, but I got to order my favorite black olive and sausage.

Interestingly enough I found out at the Columbia Imo's that there is an Imo's baseball card?  How did I not land one of these cards yet?  Apparently you have to order out and have a pizza delivered?

"Hello, Imo's I would like to order a pizza for delivery.  Raleigh is in your delivery zone, right?"


  1. Looks like you and the family had a great time. You are killing me. I always head to Imos and Fortels Pizza Den in Kirkwood when I get back home. My wife will barely eat STL Style but after years of trying I think she is coming around. I have even thought about having Imos sent to me here in Cal for my B-day.

    1. Imos will ship pizzas frozen, but I have heard it's not quite the same.

    2. I heard that too-but pizza here is lame and I might have to take a chance. We've ordered Giordano's from Chicago and it was pretty close to the on-site pie.