Quick Bites: 5.1.24

popping up | You can sample Niche Food Group’s new globally inspired barbecue concept, Expat BBQ, at Urban Chestnut’s Biergarten location in Midtown. Executive chef Sam Nawrocki is sharing his take on barbecue favorites ahead of the restaurant’s opening. The Brisket Pop-Up on May 4 will offer sandwiches made with chipotle in adobo, avocado salsa verde and cilantro, and on May 26 the Pork Pop-up will feature pulled pork prepared with a Vietnamese “hogwash,” ginger pickles and Thai basil.

perfect pairings
Swade Cannabis is collaborating with local restaurants and chefs for a series of infused dinners. Appropriately launched on April 20, Best Buds invites chefs to work with “Stiribles,” a new, unflavored, water-soluble THC-infused powder. The first collaboration featured an infused blackberry jelly at both Up Late locations. Pie Guy Pizza will offer an infused slice on May 13, El Molino de Sureste is using the product in tacos and tostadas on June 24, and Indo is offering the chance to sample infused sushi rolls and Thai Street food on July 16. For more information, visit

in high spirits
Congrats to Still 630! The distillery won big at the American Craft Spirits Association, taking home 11 medals. Its Five-Year Expedition Rum not only won gold but also Best in Class Rum—the brand’s fifth Best in Class award. Still 630’s Knowledge of Good Apple Brandy also received a gold medal, and its other medal winning spirits include entries in whiskey, brandy and gin categories.

one tasty partnership
Two beloved St. Louis food brands are joining forces! Hi-Pointe Drive-In and Taco Buddha have formed Gastronauts Food Group— a nod to their “out-of-this-world” approach to food and hospitality. The restaurant group will assist both restaurants in sustainable growth with streamlined operational efficiencies and collaborative marketing, while allowing each to maintain their independent brands. “We are very proud to be from St. Louis and build these brands here, and a big part of our Gastronauts Food Group strategy is to let the rest of the country know what St. Louis grown brands are all about,” says Ben Hillman, president of Gastronauts Food Group.

opens + closes
Umami Seasons Hotpot has joined the restaurant lineup on the Loop. The Taiwanese hot pot spot is now open at 6602 Delmar Blvd. … Old Town Florissant is getting a little Italian flavor. The historic Narrow Gauge Railroad station house in Tower Court Park (1060 St. Catherine St.) will soon be home to Costello’s Pizza and Subs. … Cobblestone, a market, deli and cafe concept, is new to Laclede’s Landing in the old Peper Tobacco Co. (701 N. First St.). … Last month, local fave Mission Taco Joint opened its ninth location at 1000 Woods Mill Plaza in the Clayton Village Shopping Center in Town and Country. … Breakfast lovers will want to head to Midtown, where The Biscuit Joint is serving interesting takes on classics at 2649 Washington Ave.

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