Dining

Review: Firecracker Pizza & Beer

first impression 
This is a quirky pizza joint in The Grove started by Chip Schloss, the force behind Atomic Cowboy. It’s got a cool, eclectic vibe and a menu of more than 60 beers, a handful of ‘beer-forward’ cocktails, and eats that are house-made, mostly unique pizzas and starters. I liked the edgy ambience, the food and the prices.

wash it down:
The beer selection is awesome here, focusing mostly on local and regional selections. There are more than 60 brews on tap, including many seasonal picks like Schlafly’s Oktoberfest ($6), a Bavarian Marzen that is hearty and dark. Also deliciously seasonal: Urban Chestnut’s Bushelhead ($7), a crisp, hard cider. The excellent Keep It Civil ($12) cocktail mixes Civil Life’s brown ale with rye.

overall 
This is a fun place that is serious about pizza and beer. The ambience is funky, with an aura of irreverence.

must try
» screamin’ mimis: $8; These chicken strips were thigh meat (which is totally more flavorful), house-smoked and served with two tasty dipping sauces, a white horseradish and a sweet red Thai chili. The slightly smoky flavor paired well with both sauces, which were spicy.
» cherry bombs: $8;  Giant beef-pork meatballs that were a little spicy from cherry pepper relish
» spuds rodriguez: $12;  The pizza crusts are delicious, crisp and bubbly and not greasy (Pi Pizzeria’s co-founder Frank Uible is a partner). This one had a rich creaminess, thanks to the special ‘FPB white sauce’—cream, sour cream and horseradish. It was a decadent combination of sweet, creamy and tangy. Tasty chunks of applewood bacon and roasted poblano cubes dotted the pie, along with roasted corn kernels, roasted potato slices and sweet, caramelized onions.
» funk-a-delic: $13;  A pizza with herbs, house-made sausage, mushrooms and spinach; it was a little light on all ingredients except the oregano.
» shiva’s revenge: $12; A blend of exotic Indian flavors with curry hummus, tamarind-soaked cauliflower, mint, eggplant and mozzarella—very good, especially if you like Indian food.
» cinnamon girl: $2; Made in-house (as are all desserts), this chili and cinnamon brownie of massive proportions is filled with chocolatey goodness.
» apple betty: $4;  A treat of cinnamon, oats and brown sugar coating firm apple slices. It’s sweet and crunchy, a little tart and tangy from the naturally tart apples and cinnamon. Plus, it’s gluten-free.

4130 Manchester Ave. | 314.534.2666

the dish | Jumbo Flight: Cherry Poppins, No Sleep ‘Till Brooklyn and Pepperonius Monster pizzas

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