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Dressel’s is a St. Louis institution, the Platonic ideal of a Welsh pub and one of the very best spots in town for a pint of good beer and cultured conversation. Which makes the trick that owner Ben Dressel and chef Michael Miller have pulled all the more impressive: Without robbing Dressel’s of any of its charms, they have elevated its food to among the best in town. The dishes are unfussy but elegant and deeply flavored. Recent standouts have included trout over a celery-root purée, chicken paired with a classic panzanella bread salad and deviled eggs flavored with ham hock and wasabi. Never fear: Dressel’s pub essentials (the burger, the chips and rarebit) are still available, and still as delicious as ever.
Dressel's is our favorite spot to dine in St. Louis! They have the BEST chips and rarebit this side of the Mississippi! It has a quaint and welcoming vibe that is unlike many other spots in town. The ambiance is elegant yet comfortable, charming and earthy. The art work is tasteful and the music is wonderful. It has a great authentic pub feel and the food impresses us time and time again. Dressel's is brilliantly sources local farm fresh ingredients, a noteworthy action that should be the "norm" for all upscale eateries across the board. Dressel's is sourcing local, fresh, sustainable and non-GMO foods from small farms across the region not only to be a conduit in the local foods movement, but to also support the local economy and to reduce his and his patrons carbon footprint and to promote healthier food options. Chefs Mike & Derek are taking it to the next level by creating beautiful and cohesive dishes which create the most amazing marriage of flavors. On a warm mid-Spring day on the charming street side patio, as I savored the hand crafted goat cheese ravioli in a lemon brown butter sauce topped with Claverach Farms micro greens, I finally understood the visceral connection that humans have to food. Not only can we not survive without it, but it can bring us utter happiness. I was even more impressed by the local trout over a beautiful bed of roasted potatoes, shallots, garlic, and broccoli rapini. My husband enjoyed the steamed mussels alongside grilled bruschetta topped with a sauce that was out of this world. Of course we still indulged in our favorite pub fare... Fresh chips & rarebit. We shared our meal with our 7 year old. I have never seen him clear his plate so fast and ask for more than I did that day. Of course no meal is complete without dessert.... house made sweet potato pie topped with fresh parfait.... outstanding and gone in less than a minute! We left feeling satisfied and energized. A perfect meal.
I recollect another exquisite meal in the fall, a butternut squash and goat cheese tart paired with savory sweet potato house made gnocchi spiced to perfection. The dessert to follow that meal was an absolutely perfect end to a perfect meal... An Irish Coffee parfait... Additionally, the bartender has mad skills when it comes to pouring the perfect beer. The pomegranate mojito was beyond delicious. The service is ALWAYS excellent and the chefs are profoundly talented. I love the new menu! I love the same old feel & I LOVE the use of fresh, local produce & meats in all of their old and new dishes. We are regulars.
The Gut Check One Hundred is our accounting of the 100 dishes in St. Louis that you must eat right now. These are the best dishes at the newest restaurants and the newest dishes at the best restaurant... More »
Not everyone gets the joke at first, admits Patrick Connolly, the executive chef of Basso (7036 Clayton Avenue; 314-932-7820), the new gastropub inside the renovated Cheshire hotel. The "Emo Cover Ban... More »
Despite spending way too much time on the Diners, Drive-Ins and Dives page of the Food Network website, charting the path that Guy Fieri cut through St. Louis earlier this year, I somehow missed that ... More »
The Guy Fieri parade through St. Louis marches on. Tonight's episode of the spiky-haired one's Diners, Drive-Ins and Dives ("Food Done Right") features south city's The Shaved Duck (2900 Virginia Aven... More »
Guy Fieri's spotlight shines again on St. Louis: Anthonino's Taverna (2225 Macklind Avenue; 314-773-4455) will appear on tonight's episode of the spiky-haired one's Diners, Drive-Ins and Dives on the ... More »
A few things St. Louis restaurateurs shouldn't do during a halting economic recovery: 1) Open an upscale, members-only establishment that charges a monthly fee. 2) Overhaul the beloved menu that has helped make you an institution. 3) Operate a second restaurant concept within an existing restaurant, and then replace the second concept with another, even more ambitious concept. Yet local restaurateurs have done all three of these things over the past year, and the area's dining scene is the... More »
It almost seems like an insult to call the food at Dressel's the Best bar food in St. Louis. Or a backhanded compliment, at least; bar food carries the connotation of something you might enjoy eating while you're getting drunk, but not so much otherwise. The food at Dressel's, on the other hand, is so amazing it almost seems a shame to drink, just in case you end up having a few too many and can't quite remember how amazing it all was the next morning. The pretzels are perhaps the pub's... More »
One grows weary of restaurant brunches, which aren't so much the promised breakfast-and-lunch love child as a glorified diner breakfast with cocktail options. Which is exactly why the brunch menu at Dressel's stands apart, not only for the substantial options offered within the oft-neglected "lunch" category, but for its inclusion of breakfast creations that go beyond the humdrum two-eggs-with-meat-and-toast. Here you'll find the "Eggs Reuben," which tops toasted rye with an egg, tomato... More »
The key to making Provel palatable is moderation. (In the sense that this summer St. Louis received a moderate amount of rain.) The key to making Provel palatable and enjoyable is to employ it only as an accent for other, better ingredients. The key to making Provel not merely palatable and enjoyable but a cause for celebration is to visit Dressel's. Among the many wonders that chef Michael Miller has accomplished in remaking the menu at this Central West End stalwart is to showcase Provel... More »
The pretzel at Dressel's is hot. Like, steam-engine hot. You have to wait for it to cool. Which, frankly, is good discipline. After all, good things come to those who wait -- consider the properly poured Guinness. While you wait, consider the medieval history of the pretzel, its dubious origins as a monastic invention or an Alsatian Lenten compromise. Consider that the pretzel bread before you is not the traditional Germanic three-hole twist but rather two coiled lengths of bread... More »
The only reason every burger aficionado in the bi-state area isn't lined up outside Dressel's is because, well, most folks don't equate "Welsh pub" with "perfect hamburger." But we know the truth, and it's killing us to keep the secret. So if you know what's good for you, you'll head Dresselward the next time the carnivorous craving kicks in. Start off with a nice beer -- a Double Dragon Bitter Ale, perhaps, or a Fuller's London Porter. Order a basket of homemade potato chips (and don't... More »
This city's approaching another fall, which is just a short interlude before a cold, daylight-deprived winter. Pools are already closed, open-toed shoes a no-no. As pleasantly cool evenings give way to brisk ones and six o'clock begins to look like midnight, it's hard to get motivated to do much of anything, let alone cook. But here's a rare bit of good news: There's a perfect wintertime snack that will warm you inside and out, and it involves beer and cheese. Interested? Thought so. This... More »
We have little regard for those friendly "how's it goin', Joe, what can I do for ya?" sorts of bartenders. Give us someone enigmatic to mix our drinks, keep us guessing and make us feel even a little bit unsure. Someone who reminds us that if we're looking for solace in a bar, we should be giving our lives some serious, sober thought.John Berg stands, rail-thin, behind the bar at Dressel's. His shock of white hair and long mustache invite caricature. His voice rises from some depth, we... More »
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