Oishi Sushi

From now on when I hear the term "cooking with fire" I will be thinking of Oishi's. This place isn't just a restaurant, it's an experience. You go there when you're craving some good food and some entertainment to make the time fly by.

It was the beginning of summer and a girls night out was long overdue. Don't worry, gentleman, Oishi is friendly to both genders.

The two ring-leaders of this outing picked the location, so for once my urbanspoon app was getting a night off.

Now, I don't know about you but I always have a bit of apprehension in my heart when it comes to trying a new sushi place. I'm fearless with any other type of cuisine but it just seems like there's so much that can go wrong with this particular fare.

We were seated surrounding a grill. Let me make sure I'm perfectly clear. There wasn't a grill at the table. The grill basically was the table.

The sushi is good, but if you're looking to up the experience and entertainment level, go for the habachi.

Quick side note, I would be remiss if I didn't take a moment to mention the pot stickers. So. Good.

Now, you're probably thinking that this doesn't sound much different than any other restaurant. Where's the experience? Where's the fire? Here's where the entertainment comes in. When you order the habachi, there's a chef that comes to your grill/table (grable? tabill?) and cooks your food right in front of you.

You start out with some fresh fried rice. This could practically be a meal in and of itself, but I'm not going to stop there. Next, they grill up your vegetables and your protein. Seafood, steak, chicken, tofu, whatever suits your fancy.

As it's being grilled, you better be on the watch out and ready for a workout. The chef starts going around the table and tossing pieces into your mouth. Yep, that's right. You get to play a good ol' fashioned game of food toss. And mom won't even yell at you for playing with your food. All of this is going on while he is

You can finish it off with a couple different dessert options. Here was mine:

Oh, yes my friends. That is absolutely deep fried ice cream. Pretty sinful with none of the regrets.

All in all, you go to this place for a good time. The good news is you don't even have to get the phone number of the side of a bathroom stall. ;)

Fork Rating

Price Range
$10 - $20

100 Public Works Dr
Chesterfield, MO 63005


McGurk's Irish Pub & Garden

Let me start out by saying that I am a dyed in the wool, Braveheart loving, claddagh wearing, haggis eating Scottish girl.

Had to say it.

Just to be clear.

Now that we're on the same page, I have a confession. I love this Irish pub.

I feel like a wee bit of a traitor. But I can't help it. It has earned it's rating as one of the top 10 Irish pubs in America.

Let me set this up for you.

It was a dark and stormy night. The concert that I had VIP passes for was rained out. *Cue wailing and gnashing of teeth*

Instead of spending the night at home bemoaning our fate, my friends and I decided we wanted to go out. To someplace "lively". We wanted food and music. We wanted a good time to wash all our troubles away.

Out comes my trusty phone (or secretary as my friend calls it) to open the urbanspoon app and do some restaurant finding magic.

After a couple shakes with no luck (too expensive, been there, doesn't have good reviews) McGurk's popped up. Asked around, found the word on the street indicated it was good.

Right as I walked in, I heard some lively Irish music. It was great. There was a big bar facing the band area, people were singing along, waving their pints in the air and having an all around great time. I felt like I had been transported to the Emerald Isle. I looked for leprechauns, I was that pulled in.

The kitchen was just about to close but the hostess graciously said that if we swore to order fast, she would get us taken care of.

A quick skim of the menu showed me a wide range of fares. With the time clock breathing heavily down my neck, I picked the fish and chips. So did 95% of the rest of the table. We were all either going to be happy together, or sad together.

The good news is that we were all more than happy. We were delighted. You can do a large or a small order of this entree. The small was perfectly portioned for all the ladies at the table. The fish comes in small, fantastically fried squares. Little nuggets of goodness. The chips, much to my surprise, were potato chips. They're made fresh at the restaurant.

All in all, the food was filling and satisfying, the atmosphere was great and the music lifted our previously dejected spirits. Oh, and speaking of spirits, there's multiple full bars with great selections.

I'm still fanatically Scottish. But, I guess that every once in a while a truce can be made to take a quick visit to McGurk's.

Fork Rating

Price Range
$10 - $20

1200 Russell Blvd.
St. Louis, MO 63104

John D. McGurk's Irish Pub on Urbanspoon


The Malt Shop

In my mind, and according to my stomach, Summer has always equaled ice cream. I remember when my mom would give me some change, put me on my bike and send me off to get a cone from the shop down the road. I'd have to perform a balancing act worthy of a circus performer to make it home without dropping my treat on the ground, but was it ever worth it.

Nowadays, with most people thinking first of chain ice cream shops when it comes time for a frozen concoction, The Malt Shop is an opportunity to get back to some basics.

If you're looking for something upscale and chic, it is not the place for you. But if you want a quick and tasty trip back in time so simpler days, you have to check out this little hideaway.

There isn't any indoor seating, but there are some great picnic benches where you can gather round to enjoy some classic burgers, sides, and of course, desserts.

I tried a cheeseburger, a couple fries, tasted some jalapeno poppers, and rounded it all out with a classic chocolate malt. As one of my old friends used to say,"Ice cream doesn't fill you up. It just fills in the cracks."

The cheeseburger was basic but delicious. The fries were good enough, but not outstanding. The jalapeno poppers were hot and creamy. The malt was thick and full of flavor.

We sat around for a few hours enjoying our food and the fine weather. None of us wanted to go and get back to the rush of everyday life. I think that might be one of my favorite things about this place...it's an escape. It's set off the main road on a quiet, tree lined street. There isn't anyone rushing you off of your table and there's more options for food than anyone could ask for.

So come here and let yourself forget everything else, including your calorie count, for a little while. Let yourself be a kid again. I guarantee you won't regret it.

Fork Rating

Price Range
$2 - $8

1751 Smizer Station Rd
Fenton, MO 63026

Malt Shop on Urbanspoon


Pepper's Deli & Bar-B-Q

Ever since I moved to St. Louis, I've been looking for a good, local deli. You know, the kind with killer sandwiches and tasty sides. A small place that doesn't feel like a chain. Somewhere that has a wall cooler full of drinks and a dessert display case that just begs you to indulge.

I finally found one and it even has a bonus. Bar-B-Q!

Some friends and I were looking for a place to grab some lunch. We wanted something that wasn't too pricey, was local, and possibly someplace we hadn't been to before (after all, I do have a blog to maintain;).

Once again I pulled out my phone and opened my trusty urbanspoon app. Side note: Seriously, everyone...if you don't have this app, you really need to get it. Lifesaver.

Anyways, I shake it up and find a deli that just happens to be within a few miles of our current location. 95% of people rated that they like it? Awesome! Average meal under $10? Bonus!

When we wandered into this semi-hidden location, it was just what we expected. A deli. Not pretentious, not overdone, just some simple tables, lots of beverage options and a huge menu.

I went with the Chopped Angus Brisket. The beef was smoked for 16 hours, chopped and piled high on a plain egg, onion, or whole wheat bun. I chose the onion bun with a side of creamy potato salad. Add a drink on the side and the whole thing came out under eight dollars. Great meal at a great value.

Though I choose the brisket this time, I can't wait to go back and try the sandwiches. One of my friends got the BLT and it was practically bigger than her head. No skimpy and scarce strips of bacon for this sandwich. This guy was loaded down with hickory smoked high grade pork.

The brisket and potato salad were a generous portion, so next time I'll be sure to save room for the ginormous cookies they have in their display case.

There was only one person working, which slowed down the line a little. He did a great job of getting our meals out to us but if you go during a busy time I would recommend that you don't go in a rush.

Pepper's will definitely be regularly visited by myself and everyone that was in my group. The food was good and the prices can't be beat.

All in all, it's good to see that the old fashioned, privately owned deli still has its place in a chain dominated industry.

Fork Rating

Price Range
$5 - $10

32 Clarkson Rd
Ellisville, MO 63011

Pepper's Deli & Bar-B-Q on Urbanspoon


The Scottish Arms

For this Scottish girl, there are few things more comforting than walking into this little slice of the Highlands. Even if you don't have any Scottish blood, this is a great place to escape on a blustery day. Or, if you are a fan of the warmer weather, you can sit on the patio.

You'll find waiters in kilts, a good wide selection of beverages and some traditional celtic fare.

My friends and I like to meet up here anytime we feel the need to have a mini virtual vacation to the great UK. On our most recent visit, we started with Baby Bridles, which are little slices of heavenly herbed ground sirloin all wrapped up in puff pastry. We also had Celtic Crisps, consisting of fresh potato chips and hot cheese sauce.

I moved on to traditional Fish 'N' Chips. Their take on this classic dish is fried haddock in five ale batter, chips (fries, for the non-celts), and a side of lemon caper sauce. The fish was fresh and delicious. I honestly couldn't get enough of the lemon caper sauce and the enjoyable layers it added to the meal.

One of my friends had the Shepherds Pie, one of the ultimate comfort foods. It's a skillet of stuffed with ground lamb, onions, carrots, turnips, and parsnips smothered and baked with mashed potatoes.

We finished off with a Almond and Espresso Bread Pudding that was a nice encore to the meal.

You might be noticing that none of this is particularly diet friendly, but you can't be the next Braveheart and worry about your arteries at the same time.

If you're looking for a relaxing experience that could lead to an evening of conversation possibly inspiring you to overthrow a monarchy,  The Scottish Arms is the place for you.

Fork Rating

Price Range

8 South Sarah Street
Saint Louis, MO 63108

Scottish Arms on Urbanspoon