RESTAURANT: Pappy’s Smokehouse (St. Louis, MO)
Featured on Food Network’s “Food Feuds” and Travel Channel’s “Man vs. Food” & “BBQ Crawl.” Pappy’s Smokehouse is known for their delicious and juicy ‘Memphis Style’ BBQ…and the twisting and turning line out the door and tends to support that this place is a barbecue Mecca in ‘The Lou.’ But when it comes to ‘Cue, PCC is especially critical…so let’s see if this place qualifies for ‘Best Cue in the Lou.’
SIGNATURE DISH: Although they serve all the standard smoked meats, their barbecue pork ribs are the feature, and are so renowned that they boast selling one per minute of every day. They are so popular, it’s the main reason they’ve been featured for on The Food Network and The Travel Channel.
TASTE: We have featured a lot of BBQ on Pop Culture Cuisine and have eaten a heck of a lot more, so we’re fairly confident in our ‘Cue pallet.’ Unfortunately, Pappy’s just didn’t rise to the occasion and match the hype. True…, Memphis Style is not PCC’s favorite, but the ribs were a bit tough and really not all that distinct with flavor. I was pretty let down because I was pretty hyped to try this place and I really wanted it to be good…it just wasn’t. In fact, I didn’t even finish half of my slab. On a side note, the green beans and smoked sausage were extremely tasty and I might take a trip back to Pappy’s just for those.
AMBIANCE: Located in downtown St. Louis neat St. Louis University, Pappy’s is in a great location with a lot of up and coming/trendy joints. The restaurant is not very big and can get a little crammed with patrons, but I guess that just goes to show how popular this place is. As far as the look…it’s pretty cool inside with a lot of pictures and fun signs on the walls. It’s sort of a version of ‘junked up’ sheik . Overall, it’s a fun atmosphere and because the smoker is right on the street next to the building, you get do see the process first hand.
SERVICE: Like many legit BBQ places, you place your order at the counter and then they bring you your order; and although they cook low and slow, the service was amazingly fast, which was a bonus for this hungry visitor.
PRICE: It’s BBG…so it’s expensive, and I just expect that going in. A full slab is $23.00 but that includes 2 sides and is more than enough food. So as far as barbecue joints go, I wasn’t outraged by the prices but would have liked to see a little better bargain.
Overall, Pappy’s kick started a weekend of baseball and beer in St. Louis so it was a nice experience. But, I don’t know if it would be my first choice to visit next time I’m in town. The taste just wasn’t memorable enough and didn’t leave a great impression. For that reason, PCC gives Pappy’s Smokehouse 2 ½ ‘Little Piggies.’
RESTAURANT: Wallace Station (Versailles, KY)
Wallace Station has been on PCC’s “Top Places to Visit’ since we first saw it featured on Food Network’s “Diners, Drive-Ins and Dives” with Guy Fieri. Sandwiched between Lexington and Frankfort in the bluegrass hills of Kentucky and amongst many bourbon distilleries, this little deli/bakery/café/ is so unassuming that you’d miss it if you blinked or didn’t know where you were going…and you’d be upset if you did.
SIGNATURE DISH: There are a lot of offering on their deli style menu (and they’re open for lunch and breakfast), but we were there for the burgers….in specific, ‘The Famous Big Brown’ which Guy names one of his top 5 burgers and featured on his show. Think Hot Brown in burger form…YUM!!!
TASTE: Overall…excellent. We all ordered something different but everyone was very happy. The ‘Big Brown’ was amazing! It was so good it makes me wonder why all cheese burgers don’t use a cheese mornay sauce. Guy was accurate in placing this burger in his Top 5.
SERVICE: You order at the counter and they bring it to you. They were very cordial to us out-of-towners and like talking with our 1-year old daughter (which she enjoyed as well. But really not a lot of ‘service’ to speak on…but friendly nonetheless.
AMBIANCE: This place is old and run down…but in a historic and quaint way. It’s not very big and you get the feel you’re in a turn of the century general stor that also serves a lunch counter. Like I said…very quaint and fitting for the natural landscape that makes up the countryside.
PRICE: Prices were a little high for burgers and sandwiches, but the taste made up for it. Most burgers are about $10, and sandwiches are similar if not a little less.
We were very happy with our visit to Wallace Statin and would likely go there again if given the opportunity. It’s a little out of the way, but…that mornay sauce…memorable to say the least! That is why PCC is comfortable with awarding this little joint 3 1/2 ‘Little Piggies.’
RESTAURANT: 12 South Taproom & Grill (Nashville, TN)
12 South Taproom was one of Zane Landry’s Music City stops on his pub crawl style show, “Drinking Made Easy.”
Located in the heart of 12 South District in Nashville, The Taproom has been a great neighborhood hang for lots of
good beer since 2006.
SIGNATURE DISH: Well…although they do serve food, in their own words, they are a beer bar by proclamation. 12
South is a craft brew drinker’s paradise, only allowing local, craft, and micro brews on tap (NO MACRO-BREWERIES
TASTE: It’s beer….so it’s good! I’m not a big beer snob so I don’t know a lot of craft beers, so I needed a little bit of
help from my local guide to settle on a good beer. But once I did, it was cold and…wait…give me a minute…I need
to go get a beer from the fridge!
AMBIANCE: The place is nothing fancy. The neighborhood it’s in is starting to build up and get a little trendy which
makes 12 South Taproom stand out because it is far from fancy. It’s simply a good bar where you can get a cold
beer. Think opposite of pretentious…minus the whole ‘only craft brew’ think.
SERVICE: I’ve been to 12 South a few times and have never had bad service, either up at the bar or from a server.
The only thing I would note is this is a neighborhood place where most of the people who go there know what they
want or know the local beers. So if you are not up on your craft beer…you may have some trouble.
PRICE: As little as $5.00 for a draft beer which for a major city like Nashville is a plus.
I like the 12 South Taproom. It’s one of my preferred places to visit and get a drink when I’m in Nashville. I know
the local beer I prefer and they have it cold and on tap. Quite often there are local bands too, which is always a
bonus. So next time you’re in the Music City, you should visit and tell them that PCC gave them a 4 ‘Little Piggy’