Dining Through St. Louis

Hi Friends! Before I get into tonight’s post, I need to ask if I could get a few extra prayers tonight and tomorrow for my grandma. She’s been having some GI issues – colitis – but they think she may need surgery. We won’t know for sure if she’ll need surgery tomorrow until, well, tomorrow. Prayers are definitely appreciated. Thanks in advance!

Tonight was my definition of a “me” night. Kevin worked late, we didn’t go house hunting or out to eat, and I treated myself to a mani/pedi.

Pro tip: find a mani/pedi place that offers free wine. Makes all the difference.


But backing up a little bit, ever since we got to St. Louis, we’ve been so busy. We spending all of our free time after work looking at houses. Honestly, tonight was the first night since moving here that I haven’t had anything I absolutely had to do, which was wonderful.

Since we’ve been out and about looking at houses in the evenings and on weekends, we’ve eaten out our fair share. Granted, I love trying new restaurants, but it was so nice to eat a home cooked meal tonight!

So, where all have we been? To start, we ventured over to Retreat Gastropup in the Central West End (CWE). We walked to it from our temporary apartment which was so fun! I felt like I was living in a real city again!


I got their classic burger which was perfectly cooked and half of it made for excellent leftovers the next day. The salad on the left was the real winner though. Those pecans were addicting!


Next up? International Tap House (iTap). Also within walking distance, iTap is home to tons of craft beers on tap which is right up our alley.


On our second official night in town, we went to the Cardinals game with Kevin’s new coworkers! We played the Reds, and we lost, which was horrible since Kevin is from Cincinnati and he gloated all night.


One weekend when we were out and about house hunting, we stopped at Hacienda on Manchester. We had been there many times before, but this time wasn’t so great. We weren’t too impressed with our food. But, the margs were good!


But, speaking of good Mexican food. Kevin and I have now eaten at Tortillaria in the CWE twice now! The cheese enchiladas at this place are SO CLOSE to what Casa’s taste like. (Casa closed down a few years ago, but it’s where my parent’s met and I grew up eating here. It’s hands down, my favorite restaurant in the entire world.)


On a little bit of a healthier note, we had lunch one Saturday at Bar Louie in Kirkwood between houses. This salad was my everything. Pears. Pecans. Blue cheese. Balsamic. Gimmie dis every day.


As you can see, we’ve certainly eaten around St. Louis a bunch so far! #perdiemFTW

But, we’ve also eaten some good meals over and my mom and dad’s house. Gracie’s 5th birthday was on Monday (!) so we went over to my parent’s to celebrate with her. We’re the world’s worst dog parents and didn’t get her anything. Thankfully, grandma came through in the clutch and Gracie got a new bone and toy. Aren’t grand-pup-ma’s the best?


Destin 2016

Once upon a time, Kevin and I had a week off work dedicated to go storm chasing. As you read before, we kicked off our vacation with Kevin’s sister’s college graduation in Cincinnati and our friend’s wedding in Indianapolis. After those events, we planned on heading west.

But…there were no storms. So we spent the first couple of days in St. Louis to figure out a game plan. At least I got to see my hometown! <3


And we ate well! One night, we went and grabbed Mexican food and margs with my parents at Chimi’s. Their shrimp fajitas are fire.


Okay okay so Destin. How’d we end up there?

Well, after Sunday and Monday in St. Louis and no signs of storms anywhere, we decided to not waste our vacation and we hightailed it to Florida! We left Tuesday afternoon and stopped in Madison, Alabama to break the drive up in two days. Madison doesn’t have much, but they do have this amazing little brewery, called Blue Pants Brewery. If you’re every driving to Destin or passing through Madison, go there!


Tuesday nights, the night we happened to be there, was half price pint night! Couldn’t have been better.


We actually met up with Kevin’s friend from meteorology classes, who is getting his PhD nearby, and had a beer with him as well. The brewery turned to Blues game on for us, but we lost so let’s not talk about that.

So after a few beers and great time in Madison, we woke up the next morning and ventured the rest of the way down to Destin!


We booked our condo on Monday night, so we got real lucky with this one you guys. We knew we wanted an ocean-front room because, well, I’m a snob about the beach and have been to Destin many of times and I just wanted to be right on the ocean again. Luckily, we found ONE left in our price range for our dates!


It slept 4 which was perfect for us. It had one bedroom(a pullout couch, if needed), 1.5 baths and a great kitchen, full of all the equipment we’d need.



The only bad thing about this condo, was that the bed was literally the most uncomfortable bed I’ve ever slept on in my entire life. I’m super picky about beds (I sound like a real brat right now, huh?) but even Kevin thought it sucked. I slept like total crap and kept waking up with a backache.


Okay but anyways, let’s check out this view! It was worth a few rough nights of sleep!

Our condo was on the 14th floor, so we were able to see for miles!


We arrived around 2 p.m. in the afternoon so we knew we could have a few hours of beach time if we wanted! So, we changed right into our suits and hopped in the water.


Ah, bliss. I think I was born to lay on the beach. That’s my calling in life.


Kevin left his sunglasses at home so I let him borrow my Ray-Bans until we could make our way to Walmart later that evening to buy a couple cheapy pairs for us. Well, an hour into being in the water, Kevin got knocked over by a wave and we said goodbye to a pair of $125 sunnies.

We weren’t going to let that damper our vacation, though! Once the sun started to set, we headed over to Walmart to get our staples for the week. This includes Blue Bell ice cream, because duh. We also each made sure to buy a pair of $2.50 sunglasses while we were there!


For our first night, we wanted to go out to dinner and celebrate being on vacation so we ventured over to The Crab Trap and had a beer in the sand while we waited for our table.


Our view was amazing. I just couldn’t believe we were at one of my favorite destinations on earth!


We split a salad and crab/shrimp entree. Plenty of food for the both of us…though we fought over the last crab leg. Too delicious.


We woke up pretty early the next morning so we could get in a good full day at the beach. I started with coffee and breakfast on the balcony, which is how I’d spend every morning of my life if I could.


A cooler full of beer at 10 a.m. is completely okay when you’re on vacation, right? K good.


Or margaritas 😉


We spent all day down at the beach except for a quick lunch break. So by the time we got up to the condo that evening, we were starving and sunburnt (despite reapplying every hour or so!).


We decided to go to a local seafood market to get some fresh fish and shrimp for meals. We made shrimp tacos our first night and they were so tasty.


The Blues were still in the playoffs when we were in Destin so we made sure to watch all the games that were on while we were there. Unfortunately, they lost…so again, we’re just not going to talk about that.


One night while we were there, we did have a big storm that passed by. Because I’m the best wife ever (and was already sleeping horribly), I got up at 4 a.m. to help Kevin take pictures of the lightning on the water. We ended up getting a couple amazing shots!

This counted as storm chasing, right?


Unfortunately, the storms stuck around during the day on Friday so we didn’t go to the beach taht day. We did, however, walk to the Island Wing Company for beers and lunch. Highly recommend their spicy chicken sandwich!


The storms cleared up by the afternoon so we took a nice long walk on the beach, a couple miles each way. So peaceful!



Saturday was our last full day so we spent our time in the water! This is where Kevin broke sunglass pair #2 and lost pair #3. So yes, three sunglasses gone in three days.


But it’s fine, because BEACH!


By the time we got to Saturday, Kev and I were pretty burned (again, despite putting on loads of sunscreen). So when we took a break to refill our drinks, Kevin napped for a few minutes totally covered up. Cracks me up.


Later that afternoon, we walked over to The Back Porch for lunch. This place is one of my favorites in Destin and will always remind me of my grandpa.



I got the shrimp and crab pasta which was so good, I promptly napped right in our beach chair as soon as we got to our spot after lunch. Big lunch + sun + drinks = prime napping recipe.


For our last dinner, we made a delicious mahi mahi, which we also got from the local seafood shop.


Sunday we said not goodbye, but hopefully, see ya real soon. Nine hours later, we were back home in Louisville. Until next time, Destin!