St. Louis sits in the midst of a Triangle of Q, proscribed by powerhouses to the south (Memphis), east (the Carolinas), and west (Kansas City). But don't sleep on the excellent morsels of meat that St. Louis BBQ joints have to offer, including our local under-the-radar specialty, the crispy snoot. For that, we recommend at stop at Smoki-O's; check out our finger-lickin' recommendations for more spots to get your Q on.
An unassuming storefront location belies the serious goodness inside the door, including smoked salami.
On a revered corner in an always-bustling neighborhood, this place is pushing the envelope: beef ribs are a menu mainstay, and a rotating cast of specials includes alligator ribs, kangaroo burgers, and more. Small-batch whiskeys are another focus.
It's KC-style, served right here in River City. Burnt ends and sliced brisket rule the day, and lots of grown-up games fill the space. Fun for happy hour and a crowd!
Try something different, with the barbecue salad: your choice of meat atop red peppers, black beans, green onions, fried onions, cornbread croutons, and more. Also an excellent local beer selection on tap.
It's a nonstop NOLA-style party up in here, with Cajun-Creole influences on the menu, from BBQ shrimp and catfish to the St. Louis standard, smoked pork steak. Also try a sneaky touch of Memphis: BBQ spaghetti.
It's a neighborhood joint, in the best tradition, but even a first-timer will feel like a regular at this friendly spot. As for the food? Well, it's hard to find something they haven't sauced or smoked: smoked trout, pork chops, spare ribs, kielbasa, chicken, pulled pork, bockwurst, prime rib ... and the list goes on.
This here might be the joint that launched a thousand ships, since protégés of owner Mike Emerson have fanned out all over town. Pass the time in the lunch line admiring the hometown-proud smokers out front, including one cheekily named "Porky LaFarge" (a nod to hometown musician Pokey LaFarge).
It's down-home food, but done with a care you'd find in a gourmet establishment. Walnut and brown sugar-cured bacon is a perennial favorite, along with loaded smoked potato wedges, baby back ribs, smoked meatloaf in a root beer glaze, and much more.
How's it bayou? Here, your taste buds get a party going on, with smoked wings and the house specialty, the dirty chick: smoked chicken, smothered in gumbo, on a bed of dirty rice.
Sugarfire started an explosion, mushrooming to six locations faster than you could say "sweet tea." Line up and grab your brown-paper-lined tray, then chow down in the homey, rustic dining room. Do Not Miss: Sugarfire Pie for dessert.
One of the most diverse and complete menus we've found, with corned beef, brisket, turkey wings, fish and even smoked tofu. And the sides? Woo-wee. Smoked pineapple, cheesy scalloped potatoes, tequila-lime green beans and much more round out the plate.
In a light- to medium-industrial area, this little spot packs 'em in with everyone from folks who work in nearby factories to Illinois commuters crossing the nearby bridge. The craveable menu item? The venerable crispy snoot.