This post is a bit of a departure for this sorely neglected blog, but Brad and I had an amazing meal while we were in St. Louis and I wanted to share some pictures (taken with my phone) so you can also bask in its loveliness. We were in town to present at the Pop Culture Association/American Culture Association Annual Convention. Right down Washington Ave. from the convention center was Mosaic, a tapas restaurant.
Tapas is generally used to describe small appetizers or snacks in Spanish cuisine. Mosaic wasn’t specifically Spanish — they described themselves as modern/fusion and also used the term “small plate” to describe portion sizes. They recommended 2-3 selections from the menu per person, so we had a total of 6 delicious treats:
1. Flight of Soups
Described in the menu as “chef’s selection of fine soups,” they were fine indeed, and tied for my favorite of the dishes we sampled. On the left is Roasted Beet with Bacon (winey and meaty and amazing), in the middle is Butternut Squash with Tahitian Vanilla Bean (sweet and smooth, like a dessert), and on the right is Truffled Broccoli and Cheddar (delightfully creamy and tangy).
2. Fresh Mozzarella Caprese
An interesting twist on the standard tomato, fresh mozzarella, and basil caprese salad. The menu describes it, “Seasonal tomatoes, champagne mango, fresh mozzarella, English cucumber, basil vinaigrette and balsamic reduction [in those little pipettes], toasted hazlenuts.” Fresh and zesty.
3. Grilled Fresh Asparagus
Description: “Candied almonds, shaved parmesan, lemon thyme oil.” A lovely mix of crunchy, salty, and light citrusy.
4. Chorizo Stuffed Chicken “Wings”
Brad bit into this and said, “Holy sh*t.” Yeah. Described thus: “Whipped Gorgonzola [in the cup], guajillo chili & agave nectar BBQ [in the pipette].” The chorizo was spicy and salty, and when topped with the sweetness of the sauce and the creamy Gorgonzola spread, it was indescribable.
5. Pulled Korean BBQ Pork – Apple
Wow. First of all, how beautiful is that? Described as, “Baked Fuji apple, goat cheese creme fraiche, five spice pistachios.” I don’t recall there being pistachios, but the rest of it was amazing. Cutting up the apple made of mess of this gorgeous thing, but the tanginess of the barbecue sauce and creme fraiche with the sweetness of the apple made it worthwhile.
6. Three Cheeses
My other favorite (are you surprised?). “3 fine cheeses served with fresh fruit and nuts, house chutney, walnut raisin bread.” I think the five-spice pistachios showed up in this dish, over on the left in the middle. The three cheeses were Cotswold blue, Drunken Goat, and some lovely soft French cheese that I can’t remember the name of, similar to a Brie. The chutney was highly spiced and piquant. The fresh fruit was a perfect complement to the creamy cheeses.
If we ever return to St. Louis, we’ll be back at Mosaic. So many more things to try, like the Herb Gnocchi, the Pot Stickers with Thai peanut sauce, the North African-style Hummus, the Cherry Port-Braised Short Ribs, the Cardamom Creme Brulee Liqueur Cup . . .