Over Memorial Day weekend (let us all note that this has been the ONLY HOLIDAY ALL INTERN YEAR that I haven't had to work...just saying), Matt and I ventured yet again into the land of "driving around the midwest" (flashbacks to our honeymoon). We rented a car - 2012 Buick Regal - and head to St. Louis for a Cardinals game. If done in one sitting, the drive is about 7 hours or so. We decided to drive to KC Friday night and then STL Saturday morning.
We stopped at Bandana's BBQ in St. Joseph, MO (just north of KC) for dinner. Turns out they are now putting calorie counts on the menu! See my rant. Ergo, this helped in our menu choices. We got to our lovely, cheap hotel, fell into bed, and woke early the next AM to continue our trek.
My biggest desire of the weekend was to go to Pappy's Smokehouse - long rumored (by Urbanspoon and the food award internet world) to be the best BBQ in STL and one of the top joints in the country. As I am a planner to the core, I saw they opened at 11am on Saturdays and usually have a huge line. My plan was...get there at 11am. And we did! In fact, we got there at 1045, and people were already eating! I never get this. Whatever. We ate. We ate. OMG. It was great. Yes, I wanted that to rhyme. We ventured around STL on foot until our hotel room was ready.
Saturday night involved the game basically. In true midwest form, STL was hot and humid. It was free hat night! And the bonus of Busch Stadium? They let you out and in again! My friend is doing OB/GYN residency down there, so after we got our free hats, we met her for a drink at "Bar 360." Yes, it is a hotel bar, but it has AMAZING views. Simply amazing. You can see right down into the stadium. Their drink prices reflect this amazing view, but at least my sangria was delicious. The cardinals ended up losing that night, but we experienced St Louis style pizza for the first time at (will review here shortly)
Sunday involved being a tourist. We went down to the arch early in the AM (trying to avoid heat & humidity). Being the sized individuals we are, and given Matt's slight fear of heights) we opted to take photos OF the Arch rather than IN the arch. We wandered around the waterfront some more and touched the Mississippi River...with our shoes. It looked kinda dirty. Breakfast was found. The remainder of the day was supposed to involve the Budweiser Tour and the free zoo. Supposed to. In Matt fashion he said "Hey, let's walk to the Budweiser plant so that after our samples, neither of us has to drive." I say, "As long as you are okay getting all gross and sweating." He said, "Already done." The tourist map claimed it was 1.7 miles. Google later showed it to be 2.5. Huh. We got there eventually. Hot and sweaty. And ready for beer. Turns out when you sweat that much, 2 free samples gets you pretty happy pretty fast.
Obviously we were now stuck there without a car. Rather than just walk back the 2.5 miles, however, we decided to do our own little bar crawl. Basically, we stopped at a lot of bars on the way back to downtown. Grizzly Bears, 1860s Saloon, Carson's, Kelly's, Angry Beaver, Drunken Fish, and possibly one or two more. Obviously, the zoo didn't happen. On a positive note, a 2.5 mile walk isn't as hard when you stop and drink every now and then :D
Monday involved driving back to Omaha. We had a ton of fun but have realized that STL - at least the downtown - isn't the greatest place. Like many cities across the US, people are flocking out of downtown to the suburbs, which is sad to me :( That, however, is for another day