Tag Archives: milkshake

Somebody Else’s Local – Spirit of St. Louis Edition

This weekend I took a trip up I-55 to one of the great Midwestern cities of America, which is often referred to as either the home of the Cardinals or the Gateway to the West. Once St. Louis was acquired by the French it became the primary outpost for outfitting folks on their way out west. Some of these included the pretty famous explorers Merriweather Lewis and William Clark.

So, like Lewis and Clark, I had a great journey, and I’ll break the first day down into three sections. Warning – this is long – End Warning

  1. Lax
  2. The Heart Stopping BLT and other edible goodies
  3. G A G A – Lady Gaga to be exact

Welcome to St. Lax

While I have used St. Louis as a jumping point for a number of trips to Colorado, this time my destination was mere miles West of the arch.  First order of business was for the old Flying Elvis Lacrosse team to compete in a little tournament that involved possibly the hottest weather that I have ever stepped on the field for. If it wasn’t 150 degrees (most likely it wasn’t) it was definitely in the triple digits.

Unfortunately the weather wasn’t conducive to us playing our best (it affected both teams equally, I will admit), and we didn’t win the tournament. I pretty much have a black and white view of these competitions in that you either win or lose. I am just as interested in 2nd place as I am 8th place when I don’t come in 1st. I feel like I am to blame for this tournament, as I left my customary EP shades that I normally wear under my helmet (as seen in the above photo) back in the 901. Well that and the fact that I got stuffed on a couple of important one on ones with the goalie!

As much as I am all about the win, I hold the camaraderie even higher. Of course when there is a score, I want to win (who doesn’t?), but what makes these trips fun is that I get to hang out with a lot of the guys that I don’t see as much. Lax really is as much of a brotherhood as it is a classic sport. The game brings people together, fo sho.

Take you to the Candy Shop

Between the bookends of excitement, K and I needed to get something to eat. She ran around for a while during the afternoon during part of the tournament and came home with some new old clothes (vintage-a-holic!) and some good intel on the city. After a little strategizing, we decided to head over to Crown Candy Kitchen for a little dinner and a milkshake before we hit up the concert.


This place is really cool. It is almost 100 years old and in the 4th generation of family, which is awesome. It has a seriously old time feel to the interior with old scripted menus, and booths that each have coat racks for when people used to get dressed up to go out.  When we got there, we had to wait in line for about 20 minutes to get a table, so I did what I normally do, I watched to see what people were ordering.

When I noticed that an entire table had ordered BLTs, it was pretty clear that those three magical letters would come out of my mouth when the waitress asked me what I would want. When you see a milkshake at almost every table, that makes it pretty easy except for choosing the flavor. K played both sides of an argument fit for the Supreme Court over the merits of ordering a strawberry shake, which is her favorite flavor, or ordering a cherry shake. She concluded that if you live in a town with Wiles-Smith Drug Store and their great strawberry shake, you order the cherry. It was a good call.

I went with the chocolate banana milkshake and it was awesome. One thing that we learned while there was that these milkshakes are beasts. 24 oz. of shake is a lot. We probably could have split 1 and been in good shape. I take that back, no probably about it, as we both left half a shake behind each. They have a challenge that if you can drink 5 malted milkshakes (120 oz) in 30 minutes you get them free. I discussed this with the customers around me and concluded that I would be lucky to drink 2 shakes in 30 minutes…

I don’t watch very much TV, but once I was at Poplar Perk’n getting some coffee and their tv was on the Man vs. Food, and I watched in horror as some guy tried to drink 5 malted milkshakes in 30 minutes. When I just opened Crown Candy’s website, I realized that it was the same place!

I also got the BLT that I saw everyone order. I will admit that I was slightly excited and concerned when it was called the “Heart Stopping BLT” on the menu. It came to the table piled with at least a full inch of bacon. This could have been anywhere from 9 to 90 slices of the good stuff. It was insane. If you read this blog often, you can see that I’m not exactly timid of food, but I left almost a half of a sandwich behind. Next time I’m getting K to split a BLT and a shake with me, and then we can see if we are still hungry!

K got the ham and cheese sandwich, which was a more manageable size and was delicious. It was grilled to perfection. If you think that Ruffles, a grilled sandwich, and a milkshake don’t make a fun throwback meal, well I don’t know what to tell you…

Lastly, you could walk out of there with bags and bags of candy if you choose. Here is a photo that I snagged off their website. There was plenty more where this came from. If you get up to St. Louis, I’d say give this place a try!

Haus of Ga Ga

So the other day I was describing the dance mix from my birthday party and how it had a lot of Lady Gaga on it now that K (ok, and me) has totally gotten into her. Randomly I checked the Gaga website and found out that she would be playing the same night as the tournament in the same city. Seemed obvious that we would have to go to that one. I worked a little magic (stubhub) and got some tickets for us to see her in action. Action it was.

*Note – There was no way to get good photos at the show with my iphone, so I scoured the internet for them, and I will credit them all at the end of the post.

The Monster Ball Tour has been running all over the world and will continue on in the US for a bit before zipping over to Europe. I’ve been to a fair number of concerts in my day, but this could more aptly be described as a musical production. Gaga and her dancers were constantly switching costumes, and the stage was changed about 5 times during the show. The show (loosely) tells the story of Gaga’s trip to the Monster Ball, which is the best party in the world. As in any good story, along the way there are monsters and other shenanigans!

Beyond the incredible production value of the show, the concert was really awesome. Gaga did a great job of constructing a setlist to create variance in tempo, energy, and the fame quotient of the songs, so that there was a steady stream of build-ups throughout the night. When she played big dogs like “Telephone” and “Paparazzi” the place went absolutely bonkers. K and I had good seats that allowed us to see everything and get good sound from straight away.

No matter what you say about Gaga (and I know a lot of people say a lot), it is hard to deny how catchy the songs are and how good they are for dancing. It was a great atmosphere with everyone dancing throughout. The last thing that really stuck out for me was the relationship between Gaga and her fans, the Little Monsters. While I was new to the whole scene, starting my Gaga listening in earnest 3 days before, there were some seriously dedicated folks out there.

I seriously spent the entire time before the lights went down pointing out crazy costumes to K. We decided that it must have been at least 1 in every 8 people that were dressed in serious Gaga. We also decided that way fewer than that were wearing my polos shirt/seersucker shorts/boat shoes combination. What can I say, you can take the Thomas out of Memphis, but you can’t take the Memphis out of me.

Last point about this intense relationship between Gaga and the Little Monsters. A lot of her talking points during the show revolved around making her fans feel special, especially those who are pushed to the margins of society because of their differences. So it makes sense that there are a lot of people that really look to Gaga as a source of inspiration and as a larger voice than their own. It was pretty cool to see the way she looks out for her peeps and they support her in return.

Encore

My first day in the STL was an eventful one to say the least, full of Monsters, BLTs, and some seriously hotted up lacrosse. I’ll finish the trip in my next blog, which will be a new installment of The Brunch Report with the story of K and I’s trip to St. Louis’ number 1 ranked brunch spot. So, until then, just dance!

-Thomas

* Gaga photo credits:

Veggie Tales & the Mt. Rushmore of Milkshake

I probably go to the Beauty Shop more than any other place in Memphis.  I’m not talking about curling irons and flat weaves, I’m talking about Karen Carrier’s restaurant in Cooper Young. I go almost every Sunday for brunch, but I’m going to discuss the important matters surrounding my dinner the other night.

Veggie Tales

K and I aren’t eating any meat during Lent, so that took some of my favorite options off of the menu.  The beef bourguignon and the trout are the Mel Gibson and Danny Glover to my Lethal Weapon of dinner, but those will have to wait.  Fortunately, Joe is an excellent server with a keen eye for vegetable pairings after a stint in a vegan restaurant at some point in his career.

He led me to the Roasted Winter Vegetable Salad, which involved warm veggies like turnips and beets, a warm goat cheese mousse, and a drizzle of oil and pesto.  I don’t know that I would have ordered this without a recommendation.  But let this serve as your recommendation – this salad is awesome.

Roasted Winter Vegetable Salad

Paired with this was the Roasted Butternut Squash Ravioli. Now, I had gotten this before and liked it a lot, but it was really much better when served together with the salad.  The complementary flavors made it work.  Also, as a man, I think that the salad (or other side) is necessary to go with the ravioli unless you really aren’t that hungry (not a common occurrence for me!).  Back to the ravioli, I love butternut squash, and the sun-dried tomatoes and the pesto add to the flavor to create a delicate, delicious dish.

Butternut Squash Ravioli

K says, “Do mo arigato”

Initially the dinner plan involved a trip to Do for Thai Curry soups, but it was totally packed, so we switched it up.  Fortunately, due to the fact that these two restaurants are partners in crime, and Do was busier more due to sushi than soup, Joe was able to get Kat the Tofu Curry Vegetable Soup from next door.  K’s secret is to take the soup, a side of sushi rice, mix them together, and you end up with a meal that lasts twice as long and a lot of starch to really soak up the incredible flavor of the soup base.  I highly recommend it.

hand warmer slash soup

The Mt. Rushmore of Milkshake

I’m going to start with a little math equation:

coffee gelato + cinnamon gelato + nutella + milk = the best milkshake since Kelis.

The Mt. Rushmore of Milkshake

I’m serious, this was the most unique milkshake that I’ve ever had.  It now resides on my Mt. Rushmore of Milkshake* along with the chocolate strawberry shake at Delta Kream in Tunica, the peach shake (when in season) at the Bulldog Cafe in Earle, AR , the Java Shake at Java Cabana in Memphis,  and any shake at Memphis’ own Wiles-Smith Drugstore.

* – note that my Mt. Rushmore has room for 5 shakes instead of just 4 presidents. The 5th shake represents Calvin Coolidge, who someone smarter than me called our most underrated president.

1 milkshake was harmed in this review

Final note – do yourself a favor and head over to the Beauty Shop on a Thursday night and let Joe help you put together a great meal. I’m sure I’ll see you there.

-Thomas