Wave-Taco's sun-loving bartenders pour libations amid white-sand volleyball courts, a grass patio, and a sizable population of lounge chairs. Dive into a pitcher of Shock Top, a citrusy belgian white brew ($13), or a bucket of aluminum 16-ounce bottles of Budweiser, Bud Light, Bud Light Lime, Bud Select, or Michelob Ultra ($19) as cold as an ice-skating rink on Saturn's outermost ring. Lounge in swim trunks, bikinis, or borrowed hotel robes while sipping Malibu rum buckets, a potent concoction of seven flavors of rum and fruit juices ($13). Wave-Taco hosts live DJs, beach parties, and bikini contests, and it is open from 6 p.m. to midnight Monday-Thursday and from 2 p.m. to 8 p.m. on Sunday.
The Over/Under Bar & Grill is only a few blocks from the stadiums where the Cardinals, Rams, and Blues play. Being located within a stone's throw of these sporting meccas is appropriate, since the bar screens the night's biggest games on 37 large-screen LCD televisions. It even shows major events outside, where a 120-inch screen helps illuminate an outdoor patio.
This atmosphere alone would've been enough to earn The Over/Under the honor of the Riverfront Times' best sports bar of 2010. But the paper lauded much more than the TVs and games, going on to gush about the spot's "impressive lineup of microbrews" and "great food." The chefs achieve this greatness by reinventing American classics with gourmet ingredients. For example, they smother their waffle fries in housemade gorgonzola sauce, create half-pound burgers with wagyu beef, and dress up drab BLTs with applewood-smoked salmon. St. Louis Magazine and Sauce Magazine have also taken notice, calling The Over/Under one of the best places to watch a game in St. Louis.
Though Tortilla Grille was borne out of an earnest Midwestern work ethic, the menu reveals influences from all over the world. The bill of food keeps taste buds guessing with eclectic offerings such as savory chicken shawarma, crispy falafel, and caribbean jerk tacos. The breakfast and lunch operation keeps health in mind too, assembling colorful salads, along with fresh, veggie-laden wraps. Early risers can explain their really interesting dream over a breakfast burrito or sunny-side up eggs, while lunch goers can enjoy grilled quesadillas, and tacos.
Designed to charge the senses and infuriate passing bulls, El Borracho's red walls evoke every aspect of Mexican culture and pop culture’s take on Mexico, featuring arched sconces stuffed with Catholic icons; pink nooks highlighting vintage photos; and bones, daggers, and matador portraits hanging from stripped wood panels. The décor keeps awkward silences in conversations to a minimum while adding spice to the sizzling menu. El Borracho serves its foodstuffs family-style, much like they do in authentic Mexican taquerias, only without the complimentary cactus massage. Tacos are available for $2.25–$2.75, while burritos and quesadilla go for $5 a pop. The restaurant provides the trimmings—such as cilantro, onion, cheese, lettuce, tomatoes, and refried beans—while the customer selects the carne, be it chicken, ground beef, carnitas, chupacabra, or chorizo. Milder palates can get their tacos gringo (flour tortilla, lettuce, tomato, onion, and cheese); true revolutionaries can get them Pancho (corn tortilla, cilantro, onion, and redistributed land).
The scent of garlic, chilies, cilantro, and other quintessential Tex-Mex flavors waft through Diablo Southwest Grill’s two stories, where waiters ferry bowls of rich chicken enchilada soup. The menu also includes Cowboy nachos with chili and bacon, hamburgers topped with guacamole, and the Socorro steak sandwich with chopped chilies, blue cheese, and whiskey-onion sauce. Bartenders pair drinks with each dish, from classic margaritas and manhattans to the Mexican beers on tap.
A quaint combination of exposed brick, hardwood paneling, and the bright, colorful woven fabrics of Latin America, Arcelia’s Mexicana dishes up its title in more ways than one. Of course, the chefs back up the décor with a robust menu of Mexican eats both familiar and obscure. Hand-made flour tortillas wrap up classic enchiladas and empanadas. Spicy gravies add flavor to the albondigas – chicken meatballs – or the bistec ranchero, thinly slice beef with potatoes.