H. Teller Archibald opened the doors of the first Fannie May Chocolates in 1920, delighting the passing palates of Chicago’s LaSalle Street with exquisite chocolates that continue to tickle taste buds today. Though nearly a century has passed, Fannie May’s alchemists still rely on the same recipes as the first store, refusing to budge on quality even when faced with shortages during war times and the never-ending Gregory Middle School food fight of 1997. Renowned for sweetness and attention to detail, the chocolatiers’ treats stand as an institution of inventive eats, from the gooey pecan and caramel of their Pixies to the sunny, toasted-coconut-encased dark chocolate of their Trinidads.
When Terry Yake found his way off his family's farm to pursue a career as a professional hockey player, he didn't dream that it would lead him back. During his time with the St. Louis Blues, Terry would return from every trip back home to Manitoba, Canada, with a care package under his arm, packed with the farm's fresh, free-range beef. His teammates got a taste at a backyard barbecue and began clamoring for more beef like a carnivorous pack of parrots. When Terry returned to the St. Louis area, so did the demand for his family's meat. He began running a bare-bones operation out of his garage, which eventually grew into a retail outlet that allows Terry to share the fruit of his family's labor with the community he now, happily, calls home.
All of T-Bones Natural Meats's beef comes from cows that graze freely, without the effects of hormones, steroids, or antibiotics. The same can be said for the free-range poultry, pork, and bison that the team procures from area farms. The animals eat what they would in nature, which Terry believes results in a better taste, a better conscience, and better nutrition—as studies have shown. Their sausages are made from pigs that have been raised equally kindly; the meat is wrapped in natural casings with all-natural add-ons, such as fresh mushrooms, just-chopped apples, and pure maple syrup. All the meat is flash-frozen, a more eco-friendly way of salting it and storing it in an ice palace.
Schnucks Kids Camp is more than a grocery store. While they sell cooking ingredients, their coaches also teach the culinary techniques to transform basics into piping hot dinners. During live demonstrations, novice cooks stop by to watch and learn as chefs whip up featured recipes, doling out samples to passersby. They happily answer any questions about cooking methods and required equipment, helping budding cooks who want to recreate the dishes at home. Necessary ingredients for every demo dish are available for sale beside each demo station, rather than magically stowed under the coach's chef's hat.
The company also encompasses a more structured cooking school, with classes for couples, families, and kids. A sommelier teaches adults about wine-tasting basics in one session; in another, students learn to prepare market-fresh fish. Kids' classes, meanwhile, cover topics from fondue to circus-themed snacks.
With a master's degree in Chinese medicine from Phoenix Institute of Herbal Medicine and Acupuncture, acupuncturist Heather Wheeler strives to relieve pain and discomfort by redirecting chi (energy flow) at the behest of thin needles gently placed under the skin. Each treatment is preceded by a 90-minute initial consultation, during which she discusses the patient's past and present health issues in terms of Chinese medicinal practice. Once she has an idea of what needs to be done, she gingerly slides the disposable needles under the skin and allows the patient to relax for 20 minutes in a private room. She then removes the needles and performs further feats of chi legerdemain, which may include tui na (Chinese massage), gua sha (gentle skin abrasion), and nanna nanna boo boo (the technique of mocking pain until it dissipates in shame). The first acupuncture appointment lasts about 1.5 hours, and the follow-up appointment is only an hour, barring unforeseen needle thievery committed by the knitting club next door.