Star Power

 

It seems local restaurants in the national spotlight are everywhere these days. ALIVE takes a look at the most recent highlights.

Triple Filtered

Sub Zero Vodka Bar went through a distillation process to make the OpenTable list of Top 100 Dining Hot Spots in the United States. The site vetted 5 million reviews for 15,000 restaurants, then did another round of scoring for restaurants tagged as “hot spots.” Sub Zero’s selection of 500 vodkas from 28 countries is certainly impressive on its own, but brothers Derek and Lucas Gamlin up the fun factor with frequent themed events ranging from sushi and sake tastings to gardening classes, fitness talks and celebrity autograph sessions.

Sweet Success

A person could gain five pounds just reading about the signature desserts for Food & Wine Magazine’s The People’s Best New Pastry Chef—Central Region finalist Robert Zugmaier, pastry chef at Sidney Street Cafe. His very popular Snicker Bar is a caloric carnival of chocolate mousse, honey nougat, roasted peanuts, dulce de leche and chocolate-bourbon sorbet.

Always a Bridesmaid

Gerard Craft, whose restaurants include Niche, Pastaria and Brasserie by Niche, earned his fourth finalist nomination in the James Beard Awards for Best Chef: Midwest. The top award, handed out on May 6 in New York City, went to an in-state rival, Colby Garrelts of Bluestem in Kansas City. There’s always next year for Craft. After all, this was Garrelts’ seventh nomination. Then again, he has stiff competition from Kevin Nashan of Sidney Street Cafe, a 2013 semifinalist and also a veteran nominee for the award.

Doubling Up

The sly folks at Travel + Leisure Magazine have left us guessing as to exactly why they chose Bixby’s in the Missouri History Museum as one of their 12 America’s Best Museum Restaurants. But they’ll get no arguments that the recognition is well-deserved. For one thing, there’s the use of locally sourced ingredients, which is very fitting in a museum dedicated to the region’s past and present. Over at OpenTable, the scoring system is more transparent (see above). Thus, we know exactly how Bixby’s, operated by catering company Butler’s Pantry, earned the Diners’ Choice Award for Best Brunch Restaurant in May.

 

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Sub Zero Vodka Bar

 

Photo credit: Courtesy of Sub Zero Vodka Bar

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