This Week's Dish: Clink! Delivers Local Booze Nationwide, Ivy Magruder Leaves Vin De Set for Gamlin Whiskey House, Craft Chophouse Turns 1

 In Food
Image courtesy of Clink!

Image courtesy of Clink!

The co-owners of Modesto Tapas Bar, Erin Keplinger and Brendan Marsden, recently announced their newest venture in gastronomical indulgence—this time of the liquid variety. Clink!, an online liquor store based in St. Louis, hopes to launch on Oct. 4 and will employ local drink experts in curating the site’s offerings. The reach of the site will be national, but will be sure to include our hometown heroes, such as Schlafly and Perennial beers and Mastermind, Pinckney Bend and The Big O spirits. Other local artisans will be commissioned by the site, creating custom engraved boxes, embossed tags and more.

Okay, folks, follow me here. Two weeks ago, Derek and Lucas Gamlin–owners of SubZero Vodka Bar and the forthcoming Gamlin Whiskey House (slated to open Sept. 30) and Taha’s Twisted Tiki–announced that Ian Craig had left their happy family after seven years as executive chef. On the verge of some major expansion plans, the Gamlins went looking for a replacement. But they didn’t have to look far. Just one week after Craig resigned, Ivy Magruder of Vin de Set stepped in to fill the role. Magruder originally opened Vin de Set as executive chef and later moved into the position of general manager. Now, with the Gamlin brothers, Magruder will become corporate executive chef of all three Gamlin establishments. And now we have a hole to fill at Vin de Set. Enter Karen Caputa, most recently the food and beverage manager at the Ballpark Hilton and before that a tenured manager at Mike Shannon’s Steak & Seafood. Caputa will take over Magruder’s former role as general manager at Vin de Set. As for who will take her spot, well, that’s where the trail runs cold.

Congrats to Carl’s Drive-In! The iconic Brentwood burger joint owned by Frank Cunetto was recently recognized by Guyot as one of the “Top 10 Best Burger Restaurants in the U.S.” We already knew that, but it’s cool that the rest of the country now knows it too. 9003 Manchester Road, Brentwood, 314.961.9652

And while we’re passing out congratulations, one goes to Sump Coffee as well, which was included in a list of 58 “extraordinary” coffee shops published on Grub Street, the food blog of New York Magazine. The article notes the oh-so-notable beard of owner Scott Carey, and mentions, oh yeah, that the Kyoto-styled brewed coffee and espressos pulled using a Slayer machine are pretty great too.

The St. Louis NFL Players Association and Jim Beam have teamed up with J. Buck’s to present Monday Night Football every Monday at J. Buck’s in Clayton. The event features appearances by current and former NFL players, product tastings from Beam Global’s Red Stag Hardcore Cider and Spiced Cinnamon, along with food and drink specials from J. Buck’s. CBS Sports Radio 920AM will be broadcasting live each week and will conduct live interviews with current and former NFL players, as well as other special guests. This event series runs through the duration of the NFL Monday night season, which ends December 23. 101 S. Hanley Road, Clayton, 314.725.4700,

Bill Kunz, owner of Highway 61 Roadhouse, and Tom Coghill, owner of Iron Barley, will soon be heading to New Iberia, La., to compete in the annual World Championship Gumbo Cook Off, Oct. 11-13. The duo is getting psyched for the event with a Bon Voyage Party at Highway 61 Roadhouse (which coincides with the restaurant’s 7th Anniversary Celebration) on Saturday, Oct. 5. The festivities will included a whole-hog cook off and live music from Willie and the Poor Boys. Attendees will then see off Kunz and Coghill as they board their RV for a pre-competition roadtrip. The Gumbo Road Trip will roll into Clarksdale and Merigold, Mississippi, both located on America’s Blues Highway, U.S. 61. In Clarksdale, they will cook barbeque at Hopson Plantation and visit Morgan Freeman’s blues club, Ground Zero. A visit to Cat Head Delta Blues and Folk Art store is also planned. In Merigold, they will visit Po’ Monkey’s juke joint. Oh yeah, the competition. Kunz and Coghill will compete against nearly 100 other teams, and the winners will be announced by 3:30pm on Sunday, Oct. 13.

Mark your calendars now to attend the CWE Flea on Oct. 5 and 19 from 9am to 2pm. Modeled after the wildly popular Brooklyn Flea, this limited-time event features up to 13 area vendors displaying vintage clothing, repurposed furniture, jewelry, natural beauty products, handmade children’s clothing, antiques/collectibles and, of course, food. Shiloh Hill Hens will be on hand with eggs, produce and Amish bread; Torta Bella will feature pastries; and Native Pops will hock its gourmet popsicles. The CWE Flea is located at 449 N. Euclid at Washington Ave. For questions, contact 314.494.9123 or

Craft Chophouse will celebrate its first full year in business with The Art of Entertaining anniversary party on Saturday, Oct. 5 from 4-11pm at Edwardsville City Park. The owners, Edwardsville natives Adam Washburn and Megan Pashea, invite the public to join them for food and live music from The People’s Key featuring Zena Star and Anita Rosamond Band. Guests should expect a smorgasbord of good eats, including kabobs, oysters on the half shell, jumbo shrimp cocktail, lobster mac and cheese, toasted ravioli, potato skins, hot wings, tater tot poutine and beef and chorizo sliders. There will be plenty of craft beer and wine on hand to wash down the grub. Admission is free, with open seating available (lawn chairs are encouraged). Reserved VIP tables for parties of six or more are available for $50 through Sept. 29 and can be made by calling 618.307.9300. Proceeds from the event benefit the Alzheimer’s Association’s Walk to End Alzheimer’s.

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