I had a delightful KTRS radio interview with talk show host John Carney this week and the chance to meet George Mahe, St. Louis Magazine’s dining editor and Russ Clark, co-owner of St. Louis Kolache.
In the studio—just under the sign that read “No Food or Drink”— we sampled a variety of warm kolache before going on air. It was love at first bite.
The classic Czech pastry is made from a sweet, yeast dough often stuffed with fruits and cream cheese or even more exotic fillings. There’s as much disagreement over how to make them as there is on how to pronounce kolache. Most often it’s said koh-lotch-chee, though the Czechs use only the first two syllables.
However you say it, there’s no doubt Clark has taken the kolache concept to the next level. I tried one called the Chocolate Elvis made of Nutella, banana and bacon. (If you’re ever having an Elvis theme party, these tasty little dumplings would be perfect.) I took home a few of the Sausage and Gravy variety and warmed them up for a quick breakfast treat.
Still, I hadn’t scratched the surface of the menu, that features familiar flavors poked into the addictive little dough balls: Reuben; Hot Ham and Spinach and Mushroom with Pesto; St. Louis Slinger; New York Pizza, and more. The sweet, fruit-filled pastry sells for $1.59 each or $16.99 a dozen. The meat, cheese, and vegetable varieties go for $2.69 a piece or $28.99 a dozen.
Clark, whose place in Creve Coeur has been open since October, points out that the stuffed pastry is ideal for any function or any time of day. Besides the appeal of the familiar tastes incorporated in the dough pockets, kolache is also portable, versatile, and fun to eat.
St. Louis Kolache, 1300 N. Lindbergh (at Baur & Schuetz) in Creve Coeur. Open: Mon. to Sat. 6a.-2p. Sun. 7a-2p.