A Fun Place to Be Insulted
by lyle e davis
It's been my experience in going to restaurants, particularly
the fancy-schmanzy ones, that they are generally
food with sometimes adequate service but with a hefty price tag.
I've come to believe, over the past several years, that
quite often you get more for your buck and a helluva
lot more entertainment value if and when you find those special little places
that are often not much more than a hole in the wall. We found that to be true two years ago when
we visited a broad spectrum of restaurants in New Orleans . . . and we found it to be true
Louis as well.
In St. Louis, purely by accident, we found
Chili Mac's Diner. It's a small,
greasy-spoon appearing cafe. We actually
had walked past it at one time and I somewhat snidely and jokingly mentioned to
Evelyn . . ."ah, now there's a restaurant where I could properly entertain
you." We subsequently met another
couple who told us that the place was actually quite good. So, "what the hell," we thought,
"let's give 'em a try." I'm glad we did.
It's like a cafeteria . . . about 15 tables, the waitress
will seat you with total strangers and you make do as best you can. We struck up a great conversation with newly
found friends from Illinois, who were visiting
They had already discovered this diner years
ago and came regularly.
We had Donna (Radsord) for a
waitress. She was an absolute kick. She
takes great joy in insulting the customers and the customers love it and keep
coming back for more. Donna's been there
for about 20 years, most everyone else has as well. Low turnover is usually a sign that
ownership/management is not only okay, but pretty damned good.
At one point, after I ordered the breakfast special of
eggs, toast, and tea, she asked if I wanted white or wheat toast.
"Do you have rye?," I
"Did I ask you if you wanted rye," she
She got me good.
Later . . . I said something to her,
don't recall what . . . and she sneered again,
"eat, get out."
I don't know if all the wait staff is like her but she's
got one of those personalities where you feel insulted if she doesn't insult
you. Kind of a less
expensive version of "Dick's at the Beach." (A San Diego restaurant
known for wait staff that insult you . . . and charge you an arm and leg while
I think my breakfast special cost less than $3 -they have
all kinds of sandwiches, chili (I have no idea what a Chili Mac is but they
apparently sell a lot of it).
If you're in St. Louis and looking for not only good food
but a restaurant . . . no, it's not a restaurant, make that diner . . . with a
great atmosphere . . . a staff that makes it fun to eat out again . . .and a place that serves up good food at a really low price
. . . check 'em out . . . Chili Mac's . . .510 Pine
Street, St. Louis (314.421.9040).
And Another Review . . .
We also dined at Mike Shannon's (he's the current play by
play announcer for the St. Louis Cards and a former outfielder for the
I would not go back there.
Attractive decor, service excellent, but the prices were
outrageous. I had a prime rib . . $26.00 a la carte. It was huge, (16 oz) I'll give you that. But I really didn't want huge, and I didn't
have an option.
Interestingly, we had two rather distinguished and well
dressed gentlemen seated across from us.
They looked over the menu, looked at each other and said, "hell, we'd burn up all of our per diem just eating
here." They ordered a beer and
If folks don't mind spending an awful lot of money, I
suppose it's okay . . . but I wouldn't recommend it as
one of my top five places to send tourists . . . certainly not without a
They had a filet and lobster, a la carte, $41. That was a 'special.' Interesting. The waiter outlined the special(s), there
were two of them, but he didn't give the price.
You had to ask the price. I don't
like that. We didn't just fall off the
turnip truck . . . and I had a feeling that he was reaching into our wallets,
hoping we wouldn't notice, but being very polite about it.
Shannon’s is in the heart of downtown
St. Louis, very close to the stadium.
Mike Shannon's Steaks and Seafood
100 North Seventh St
St Louis, MO 63101-2102
Phone: +1 314 421 1540