So my friends call me a walking, talking billboard for the city of Ferguson, MO. There may be something to that.
Before Yoli and I married, I set about looking for a place where we would live. I wanted a friendly place that was pedestrian friendly with stores and services in walking distance, since Yoli doesn’t drive. I should have thought of Ferguson immediately, since I was an UMSL student who drove through the town frequently. But I didn’t. It took me a month or two before my dad said “You were always talking about the progress you saw in Ferguson. Why don’t you look there?”
So I did, and I found a very inexpensive apartment in a great location. And we’ve been here for more than 2 years. You can read a bit about what we enjoy about living here on the Ferguson Citywalk website.
Lately, what I’ve really been enjoying are the restaurants. Yoli suggested I make a list of my favorites, so here goes…
O.T. Hodge Chile Parlor – I really like their “chile” and their hamburgers. They cook everything to order, including their french fries, which are outstanding. They also pass one of the most important restaurant tests – bacon quality. Most restaurants (Denny’s, etc) use this really cheap thin unbacony bacon. Not O.T. Hodge. They use thick bacon which they cook nice and crisp. I’d eat here more often, but they don’t stay open late enough through the whole week.
Whistle Stop Depot – They sell frozen custard, sandwiches, soups, and a few other desserts. The custard is great, they also do concretes and sundaes and have TONS of toppings available. They have a sandwich-of-the-day, soup-of-the-day and custard-flavor-of-the-day. They publish a convenient schedule of these days in each month’s Ferguson Times, so we can plan what days we definitely want to go. They stay open later than some of Ferguson’s other restaurants, which is a big plus. And their sandwiches are very good. The workers are very friendly. They take extra customer service steps, like giving you ice waters with your meal if you don’t order sodas (even though you didn’t ask for the water). And the Whistle Stop is more than a restaurant, it is a museum of the city. The Whistle Stop is located in Ferguson’s old train depot. All the walls are covered with photos and exhibits.
It’s worth noting that the two aforementioned restaurants regularly run coupons in the Ferguson Times and on the backs of receipts at Shop n’ Save. We REALLY like that.
Queen’s – We used to go to a different Chinese food place in Ferguson before we switched to Queen’s. The customer service is excellent. The lady who works there remembers every customer’s name, their usual orders, and even their overall order history. As I understand it, she has worked there forever and knows practically the whole city. The food is good, and the place almost always seems busy.
Other Ferguson places we like include the Thyme Table (great breakfasts, and they also pass the bacon test); El Palenque (a new Mexican restaurant which is a bit pricey but has great food); the Corner Coffehouse (almost right next door to us, fairly pricey, but great atmosphere and friendly); and Soma’s Coffeehouse (nice place to hang out, used to serve a great sandwich called the Pavo Real, but they stopped doing food). Of course Ferguson has many other restaurants, but these are the ones we go to most often.
We try to stay in Ferguson for most stuff, but we do venture out to other places. The Subway on St. Charles Rock Road near McKelvey has a great deal on Sundays ($7.99 for two foot-longs); Hendel’s Marketplace in Florissant is a fine dining restaurant that is wonderful for special occasions; Sonic in Cool Valley is a favorite of Yoli’s.
So, there you have it. If you have any North County favorites, feel free to talk about ’em in the comments section!