Salt + Smoke's Burnt End T-Ravs
I can understand why other cities haven't welcomed St. Louis favorites like gooey butter cake and Provel cheese with open arms. But there's no good reason that every city in America shouldn't be serving toasted ravioli (a.k.a. t-ravs). For the uninitiated, toasted ravioli are just like your normal ravioli, except they're breaded and fried—no, there's not toasting involved here. We're talking about a Midwestern speciality, after all. The typical t-rav is filled with a nondescript meat, basil, and oregano—basically a meatball. Some are filled with cheese to appease vegetarians.
That's not the case here at The Delmar Loop's Salt + Smoke. No, sir. Salt + Smoke has, over the last 6 or so months, become my go-to for any kind of BBQ meat relating to the cow. Owner Tom Schmidt and his crew have mastered beef. Expect another post later this summer on their brisket, but in the mean time, make a note-to-self: I must go to Salt + Smoke and order the brisket. If they have the option of burnt ends, I must tweet at Spencer so he can come eat them instead of me.
You know what burnt ends are, right? I won't say there's no shame in not knowing. You're an adult. You should know by now. Burnt ends could more appropriately be called Brisket Gold, Diamonds in Le Boeuf, or just the emoji for the crying smiley face. Super fatty chunks of the brisket are cut and smoked extra long, allowing the fat to render out and produce bites of brisket as smoky as Don Draper's office and as crunchy as meat bark can be.
They are my single favorite bite of BBQ.
Salt + Smoke takes their burnt ends, chops them up, then stuffs ravioli with them. These are ravioli that are 15+ hours in the making. It is impossible for them not to taste like heaven. Especially when served with white BBQ sauce—a tangy, even more fattening version of normal BBQ. It's mayo-based and loaded with horseradish and vinegar. It's like ranch 2.0.
To recap: fatty, smoked meat stuffed into pasta, then fried. In a post-apocalyptic world, I would accept these as currency.