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5 Popular St. Louis Hole-in-the-Wall Restaurants

5 Popular St. Louis Hole-in-the-Wall Restaurants

5 Popular St. Louis Hole-in-the-Wall Restaurants

These five popular St. Louis hole-in-the-wall restaurants add a special charm and flavor to the dining landscape. We have explored five popular St. Louis hole-in-the-wall restaurants that have captured the hearts and taste buds of locals and visitors alike. This is why these are some of the popular St. Louis hole-in-the-wall restaurants that are waiting for you to discover them.

Gioia’s Deli, located in The Hill neighborhood, has delighted patrons with its mouthwatering Hot Salami sandwich and other Italian-American specialties. Blues City Deli, nestled in Benton Park, offers a blend of soulful music and delicious sandwiches, including their signature Cuban Reuben. Cunetto House of Pasta, situated in the historic area of “The Hill,” serves up authentic Italian dishes, with their Chicken Spedini taking center stage. Crown Candy Kitchen, located in Old North St. Louis, is renowned for its comforting Crown Candy BLT and nostalgic milkshakes. Finally, The Shaved Duck in Tower Grove East tantalizes taste buds with their smoky delights, such as their signature Smoked Duck Breast.

However, these five restaurants are just a taste of what the the city has to offer in terms of the St. Louis hole-in-the-wall restaurants. The city is brimming with countless hidden gems, each with its own unique ambiance, signature dishes, and stories to tell. From cozy diners to unassuming storefronts, there are plenty more hole-in-the-wall restaurants waiting to be discovered by adventurous food enthusiasts. This list is in no particular order.


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1) Gioia’s Deli

Gioia’s Deli is one of the popular St. Louis hole-in-the-wall restaurants located in the heart of The Hill neighborhood. This family-owned and operated establishment has been serving up delicious Italian-American fare since its humble beginnings in 1918. Gioia’s Deli has become a popular institution in St. Louis, cherished by locals and visitors alike for its warm atmosphere and mouthwatering cuisine.

One of the highlights of dining at Gioia’s Deli is their famous Hot Salami sandwich. This delectable creation features their house-made hot salami, topped with melted Provel cheese, and served on a crusty Italian roll. The combination of spicy salami and creamy Provel cheese is a match made in culinary heaven, leaving your taste buds dancing with delight.

Main Menu Items:

1. “Roast Beef and Provel”: This classic sandwich is a true crowd-pleaser. Tender slices of slow-roasted beef are piled high on a fresh roll, accompanied by a generous amount of gooey Provel cheese. The savory flavors meld together harmoniously, creating a satisfying and hearty meal.

2. “Italian Submarine”: Gioia’s Deli’s take on the classic Italian sub is a feast for the senses. A symphony of Italian flavors comes together with layers of Genoa salami, capicola, mortadella, and provolone cheese, all nestled in a soft Italian roll. This sandwich is further enhanced with fresh lettuce, tomato, onion, and a drizzle of tangy Italian dressing, delivering a taste of Italy with every bite.

3. “Meatball Sandwich”: Gioia’s Deli takes their meatball game to the next level with this crowd-favorite sandwich. Perfectly seasoned meatballs made from a cherished family recipe are smothered in rich marinara sauce and topped with melted Provel cheese. Served on a soft roll, this sandwich is a comforting and indulgent treat for any meatball lover.

Customer Reviews:

“Gioia’s Deli truly captures the essence of authentic Italian flavors. The Hot Salami sandwich is a must-try! The perfect balance of spiciness and cheese, it’s like a flavor explosion in your mouth.”

“I stumbled upon Gioia’s Deli while exploring St. Louis, and I’m so glad I did! The Roast Beef and Provel sandwich was incredibly delicious. The beef was incredibly tender, and the Provel cheese added a unique twist. I’ll definitely be back!”

“The Meatball Sandwich at Gioia’s Deli is simply out of this world. The meatballs are incredibly flavorful and moist, and the marinara sauce is the perfect accompaniment. You can taste the love and tradition in every bite.”

Gioia’s Deli is a hidden gem among St. Louis’ dining scene, truly living up to its reputation as one of the popular St. Louis hole-in-the-wall restaurants. With its family-owned and operated status, this establishment has created a warm and inviting atmosphere where visitors feel like part of the family. They are one of the best St. Louis hole-in-the-wall restaurants.

Whether you’re indulging in their signature Hot Salami sandwich or exploring the diverse menu options, Gioia’s Deli offers a delightful experience for all food enthusiasts. It’s no wonder that Gioia’s Deli continues to be a popular destination for locals and a must-visit spot for anyone seeking authentic Italian-American cuisine in St. Louis. They rank high among the best St. Louis hole-in-the-wall restaurants for good reasons.


2) Blues City Deli

Blues City Deli is one of the popular St. Louis hole-in-the-wall restaurants nestled in the vibrant neighborhood of Benton Park. This family-owned and operated eatery has been serving up delectable sandwiches and soulful music since its establishment. Blues City Deli has earned a special place in the hearts of locals and tourists alike, offering an unforgettable experience combining mouthwatering cuisine and live blues performances.

Blues City Deli is renowned for its signature sandwich, the “Cuban Reuben.” This unique creation combines the flavors of a traditional Cuban sandwich with the popular Reuben. Tender, slow-roasted pork is paired with Swiss cheese, pickles, and tangy mustard, all pressed between slices of marble rye bread. The result is a harmonious blend of savory and tangy flavors, providing a delightful twist on two popular sandwich classics.

Main Menu Items:

1. “Muffuletta”: Blues City Deli’s take on the classic New Orleans sandwich is a true masterpiece. Generously stacked layers of cured meats, including ham, salami, and mortadella, are complemented by melted provolone cheese and a tangy olive salad. All of these delectable ingredients are encased in a round sesame-seed-topped Italian loaf, creating a flavor explosion with each bite.

2. “Soulard Blues”: The “Soulard Blues” sandwich pays homage to the vibrant music and food scene of the nearby Soulard neighborhood. This mouthwatering creation features tender roast beef topped with provolone cheese, sautéed mushrooms, and a zesty horseradish sauce. Served on a fresh French baguette, this sandwich delivers a satisfying combination of hearty flavors and a kick of tanginess.

3. “N’awlins Muffaletta Salad”: For a lighter option, Blues City Deli offers a refreshing twist on the traditional muffuletta. This salad features mixed greens tossed in a tangy olive vinaigrette, topped with a medley of cured meats, cheese, and a generous portion of the signature olive salad. Bursting with flavor and textures, this salad is a perfect choice for those seeking a lighter yet satisfying meal.

Customer Reviews:

“Blues City Deli is a hidden gem in St. Louis! The Cuban Reuben sandwich is pure magic. The combination of tender pork, pickles, and Swiss cheese is out of this world. Plus, the live blues music adds an extra layer of soul to the whole experience.”

“I can’t get enough of Blues City Deli’s Muffuletta! The meats are perfectly seasoned, and the olive salad brings everything together. It’s like a taste of New Orleans right here in St. Louis.”

“The Soulard Blues sandwich is a flavor-packed delight. The horseradish sauce adds a fantastic kick, and the sautéed mushrooms are the perfect complement to the tender roast beef. This place knows how to make a sandwich!”

Blues City Deli is a vibrant and popular St. Louis hole-in-the-wall restaurant, cherished by locals and visitors alike. With its family-owned and operated status, this eatery exudes a warm and welcoming atmosphere. From their signature Cuban Reuben sandwich to their authentic Muffuletta, Blues City Deli showcases the rich flavors of both New Orleans and St. Louis. They are one of the popular St. Louis hole-in-the-wall restaurants.

The combination of delicious food and live blues music creates an experience that is truly unique and unforgettable. Whether you’re a sandwich aficionado or a music lover, Blues City Deli is a must-visit destination that captures the essence of being one of the popular St. Louis hole-in-the-wall restaurants. They stand out among the popular St. Louis hole-in-the-wall restaurants.


3) Cunetto House of Pasta

Cunetto House of Pasta is one of the popular St. Louis hole-in-the-wall restaurants located in the historic neighborhood of “The Hill.” This family-owned and operated establishment has been serving up authentic Italian cuisine since its inception in the early 20th century. Cunetto House of Pasta has become a popular culinary destination, known for its cozy atmosphere and mouthwatering pasta dishes.

At Cunetto House of Pasta, their signature dish is the “Chicken Spedini.” This delectable creation features tender chicken breast rolled in breadcrumbs, skewered, and grilled to perfection. The chicken is then topped with a flavorful white wine and lemon sauce. The combination of the crispy coating, succulent chicken, and tangy sauce creates a symphony of flavors that leaves patrons craving for more.

Main Menu Items:

1. “Linguine Aglio e Olio”: This classic pasta dish showcases simplicity at its finest. Perfectly cooked linguine is tossed with sautéed garlic, red pepper flakes, and a generous drizzle of olive oil. The result is a light yet flavorful dish that allows the quality of the ingredients to shine through.

2. “Ravioli di Portobello”: Cunetto House of Pasta’s ravioli stuffed with portobello mushrooms is a vegetarian delight. The delicate pasta pockets are filled with a savory blend of portobello mushrooms, cheese, and herbs. The ravioli is then bathed in a velvety tomato cream sauce, adding a luxurious touch to this comforting dish.

3. “Tortellini alla Panna”: This indulgent pasta dish features tortellini, small stuffed pasta rings, bathed in a rich and creamy Parmesan sauce. Each bite of the tender pasta is a burst of cheesy goodness, accompanied by the luscious sauce that coats every strand. It’s a decadent choice for those seeking ultimate comfort in a bowl.

Customer Reviews:

“Cunetto House of Pasta is a true gem in St. Louis. The Chicken Spedini is a must-try. The combination of the tender chicken and the tangy sauce is simply outstanding. It’s no wonder this place is considered one of the popular St. Louis hole-in-the-wall restaurants.”

“The Linguine Aglio e Olio at Cunetto House of Pasta is a simple yet extraordinary dish. The flavors are perfectly balanced, and the garlic shines through without overpowering the pasta. It’s a dish I could eat every day.”

“The Ravioli di Portobello is a vegetarian delight. The combination of the earthy mushrooms and the creamy tomato sauce is heavenly. The pasta is cooked to perfection, and every bite is bursting with flavor.”

Cunetto House of Pasta stands as a popular St. Louis hole-in-the-wall restaurant, cherished by locals and visitors alike. As a family-owned and operated establishment, it has upheld a tradition of serving authentic Italian cuisine for generations. From their signature Chicken Spedini to their comforting pasta dishes, Cunetto House of Pasta showcases the essence of Italian culinary excellence. They are another of the great St. Louis hole-in-the-wall restaurants.

With its cozy ambiance and delectable offerings, it’s no surprise that Cunetto House of Pasta has established itself as one of the popular St. Louis hole-in-the-wall restaurants, capturing the hearts and taste buds of all who dine there. They deserve to be ranked high among the great St. Louis hole-in-the-wall restaurants.


4) Crown Candy Kitchen

Crown Candy Kitchen is one of the popular St. Louis hole-in-the-wall restaurants located in the Old North St. Louis neighborhood. This family-owned and operated establishment has been serving delightful comfort food and homemade candies since its inception in 1913. Crown Candy Kitchen holds a special place in the hearts of locals and tourists alike, offering a nostalgic dining experience that is rich in history and flavor.

One of the highlights at Crown Candy Kitchen is their famous “Crown Candy BLT.” This iconic sandwich features crispy bacon, fresh lettuce, and ripe tomatoes, all layered between slices of toasted white bread. What sets this BLT apart is its generous portion of bacon, making each bite a blissful combination of savory, crunchy, and refreshing flavors.

Main Menu Items:

1. “Malted Milkshake”: Crown Candy Kitchen is renowned for its delectable milkshakes, and the Malted Milkshake is a fan favorite. Made with their signature malt powder, rich ice cream, and topped with whipped cream, this milkshake takes you back in time with its old-fashioned charm and creamy goodness.

2. “Grilled Cheese Sandwich”: Crown Candy Kitchen’s Grilled Cheese Sandwich is a classic comfort food indulgence. With gooey melted American cheese and perfectly grilled bread, this simple yet satisfying sandwich is a timeless favorite that will leave you feeling warm and content.

3. “Patty Melt”: The Patty Melt at Crown Candy Kitchen is a hearty treat for burger enthusiasts. This sandwich features a juicy beef patty topped with melted Swiss cheese and caramelized onions, all sandwiched between two slices of grilled rye bread. It’s a mouthwatering combination of flavors that hits all the right spots.

Customer Reviews:

“Crown Candy Kitchen is a true gem in St. Louis! The Crown Candy BLT is a must-try. The abundance of crispy bacon takes it to a whole new level. It’s no wonder this place is considered one of the popular St. Louis hole-in-the-wall restaurants.”

“The Malted Milkshake at Crown Candy Kitchen is out of this world. It’s thick, creamy, and has the perfect amount of malt flavor. It’s like stepping back in time with each sip. Absolutely divine.”

“I can’t resist the Grilled Cheese Sandwich at Crown Candy Kitchen. It’s simple, yet they execute it perfectly every time. The melted cheese and perfectly toasted bread create a heavenly combination. Pair it with a malted milkshake, and you’re in comfort food heaven.”

Crown Candy Kitchen holds a special place in St. Louis as one of the popular St. Louis hole-in-the-wall restaurants. As a family-owned and operated establishment, it has remained a popular culinary destination since 1913. From their signature Crown Candy BLT to their delightful milkshakes, Crown Candy Kitchen offers a nostalgic dining experience that combines comforting flavors with a rich history. They are one of the leading St. Louis hole-in-the-wall restaurants.

The restaurant’s commitment to quality and tradition has made it a cherished spot for locals and visitors alike. Crown Candy Kitchen truly captures the essence of being one of the popular St. Louis hole-in-the-wall restaurants, delivering a delightful blend of taste, nostalgia, and warm hospitality to all who walk through its doors. They have earned the rank of being one of the leading St. Louis hole-in-the-wall restaurants.


5) The Shaved Duck

The Shaved Duck is one of the popular St. Louis hole-in-the-wall restaurants located in the Tower Grove East neighborhood. This family-owned and operated establishment has gained a loyal following for its tantalizing barbecue and smoked dishes. The Shaved Duck embodies the spirit of a hidden gem, providing a cozy and inviting atmosphere for patrons to enjoy their delectable offerings.

When dining at The Shaved Duck, their signature dish that stands out is the “Smoked Duck Breast.” This flavorful creation features tender and succulent duck breast, expertly smoked to perfection. The smoky and rich flavors of the duck are complemented by a savory and tangy house-made sauce, resulting in a dish that is both unique and mouthwatering.

Main Menu Items:

1. “St. Louis-Style Ribs”: The Shaved Duck’s St. Louis-Style Ribs are a barbecue lover’s dream. These meaty and succulent ribs are slow-smoked to perfection, allowing the flavors to infuse deeply into the meat. Glazed with a tangy and slightly sweet barbecue sauce, these ribs are tender, juicy, and guaranteed to satisfy your cravings.

2. “Pulled Pork Sandwich”: The Pulled Pork Sandwich at The Shaved Duck is a true crowd-pleaser. Tender and smoky pulled pork is piled high on a soft bun and accompanied by a tangy barbecue sauce. The combination of the melt-in-your-mouth pork and the zesty sauce creates a harmonious blend of flavors that will leave you wanting more.

3. “Brisket”: The Shaved Duck’s Brisket is a melt-in-your-mouth delight. This slow-smoked beef brisket is cooked to perfection, resulting in tender and flavorful slices of meat. Served with a side of house-made barbecue sauce, this dish is a true testament to the art of smoking meats.

Customer Reviews:

“The Shaved Duck is a hidden gem among St. Louis hole-in-the-wall restaurants. The Smoked Duck Breast is a must-try. The smoky flavors combined with the savory sauce create a delightful explosion of taste. It’s no wonder this place is considered one of the popular St. Louis hole-in-the-wall restaurants.”

“The St. Louis-Style Ribs at The Shaved Duck are absolutely phenomenal. The meat is fall-off-the-bone tender, and the barbecue sauce adds a perfect balance of sweetness and tanginess. I can’t get enough of these ribs.”

“The Pulled Pork Sandwich at The Shaved Duck is pure barbecue bliss. The pork is perfectly cooked, and the barbecue sauce is finger-licking good. It’s a sandwich that satisfies both your hunger and your taste buds.”

The Shaved Duck stands out as a popular St. Louis hole-in-the-wall restaurant, offering a tantalizing experience for barbecue enthusiasts. As a family-owned and operated establishment, it exudes a warm and welcoming ambiance. From their signature Smoked Duck Breast to their mouthwatering St. Louis-Style Ribs and Pulled Pork Sandwich, The Shaved Duck delivers on flavor and quality. They are one of the Leading St. Louis hole-in-the-wall restaurants.

With its cozy atmosphere and delectable offerings, it’s no surprise that The Shaved Duck has established itself as one of the popular St. Louis hole-in-the-wall restaurants, captivating diners with their smoky and succulent dishes. They can definitely be counted among the Leading St. Louis hole-in-the-wall restaurants.


So, the next time you find yourself in St. Louis, venture off the beaten path and explore the city’s culinary underbelly. Seek out the tucked-away eateries, ask the locals for their favorite spots, and embark on a culinary journey that will uncover even more popular St. Louis hole-in-the-wall restaurants. Who knows what delightful surprises and delicious flavors await?


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