There are so many reasons to love St. Louis: beautiful parks, beautiful historic architecture, and one of our personal favorites: the bustling community of small businesses that are moving our region forward. Here is our list of 10 St. Louis staples we could include in a STL-themed goody bag – we hope it gives you some ideas of what to share when hosting a friend from out of town or to take with you next time you visit them!
- Gus’s Pretzels – Gus’s is family owned and operated and is located off Arsenal Street just south of Benton Park. Gus Jr. is a third-generation pretzel maker, keeping the family tradition of baking fresh pretzels each day. And if baking them at home is more your thing, you can find their frozen pretzels at select grocery stores in the city and county.
- The Billy Goat Chip Company – A St. Louis-based company that prides themselves on the simplicity, aesthetic, and flavor of their chips. High quality ingredients mixed with careful craftsmanship makes what The Billy Goat Chip company believes “to be the best potato chip in the world.”
- Dad’s Cookies – Home of the original scotch oatmeal cookies (also known as the best cookies you’ll ever have). The business has been passed down through the Renz family, and it is now owned by another generation of the family: the Hastey brothers.
- Fitz’s Root Beer – With an original recipe created in 1947 in St. Louis, and the official opening of a location in the Delmar Loop in 1993, Fitz’s Root Beer has become recognized across the United States.
- St. Louis Blues and St. Louis Cardinal Gear – What would a St. Louis goody basket be without some merch to support our favorite sports teams?
- Beer – Pick a favorite or build a custom pack: Budweiser, Schlafly, Urban Chestnut, 4Hands, Side Project, Perennial, Civil Life – just to name a few. The local beer scene in St. Louis has beyond flourished in the last few years and there is guaranteed to be something for every taste! (Even the non-alcoholic taste)
- Imo’s Pizza – We can’t forget “the square beyond compare!” With true pioneering spirit, Ed and Margie Imo opened their first pizza store with $1,500 in 1964. The unique use of Provel cheese and the signature grid cut to their pizza aided Imo’s in becoming the signature St. Louis-style pizza and while this is an item that might not quite fit INSIDE a goody bag, did you know you can now get Imo’s delivered nationwide?
- The Normal Brand – Headquartered in Clayton, Missouri, The Normal Brand started with an idea to make normal clothes better and the determination of three brothers and their family. On March 10, 2015 the first item, a hat, was purchased and the company has now grown to a full collection of clothing styles for men and women that can be purchased online, at their stores in St. Louis, Kansas City, and Nashville, and at a variety of retailers across North America.
- Gooey Butter Cake – For anyone with half a sweet tooth, this is a staple not to be left behind! Whether homemade or store-bought, this St. Louis specialty is a mouthwatering dessert that is hard to practice restraint with. Fans of the decadent treat can always find it at local grocery stores or on the menu at many local eateries such as the beloved Gooey Louie, Russell’s, or Park Avenue Coffee.
- Ted Drewes Frozen Custard – First opened in Florida in 1929 then quickly transferred over to St. Louis were it became a mandatory stop for those traveling on Route 66, Ted Drewes has continued to make delicious frozen custard with fast-paced, efficient service, drawing crowds to its Chippewa location rain, snow, or shine. And did you know you can find Ted Drewes vending machines at the Lambert International Airport now? So, you can’t miss the chance to take it on the go!
Small businesses are the backbone of our economy. They are not only a robust source of jobs in our region, but they also help keep money circulating within our local economy. This is something we are passionate about at Saint Louis Bank. Supporting the long-term success of our growing community of small, locally owned businesses in St. Louis means the long-term success of our region, and we are here for it!
What’s in your Saint Louis Goody Bag?