For a homegrown and humble neighborhood joint, Ruma's Deli (1395 Quantock Drive; 314-892-9990) sure cooks up its share of controversy. Love or hate its signature ingredient, the South County deli - and local family-owned institution - proudly serves the platter-sized sandwiches smothered in that most St. Louis of cheeses: Provel.
The Gerber may be its most famous take on a regular old ham-and-cheese, but for our hard-earned $5, we opt for its fraternal twin of meaty, cheesy indulgence: The Prosperity.
The Prosperity is served hot and open-face on toasted bread. It's then piled with roast beef as thick as steak cuts and encased in a white sheet of Provel. Somewhere inside, there's melted garlic butter - and gravy.
It's simple yet indulgent. It takes two sittings to consume it. It may have an inferiority complex. It's delicious, and it's so St. Louis.
Beginning last year, RFT restaurant critic Ian Froeb counted down -- in no particular order -- 100 of his favorite dishes in St. Louis. Now Gut Check has taken up where he left off. Check back frequently as we detail our 100 favorites, and don't hesitate to send us yours, too, either via the comments thread or at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Previously: #94: Cherry Cheese Danish from Missouri Baking Company #95: Bread Pudding with Whiskey Sauce at Ruth's Chris Steakhouse #96: Egg Salad Sandwich at Township Grocer #97: Cheeseburger and Fries (Extra Crispy) at O'Connell's Pub #98 Mussels & Fries at Brasserie by Niche #99: Beef Taquitos Mexicanos at El Indio #100: Spinach Artichoke Dip at Cafe Eau