A Visit to Shameless Grounds -- A Different Kind of Cafe


  • Mabel Suen

Back in February Gut Check previewed Shameless Grounds (2650 Sidney Street; 314-773-9900), a sex-positive coffeehouse connected to the Koken Art Factory. Tip of the Tongue checks back in with owner Andrew Mueller to see how things have been running since SG's opening in April, and to find out what eats the café currently offers.

To put Shameless Grounds in a nutshell, Mueller says, "The general idea was to create a very warm and welcoming space for people whose love lives fall outside of the box... We are a unique, eclectic and fun café for people who like things that are off the beaten path."

The staff of Shameless Grounds - MABEL SUEN
  • Mabel Suen
  • The staff of Shameless Grounds

The description "off the beaten path" can also be taken literally in this instance, as the exterior of the building can look quite unassuming to the unsuspecting eye. A sandwich board and small hanging sign yielding the SG logo indicate the entrance to the colorful café that is hidden away in the large warehouse. After stumbling up some steps, a second door opens into a second-floor space teeming with tangerine shaded walls.

The room exudes an inviting glow from sunlight peeking in through ceiling-high windows draped in flowing red curtains, and there's plenty of table seating to go around in addition to comfortably squishy leather seats for lounging. Tastefully displayed art with sensual themes adorn the walls, but you won't find any suggestive food items here unless you count "The Schnitzengruben ($5.25)," a sandwich featuring bratwurst straight from the local G&W Meat and Bavarian Style Sausage Company.

Shnitzengruben ($5.25) - G&W local bratwurst, steamed in hard cider, nestled under warm saurkraut, served on a soft pretzel bun with spicy mustard on the side - with a cup of potato and leek soup - MABEL SUEN
  • Mabel Suen
  • Shnitzengruben ($5.25) - G&W local bratwurst, steamed in hard cider, nestled under warm saurkraut, served on a soft pretzel bun with spicy mustard on the side - with a cup of potato and leek soup

The menu features a moderately sized selection of Chauvin coffee drinks, rotating soups, salads, appetizers, sandwiches. Of them, Mueller names "The Chauvinist Pig ($6.95)," a sandwich consisting of pulled pork shoulder, thin-sliced ham and crispy bacon with barbecue sauce, as the best-seller. His personal favorite is "The French Kiss ($7.95)" salad, their version of salad Nicoise. The café also features two new lunch specials a day typically for meat-eaters and a weekly vegan lunch special.

In addition to being an alternative meeting place and offering tasty eats, Shameless Grounds provides curb-side coffee service. Patrons can text orders to 508-JOLT-2-GO to catch caffeine on the run. What more could anyone ever want? Shameless Grounds opens daily at 10 a.m., closing Sunday through Thursday at 10 p.m. and Friday and Saturday at midnight.

For more tasty tidbits and opportunities to win great prizes, such as cookbooks, gift certificates to local restaurants and more, subscribe to Tip of the Tongue, the Riverfront Times' weekly food newsletter. This week, we'll raffle off a $25 gift certificate to Tee's Golf Grill.


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