by Mabel Suen
Earlier this year, Des Peres got its first wine bar: Pairings Wine & Dessert Bar (1131 Colonnade Center; 314-821-5455), and Gut Check stopped in to try it out for lunch. For starters, the wine list offers about fifty red and white varietals by the cup or bottle. After choosing a glass, guests can select from a few different categories: starters, salads, sandwiches and wood fired flatbreads -- the dinner menu contains the same options with a list of entrees in place of the more casual sandwich options.
Sandwiches include a "Croque-Monsieur" panini with Black Forest ham, gruyere, dijon and a mornay sauce as well as a lamb burger. Flatbread options include combinations including roasted veggie as well as surryano ham and apple with caramelized onions. For dinner, diners can select from crispy duck breast, maple bourbon salmon and more.
Pairings' other namesake element awaits at the end of the meal -- tiny, bite-sized desserts are divided into the following categories on the menu: "delicate," "decadent" and "daring." For $3, try one of these or a scoop of housemade ice cream or sorbet. For $8, create a trio of any of the above. Individual dessert flavor combinations include everything from deconstructed key lime pie and tiramisu to bacon-blueberry bread pudding and espresso-spiked brownie.
Pairings fills the place formerly occupied by Jilly's Cupcakes A-Go-Go. The room in general exudes a warm, orange glow thanks to overhead lighting and a color palette that ranges from yellow to deep burgundy, an appropriate vibe to coincide the carafes of wine that accompany each meal.
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