off to see the wizard

For our 3 year anniversary, Matt + I decided to do another St. Louis day. [Yes, we are spoiled that we are both teachers and can pretty much do whatever we want during the day in the summer. I am also starting to think I should’ve named this blog “The Adventures of K + M”.]

We started the day off going to the St. Louis Zoo. It was extraordinarily hot + humid. Not the greatest to spend outside all day, but it also meant the zoo wasn’t very crowded. We spent a good amount of time there [we are now Zoo Members thanks to my in-laws], checking out almost everything, including the new Stingray exhibit. OK, so I’ve swam with stingrays before in Grand Cayman, but I am absolutely scared to death of all things fish-like. So, I was pretty proud of myself for getting over my fear and actually petting some of the stingrays! Very cool… go while they are still there! It is about $5 a person – we had free ticket vouchers due to our gym membership – but totally worth it, I think.

Right after we left the stingrays, we heard some thunder so we booked it back to the car. With some time before dinner, we decided to head over to the History Museum, also in Forest Park. The permanent exhibits are free to the public and include 1904 World’s Fair, Charles Lindbergh, and St. Louis from the 1700s to 2000. However, they bring in new exhibits every couple months or so that cost what I think is a little too much money. Right now they are running Vatican Splendors, which includes all sorts of things straight from the Vatican in Italy. But, with it being $19 per person to get, we chose to just stick to the free exhibits, which were pretty cool. I especially liked St. Louis from 1900-2000 – lots of stuff on the suburbs along with Arch and STL sports stuff.

After the History Museum, we made our way over to Lafayette Square to eat at Square One Brewery. I must say, absolutely delish! They not only are a microbrewery, they also are a distillery. They also had great vegetarian options, unlike most chain restaurants. I loved it!

And onto the Main Event! After announcing my blog on Facebook, a friend from high school mentioned that we should go to Mr. Wizard’s Frozen Custard. Since we had never been there before and we were already downtown, we decided this would be the perfect was to top off our anniversary.

The place just sneaks up on you as you drive down Big Bend. The first thing I saw was their frozen custard street sign, and I looked over to see this tiny little place right off the road. It reminded me a lot of Fritz’s in Florissant – just a tiny, classic custard stand. Extremely dated, but that makes it classic.

We took a few minutes to browse the menu, since we had never been here before. The Hubs decided to get a German Chocolate sundae [can you tell he’s more of a sundae guy that a concrete guy] that had vanilla custard topped with caramel, coconut, and pecans. I, of course, decided to get a concrete, and what better one than the Wizard! The Wizard came with vanilla custard blended with strawberries, hot fudge, and brownies.

Now, there are two things I must note about Mr. Wizard’s. They serve both frozen custard and frozen yogurt. There is a HUGE difference between the two. While custard is rich and creamy, frozen yogurt has more of a tart flavor, and I don’t think it’s nearly as creamy as custard [neither is ice cream for that matter]. When you order, you must indicate whether you want the custard or the yogurt – I don’t know what happens if you don’t tell them which one you want, but they make it pretty clear you must tell them with all the signs they have posted on their windows.

The other thing I must note is that this is soft serve. Although Fritz’s and Ted Drewes’ are both “soft serve”, they are scooped from a bucket. Mr. Wizards comes straight from the machine – think, dorm cafeteria style. I don’t particularly like frozen custard served this way. It’s just not as classic for me, since I grew up and worked with the scoop soft serve. But, that’s just my opinion… it doesn’t change anything about the consistency or make it not frozen custard.

At first, we both thought there was something left to be desired, the desserts really grew on us. [Honestly, I don’t think you can go wrong with custard.] The vanilla was not nearly as rich as Andy’s, it was still pretty good. I didn’t get much hot fudge flavor, but the brownies were awesome with the strawberries! The Hubs really enjoyed his too – he claimed that the pecans had just the right amount of salt and the caramel was delicious. I’m not sure we would go back, since we have better custard closer to us and if we are downtown, we would probably get Ted Drewes’, but we definitely enjoyed it!

UP NEXT

We are planning on taking a trip to another frozen custard stand in St. Charles this weekend, probably either Lyon’s or Doozles. Next week, we are doing another St. Louis Day and heading out to South City/County to go to Grant’s Farm and Spanky’s Frozen Custard, another new-to-us frozen custard stand!