The Chocolate Pig

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Sweet Sweet Swine

February is already here, and that means taking out that special someone for an evening of over indulgence to show your love.  Or getting your bestfriends together to support one another in singles love.  Either way this time of year lends itself to finding a cozy warm place to dive into decadence as we try and endure the ending months of winter.  The Chocolate Pig is the perfect new addition to St. Louis for this very occasion. 

Women love chocolate and men are pigs, wait no I mean men love bacon!  All stereotypes aside there couldn't be a better place to please any couple than The Chocolate Pig.  This new addition to the St. Louis food scene offers creative dishes on both the savory and sweet side, and sometimes combines the two.  We walked in on a Thursday evening with no reservation and were able to be seated right away.  We started with the Chicken Fried Brussels Sprouts and Fried Skins.  I am a huge fan of brussels sprouts and was very excited to try them in a new way.  They did not disappoint, as they came out hot, crispy and delicious.  The fried skins are a combination of fried pork skins and chicken skins.  This combination may seem peculiar, but the pork skins literally melt inside of your mouth, while the chicken skins provide a nice crispy chew in contrast.

The menu features dishes of comfort having options for anybody, including vegetarians! From pork chops to scallops The Chocolate Pig menu has many choices that appeal to everyone.  They even have a Bacon Flight!  Seriously y'all this place is doing things that haven't been done around here before.  I had the scallops for dinner and left nothing behind on my plate as they were seared to perfection and served with a wonderful butternut squash puree. 

After so much food for dinner we decided we definitely had room for dessert.  I may have a sweet tooth, so we ordered three!  First, The Candy Bar came out.  This take on the candy bar is filled with a delicious maple bacon ice cream, but can be substituted with a coconut bacon to make the dish vegan friendly.  The Candy Bar was creative and unlike desserts at any other restaurant.  The dessert menu here isn't filled with the usual afterthoughts you find at your average eatery.  Instead, each one peaks your interest as something new and exciting.  We partook in the Peanut Butter Bomb which includes beautiful table side service.  Arriving as a sphere of chocolate, a warm berry compote is poured over the top to melt away and expose the peanut butter crumble inside.  The flavors lived up to the dramatic presentation and is a must have for anyone visiting The Chocolate Pig. 

Lastly, we shared the Chocolate Pig Shake.  This boozy concoction was the perfect blend of the Chocolate Pig namesake.  Chocolate ice cream, chocolate covered bacon and bacon smoked salt combine to create the perfect sips to end the night.  Overall my experience at The Chocolate Pig was an A++.  I will definitely be back and recommend this as a must visit for everyone here in St. Louis.

-Ethan Sharp

Model Mama: An Intro To My Busy Life

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Hi. My name is Jess and I’m exhausted. Being a single mom is exhausting. Working full time is exhausting. Creating and running a magazine is exhausting. Modeling is exhausting. Why do we do this to ourselves?  Why do we put so much on our plate? Do we want to fail, or is it that we think we are failures if we don’t have our hands in several jars at once?  

I feel nervous creating a blog of my real life. Also why am I adding yet another thing to my already long list of adventures? (Yes I am using the word adventure instead of job to make it more appealing to myself.) My life is messy. And lazy. And hard. And sometimes it’s too much so I hide my head in my blankets instead of responding to important text messages or emails. 

Don’t get me wrong….my life is also amazing. And fulfilling. And busy. And if you are to look at my social media, this is what is portrayed: a happy girl without a care in the world. This blog is to let you know who the real me is- the chaos and the scheduling that has to go into being a working mama while also maintaining my style and life apart from that.

So a little about me.  I am a 38 year old single mom to Izzy, who is 13. She plays basketball, volleyball, runs track, is one of the lead girl roles in the spring musical, sings in the Illinois honor choir, and a straight A student.  Is that enough bragging yet? I’m very proud of her- she’s literally the coolest person I know and is killing it in this game of life. She’s sassy, confident, smart, and a smart ass. She has just gotten into fashion and makeup, so Christmas was a little expensive this year, to say the least. Navigating her schedule is always a challenge and involves a lot of driving, coffee, and regrettably, ordering food. Why? Because I’m exhausted and don’t want to cook or grocery shop some weeks. So ordering takeout it is! And I don’t feel guilty about it.

Okay, single mom.

I also work full time as a server at a local restaurant.  This job allows me to be flexible with my busy schedule while also allowing me to work evenings, as I am a night owl. Don’t even attempt to speak to me before double digits in the day. I used to work a job in which I had to be there at 6 am every morning.

HELL NO NEVER AGAIN THANK YOU NEXT.

 

Single mom. Work full time.

Now comes the parts of added nonsense. Okay not nonsense, but really, why do I do this to myself?  I co-created and co-run this magazine. Most of my extra time goes into styling, contacting models, hair and makeup artists, coming up with concepts, scouting locations, you name it, I do it. It’s exhilarating and exhausting. But most of all, it’s fulfilling. Having a creative outlet is so so important. Why I took something as big as creating a magazine for my creative outlet- well I still haven’t figured out the answer to that yet. 

Single mom. Work full time. Magazine.

I also model on the side, something I have done for years and years and I love it. I love crating art with people and I love to see clothing come to life in photographs. 

Single mom. Work full time. Magazine. Model. Macrame. Yes, I just started doing macrame with the intention of selling it. For me, it is hard to sit down and relax on the couch and I too often found myself on social media, just scrolling mindlessly for hours. Now, I macrame while watching tv so my hands are busy. It also keeps my mind busy, as I tend to be an over thinker and I can drive myself crazy by overanalyzing my day. (Am I a good mom? Am I gaining too much weight? Can I pay all my bills this week? Why didn’t my boyfriend text me back? Etc etc etc)

Social life: do the magazine meetings or photo shoots count?

This is my busy life. I don’t think I am any different from other single working moms- we are all tired and just trying to keep it together, one day at a time.  What are your tips/tricks to navigating your schedule? Am I the only one who sometimes hides under the blankets from life for a few hours? I wanna hear from you! Mama to mama, let’s help each other out.

-Jess Gibson