Checking in with Amanda! This time...Twisted Ranch, St. LouisMay 20, 2021 03:07PM ● By Amanda Wharton
ATTENTION RANCH LOVERS!
Ever since I tried ranch dressing when I was 10 years old, I
have been a ranch fanatic. Yes, I am one of those cliché Midwestern people that
eats ranch on basically everything… tacos, pasta, chicken strips, pizza, and
crackers. Some may call it an unhealthy obsession, but I like to think of it
more as a passion! I grew up in a Hidden Valley Ranch (HVR) household, so I am
a bit partial to HVR, but I have found very few ranches that I don’t enjoy. Anyone
that knows me, knows that ranch dressing is one of my favorite foods. I even plan to have a ranch fountain at my
I was scrolling through Facebook a few years ago, and came across a video featuring a one-of-a-kind, ranch-based restaurant called Twisted Ranch. Every item on their menu had one of their ranch flavors incorporated into its recipe. My initial thought was WOW, I have to try this place no matter where it is in the United States. As the video concluded, it was revealed that this restaurant was located in St. Louis (STL), MO. Only a two-hour drive from my house in Columbia! I immediately texted my fiancé Jake with excitement and we planned a weekend trip to STL.
When we arrived at Twisted Ranch, we were greeted by friendly staff and a large group of people waiting outside. We placed our name on the lunch waitlist and were told it would be about an hour and a half wait. Of course, this is longer than I would be willing to wait to eat at most places, but this wasn’t just any restaurant! On our drive in, we noticed a farmer’s market next door, so we decided to explore that in the meantime as the wait staff had our phone number and would text us when our table was ready.
The Soulard Farmer’s Market is one of the oldest markets still operating in the United States. We walked through, checking out the stands of many local vendors and their home-grown and home-made goods. After about 30 minutes, we decided to purchase adult beverages from one of the vendors to pass the time as we walked around the market, expecting we still had quite a while to wait. About two minutes later, we received a text from the restaurant that our table was ready and we had 5 minutes to check-in before our table would be given away. We chugged our drinks and fast-walked back to the establishment excitedly, thankful for the shorter than expected wait time.
We returned just before time was up and were seated at a small table for two. We started with drinks, ordering a “skittles flight” to share. This included 5 delicious cocktails, each with a different flavor of vodka. If you enjoy sweet drinks, then you will love this flight. They also offer several other specialty cocktails, many themed around the local sports teams of STL. Jake and I love to attend Cardinals baseball games and Blues hockey games when visiting STL.
Undoubtedly, my main goal for the day was to try as many ranch flavors as possible. We ordered a fries appetizer that was accompanied with a flight of 13 ranch flavors of our choosing from the list of 33. Yes, 33 ranch flavors, each made fresh daily. It was one of the hardest decisions I have ever had to make, but after finally narrowing it down to 13, we filled out the provided sheet with our selections, turned it in to our waiter, and sat eagerly. The appetizer came in a unique rotating platter with each selected ranch numbered and identified on a list. I was in my own personal heaven! We tried each one individually, rating it as if we were professional food critics. Once we had both declared dibs on our favorites, we finished the rest of the fries. My favorites were the parmesan peppercorn and avocado ranch. Jake is not a ranch lover in general, but he was a good sport and tried each one. He did find a couple that he liked though, with their cheesy bacon ranch being his favorite. In addition, we both loved the BBQ ranch so agreed to split it equally fry for fry! Relationships are about compromise, right? Some of the flavors, although innovative, were not as tasty as I would have hoped. Not to name names, but the “it takes two to mango”, a mango flavored ranch did not make our preferred list.
For our entrees, I ordered a pulled pork sandwich that was smothered in BBQ ranch, and Jake ordered the “twisted burger”, also topped with BBQ ranch. We were both extremely satisfied with our meals and left the restaurant stuffed and satisfied, with a resolution to return someday. Our trip could not be complete until I took a picture posing in front of the huge spray-paint sign on the side of the establishment!
I find myself in St. Louis about once a year, at least, and with each trip, I make sure to fit a visit to Twisted Ranch into my itinerary. My most recent visit was with my friends, Taylor and Sarah. We were in STL for a Christian French concert, and certainly, I advocated for Twisted Ranch for lunch before the event. The concert was on a Thursday night, so we left Columbia at 10 AM after our last class of the day. This time when we arrived, there was no wait! This was both of my friends’ first time to this ranch dressing haven, so as a veteran, I walked them through the fries appetizer with the 13-ranch flight. They both loved it! Both of them favored the parmesan peppercorn like me. I was just as satisfied with my meal this time as I was the last time at the establishment. Again, leaving full and happy, Twisted Ranch did not disappoint and their spray-paint sign made a perfect backdrop for an Instagram worthy picture!
My most recent visit was just a few weeks ago. Unfortunately, this was my first visit during the COVID-19 pandemic and they were implementing 50% capacity rules. I was in STL with my fiancé for a wedding, so once again, I was determined to fit Twisted Ranch into our schedule. We arrived on a Saturday evening around 6:00 PM and were quoted a 2.5 hour wait time. Our stomachs were already growling at that point, so we decided to venture elsewhere for dinner.
Although my most recent visit did not go as planned, I am determined to make it back to Twisted Ranch in the near future. Weekdays seem to be the best time to visit to avoid an extensive wait time. If you find a ranch flavor you can’t live without, you can also buy a bottle or any of their cute t-shirts to remember your visit. Whether you’re a ranch connoisseur or you only consume ranch here and there, you are sure to enjoy your experience at Twisted Ranch.
1731 S. 7th Street
St. Louis, MO 63104