December 2, 2022

Sauce Magazine – First Look: Sureste at City Foundry in St. Louis


First Look: Sureste at City Foundry in St. Louis

Regional Mexican cuisine has seen a renaissance of late in St. Louis, and chef Alex Henry’s new City Foundry STL (3730 Foundry Way) restaurant, Sureste, is an exciting addition. Henry was previously a chef in Cleveland-Heath and Nixta and cooked at restaurants like Vicia and Brasserie, but this is his first solo spot.

Sureste is Chef Alex Henry’s first restaurant as owner. // photo by Adam Rothbarth

“The concept is Southeastern Mexican cuisine, like Yucatan, but using ingredients available in St. Louis, with a few exceptions,” said Henry, adding that the menu would be based on the seasons and would rotate frequently. Indeed, at Sureste, local ingredients are essential: the whole pigs come from Rensing Hog Farms, while the tomatoes come from Tony’s Family Farms. Fresh corn is ground in-house for the tortillas.

A centerpiece of the menu is Henry’s cochinita pibil, a dish of pulled pork traditionally cooked in the ground and served with tortillas. “But they didn’t want to let me dig a hole in City Foundry,” Henry said with a laugh. Sureste will also feature chilmole, a dark mole dish that uses burnt peppers and spices; the chilmole will come with turkey, pork meatballs and a hard-boiled egg. The toksel includes grilled lima beans cooked in a cast iron skillet, although the dish typically has chefs cooking using hot stones. “The health department wouldn’t let me cook with stones,” Henry said with another laugh.

Colado pork tamale includes a sweet masa, pork, tomatoes and tomato sauce cooked in a banana leaf and served with fresh homemade tortillas. // photo by Adam Rothbarth

The dips include guacamole, frijol colado and sikil pak; Sureste will also offer tamales and ceviche options. A few traditional drinks will be available, including an agua fresca made from coconut and rice called horchata de coco.

The restaurant will be open for breakfast from 9 a.m. to 11 a.m. and for lunch and dinner from 11 a.m. to 7 p.m. every day except Tuesday.