Looking for that hard-to-find local jam or jelly? Are you in desperate need of unique salsas, seasonings and sauces? Missouri Mercantile is the place to go to solve all of your troubles. This specialty shop, located in the St. Louis Mills Mall here in Hazelwood carries numerous varieties of wines, sausages, hand-made cheeses, pickles, honeys and more. What do all of these items have in common? They are all made by Missouri artisans and growers.
Missouri Mercantile originated in 2002 in Old Town Florissant, when owner Bill Olwig decided to open a shop that sold nothing but Missouri products. About a year later, the shop moved to its new location inside of the mall.
Susan Schilligo, an employee and friend of Olwig's, couldn't be happier with the move.
"We get a lot more business here in the mall," she said. "There's a lot more foot traffic here."
During my time in the store, there was a steady stream of customers coming and going, with a few simply browsing. Most however, walked out with shopping bag full of local goodies.
In between customers, Schilligo was more than happy to give a tour of the store, where she pointed out some of the more popular items. Missouri Mercantile boasts a massive display of local wines, with more than 18 wineries represented in the fray. Offerings from Stone Hill, Crown Valley, and St. James Wineries were just a few of the brands on display. In addition, there is also a large display of barbecue sauces from all over Missouri; Wicker's BBQ, Cowboy Chris, and Ray's Gourmet Foods were just a few.
With the wide variety of items the shop has to offer, it's no wonder the popular shop has won awards for being the best gift shop. To keep up with the demand, Olwig started an online store, where customers can purchase just about everything offered in the store without having to leave the comfort of their home.
So the next time you're hankering for something creative, local and reasonably priced, make Missouri Mercantile your next stop. This shop will likely have just what you're looking for.