Pop into Living Room for a great cup of coffee—roasted in-house—and one of their delicious breakfast options. The cheesy biscuit will never let you down, but if they’re offering their smoked egg sandwich, you will order that. For lunch, you can’t leave Maplewood without a sandwich from Bolyard’s Meat & Provisions. Owner Chris Bolyard spent over a decade at James Beard Award winning Sidney Street Cafe, so he knows a thing or two about great food. For dinner, book your reservation at Reeds American Table right now. This restaurant is perfect, whether you’re looking for a casual burger and beer, or celebratory meal with top quality wine. Head east from there and you’ll find Acero, where classic Northern Italian cuisine is done right, and The Benevolent King, a sexy Middle Eastern restaurant with small plates and great cocktails.
The decisions here are going to start off easy then get significantly harder. Start your day off at Winslow’s Home for a delicious breakfast—mostly because it’s good, but also because there aren’t other worthy options. While you are in St. Louis’ Chinatown, there are other options, including Taco Buddha, Frank & Helen’s Pizzeria, and La Pizza, but we recommend sticking with the Asian restaurants. Tai Ke (Taiwanese) and Cate Zone (Szechuan) are our two favorites right now, but Asian Kitchen Korean is solid, and Lulu’s Seafood is good for dim sum.
Most of The Loop is considered UCity, but we’re just going to make it its own thing. Blueprint Coffee is where you’ll want to get your morning caffeine and pastry fix. The street’s daytime dining options are as eclectic as its shops. If you’re looking for Asian food, you have the best Thai restaurant in St. Louis, Fork & Stix, plus Seoul Taco, Bing Bing, Gokul Indian, Nudo House, Taj Mahal, and more. Mission Taco is a favorite no matter the time of day, as are Salt + Smoke and Pi Pizzeria. As the sun sets, make your way to Publico for a modern Latin American dinner you won’t soon forget.
Go back just over five years ago and this area was a restaurant desert. Now it’s home to some of the city’s best and most exciting restaurants. Crazy! Early risers can grab pastries, coffee, and breakfast at places like SweetArt, World’s Fair Donuts, and Fiddlehead Fern Café, but it’s around lunchtime that things go from good to great. A sandwich at Union Loafers is a MUST. And, at night, it turns into what is possibly the best pizza shop in town. Good Fortune, a modern Midwestern restaurant focused on Asian ingredients, offers a truncated lunch menu and a full-sized dinner menu (with a great cocktails, too). Olio is a casual contemporary Israeli spot with solid small plates, freshly baked breads, and a happening bar scene after the sun goes down. If you’re looking to impress, grab a seat upstairs at Elaia, one of the city’s finest restaurants. Oh, and do not forget to go to La Patisserie Chouquette for beautiful French pastries.
Read more about our favorite restaurants in Shaw & Botanical Heights.
South Grand has long been known for its international restaurants, and for good reason. If you want to dunk your head in a huge bowl of pho at Pho Long, eat modern Filipino at Guerrilla Street Food, or try Meskerem Ethiopian, you can! You can also get huge, NY-style slices of pizza at Pizza Head, take in Turkish delights at Sheesh, have a hearty brunch at Rooster, or try the famous Blackthorn Pub and Pizza Chicago-style deep dish pie.
Some argue that Clayton is St. Louis’ best eating neighborhood. We don’t necessarily agree with that, but there are some amazing choices. In “downtown” Clayton, you can snag a seat at James Beard winner Gerard Craft’s Pastaria, a casual pizza and pasta joint (get the Salume Beddu Nduja pizza if you can handle spicy food), or treat yo’ self to a fancy dinner at Craft’s upscale Sardella. You’ll also find The Crossing, 801 Chophouse, 801 Fish, and a number of other steak chains (skip them). Casual eats aren’t ignored, either, with options like Half & Half, Five Star Burgers, and Vincent Van Doughnut. Head to the eastern part of Clayton and you can dine in the chic and sexy Bar Les Freres and I Fratellini, grab a corned beef sandwich at Protzel’s, or throw down at St. Louis’ hottest new restaurant, Louie.
Read more about our favorite restaurants in Clayton.
The Grove has quickly become one of St. Louis’ hottest areas—start on the western side of Manchester and hit up Urban Chestnut Brewery and Bierhall and its sister restaurant, The U.R.B. (amazing pizza by the slice!), then make your way down to Sameem Afghan Restaurant, Layla, and Grace Meat + Three. Grace is easily one of the best restaurants in town, but if it’s just not what you’re feeling, you could pop into The Gramophone for monster sandwiches, or continue east to Pie Guy Pizza, Rise Coffee, or the Byrd & Barrel Nug Shack at Parlor. Keep the party going at Atomic Cowboy or Handlebar.
The Central West End has long been a happening place for dining and drinking in St. Louis. Breakfast options are minimal (though Brasserie’s weekend brunch is epic), but the rest of the day, you’re golden. Higher-end options include the vegetable-forward Vicia, modern southern cuisine at Juniper, and casual French fare at Brasserie. On the more casual side, you have ‘ZZA Pizza + Salad, Shake Shack, Pickles Deli, and Retreat Gastropub. Late night drinking options are headlined by Taste Bar, but Scarlett’s Wine Bar and Narwhal's Crafted are both solid picks.
Read more about our favorite restaurants in the Central West End.