One of the better spots in town for beer-snobs and foodies alike, Square One Brewery & Distillery is a must-visit in St. Louis. Located in the heart of the vibrant Lafayette Square, only a short drive from downtown, this fully-functional brewery also seconds as a happening restaurant offering modern American cuisine along with classic standbys. The menu can be described as 'comfort food at its best' with a line-up of signature specialties like Pulled BBQ Pork, Smoked Salmon BLT, Fish & Chips, Crab Cakes, Bacon & Avocado Omelet, Cobb Salad and Buffalo Hot Wings. Post dining, patrons can sample some of the best micro-brews, crafted cocktails, wines and other spirits. The 13 beers on tap feature not only local brews but also a variety of imported ales. The atmosphere is laid-back and the service is top-notch. So, whether you are looking for a night-out destination or just want to venture outside downtown, come down to Square One Brewery.
CBGB is a weird place. During the day, its appearance from the street makes this underground club look like an abandoned building, especially since the name of the business is drawn on the front door with spray paint. It's one of those places that draws a familiar crowd; everyone knows everyone and newcomers are easily identified and introduced to the rest of the group. The atmosphere can be considered alternative, frequented by hipsters with funky outfits, hairdos and musical interests. The best times to stop by are Wednesday, Friday, and Saturday nights. Though the ambiance has a distinctly edgy tone, the live music acts that come through are quite diverse and anyone can have a great time at the venue.
Voted best nightclub, bar, hangout, restaurant...you name it: Blueberry Hill is the place to go for great food and live bands. Whether it is a local band or a national touring act, this establishment has the best in blues, reggae and rock 'n' roll. The menu contains an array of heart clogging selections like chili fries and hamburgers, but you will also find numerous veggie offerings as well as specials like Trout Almondine and jerk chicken. Sandwiches and breakfast grub are also available.
Aiming to be the premier nightclub in the Midwest, Europe Night Club is all about the music. This club boasts of a state-of-the-art sound system, light system and outstanding customer service. Focusing on live EDM music, Europe has hosted acts such as Skrillex, The Crystal Method, Starkillers and Chuckie, among others. There is a strict dress code, so make sure you dress to impress.
"Fun and casual" is the name of the game at this American restaurant. Owners Thom and Jane Sehnert are friendly and well-known in the St. Louis community and culinary scene. Annie's serves great food, as evidenced by the always full dining room and perpetual line out the door. This restaurant is known for its steaks, but it also serves smoked meats, pork, fish, ribs, burgers and more. Outdoor dining is available.
At the turn of the century, Charles P. Stanley established his eponymous cigar company in St. Louis. Stanley's early experience in the industry and unrivaled tobacco instinct won him high-profile clientele including presidents and foreign ambassadors. Inherited over four generations, the family name lives on today at the charming lounge on Washington Avenue. Plush leather sofas, rustic tables and antique chandeliers are shadowed by an artistic facade to create an old-world ambiance. The cigar cellar boasts leading brands like Ashton, Romeo and Julietta, Te-Amo and Davidoff, and complements some of the finest spirits on offer.
St. Louis has a reputation for fine Italian restaurants, and Marcella's epitomizes that tradition. Located in the south city neighborhood of "The Hill", this unpretentious trattoria serves wonderful food while maintaining a warm neighborhood atmosphere. Appetizers include a marvelous pizza with truffle oil and a four-cheese pizza. The innovative house salad is a delightful mix of greens topped with tomato, red onion, mozzarella and pine nuts with balsamic tomato vinaigrette. This is a great place to hang out with some friends and is also light on the pocket.
For kids and adults alike, this unique soda fountain shop has something for everyone. Located in a former 1916 car showroom on Locust Streets' famous Automotive Row, Fountain on Locust serves up a bevy of nostalgic treats in the form of retro cocktails, ice cream sundaes, American cuisine, milkshakes, floats, and of course, house-made sodas. The unassuming exterior leads to a fantastical interior featuring gleaming white and blue mosaic subway tiled floors, bar seating with swivel seats, and an attention grabbing art deco mural gracing the walls. For the adults, their signature ice cream martinis are a must-try, while the piled high toppings of their old fashioned ice cream specialties are a real treat for the kids.
The secret is out! 33 Wine Shop and Tasting Bar is no longer exclusive to rumor-mill regulars. Almost invisible from the street, this wine bar offers a romantic, classy, yet casual atmosphere, featuring minimalist decor, modish wall art, and plenty of social interaction. Locals rave about the friendly, knowledgeable staff and Jake, the owner, can't wait to share his expertise with interested passersby. He'll even sit and indulge in the wine tasting experience with customers (how's that for a career?). The outdoor patio is a magnificent place to sit and enjoy warmer weather; but even in the winter, this is a perfect place for a first date. And for what seems like such a small space, the inventory is astounding!
Amsterdam Tavern has not been around long in the Tower Grove South neighborhood, but in a short time, it has garnered quite a reputation. Appealing to a hip but tradition loving and beer drinking crowd of sports enthusiasts, Amsterdam Tavern offers great brewskies for a great price. Sure, there's bar food, but the emphasis is on the crowd, the beer, and the sports. Voted "Best Soccer Bar" by the Riverfront Times, St. Louis natives come from far and wide to watch the game and have a good time. Amsterdam Tavern is a non-smoking establishment, but smoking is allowed on the patio.
The Royale is one of the best places in South City to get a bite, have a drink and mingle with a cool and diverse young crowd. The kitchen serves up tasty variations on classic pub food and the bar features a long list of custom cocktails. A large crowd of regulars and a steady stream of lively groups give this place a comfortable and exciting atmosphere unmatched in St. Louis.