This post has been updated throughout with additional information.
Death in the Afternoon, the restaurant at Citygarden sculpture park downtown, has closed. The final service was Nov. 23.
Adam Frager and TJ Vytlacil, the co-founders of the members-only restaurant and bar Blood & Sand, opened Death in the Afternoon in June 2014. It was the third restaurant in the Citygarden space, following the Terrace View and Joe's Chili Bowl. Among its accolades, Death in the Afternoon was twice a member of the STL 100.
Frager tells Off the Menu that he and Vytlacil decided to close Death in the Afternoon for the same reason that the duo sold Blood & Sand earlier this year: They want to focus full-time on their latest venture, Brigade Society, a point-of-sale software system for restaurants.
“We realized our lease was coming up, and it forced TJ and I to think about this pragmatically,” Frager says.
Though Death in the Afternoon was, in Frager's estimation, “the best it's ever been” and doing well financially, he and Vytlacil did not want to sign another two-year lease when Brigade Society would be their main concern.
“We didn't want to be an absentee owner,” Frager says. “We didn't want to put our staff or us or Citygarden in that kind of position.”
As for Bridgade Society, Frager says the software now counts 30 full-time customers across 13 states.
“We had a great run,” Frager says. “We felt the timing (to close) was perfect.”