When great weather and great food collide, you have a perfect recipe for al fresco eating
Bar Les Frères
The duo of restaurateur Zoë Robinson and chef Ny Vongsaly rule this stretch of Wydown Boulevard in Clayton with their trio of terrific restaurants: I Fratellini, Billie-Jean and Bar Les Frères. And while Bar Les Frères’ patio might lack the whimsy of the restaurant’s interior, it loses none of its romance.
Where 7637 Wydown Boulevard, Clayton • More info 314-725-8880; barlesfreres.net
Cinder House, from acclaimed chef Gerard Craft, replaced Cielo at the Four Seasons Hotel St. Louis. The view from the restaurant’s rooftop deck remains the same. Gaze upon downtown, the Gateway Arch and the Mississippi River as you enjoy a casual version of Cinder House’s meaty, Brazilian-inspired fare.
Where 999 North Second Street • More info 314-881-5759; cinderhousestl.com
The Frisco Barroom
The Frisco Barroom, which opened last summer in Webster Groves, is a big, inviting restaurant in any season. For summer (and pleasant weather in general) it grows bigger with an attractive courtyard behind the restaurant and a rooftop deck overlooking the city’s Old Orchard district.
Where 8110 Big Bend Boulevard, Webster Groves • More info 314-455-1090; thefriscostl.com
This summer provides a new reason to visit Herbie’s ample outdoor-dining space. The Clayton restaurant has named the talented Ramon Cuffie as executive chef. Cuffie has showcased his skills in St. Louis restaurants over three decades (Bar Italia, Jaboni’s, Parigi) and promises to put his stamp on Herbie’s classic fare.
Where 8100 Maryland Avenue, Clayton • More info 314-769-9595; herbies.com
Olive + Oak
At Olive + Oak, outdoor-dining season is a boon even to those who want to eat inside. Every diner who chooses a table on the restaurant’s modest sidewalk patio is a diner who isn’t sitting inside the perpetually (and deservedly) packed dining room. Wherever you sit, you’re enjoying chef Jesse Mendica’s lauded contemporary-American fare.
Where 102 West Lockwood Avenue, Webster Groves • More info 314-736-1370; oliveandoakstl.com
Rockwell Beer Co.
The contemporary design of Rockwell Beer Co.’s new tasting room certainly doesn’t evoke a classic beer garden. You won’t mind when you’re sitting outside it this summer, sipping one of its excellent brews paired with a cheeseburger and fries from its Gerard Craft-directed food component, Brasswell.
Where 1320 South Vandeventer Avenue • More info 314-256-1657; rockwellbeer.com
Salt + Smoke
The Delmar Loop is one of the prime spots for people-watching in St. Louis, and if both the calendar and the fates agree, you might catch a glimpse of the fabled Loop Trolley, too. Take it all in from Salt + Smoke’s original location while enjoying exceptional beef brisket and other barbecue.
Where 6525 Delmar Boulevard, University City • More info 314-727-0200; saltandsmokestl.com
Taco Buddha offers outdoor dining in a leafy, mostly residential stretch of University City. The restaurant, which reopened in April after a fire in January, serves tacos with Mexican, Tex-Mex and globally inspired flavors and a special fondness for Hatch green chiles.
Where 7405 Pershing Avenue, University City • More info 314-502-9951; tacobuddha.com
Edibles & Essentials
Though Edibles & Essentials faces busy Hampton Avenue, its back patio offers a more tranquil experience. Enjoy Matt Borchardt’s casual lunch and dinner fare — the menu changes monthly, though the french fries and fried ribs are must-order staples — as well as Saturday brunch and the special Tapas Tuesday selection.
Where 5815 Hampton Avenue • More info 314-328-2300; ediblesandessentials.com
Cassy Vires, who made her mark with Home Wine Kitchen in the first half of this decade, now leads the kitchen at University City’s one-of-a-kind restaurant and store Winslow’s Home. Enjoy Vires’ take on Winslow’s signature fare and her own creations on the restaurant’s covered front patio.
Where 7213 Delmar Boulevard, University City • More info 314-725-7559; winslowshome.com