Thursday, July 17, 2014

The Precinct Prepares for Police Headquarters to Open Next Door

Posted By on Thu, Jul 17, 2014 at 8:00 AM

The bar at the Precinct. | Nancy Stiles
  • The bar at the Precinct. | Nancy Stiles

Jim Edmonds and Mark Winfield rebranded their downtown steak house as a police-themed restaurant called the Precinct (1900 Locust Avenue; 314-588-8899) last year to coincide with their new neighbors, the St. Louis Metropolitan Police Department's new headquarters, moving in. Not everything went as planned, as is wont to happen with government bureaucracy, but after many delays, the police HQ is finally opening this Saturday, July 19. Needless to say, Winfield is excited.

See also: The Precinct Launches Revamped Menu

"It's long overdue, but I'm kind of glad that they've been a little behind," Winfield tells us. "It gave us time to work out kinks and get a better menu."

The Precinct first opened in October and was hit with bad reviews from several publications (including ours) a few months later.

In response, Winfield got a new chef, Ben Welch, and a new menu focusing on barbecue and smoked meats. It was a good move, as we discovered on a return visit.

"Everybody loves the new menu, so it's going better. I'm glad we made the chef change and updated the menu, because the first time out of the gate, we missed it," Winfield says. "I will put my brisket and my ribs up against anybody's in St. Louis, and people will choose our stuff."

Chief of Police Sam Dotson allegedly appealed to Winfield to add a breakfast menu, but don't look for that just yet. That would involve adding more shifts and workers so that the Precinct would almost be a 24-hour operation. Winfield says if St. Louis' finest do show up to lunch and dinner, he'll consider adding breakfast.

"We're excited and ready for them to move in, but this is not just a restaurant for police officers," he says. "We welcome everybody -- all our neighbors."

Gut Check is always hungry for tips and feedback. E-mail the author at

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