What of those simple, quietly confident restaurants that serve good, honest food without reality-TV show ambitions? Take J Greene's Pub in Warson Woods, for example. On any given day at this neighborhood bar and grill, one can find grandmothers playing bridge over lunch, toddlers scuttling around the dining room floor or young professionals enjoying craft beers at happy hour. Continue reading Cheryl Baehr's review of J Greene's Pub.
Hours: Sun 8am-11pm, Mon-Tue 11am-11pm, Wed-Thu 11am-12am, Fri-Sat 11am-1am
Price: $; $$
In an era of gastropubs and mixologists, J. Greene’s Pub sets itself apart from the pack by being a decidedly untrendy, honest-to-goodness neighborhood bar and grill. Husband and wife owners Jason and Juliet Greene bring their combined total of 22 years experience from McGurk’s, a St. Louis pub institution, to Warson Woods and turn the corner of a nondescript strip mall into a worthy eatery. Just because J. Greene’s isn’t complicated does not mean it is lacking in quality, well-executed food. The menu features from-scratch comfort classics, house-cured and smoked meats, and old family recipes. Especially noteworthy is the housemade toasted ravioli, elevated by the extra love that comes from fresh pasta dough, a blend of seasoned beef and sausage, and real marinara sauce. The biggest menu surprise comes in the form of pork osso bucco, a staple of northern Italian fine-dining restaurants that intriguingly shows up on J. Greene’s American-style menu. The slow-braised meat falls off the bone into a lovely pool of tomato infused cooking liquid, forming a rich gravy for the rustic mashed potatoes. It’s difficult to leave room for dessert after stuffing oneself with tater tots and jalapeño poppers (they’re homemade too), but diners must leave room for the warm and sticky bread pudding, a decadent cinnamon and caramel pillow snowcapped with vanilla bean ice cream. This is comfort food at its best.