Best Of 2004

Best Neighborhood Bar (East Side): Javon's Restaurant

When Ron Malloyd opened Javon's Restaurant two years ago, it took a certain amount of intestinal fortitude: Malloyd's chosen location, downtown East St. Louis, has been a commercial sinkhole for decades. And yet Malloyd, a lifetime resident, does a robust lunch takeout business and sells more than his share of Cognac to a loyal clientele who appreciate his effort to bring a touch of class to East Saint's ramshackle city center, which would make a fine ready-made movie set for the next Mad Max sequel. If Malloyd's can-do spirit could be cloned across the river, St. Louis' renaissance would be off and running.

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