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Friday, October 2, 2020

St. Louis Restaurant Openings and Closings: September 2020

Posted By on Fri, Oct 2, 2020 at 10:18 AM

Lazy Tiger, from the team behind Reteat Gastropub and Yellowbelly, opened this month, giving us somewhere to drown our sorrows. - COMPLIMENTS OF LAZY TIGER
  • COMPLIMENTS OF LAZY TIGER
  • Lazy Tiger, from the team behind Reteat Gastropub and Yellowbelly, opened this month, giving us somewhere to drown our sorrows.

The note on the website for Cousin Hugo's Bar & Grill says it all: "Victim of the COVID-19 economy. Thanks for 80 years of memories."

The name Cousin Hugo's might not ring a bell, but you've driven past it a million times. A small, house-like structure that sits off Laclede Station Road in the foreground of "Rocket Ship Park" (Yes, it's technically called Deer Creek Park, but who actually calls it that?), the pub had been in operation for eight decades, and likely could have gone longer, were it not for the abject terribleness rained down on the industry by the COVID-19 outbreak.



Tom's Bar & Grill is another Cousin Hugo's — more institution than watering hole, this Central West End bar was one of those constants you'd pass as you'd roll down Euclid. Now, it, too, is gone, a sad reminder that while younger, nimbler restaurants can use words like "pivot" or "transition to a new model," longtime spots, especially bars that exist as in-person gathering places, do not have that luxury and are on the edge of collapse. In a city with an embarrassment of riches in that department, it's a worrisome sign of what's to come.

However, the news was not all bad this month. Lazy Tiger, the hotly-anticipated third concept from the Retreat Gastropub and Yellowbelly folks, opened down the road from Tom's as a bastion of cocktail culture. O+O Pizza fired up its ovens in Webster Grove, giving us another wonderful pizza option, and the Lucky Accomplice, the second restaurant from chef Logan Ely of Shift, welcomed its first guests this month in Fox Park.

When asked about what it's like to open during a pandemic, Ely said that it's something he tries not to think about. "I can't worry about things I can't change or control. All I can do is put my head down and work."

Words to live by in these challenging times.

Closings
Cousin Hugo's Bar & Grill, 3233 North Laclede Station Road, Maplewood
Feasting Fox, 4200 South Grand Boulevard, Dutchctown
Hamburger Mary's, 400 Washington Avenue, Downtown
Lucas Park Grill, 1234 Washington Avenue, Downtown
Mayana Mexican Kitchen, 7810 Forsyth Boulevard, Clayton
Russell's Cafe & Bakery, 14888 Clayton Road, Chesterfield
Tom's Bar & Gill, 20 South Euclid Avenue, Central West End
Wasabi Sushi Bar, 9983 Manchester Road, Warson Woods

Openings
BB.Q Chicken, 1334 Central Park Drive, O'Fallon, Illinois
Botanas La Michoacana, 3410 California Avenue, Cherokee Street
KC Bones (ghost kitchen), 634 Washington Avenue, Downtown
Lazy Tiger, 210 North Euclid Avenue, Central West End
Love at First Bite, 10479 St. Charles Rock Road, St. Ann
O+O Pizza, 102 West Lockwood Avenue, Webster Groves
The Lucky Accomplice, 2501 South Jefferson Avenue, Fox Park
Wing Ding Dong (ghost kitchen), 920 Olive Street, Downtown

Did we miss anything? Leave a note in the comments.

We are always hungry for tips and feedback. Email the author at cheryl.baehr@riverfronttimes.com.

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