Contemporary in St. Louis

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    Half & Half
    Half & Half serves both breakfast and lunch, but the breakfast menu here - available throughout the day - is unquestionably the star, as owner Mike Randolph (who opened the midtown pizzeria the Good Pie) gives the Most Important Meal of the Day a contemporary bistro treatment. You can pair your eggs with pork belly; the steak in your steak and eggs is a hanger steak. Coffee service, featuring beans from Kaldi's, is extraordinary, from the "ordinary" drip brew to grounds filtered through cloth so as to capture the maximum amount of their essential oils.
    Harvest
    When Stephen Gontram opened Harvest nearly fifteen years ago, it set a new standard for St. Louis dining with its emphasis on seasonal American cuisine. Gontram sold Harvest a few years ago to his executive chef, Nick Miller, and under Miller and his executive chef, Brendan Noonan, Harvest continues to stand out amidst an increasingly crowded field of restaurants featuring local, seasonal fare. Meat, seafood and game preparations are sure bets, and the bread pudding might be the best dessert in town. The award-winning wine list features good selections for most budgets.
    Hendel's Market Café & Piano Bar
    Hendel’s Old Town Florissant digs have a colorful past: The century-old storefront used to be a grocer. But there’s nothing old-fashioned about the food. Try the German potato soup with its zippy hint of vinegar or the smoked shrimp en croute; there’s also a full menu of steaks, chicken, fish and pasta. Other perks include enthusiastic, rosy-cheeked service; a comfy dining room; and outside seating in a serene garden. Kids menu. $$. Open Tuesday through Saturday from 11 a.m. to 9 p.m. and Sunday from 9 a.m. to 2 p.m. Patio.
    Herbie's
    Monarch owners Aaron Teitelbaum and Jeff Orbin reopened St. Louis’ beloved Cafe Balaban as an homage to its late founder, Herbie Balaban. Soak up some history with your meal in Herbie’s traditional French-style bistro, the opulent inside bar and lounge or bask in the sun on the new outdoor patio. The menu offers contemporary bistro fare with emphasis on fresh caught seafood and seasonal pairings. You never know who you’ll see at Herbies, a nostalgic St. Louis favorite. Indulge in brunch on Sundays and check out excellent bands on the weekends in the lounge.
    Home Wine Kitchen
    Chef Cassy Vires brings rustic, contemporary American cooking to a Maplewood storefront in Home Wine Kitchen, the first restaurant of her own. The menu changes every week. In general, expect half a dozen entrées with seasonally appropriate preparations that accent the natural flavors of the meat, seafood or vegetable being showcased. The burger, available at lunch, is one of the best in town.

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