John Perkins opened his restaurant Juniper (360 North Boyle Avenue; 314-520-6750) after a series of pop-ups on October 16. Beginning Friday, December 13, Juniper will add extra hours and a new late-night menu.
"It's something we always wanted to do, and we do have a little bit of a bar crowd on the weekends just sticking around a little bit later," Perkins tells Gut Check. "So it made sense to add more hours. I don't think we'll ever be a place -- and I don't necessarily want to be a place -- people go and drink, but have a late-night bite and have a drink while they're eating."
For starters, Juniper will now open at 4:30 p.m. Perkins wanted to be able to catch the crowd that's getting off work at 5 -- have a drink, maybe stay for dinner. From 4:30 to 5:30 it will be bar-only, with $5 highballs.
It will also be open Friday and Saturday nights after dinner from 10 p.m. to midnight with five or six menu items. Some carry over from the regular, Southern-focused fare, but there are a few new things, too.
"We'll have jalapeno pimento cheese poppers, which I think are gonna be really tasty," Perkins says. "We make our own pimento cheese, and we've been playing around with that idea for a while. That'll be fun."
Other new items include a smothered chicken sandwich with black-eyed peas, a cured pork-belly sandwich with pimento cheese on housemade sourdough bread, Delta-style hot tamales and waffle bread pudding for dessert.
"We'll have some menu items that are a little more playful and fun, and, of course, really good," Perkins says, "and another avenue for reaching people and having people come in and see our place."
The new hours, happy hour and late night, begin Friday, December 13, at 4:30 p.m. Perkins says to follow Juniper's Facebook page for the latest.