Ian Froeb's STL 100

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Brasserie by Niche

In St. Louis, you shouldn't take an excellent French restaurant for granted. I learned this the hard way with Franco, which I am still mourning four years after the end of its decadelong run. I learned it anew in 2019, when 808 Maison from former Franco chef Jon Dreja seemed destined for my list of the year's best debuts — until it closed after only nine months. So I relished this year's visit to Brasserie by Niche, which celebrated its 10th anniversary in 2019 but hasn't succumbed to inertia. Classics can be revelations — recently, a perfect roasted chicken in an umami-bomb jus with shiitake mushrooms — and a seasonal special like roasted-carrot soup with pistachio granola, pear and candied ginger seems timeless.

Hours: Dinner daily, brunch Saturday-Sunday

Last year's ranking: Rest of the Best

Opened: 2009

Many St. Louis-area restaurants are closed or limiting their dining options during the coronavirus pandemic.