Ian Froeb's STL 100

Photo by Michael Thomas

Byrd & Barrel

Popeye's new fried-chicken sandwich was the dish of 2019 nationally. (For the record, while I enjoy Popeye's fried chicken, I haven't managed to snag one of the sandwiches.) If nothing else, the craze served as a reminder that several St. Louis restaurants serve excellent fried-chicken sandwiches. Byrd & Barrel alone serves at least two of them: the signature Mother Clucker with caramelized onion, Provel “cheese wiz,” Red Hot Riplets and hot-pepper jelly; and the newer Down South, with pimento cheese, country ham, Tabasco aioli, slaw and pickles. These sandwiches are only one reason to return to Byrd & Barrel, where the Nugs rival the Mother Clucker as a must-order, and the skinny, crispy J.I.T.B. Tacos compete for your attention.

Hours: Lunch and dinner daily

Last year's ranking: Last included in 2018

Opened: 2015

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