Ian Froeb's STL 100

Photo by Christian Gooden (Post-Dispatch)

The Bellwether

The Bellwether posed an interesting question: When you have already established an acclaimed restaurant, how can you distinguish a new project not even a half-mile away? For the team behind now three-time STL 100 honoree Polite Society (owners Brian Schmitz and Jonathan Schoen, chef Thomas Futrell and beverage director Travis Hebrank), the answer was to look up — literally and metaphorically. The Bellwether occupies the second and third floors of the City Hospital power plant building (formerly Element restaurant), and both its space and Futrell's cooking there are even more sophisticated than what Polite Society offers. Expect intriguing seafood (scallop carpaccio), elegant pasta (English pea ravioli) and big cuts of meat (pork steak with German potato salad and compressed cabbage). As at Polite Society, the menu also delivers fun snacks: fried oysters, lamb meatballs and togarashi-dusted fries.

Hours: Dinner daily, brunch Sunday

Last year's ranking: New this year

Opened: 2019

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