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Jul 21, 2017
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SERVING SAINT LOUIS SINCE 1999
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Extra Sauce: A tour of Herbie’s new space in Clayton

December 29th 05:12pm, 2016

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It’s been a year of change for fine dining eatery Herbie’s Vintage ‘72. In May, owner Aaron Teitelbaum announced he would move the 8-year-old restaurant from its corner in the Central West End to the home of Cardwell’s in Clayton, which closed Oct. 1.

Herbie’s dropped the Vintage ’72 from its name when it moved into 8100 Maryland Ave., and opened doors to its new space in early November. Chef Chris Vomund recently took Sauce on a tour of the new 183-seat space.

 

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Customers stepping into the bar area will immediately recognize light fixtures, chairs and booths from the CWE space in a new home. Vomund said it was important to bring key elements of the former location’s character into the new restaurant. Large prints of 1920s liquor posters scattered throughout the dining area harken back to Herbie’s previous location.

 

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While many new restaurants trend toward light wood, Edison bulbs and communal tables, Herbie’s new dining room offers white tablecloths and privacy. Clusters of banquettes sectioned off by dark wood partitions and frosted glass create a sense of intimacy in the large space.

 

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A handful of additional rooms offer private dining for small six-person gatherings to larger soirees. Cardwell’s former wine room has been transformed into a 10-seat dining space equipped with a large television for presentations. And when warmer weather arrives, Herbie’s will add nearly 100 seats on its large patio that wraps around the corner from Maryland Avenue to Brentwood Boulevard.

 

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{ Herbie’s chef Chris Vomund }

 

Diners aren’t the only ones adjusting to the new space. Vomund is navigating a significantly smaller kitchen. He compared the move to downsizing from a house to a condo. However, he said this means his crew is more organized and operates more seamlessly than before, only one step away from each other.

While the dinner menu remains familiar, Vomund has added weekday lunch to serve the Clayton business crowd. The menu features soups, salads and sandwiches including a bison burger, a roasted beet Rueben and a BLTM (mozzarella, that is.) Seven heftier entrees are available for hungrier diners, such as bouillabaisse, steak frites and vegetable lasagna. Lunch is available Monday through Friday from 11 a.m. to 2 p.m.

Photos by Michelle Volansky

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