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Aug 30, 2014
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SERVING SAINT LOUIS SINCE 1999
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Posts Tagged ‘Pastaria by Niche’

The Scoop: Get a taste of R&D at Niche via test-kitchen menu Mondays

Thursday, June 20th, 2013

 

Niche has gained a reputation as a restaurant that pushes food boundaries. Evidence comes as recently as the June issue of Sauce featuring chef Adam Altnether’s barrel-aged milk transformed into ricotta for use in a light, springtime dish (pictured). Wish you could see the research and development for dishes like this up close and personal? Now you can.

Beginning July 1, Altnether will offer a five-course, Italian-focused test kitchen menu at Niche each Monday. The dinner series, called Pastaria R&D, includes a selection of imaginative antipasti dishes, three pasta courses and dessert, for $45.

“Our philosophy at Niche is to take a simple ingredient, such as pasta, and think outside the box to make it creative,” said Althether. “With Pastaria R&D, we want to bring people in with something that’s approachable, and then push them to the edge with really interesting dishes.”

White bean purée with pepperoni fat and grilled Italian bread, smoked carrot agnolotti with edible flowers, a spin on a sardella (a fermented anchovy-tomato sauce) and a twist on a ragù bianco made with chicken liver are examples of dishes that diners might encounter. All pasta dishes will be intricately stuffed or hand-rolled variations.

Pastaria R&D will be the only prix fixe menu offered at Niche on Monday evenings. Reservations, though not required, are accepted.

-Photo by Greg Rannells

 

The Scoop: Niche reopens in Clayton on Nov. 1

Thursday, September 20th, 2012

Yesterday Gerard Craft announced via Twitter that he will be closing Niche’s Benton Park location on Oct. 18 and reopening the restaurant at its new home in Centene Plaza, located on the southwest corner of Forsyth Boulevard and Hanley Road in Clayton, on Nov. 1. The orange banquette that lines the east wall at the old Niche will be brought over to the new spot, next-door to Pastaria. Much of the rest of the new décor has been locally sourced: The flooring is made from reclaimed Missouri wood, and the bar is enveloped with Missouri limestone (pictured below).



The kitchen at the new Niche is a European style set-up where the chefs work closely in stations and can easily communicate without shouting. In front of the kitchen, there is a counter with four seats where patrons can enjoy an extended tasting menu. On the west wall of the new space (pictured below) are the beginnings of a mural, which will eventually be a scene of Bethlehem Valley, a farm in Missouri. The mural is being painted by Peat Wollaeger, a local graffiti artist.



Can’t wait until Nov. 1? Visit Niche now; Craft has alluded to “fun dinners” coming up at the 1831 Sidney St. location.

Sneak Peek: Pastaria

Friday, September 7th, 2012

With opening day for Gerard Craft’s newest restaurant Pastaria expected either next week or the following, there is a flurry of activity at 7734 Forsyth Blvd., in Clayton. Craft’s concept for an Italian, mid-level dining (more than casual, but not fine dining) establishment is one of this year’s most anticipated restaurant openings. Interested in catching a glimpse of the soon-to-open Pastaria? Head over to our Facebook page to take a look.

Gerard Craft talks to Eater about his restaurants and “Midwest’s thriving restaurant scene”

Tuesday, June 26th, 2012

Today national culinary website Eater published an interview with our very own Gerard Craft. Craft is, of course, chef-owner of the Niche family of restaurants – including Niche, Brasserie, Taste and Pastaria, set to open later this summer.

In the interview, Craft discussed how he chose to move to St. Louis as a young “completely tattooed chef,” why he’s moving his flagship Niche from its original Benton Park home to Clayton, what his future goals are for both Niche and Pastaria, the evolution of the St. Louis dining scene, and a bit more. Craft even gave a nod to several of his fellow chef pals, including Sidney Street’s Kevin Nashan (whom he credits as one of the reasons he chose to open Niche in St. Louis in the first place); Mike Randolph, whose lineage at Moto led him to open up The Good Pie and, later, Half & Half and Medianoche; barbecue bigwig Mike Emerson of Pappy’s; and Josh Galliano, who is in the process of opening his own restaurant.

To check out the full interview, click here.

The Scoop: James Beard Foundation Award escapes Gerard Craft yet again

Monday, May 7th, 2012

As the James Beard Foundation Awards were announced from New York’s Lincoln Center this evening, our local food community kept its fingers crossed in hopes that Gerard Craft, chef-owner of the Niche family of restaurants, would finally walk away with one of the culinary community’s highest honors. Unfortunately, Craft, a three-time finalist and four-time semifinalist in the foundation’s Best Chef: Midwest category, did not take home the medal. The title went to Tory Miller of L’Etoile in Madison, Wis.

Other chefs vying for the Best Chef: Midwest title were: Colby Garrelts of Bluestem in Kansas City, Mo., Justin Aprahamian of Sanford in Milwaukee, Wis., and Lenny Russo of Heartland Restaurant & Farm Direct Market in St. Paul., Minn.

— Photo by Greg Rannells

The Scoop: Niche, Pastaria by Niche to move into Clayton’s Centene Plaza this year

Friday, January 6th, 2012

010612_gerardAt the end of June of last year, chef-restaurateur Gerard Craft announced that he would be opening a new pasta-centric restaurant, Pastaria, though he held back on disclosing the location.

Now that Craft has inked the lease, he has announced that Centene Plaza, located on the southwest corner of Forsyth Boulevard and Hanley Road in Clayton, will be the home of Pastaria by Niche, his fourth restaurant. But that’s not all the news. His flagship restaurant, Niche, which currently sits at 1831 Sidney St., in Benton Park, will also be moving into Centene.

Craft explained the move this morning. “The move to Clayton is an amazing opportunity for Niche and Craft Restaurants. Centene Plaza allows us to be centrally located and more accessible to our customers in both location and purpose. We have the ability to design and build a space that is completely customized and reflective of my personality, the menus we offer and the guests we serve.”

Niche is scheduled to make the move this spring. Look for Pastaria by Niche to open its doors a few months down the road, currently slated for late summer.

— Photo by Greg Rannells

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