frozen drinks at rhone rum bar photo by meera nagarajan

First Look: Rhone Rum Bar near Lafayette Square

Hamilton Hospitality owners Paul and Wendy Hamilton continue to expand their Chouteau Avenue empire with the opening of their newest spot, Rhone Rum Bar. The Caribbean-themed bar opened yesterday, Dec. 7 at 2017 Chouteau Ave.

The Hamiltons, who own neighboring Eleven Eleven MississippiVin de Set, PW PizzaMoulin Event Space21st Street Brewers Bar and Hamilton’s Urban Steak House & Bourbon Bar, first announced the concept in October. Scarcely two months later, the 5,000-square-foot space that once housed The Fitness Vault now boasts an island vibe with lime walls and nautical accents like rope lights and pirate flags.

Rhone Rum Bar seats nearly 100 inside, and general manager Pamela Moore said the Hamiltons are currently at work to enclose a back patio offering another 25 to 35 seats. Renovation also continues in an adjoining room that will house an indoor sand volleyball court.

Customers can select from 15 beachy house cocktails, most with a rum base. Half the drinks are blended to order, and the other half are served on the rocks. Rhone also offers 101 sipping rums sourced from all over the Caribbean islands, Central and South America and even Scotland. 

The Hamiltons collaborated with director of operations John Dalton and Rhone Rum Bar chef Jennifer Moore to create a menu of a dozen or so Caribbean-inspired small plates. Dishes like the conch fritters, grilled shrimp skewers and jerk chicken wings are meant to be shared alongside fruity cocktails, a bottle of Red Stripe or a pour of rum on the rocks.

Rhone Rum Bar is open Wednesday to Saturday from 5 p.m. to 1 a.m. and Sunday from noon to 8 p.m. Here’s a first look at St. Louis’ newest rum bar.

Catherine Klene is managing editor, digital at Sauce Magazine.