tony's photo by meera nagarajan

First Look: Tony's and Anthony's Bar in Clayton

Tony’s and Anthony’s Bar have a new home at 105 Carondelet Plaza in Clayton. The restaurants, which were staples in downtown St. Louis for decades, are slated to open Monday, March 22. “I think this is one of the classiest restaurants I’ve ever seen, top to bottom — we didn’t cut any corners,” owner James Bommarito said.

Bommarito had clear ideas for how he wanted to the new restaurant spaces to look and feel and worked with Bentel & Bentel Architects, a firm based out of New York, to execute his vision. 

The downstairs area, the new home of Tony’s, seats 64, while the upstairs area is the new Anthony’s Bar, which seats 40. The patio, which is still under construction, seats 38 and will open this summer around July. The restaurant is massive at 8,500 square feet, but somehow the dining spaces feel intimate. Sliding dividers are available to section of portions of the restaurant for private events, and custom Plexiglas dividers line dining areas to create space between parties — a popular option for restaurants operating during the pandemic.

The space has a classic fine-dining feeling with white tablecloths, custom furniture, warm golden light and extravagant floral arrangements. Artwork from LeRoy Neiman and Ernest Trova hang on the walls; sculptures from Wouter Dam and Ardan Ozmenoglu rest on different surfaces; and a massive, commissioned mural from painter America Martin, titled “James’ Flowers,” hangs in the main dining room. “I wanted to bring color and flair to the space, art that all age groups would appreciate. Something that brings energy and excitement to the restaurant,” Bommarito said.

While the space is new, many of the staff and dishes at Tony’s remain the same. The menu will be familiar to regulars but will also have seasonal specials. The staff, many of whom have been working for Tony’s for decades includes veteran chefs Peter Fagan and Gerard Germain, who have been with the restaurant for around 30 and 40 years, respectively; maitre d’ Ken Bollwerk, who has been there for 46 years; and head bartender Donny Bonds, who has served for 43 years.

“We treat our employees fairly, we’re honest with them, and they love what they do,” Bommarito said. “We have a family atmosphere — we laugh and have fun – but when it’s time to get to work, we get serious.”

Tony’s will be open 5 to 10 p.m. Monday through Thursday and 5 to 10:30 p.m. Friday and Saturday. Anthony’s Bar will be open 11:30 a.m. to 2 p.m. and 5 to 10 p.m. Monday through Thursday and 11:30 a.m. to 2 p.m. and 5 to 10:30 p.m. on Fridays and Saturdays. Both restaurants are closed Sundays.