stews food & liquor photo by zachary linhares

First Look: Stews Food & Liquor in Soulard

There’s a new spot to get Asian cuisine in St. Louis. Stews Food & Liquor opened in mid-January at 1862 S. 10th St. in the space that previously housed The Wood Shack in Soulard and has been well received by the community thus far.

“We've been blown away by all the love and support we've received since opening night,” said co-owner Nate Burrows. “We are excited to build on this and keep showing our love for hospitality.”

The ownership team had initially contemplated offering sandwiches, but chef Brent Petty’s favorite food to cook is Asian, so the other co-owners – Burrows and his wife Kristen “Stew” Leahy – encouraged him to lean into his strengths for their new concept. Plus, “Soulard doesn’t have any Asian places,” Burrows told Sauce previously.

The succinct menu includes items such as edamame “hummus,” Brussels sprouts, a chopped salad, khao soi, siu mai, lo mein, a pork burger with waffle fries, popcorn chicken with orange, sesame or General Tso’s sauce, and miso ramen. 

Burrows, who is Petty’s cousin, helms the bar program, having previously worked at Jack Nolen’s and Cinder House. Look for traditional cocktails such as a martini, Negroni, Moscow Mule, Old-Fashioned, Black Manhattan, frozen Irish coffee and Paper Plane, along with specialties like a Lychee Gimlet and a tiki-inspired cocktail called Fat Man in a Yellow Suit. You’ll also find beer from local breweries such as 4 Hands Brewing Co. and Urban Chestnut Brewing Co.

Stews is also a new hotspot for industry workers, who receive a 20% discount, as food will be available late, including on Mondays when so many restaurants are closed. “We come from the restaurant industry and want to have a place that industry folks can come, have delicious food and hang out with us,” Burrows said. 

The vibe at the 800-square-foot restaurant is fun and whimsical yet a little moody thanks to dim lighting and dark green paint. Between a few bar seats, plus high- and low-top tables, there’s room for 25 guests inside, along with another 25 on the front sidewalk patio. Crowd-pleasing playlists made by friends and family waft through the air over the speakers, and Burrows hopes to one day have a record player for guests to bring their own music. “I want to use this as a platform to broaden my music horizons,” he said.

Stews Food & Liquor has updated its hours since opening and is now open from 5 p.m. to midnight Monday through Thursday, 5 p.m. to 1 a.m. Friday, 3 p.m. to 1 a.m. Saturday and closed on Sunday.