The Lobby Lounge of The Ritz-Carlton, St. Louis has expanded its bar menu: In addition to some 200 martinis and signature beverages, there are six new summer libations and a decadent Cake Martini inspired by the hotel's recently-launched Ritz-Carlton Cake, that includes vodka, chocolate and orange liqueurs, and a fresh orange twist. The seasonal drink offerings coincide with the debut of the hotel’s new Martini Club. Members of the club can enjoy their journey through the hotel’s impressive menu and qualify for complimentary hotel experiences—from drinks or dinner for two at The Grill, to engraved martini glasses and overnight stays at the property. Members also receive exclusive invitations to club events, tastings and cocktail-crafting parties. Membership is complimentary, and is open to the public and hotel guests.

Left Bank Books in the CWE (399 North Euclid Ave.) will be hosting a book-signing and beer-tasting with JOE STRANGE, co-author of the seventh edition of 'Good Beer Guide Belgium', on Friday, June 20, at 6 p.m. The beer is being provided, courtesy of Craft Beer Cellar, which recently opened in Clayton. This event is free and open to the public. For more information, call 367-6731 or go online at

In other hops-related news, O'Fallon Brewery has announced it will begin exporting its brews to Italy. The brewery will begin shipping cases of 5-Day IPA, Zeke’s, Wheach and Smoked Porter to a wholesaler near Turin in Northern Italy later this month.

BRAD WATTS has been named the new executive chef at The Crossing in Clayton. Watts has been within the Jim Fiala group of restaurants in various positions for the past 12 years. Congrats, Chef!

Death In The Afternoon, the new daytime restaurant from the folks behind Blood & Sand, has opened at Citygarden downtown (808 Chestnut St.). The eatery is open Monday through Friday, from 11 a.m. until 3 p.m. We're told a weekend brunch service soon will debut.

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