It's official—Kakao Chocolate will be opening up location No. 3 in Clayton in the near future. Owner BRIAN PELLETIER has signed on for a space at 7700 Forsyth Blvd., just a few doors away from Pastaria and Niche. If all goes according to plan, look for a May opening.
Chef BEN WELCH has been tapped to be the new executive chef at The Precinct, the police-themed eatery located at 1900 Locust St., adjacent to the future site of the new St Louis Police Department headquarters. Welch has been a fixture on the St. Louis scene for quite a while. In addition to having worked with culinary luminaries like Emeril Lagasse in New Orleans, Welch also has had a hand in opening such popular local restaurants as The Restaurant at the Cheshire, Home Wine Kitchen and Katie's Pizza and Pasta.
The Dark Room, a wine bar and photo gallery, has opened at 615 North Grand Blvd. in Grand Center. The space will have rotating photography exhibits, as well as a small food menu and top-notch wine list. We're also keeping an eye on another upcoming watering hole that plans to combine art with fine drinks, the latest project from TOM HALASKA, former GM at Sasha's on Shaw, and TATYANA TELNIKOVA, owner of The Handle Bar in The Grove. Their joint effort, Craft Art Bar, will be opening soon at 2732 Cherokee St. Look for all manner of local art to be on display, as well as live performances and other creative, art-centric attractions.
Unfortunately, there are a couple of closings to report this week. Table, the second restaurant from chef CASSY VIRES and husband/biz partner JOSH RENBARGER that opened last year on Cherokee Street, has closed its doors. In an e-mail to customers, Vires assured fans that her original place, Home Wine Kitchen in Maplewood, will remain open. And in the wake of some well-publicized financial woes, the folks at Local Harvest have announced the closure of their downtown cafe in the Old Post Office building. Looks like they'll be concentrating their efforts on bolstering the grocery store and cafe on Morganford Road.