clockwise from top left: connor james, alex herman, shimon otsuka, juliette dottle, dakota williams, tai nalewajko, suji grant photo by greg rannells // pixelation by danny hommes

7 young St. Louis food and drink pros with promise


Each year, Sauce searches high and low to find the most promising young food and drink professionals in St. Louis. Meet the 2019 class of Ones to Watch.  



1. Tai Nalewajko, bar manager at The Blue Ocean


Age: 28


Why Watch Him: He gets people to drink outside their comfort zones. 



2. Suji Grant, Niche Food Group pastry chef


Age: 32


Why Watch Her: She has pastry down to a science. 



3. Shimon Otsuka, kitchen manager at Nathaniel Reid Bakery


Age: 25


Why Watch Him: He's on an international quest to perfect pastry.



4. Juliette Dottle, sommelier and assistant general manager at Elmwood


Age: 27


Why Watch Her: She's aiming for the Michelin stars. 



5. Dakota Williams, executive sous chef at Sardella


Age: 24


Why Watch Him: He never stops working. 



6. Connor James, head roaster and coffee director at Coma Coffee


Age: 25


Why Watch Him: His cold brew is one of the best in the country.



7. Alex Herman, cook at Louie


Age: 23


Why Watch Him: He's the chef St. Louis chefs are rooting for. 



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