the classic ribeye steak with pommes purée at wright's tavern in clayton photo by greg rannells

St. Louis' Best New Restaurants of 2023

These are the nine restaurants that won our hearts this year.

Wright's Tavern
Wright’s is earnest about the things that really matter, but isn’t averse to a dash of mischievous fun in the appropriate places. From the indulgent martini (with accompanying sidecar) to the riotous ice cream sundae, the moments of jaw-dropping awe and delight are the cherry on top of a rich feast, served with charismatic aplomb. Whether it’s your place for special occasions, or a weekly haunt, Wright’s Tavern was the restaurant we all wanted to eat at in 2023, and there’s really no debate: It’s this year’s Best New Restaurant.

Bagel Union
After years of playing second (or 10th) fiddle to New York bagels, St. Louis is boiling and baking its way toward a bagel renaissance – and Bagel Union is leading the way.

We can scarcely think of another restaurateur that has elevated the culture and palates of St. Louis diners more than Nick Bognar. His approach is refreshingly bold and unapologetic in everything from technique to flavor and service. For all its many virtues, Sado still doesn’t quite feel like the peak of what Nick Bognar has to offer as a restaurateur – and that’s the most exciting part.

1929 Pizza & Wine
Informed by all the experiences and adventures of owners Amy and Matt Herren, 1929 Pizza & Wine brims with an industrious, infectious verve, serving food characterized by simple yet thrilling flavors.

Black Salt
When it comes to Indian food, West County residents aren’t lacking for choice. Competition is fierce, but Black Salt has proved it has the chops to go toe-to-toe with the best, executing crowd-pleasing tandoori classics and serving up surprising fusion twists on staples.

Fleur STL
The 2020 closure of longtime St. Louis fixture Eat-Rite Diner left a hole in the downtown culinary scene, but Fleur’s menu contains echoes of its predecessor’s diner fare with a more upscale approach evident in everything from the classy renovation of the space to the food itself.

Deli Divine
With Deli Divine, restaurateur Ben Poremba is filling the gap for an authentic Jewish deli in St. Louis city. The restaurant’s masterfully executed menu of classics does more than just hold space – it holds its own in the inevitable comparison with favorite delis in Chicago and New York.

Kain Tayo
Randy and Sally Arcega’s Kain Tayo (“let’s eat” in Tagalog) is the latest local eatery winning St. Louisans’ hearts and stomachs over to the cuisine of the Philippines.

Levels Nigerian Cuisine
Ono Ikanone, co-owner of Levels Nigerian Cuisine, knew jollof rice was not to be played with: The rice at his restaurant had to be on point.