Gerard Craft has already played a key role in the development of the Food Hall at City Foundry in Midtown, where his Niche Food Group operates the Kitchen Bar and Fordo’s Killer Pizza. Now, the acclaimed chef and restaurateur has announced plans for a multi-level restaurant at City Foundry.
Expat BBQ, slated to open this fall to the east of the Food Hall, will explore global flavors through American barbecue.
The cooking techniques will be familiar, Craft said, featuring smoke and the grill. When it comes to seasoning and condiments, however, Expat BBQ will take inspiration from elsewhere around the world.
“We want to kind of take something that’s very approachable to people and then give them flavors that they’re not used to,” he said.
(Craft was not ready to give examples of specific dishes. The official annoucement did mention inspiration from “Brazil, Thailand, Africa, Australia, and beyond.”)
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Expat BBQ will occupy 16,000 square feet across three levels: a traditional dining room on the main floor; a mezzanine level for private events; and a second floor with a bar and an expansive patio.
It is, Craft said, his restaurant’s group largest project “by a factor of a lot.”
The main dining room will feature the restaurant’s full menu with table service, with seating available both by reservation and for walk-ins. The second-floor bar and patio will feature a more causal menu. The patio will also feature a stage for live music, lounge furniture and TVs.
“So upstairs is the party,” Craft said. “Downstairs, the restaurant.”
Expat BBQ marks the latest expansion for Craft, who in 2015 won the James Beard Award for “Best Chef: Midwest” for his work at his late original restaurant Niche.
In addition to his two Food Hall at City Foundry operations, he currently operates Brasserie By Niche, Pastaria, Pastaria Deli + Wine and Bowood by Niche — all 2023 STL 100 honorees — as well as Cinder House at the Four Seasons Hotel St. Louis and BrassWELL at Rockwell Beer Co.