Dining

Quick Bites: 12.16.15

curtain calls
Standing ovations are expected for The Fox Associates when its Curtain Call Lounge (521 N. Grand Blvd.), STL ’s first champagne bar, opens in time to toast the New Year. Complementing the bubbly is a menu of small-plate savories, oysters, caviar and wickedly decadent desserts. A stand-alone nightclub with Siamese-Byzantine décor, Curtain Call is the creation of owners Mary Strauss, Julie Baudendistel-Noonan and Lisa Suntrup, who collaborated with Space Architecture + Design on the sleek look.

hog heaven
Mike Johnson has done it again: He’s scored a big one with his sixth Sugarfire location, Sugarfire 44, in Valley Park at I-44 and Highway 141. Opened a couple of months ago, the enlarged ‘cue hall follows the same format as his other locales, delicious pies and long lines included.

country cousin
Gerard Craft is busy gearing up his new Pastaria location … in Nashville, Tennessee! That could explain why he turned over the chef’s duties at Niche to his second-incommand, Nate Hereford.

cup ‘o cheer
qb-hot-chocolateSanta’s bringing joy at the top of every hour between 4 and 10 p.m. at Lumière Place, courtesy of the casino’s version of The Polar Express, Lumiere Express. The train circles the casino floor selling decadently rich hot chocolate to raise funds for St. Patrick Center. The Express will make its rounds through Dec. 26. If you miss it, no worries. Cups of cocoa to support the cause are available during normal hours at Ozzie’s Sports Bar & Grill.

wrap-ups
+ Jamey Tochtrop wraps up his acclaimed Stellina Pasta operations Dec. 31. While Tochtrop explores his options, the spot will continue as an event space and pop-up dining/gathering place, starting Jan. 29 with chef Ben Grupe’s latest dinner series.

+ After 40 years, Spiro Karagiannis has decided to retire and close the kitchen at Spiro’s original Natural Bridge location. Fans can relax, though, as the family’s other locations remain open.

+ The cash register has stopped ringing at Pizzino, Clayton’s haven for grilled Roman-style pizza, which shuttered Dec. 5. Stay tuned: word is Pepe Kehm of Spaghetteria Mama Mia fame will open a mostly take-out joint there.

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