St Louis recommendations?

For the St Louis friends, I will be taking the Advanced Exam in October.  What are the can't miss spots to hit?  Staying downtown at the Four Seasons.

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  • St Louis has islands of good places to eat and drink.  Unfortunately downtown is kind of lacking.  The one place I can recommend is Lucas Park Grille.  Rich Ross is in charge of the wine program and he has done an excellent job. 

    I've listed a few different areas below  with multiple places to eat and drink within walking distance.  They are also within 10-15 minutes of the Four Seasons.

    Botanical Gardens area:

    Indo, Union Loafers, Nixta, Elia, AO & Co Market and Olio are all on at the same intersection and all great... Actually, I haven't been to Indo yet, as it just opened, but the reviews have been great.  About a 10 minute drive from the Four Seasons.  

    Lafayette Square:

    33 Wine Bar - Chill minimal wine bar in a century old building, with awesome staff and unbeatable bottle pricing.

    Polite Society - Fun place to be at night  with a solid cocktail/beverage program, and good food.  

    Planters House - some of the city's best cocktails, good food and also a really well designed spot.

    Maplewood:

    Elmwood - Topnotch restaurant run by a true hospitality professionals with a California focused wine list.

    Acero - Great upscale Italian.

    Benevolent King

    Foundation Grounds - Coffee

    Side Project - Barrel aged/fermented beers. Definitely our most nationally well known beer geek brewery.

    Schlafly - Our OG not so micro anymore brewery.  Still great

    Clayton:

    Wine and Cheese Place and The Wine Merchant are our two best wine shops and located about 1/2 a mile from each other.

    Pastaria - Don't let the playful vibe deter you, amazing casual (not American) Italian.  Extruded noodles, and great Neapolitan pizza.

    Sardella - attached to Pastaria, higher end Italian focused menu and a great space.

    Mai Lee - Not quite Clayton, but close and solid Vietnamese.  No problem bringing wine either, and a good spot if you have a larger group.

    Demun:

    Parker's Table - A fantastic wine shop, and easily one of the best designed wine shops out there.  Awesome staff, and a good spot to also get a sandwich for lunch.  

    Louis Demun - really good Italian

    Kaldi's Coffee - these are all over, but my favorite is the one in Demun.  Great place to cram for theory, great coffee without getting too geeky, and each location has a different food menu. 

    Other:

    Taste, Savage, Vicia and Bulrush

    Beer: Civil Life and UCBC are my favorite breweries, but if you are a beer nerd, Side Project is the place to go. 

    *Next to the Grove location of UCBC is URB, which serves UCBC beer and is turning out some of STL's best pizza.

    BBQ: Check out Bogarts or Sugar Fire.

    Coffee: Kaldis (multiple locations), Blueprint, Comet (best pastries in town and geek coffee)

    I'm sure that I am missing a few others

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