Retreat Gastropub: Comfort Food and Cocktails With a Twist of Fun

 In Food, Guide

If the allure of nature sounds better on paper than in real life—or if it sounds fabulous but real life keeps getting in your way—this outdoor-themed restaurant in the Central West End will be a balm to your weathered soul. Retreat’s interior is designed for coziness without kitsch, from light bulbs suspended like fireflies to the polished glow of its cedar tabletops.

The menu offers plenty of comfort food—like macaroni and cheese, pork chops and potato soup—as well as elevated versions of simple, hearty dishes. Executive chef Adam Bingham joined the kitchen in 2019, continuing the favorites like poutine and cioppino but also adding seasonal salads and specials.

Owner Travis Howard began working in restaurants at age 16. Clearly, he paid attention while working his way up through nearly every position in the front and back of the house. He opened Retreat in 2015 (and added Yellowbelly in 2018). By running a tight ship, he frees up his staff’s energy for creation and fun, especially behind the bar. Try the Oaxaca Flocka Flame, a spicy combo of mezcal, tequila and ancho chile liqueur, which definitely lives up to its name.

6 N. Sarah St.

While you’re in the neighborhood …

Brasserie by Niche
Enjoy weekend brunch serving beignets to burgers or a dinnertime three-course menu offering an authentic French culinary experience at a welcoming neighborhood eatery.

4580 Laclede Ave.

Mission Taco
The house-made tortillas, salsas and next-level taco fillings elevate this Mexican fare above the ordinary.

398 N. Euclid Ave.

Pi Pizzeria
Pi’s pies are anything but formulaic—the trademark cornmeal crust comes thick or thin, vegan or gluten-free, with dozens of topping options.

400 N. Euclid Ave.

A version of this story first appeared in 2017 in Guided: St. Louis focused on the Central West End neighborhood, available in a digital edition.

Featured image courtesy of Carmen Troesser.

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