My wife, daughter (3) and I went to a new German restaurant in St Louis on Sat. and would like to encourage all in the area who like German food to try it. It is called St Louis Gasthaus and is located at 18th and Chouteau near AmerenUE on the northern edge of Lafayette Square. The building has been gorgeously redone and is more along the lines of the light and airy restaurants I am used to in Europe, not the dark musty Bierkeller of toutrist-trap fame. I am very picky when it comes to German food--I have been to Germany and Austria many times in many different regions and consider the fresh, local and seasonal dishes I eat there to be completely, well, um, foreign compared to the deftige Scheisse that passes for German food at ALL other St Louis German restaurants. The menu at the Gasthaus right now is rather limited, hitting all the typical standards--my wife had a very good veal Schnitzel (very nice cut of meat), I the pork Schnitzel, and my daughter loved the pretzels and Goulasch soup. All was done well and the sides--red cabbage, sauerkraut, potato pancakes, German fries, cucumber salad--were generous and tasty. The proprietess and our waitress both told us they planned to expand the menu greatly in the next 6 weeks or so, but wanted to start with the more familiar items to acquaint people with the restaurant. It is a little pricey, but each dinner comes with soup or salad and 2 sides; also the wait staff, while competent, needs a little polish, especially considering the prices (21 for the veal and 18 for the pork). Their selection of German beers is good, but the wine list needs some additions to it. I know they do lunch also and the owner said they plan to make the prices and the portions of the lunch a little smaller, so as to be more competitive for the daily business diner.
Given the abindant German heritage in the St Louis area, it would be nice to have a restaurant where authenticity in the food and atmosphere is at least striven for; and I think this place comes closer than any of the other places where I have dined in the area. (It is also the only German restaurant in StL--and I have been to them all--where I have actually heard German spoken by the other customers.)
If your idea of German food needs to be up-dated, then please try this place. The standards don't taste like this anywhere else in StL.