Benton Park Gem Serving Fresh Seafood Daily – Peacemaker Lobster and Crab
St. Louis, MO/January 27, 2017 (STLRestaurant.News) Peacemaker Lobster and Crab – Some restaurants are classics because they’ve stood the test of time, becoming ingrained in a city’s culture. Others become classics after consistently offering amazing culinary creations by the very cleverest of chefs and of course, outstanding service. Still others give us a dining experience that is truly unique with amazing spaces and breathtaking vistas. And then there are those rare instant classics. These are the jewels that immediately capture our hearts (and appetites) with just the right collaboration of setting, ambiance, service, culinary inventiveness, and extraordinary food. Peacemaker Lobster and Crab in Benton Park (1831 Sidney Street, St. Louis) is one of the jewels.
Chef Kevin Nashan opened Peacemaker in 2014 right up the street from his acclaimed Sidney Street Cafe. This newer venture offers diners a classically casual seafood joint with exemplary service and exquisitely fresh seafood. Over the past two years the restaurant has been named best new restaurant in St. Louis and best restaurant of the year by multiple publications. It’s chef de cuisine, John Messbarger, has been nominated as one of the best young chefs—twice. And just last month (Dec. 2016) it made our customer review-based list of St. Louis’ Top 10 Best Seafood Restaurants (#7 with 4-stars and 319 reviews). This is a list I’d expect Peacemaker to rapidly ascend.
Peacemaker transports diners to the northeast for the freshest lobsters and crabs that can be found in St. Louis. Then it’s down to the Gulf of Mexico for fresh caught shrimp, and Cajun/Creole cooking. This may be the only restaurant in town where you can get a whole steamed blue crab, lobster rolls (both Maine and Connecticut), a Po’boy (called Poorboys at Peacemaker), clams, mussels, and fresh oysters every single day. Nashan has said it’s the food he’d like to eat at the end of a shift. Us too.
The menu was inspired by the time Nashan spent living and cooking in New Orleans and his personal journeys along the coast of Maine. As such, you’ll find Southern classics like smothered collard greens and fried green tomatoes, plus seafood boils, chowders, and gumbos on the menu. There’s even a raw bar with a rotating selection of fresh oysters from the Gulf and Atlantic Ocean. They offer four different types each day. The “Poorboys” come in everything from classic shrimp and catfish to inventive varieties like sweet potato or smoked brisket, and of course there’s the Peacemaker—stuffed with fried oysters. Chef Messbarger says the seafood at Peacemaker is so fresh because it’s flown in daily. Messbarger says that’s as fresh as it gets anywhere.
Peacemaker chef de cuisine John Messbarger spoke with the Belleville News Democrat in May 2016.
Peacemaker is situated in a rustic brick storefront in the historic Benton Park neighborhood. But stepping inside is like stepping into another world. The decor is a casual and reminiscent of a coastal crab shack with exposed beams, whitewashed brick, rustic wooden tables, and walls lined with photographs of the fishermen and oystermen who supply their kitchen. They are open for lunch Monday – Friday from 11:00 a.m. to 2 p.m. and for dinner Monday – Thursday from 4:30 to 9:00 p.m., Friday – Saturday from 4:30 to 10:30 p.m., and Sunday 1:30 to 8:30 p.m. They ask that you make dinner reservations for parties of six or more.
Nashan is a chef in demand. He was a James Beard Finalist for best chef in the Midwest, so he seems a natural choice to be one of six guest chefs cooking at the upcoming James Beard Foundation Celebrity Chef Tour Dinner in St. Louis March 21, 2017. The $200 a plate dinner at the soon-to-be-opened Vicia Restaurant is one of twenty such events around the country. He’s also been tapped to head to Chattanooga, Tenn. for a Valentine’s dinner by the Scenic City Supper Club. About 70 guests will enjoy his collaboration with Chef Erik Niel (Chattanooga’s Easy Bistro & Bar) at The Plus-One Dinner at Loveman’s February 12th. Nashan is the first chef from outside Tennessee who’s been invited to cook for an SCSC event. St. Louis diners are fortunate enough to get to eat his culinary creations every day. Yay us!
Peacemaker Lobster and Crab
Owner: Chef Kevin Nashan
1831 Sidney Street
St. Louis, MO 63104