|Peppered beef carpaccio, a thinly sliced beef fillet with mustard dressing, arugula, shaved parmesan, capers and lemon. | Jennifer Silverberg|
(One Fine Arts Drive; 314-655-5490)
11 a.m.-2 p.m. Tues.-Thurs.
11 a.m.-2 p.m. and 5-8:30 p.m. Fri.
11 a.m.-2 p.m. Sat.
10 a.m.-2 p.m. Sun.
Within its first few months of existence, the Saint Louis Art Museum's new restaurant, Panorama, acquired as much tarnish as a Bronze Age cooking vessel. It was so bad that the museum hired an outside consultant to provide an assessment of what was to be its culinary crown jewel. The advice was straightforward: Change everything, and do it as soon as possible. I was one of Panorama's harshest critics -- my review almost a year ago savaged the restaurant for bad food and spotty service. In fact, I consider it one of the worst meals I've had as a professional restaurant critic.
So to say chef Ivy Magruder didn't have a blank canvas to work with is a bit of an understatement. The veteran St. Louis chef (Vin De Set, Gamlin Whiskey House) was called in to replace Arizona transplant Edward Farrow. I was curious to see how Magruder and company could turn such a bad situation around, so I headed back. The difference is astounding -- aside from the location and name, it's not the same restaurant.More »