Tradesman’s, an American BBQ restaurant with an enviable craft beer and whiskey list, debuts 5 p.m. Aug. 9 at 1322 Chestnut St., the southeast corner of Juniper and Chestnut Streets, in the century-old Tradesman’s Trust Building. It’s next door to Craft Concepts Group’s BRU Craft & Wurst and U-Bahn.
At about 200 seats, Tradesman’s is Craft’s largest restaurant/bar. Craft owner Teddy Sourias and director of operations Alex Bokulich also have Cinder at 15th and Locust Streets, Finn McCool’s at 12th and Sansom Streets, and Uptown Beer Garden at 1735 Market St.
Architect Dimitri Armenakis from Lance Kramer & Associates, who designed U-Bahn, Cinder, CinCin, Kitchen Bar, and Nectar, had 6,000 square feet to work with on two levels.
The first floor has an open layout and 23-foot vaulted ceilings, a mezzanine, large windows that open out to Juniper and Chestnut Streets, through a garage door, to Drury Street. There’s exposed brick and historical detail in the original ceiling, plus a large main bar on the main level, and auxiliary bars on the second floor.
There’s also a cool setup whereby you can eat at either side of the Chestnut Street window, via tractor-seat-style outdoor bar stools that are serviced by oversized pull back windows. Yes, part of the outdoor seating is a window drink rail, just as they do at Tiki in Midtown Village.
Chef Craig Meyers’ menu includes Carolina pulled pork, Kansas City ribs, brisket, chicken, and tri-tip — offered as platters and sandwiches.
Meats are served with a side of white bread, pickles, and onions, and a selection of sauces: Sweet and spicy are based off of the predominant St Louis Style; the two vastly different Carolina sauces are available, with Carolina Gold and North Carolina vinegar BBQ; the final two are nontraditional.
Sides include cornbread, onion rings, potato salad, mashed potatoes, mac and cheese, corn hash, and brisket beans.
Apps include mushroom toast, smoked beet (yes, beet) carpaccio, a cheese plate, and fried oysters.
Tradesman’s has 34 beer taps, pouring exclusively American independent craft beer and cider. Two of the draft lines are special wall-mounted infusers, which are filled with assortments of hops, fruits, herbs, spices, and sweet things to make specially flavored beers. By September, bar will be stocked with about 120 whiskeys from U.S. distillers. Cocktails, too.
Fun fact: If you add up all of Crafts’s taps at its locations, it’s 164.
It’s open from 4 p.m. to 2 a.m. Monday to Friday, 11 a.m. to 2 a.m. weekends, for now. Lunch and brunch are on the way.