Bar Les Frères (7637 Wydown Boulevard, Clayton; 314-725-8880) is a beautiful, rustic French restaurant that comes in a crazy tiny package. The whole place seats only 24, plus 4 seats at the bar, and does not take reservations. Though it can be a labor of love to get a seat, we'd venture to say that its diminutive size was part of Les Frères' charm.
Well, according to owner Zoë Robinson Pidgeon, that's all about to change.
"In my imagination, Bar Les Frères is the bar in the little boutique hotel in Paris," she says. "So in the other room, I'd love to create the feel of the lobby of the boutique hotel."
Pidgeon says she always knew the antique shop next door was planning to leave, so she's been dreaming up a use for the adjacent space since she opened. She's not planning to break down any walls, however -- the shop next door will simply be another small, intimate room for diners.
The additional room will also be used for private events, and Pidgeon has enough furniture and wall pieces to customize the space for different private events -- rehearsal dinners, baby showers, cocktail parties, afternoon teas. She's even prepared should someone wish to propose there.
The room will seat 22 additional diners (almost doubling the capacity) when it's open to the public; Pidgeon says she knows people get frustrated with the no-reservations policy, so that should free up some spots on busy nights.
See also: Inside Bar Les Freres in Clayton
Luckily, Bar Les Frères won't have to close for construction, and she expects the addition to be open by the first of the new year, if not the beginning of December.
"We're going to make it feel grand -- in a shabby way," Pidgeon says.