At Randolfi's, the Food Is Great — But Don't Forget the Cocktails


Jeffrey Moll of Randolfi's. - GREG RANNELLS
  • Greg Rannells
  • Jeffrey Moll of Randolfi's.

When Jeffrey Moll began working for Mike Randolph as a waiter at Half & Half, he had never stepped foot behind a professional bar. Fast-forward a few years, and Moll’s name is one of the first to come up when people speak of the city’s top barmen.

See Also: Randolfi's Has Amazing Food. But Is St. Louis Ready for It?

Moll recently scored a win at a cocktail competition hosted by El Mayor tequila, in which he beat out some of the city's biggest mixology names. He also now runs the bar program at Randolfi’s, which I reviewed last week.

Though I used up my allotted ink espousing the virtues of Randolph's adventurous Italian cooking, the review would be incomplete without a mention of Moll’s libations. He has crafted a list that blends the traditional with the esoteric, much like Randolph is doing with the food — think the cocktail version of sweetbreads parmesan. His “Classics” evoke sitting canal-side at Harry’s Bar in Venice, Italy and include not one but two different Negronis, an “Americano,” and a powerhouse barrel-aged cocktail called the “Italian Stallion” that consists of North Shore No. 6 gin, Dark Horse Reunion rye, Cocchi di Torino vermouth and Fernet Branca.

The show-stopper, however, is Moll’s #37, a bourbon and Big-O ginger liquor based drink that arrives with a cap of applewood smoke. As our server removed the lid from the glass, the smoke escaped and filled our table with the scent of an autumnal barbecue. If sitting flannel-clad by a fire pit while sipping bourbon has a flavor, it’s the #37.

Moll is a humble guy, crediting his rise to the top of the local bar scene (something he would never say) as a matter of being in the right place in the right time. Which seems funny considering he is responsible for crafting some of the most brazen, innovative drinks available in town — the perfect pairing for Randolph’s envelope-pushing take on Italian dining.

We are always hungry for tips and feedback. Email the author at

Support Local Journalism.
Join the Riverfront Times Press Club

Local journalism is information. Information is power. And we believe everyone deserves access to accurate independent coverage of their community and state. Our readers helped us continue this coverage in 2020, and we are so grateful for the support.

Help us keep this coverage going in 2021. Whether it's a one-time acknowledgement of this article or an ongoing membership pledge, your support goes to local-based reporting from our small but mighty team.

Join the Riverfront Times Club for as little as $5 a month.