Best Restaurant Neighborhood

Clayton

Just getting into Clayton can be a traffic nightmare: There's Hanley Road, Brentwood Boulevard, the Interbelt — to say nothing of the labyrinthine streets, impossible parking, and cheerless concrete-and-glass structures that greet you once you've arrived. But oh, to just live there, to be an a.m. regular at Half & Half, to somehow write off pricey wine at Cafe Napoli during a two-hour weekday lunch, to throw back a couple of after-work beers at Barrister's and then duck into Bar Les Frères for a tete-a-tete before driving home to the missus, who's waiting for you at home on the deliciously WASPy-sounding Polo Drive. Is it any wonder Gerard Craft chose the nifty, LEED-certified Centene Plaza for the homes of Niche and Pastaria? Or that Clayton is where the award-winning, crazy-talented Josh Galliano and sommelier Nick Luedde put down roots with the Libertine when it opened in May? Not in the slightest. It's just about enough to make us want to update the ol' stock portfolio, look up real estate listings in the '105, clip on a tie, join the rat race and become golfing buddies with The Man. For now, we'll navigate the drive...and dream.

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