Best Waitstaff


Before Tony's moved to its current Broadway location, server Herb Cray (now retired) found he had a knack for showing restaurant guests to their tables while ascending a flight of stairs -- backward. Owner Vince Bommarito's philosophy, which also applied to Cray, both figuratively and literally, is that "you never turn your back on a guest." Tony's has employees who have never missed a day of work in more than 40 years, and some have served for as long as 44 years.

Yes, equally efficient servers are just as graceful at scrappier restaurants (King Louie's comes to mind), but Tony's is, well, Tony's. In business since 1946, Bommarito takes the quality of service as seriously as he takes the food. He understands that good service enhances the gestalt of the dining experience and that a great server must achieve a delicate balance between being attentive and overbearing, all the while exuding grace and confidence. A half-full glass of water is refilled while you blink, and your server arrives before you can raise your pointer. Attention to detail, careful training and an extremely low turnover at Tony's nearly dictate that you're going to be pampered, and you always are.

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Previously in Best of St. Louis