Restaurateur Dave Bailey has announced plans to make use of the now-empty space that once housed his bakery operations next to Rooster downtown. It will be a to-go-only test kitchen called Shift.
Bailey announced plans to open a barbecue restaurant across from Baileys' Range in April 2014, but thanks to construction delays, that seems to still be a ways off. He says Shift will provide an outlet to experiment with dishes and basically build a solid and diner-tested menu before that place eventually opens.
"I want [Shift] to be an incubator, essentially, for restaurants we're opening in the future and different types of cuisine we want to try out and experiment with, whether it's a new restaurant or our existing restaurants," Bailey says. Initially, Shift will offer four or five dishes per day (probably four meat options and one vegetarian) and a variety of sides ("not just the usual beans and potatoes"), pies, sweets and more.
Like his upcoming barbecue restaurant, Shift will do whole-animal butchering, which Bailey says is in keeping with his commitment to use responsibly raised (and fished) animals. This also means there may only be say, twenty ribs dishes available in a given day, and once they run out, Shift will, ahem, shift to a different cut.
"We're also not going to focus on a specific regional style of cuisine. We're going to [do that] with the big barbecue restaurant as well," he says, including St. Louis, Memphis and Carolina-style as well as international barbecue traditions. "We want to compose dishes from different types of barbecue from all over the world."
Shift is expected to open in late September and will operate from 11am until 3pm or earlier if it is sold out.
Shift, Test Kitchen & Take Out, 311 N. 11th St., Downtown, St. Louis, Missouri.
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