The 125-year-old Lamy’s Building in Sedalia, Missouri, has been in John Swearingen’s family for a century. The property has undergone a number of transformations since its days as an apparel manufacturing plant, but when Swearingen’s bright and ambitious team recently came up with the idea to turn it into No. 5 Bistro & Bar and Ox Horn Market, he agreed that this might be the best iteration yet.

Open since June 2020, No. 5 Bistro & Bar is a fine-dining restaurant that offers clean, fresh American cuisine while Ox Horn Market is a fast-casual concept that serves breakfast and lunch. In downtown Sedalia, just steps from the Amtrak to Kansas City or St. Louis, the restaurants are a modern nod to the original bones of the building, with a focal point being the restored original hardwood floors.

Swearingen hired budding chef Allen Plemmons to lead the kitchens at Lamy’s. Plemmons not only recognizes the need for an approachable and sustainable menu, but he’s also passionate about paying his employees a fair wage. When he took the job, Swearingen remembers him saying, “We’re going to do things differently.” And over the past eight months, they have.

The menu – which changes every six weeks to accommodate seasonality – is defined by ingredients that Plemmons can use every part of, allowing for very little food waste. Leftover salmon from the flame-grilled salmon with asparagus, bacon jam and risotto (currently available on No. 5 Bistro & Bar’s dinner menu), for example, can also be used for homemade stock or salmon chips.

In every dish, Plemmons chooses simplicity over eccentricity and good flavor over shock value. The sous vide and then fried pork belly is a standout, featuring what Plemmons calls an “Italian salsa verde,” fermented tomato jus, roasted shallots and micro greens.

Swearingen says he loves all of the lighter fare on the menu at Ox Horn Market. The Greek bowl with chicken, couscous, olives, red onion, cucumber, marinated tomatoes, goat cheese and lemon-herb dressing as well as the salmon salad with grilled salmon, lentils, bacon, onion, marinated tomatoes and greens tossed in an herb vinaigrette are two of his favorites, but the seared trout fillet with peas bonne femme and risotto at No. 5 Bistro & Bar is also a must-try.

“[Plemmons] can turn ordinary chicken into something you’ve never tasted before,” says Swearingen.

For the next menu, Plemmons plans to feature chicken leg quarters marinated in garlic and lime, basted on the grill and paired with a garlic-herb risotto filled with Boursin and Parmesan. He’s also created a dessert that will tempt even those who claim to not like dessert: a poached pear with pistachio crumbs, housemade chocolate bars and vanilla gelato.

Somehow Plemmons manages to make each menu more delicious than the last.

No. 5 Bistro & Bar is open Thursday through Monday from 4 to 10pm, and Ox Horn Market is open Thursday through Monday from 9am to 6pm.

No. 5 Bistro & Bar, 108 W. Pacific St., Suite 102, Sedalia, Missouri, 660.864.0108, lamymfg.com

Ox Horn Market, 108 W. Pacific St., Suite 100, Sedalia, Missouri, 660.864.0108, lamymfg.com