James Beard Award-Winning Chef Opens Fifth Restaurant in St. Louis

Carol Daniel (@caroldanielKMOX)

ST. LOUIS (KMOX) – Restaurant owner and Chef Gerard Craft delivered pasta via Uber Wednesday in downtown St. Louis, highlighting his  soon-to-be-opened restaurant, Porano Pasta.

The James Beard award winner says he’d been in talks with the developers behind the Mercantile Exchange on Washington Avenue for several years. His latest eatery will offer what is called, “fast casual food,” that Craft says is healthy, honest and transparent.

His decision to use Uber to deliver the pasta dishes was intentional.

“I’ve been a big proponent of Uber coming to St. Louis, so I was excited to give riders a first taste of Porano Pasta that will be opening in downtown St. Louis in the coming week and a half.”  Craft added, “There was also a great need in our city’s transportation options for a ride share platform like Uber – easy, fast transportation with delicious, fast food for a one day surprise? Everyone wins!”

As part of the delivery promotion, Porano Pasta donated over 100 hot meals to the American Red Cross Disaster Relief efforts in St. Louis.

Craft recalls moving to St. Louis, saying coming to the airport was a shock.

“The first time we stepped into the airport here, people asked if we were lost or did we need help. And I thought, this is crazy. People actually help people in this town?”

He says that sheer willingness to help makes the St. Louis region a very real place, and the loss of the St. Louis Rams, while disappointing, doesn’t impact the image he has of his adopted hometown.  He says for what the city is going through and what the region needs, only to create 50 new jobs – we’ll create that many jobs and we don’t need billions of dollars to do it. Craft says it just didn’t make financial sense.

The region can be known as a start-up capital and a great place for foodies, he says.

“So many people are doing so many cool things from fast food to fine dining. I think it’s an exciting time to be here.”

(TM and Copyright 2016 CBS Radio Inc. and its relevant subsidiaries. CBS RADIO and EYE Logo TM and Copyright 2016 CBS Broadcasting Inc. Used under license. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.)
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