Seeing Red in the Bywater
Yes it has taken us a while to get there, but we finally made it far enough into the St Claude side of the Bywater to get to Red's Chinese and St. Germain. Both restaurants are right across the railroad tracks that cut the Bywater in half and directly across from the ageless Saturn Bar.
To figure out where Red's is, you have to look for the only identifying sign which is a bright red square in front of the building. The facade of the establishment still resembles the typical neighborhood store complete with the old signs. Once inside though, eclectic decor and a number of fun spaces make getting comfortable very easy. Food is divine and Red's recommends sharing family style since the portions are too large for most individuals to eat themselves. Of course there is a delightful cocktail menu and you might as well try some of the exotic creations rather than the typical sake or beer. We had the Ginger Highball because we did not have enough people for the mind blowing Pleasure Bowl which serves four and probably prevents any driving back to our side of town. The staff is also fun to interact with and borders on what we can only describe as millennial hippy.
Next door is Saint-Germain which is a totally different concept than Red's and bills itself as a French Wine bar with a private dining room. Occupying both halves of a shotgun home, Saint-Germain has a comfortable bar which connects to a nicely lit patio. Drinks are creative and actually locally priced and are accompanied by a nice selection of small plates. The dining room adjacent is a reservation only room which seats 12 people. There is a five course dinner prepared for diners with an option for wine pairing. The food was divine and adventurous, but we were a bit confused by the wine since you have no idea what the pairings will be until they arrive at the table. We're red wine people and all wines were white or rose on our night. Of course you can continue with cocktails and even select wine from the wine list which is something we highly recommend doing.
3048 St. Claude Avenue
3054 St Claude Avenue