Former Duff’s chef Jimmy Voss cooking at West End Grill & Pub

Nicki's Central West End Guide Food and Drink Shop News  William Roth West End Grill & Pub Jimmy Voss Duff's

A recent press released announced that Jimmy Voss has returned to the CWE as “Executive Consigliere” at West End Grill & Pub, 354 N. Euclid. Voss was executive chef at Duff’s for many years until the beloved restaurant closed in 2013.

Stories about Duff’s and memories of favorite dishes linger in the minds of many who patronized it over its long history. Now you can experience some of Voss’s favorite recipes at WEGAP, such as the pepper steak, above, French-onion soup or Creole-crab & crawfish cakes.

There’s so much more to the Voss story however. When he was at Duff’s, the chef would occasionally take time off and hit the road to cook for the Grateful Dead.

I reached out to West End Grill’s co-founder William Roth, who is also an actor, and founder of St. Louis Actors’ Studio, and whom I was sure would have much more to say about his new hire. As is often the case, I got so much more than I asked for. 

In Roth’s words:

“We all grew up at Duff’s. I’ve known Jimmy (Voss) since the mid ’70’s. I worked at Duffs from ’84 to the mid ’90s.

We both love the Grateful Dead and once he became their road chef I would work as many cities as I could. I eventually worked West Coast shows, designed t-shirts and apparel for the band.

He catered my wedding and when I rehabbed the buildings on Boyle I designed a private kitchen (now Blue Strawberry’s kitchen) for him. He would come and fix lunch for me and my clients.

Once he moved to Texas, he would come home for a couple of weeks here and there, and I would hire him to work at WEGAP to do something special while he was in town.

Now he is here for an extended time (until Spring at least) and is working as our Executive Consigliere with Chef Raven.

We all miss 392 N Euclid (where Duff’s was located, now Salt ‘n Smoke) and so many are happy to see Jimmy and come and eat the favorites that he and (Duff’s owners) Karen Duffy and Tim Kirby cooked up for so many years.

The day West End Grill & Pub opened (14 years ago) I hung a Duff’s menu on the wall.  Karen Duffy and Duff’s taught us all so much about love and relationships and civil responsibility
and the arts. We pay homage to that as best we can.

Who says you cannot go home again?”

West End Grill & Pub, 354 N. Boyle, (314) 531-4607, 4 to 10 p.m., limited seating in the bar & dining room, patio open.  Pick-up available until 9 p.m.

Part V: CWE-based artists create during the pandemic

Linda Horsley/Horsley Arts

Nicki's Central West End Guide Art & Architecture  Walker-Cunningham Fine Arts Sarah Cunningham Maggie Pearson Lyn Magee Linda Horsley Daniel Jefferson

When I asked Linda Horsley, who opened Horsley Arts in 2017, how she’s dealing with the pandemic, she replied that there were no words, “my art says it all.”

Nicki's Central West End Guide Art & Architecture  Walker-Cunningham Fine Arts Sarah Cunningham Maggie Pearson Lyn Magee Linda Horsley Daniel Jefferson

oil on canvas corner piece, “24 x 48”

Nicki's Central West End Guide Art & Architecture  Walker-Cunningham Fine Arts Sarah Cunningham Maggie Pearson Lyn Magee Linda Horsley Daniel Jefferson

Missing the Bowl, oil on canvas, 30″ x 30″

Nicki's Central West End Guide Art & Architecture  Walker-Cunningham Fine Arts Sarah Cunningham Maggie Pearson Lyn Magee Linda Horsley Daniel Jefferson

Horsley’s oil on canvas corner piece, 24″ x 48.”

Sarah Cunningham/Walker-Cunningham Fine Arts

Sarah Cunningham, who opened Walker-Cunningham Fine Art in her CWE home in 2018, was gearing up to exhibit St. Louis-based artist Daniel Jefferson’s Bipolar Holiday: Kyoto Girls when the pandemic hit.

Cunningham, who has been in the business for 21 years (in Boston until 2015), emailed: “Dan painted a full wall mural in our dining room for the exhibit—it’s really spectacular and was made to show off his virtuosic and impromptu renderings…he did the whole thing with no study sketches—just painting straight out of his head.  It was brilliant to watch. Here is a time-lapse video from my website showing the progression over 4 days.
In reaction to the circumstances Cunningham said: “I’ve extended Dan’s show through the fall with many options for patrons to view. The website has room views and a video tour (see above), visit via FaceTime or Skype by making an appointment for a real time virtual tour, or you may visit in-person with viewings limited to 2 people at a time (masks required).”
Walker-Cunningham Fine Art, email: sarah@walkercunningham.com
Maggie Pearson
Nicki's Central West End Guide Art & Architecture  Walker-Cunningham Fine Arts Sarah Cunningham Maggie Pearson Lyn Magee Linda Horsley Daniel Jefferson  Here’s how Maggie Pearson responded when I asked what’s on her drawing board during the pandemic:
“Sadly, I’ve been just crushed by all the added responsibilities and haven’t had lots of creative time. I am working on sending out my Halloween booklet which is an original drawing and ghost stories written by me, plus some silly jokes for trick or treating. I’ve attached some drawings (above) from years past. October tends to be my creative recharge. I also think there’s something poetic about “graves into gardens” in that life morphs or there is some rebirth after death. I’ve been decking out the house in creepy Victorian decor and the yard display is next. But alas, no painting, etc. on my plate.”
For more information and to learn more about Maggie Pearson see an earlier post here.
Lyn Magee

Nicki's Central West End Guide Art & Architecture  Walker-Cunningham Fine Arts Sarah Cunningham Maggie Pearson Lyn Magee Linda Horsley Daniel Jefferson

Artist Lyn Magee began these pieces, above and below, in March when St. Louis went into lockdown mode. She describes that time as chaotic to say the least and created Chaos Series in response.  Nicki's Central West End Guide Art & Architecture  Walker-Cunningham Fine Arts Sarah Cunningham Maggie Pearson Lyn Magee Linda Horsley Daniel Jefferson  The pieces are made of painted cardboard, thin strips of metal,

Nicki's Central West End Guide Art & Architecture  Walker-Cunningham Fine Arts Sarah Cunningham Maggie Pearson Lyn Magee Linda Horsley Daniel Jefferson

strips of painted canvas and wood,Nicki's Central West End Guide Art & Architecture  Walker-Cunningham Fine Arts Sarah Cunningham Maggie Pearson Lyn Magee Linda Horsley Daniel Jefferson

and other found objects.

Nicki's Central West End Guide Art & Architecture  Walker-Cunningham Fine Arts Sarah Cunningham Maggie Pearson Lyn Magee Linda Horsley Daniel Jefferson

Magee’s final piece in Chaos Series shows bark on cardboard.

Read more about Lyn Magee and art created in her CWE studio in an earlier post here. Contact info: stanjones3733@gmail.com.

More artists work during the pandemic to come.

Edera Italian Eatery joins CWE’s restaurant scene

Nicki's Central West End Guide Food and Drink Shop News  Sam Koplar Mike Randolph Eric Ortiz Edera Italian Eatery

Edera Italian Eatery opened recently in the former Scape space, 48 Maryland Plaza. with a simple menu of antipasto, salads, pizza and pasta. It’s a tough time to open a new restaurant but in an email exchange Sam Koplar, whose family is behind the new venture, said that the restaurant is “off to a good start.”

Koplar also said they wanted an Italian name with a tie to the location, so they chose”Edera,” Italian for ivy, in a nod to the vine-covered wall on the beautiful patio, shown above. They’re keeping the menu simple for now, but after they get settled in they’ll be expanding offerings. There’s a strong possibility there will be inside seating by the end of the week, albeit with limited capacity pursuant to the city’s guidelines.Nicki's Central West End Guide Food and Drink Shop News  Sam Koplar Mike Randolph Eric Ortiz Edera Italian Eatery

In the meantime, you can order online, or follow the signs by the Maryland Plaza fountain to the carry-out window located in the passageway between Edera and Suit Supply. Nicki's Central West End Guide Food and Drink Shop News  Sam Koplar Mike Randolph Eric Ortiz Edera Italian Eatery

The menu, which includes selections for kids, was created by consulting chef Mike Randolph (Publico, The Good Pie, & Half & Half) with Executive Chef Eric Ortiz, formerly at The Ritz Carlton.

Nicki's Central West End Guide Food and Drink Shop News  Sam Koplar Mike Randolph Eric Ortiz Edera Italian Eatery

The European pizza oven can be seen in action through the carry-out window.

Nicki's Central West End Guide Food and Drink Shop News  Sam Koplar Mike Randolph Eric Ortiz Edera Italian Eatery

Visit the website for delivery options, or head to the carry out window for orders to-go or to enjoy on the patio. There is an outdoor bar, and heaters too. Safety protocols are in place at Edera: masks are required unless seated, and everything is served in “to go” containers. 

Edera Italian Eatery, 48 Maryland Plaza, Open Tuesday-Saturday, 5 to 9 p.m., (314) 367-7227. Check the website for more information.