Veritas Gateway to Food and Wine is leaving Chesterfield to re-open down the road in Ellisville with a new location that will offer a more comprehensive wining and dining experience.
The move is being driven by a desire to use a space that is better suited for the restaurant side of the operation while also more closely incorporating its retail wine shop, according to owner Stephanie Stitt. Vertias will close Jan. 15 and will open sometime in April at the corner of Clarkson and Clayton roads, with a grand opening event set for May 1.
"When we opened eight years ago, we did not intend to be a restaurant as much as it turned into," Stitt said. "It's really taken off and has a life of its own. The small kitchen space that we put in back when we were just going to do tastings doesn't work."
The business is family-run with Stephanie's husband and co-owner David overseeing the wine program and son Mathis as the head chef. Currently, Veritas only has full-service dinner on Thursday, Friday and Saturday and Stephanie Stitt said that is unlikely to change.
Vino fans can also take advantage of some deals as Veritas is holding a moving sale until its doors close in January with discounts on wine and store merchandise. For more information, visit the Veritas website, where you can also find further details about the improvements planned for the new location.
Stitt also used the move as a time to take stock of how she has seen the food and wine industry in the West County change over the years.
"When we opened, people were not sure that West County was ready for a 'real' restaurant," she said, pointing to the prevalence of chains such as Red Lobster or Houlihans. "People were eating there just because that is what was here."
She said Veritas and others, such as similar West County outfit Balaban's, have found success in focusing on inventive menus that feature fresh, local ingredients.
In fact, the last several years have seen a surge in such restaurants throughout the St. Louis area along with an ever-expanding craft beer scene that, in Stitt's view, make it an exciting time to be in the industry.