Food & Drink

Get ready to try something at these 8 new places to eat coming to the metro-east

The food scene in the metro-east will get a big boost when eight new restaurants and a doughnut shop open within the next year.

From Edwardsville to Belleville, cities across the region will welcome national franchises and locally owned eateries soon. Here’s a look at what’s coming to the metro-east:


Fans of Popeyes Louisiana Kitchen spicy fried chicken will see a new location this fall in Belleville. The new Popeyes is under construction on a lot between Arby’s and the St. Louis Bread Co. in the Belleville Crossing shopping center off Illinois 15. Work began Aug. 6 and crews plan to have it built in 90 days by Nov. 6, weather permitting, according to Edin Coralic, the St. Louis architect who designed the building. Coralic previously said Z&H Foods wants to build a new Popeyes in Collinsville. Construction on this Popeyes may begin next year on a site next to Jimmy John’s at 703 N. Bluff Road.

Can’t wait to check it out? Visit this location now: 618-398-4626,, 6011 N Illinois St, Fairview Heights


Rio Grande

It’s a total gut job. When the former home to Applebee’s opens later this fall, locals might not recognize the Fairview Heights building. New seating, fresh paint, new floors and mosaic tile will transform the former home of Applebee’s into a Mexican restaurant with a new look and a new vibe. Rio Grande is expected to open this fall, Rafael Onale and his partners confirmed.

Juicy Crab

Nearly a year after Joe’s Crab Shack closed without warning in Fairview Heights, a new seafood restaurant is expected to move in soon. Juicy Crab, located at 51 Ludwig Drive, could open as soon as November, owner Jack Chan said. His restaurant will offer Cajun-style crab, calamari, fish and chips, and more. Juicy Crab will have seafood competition nearby. Red Lobster is a short walk away at 110 Ludwig Drive.

Christi Robertson and her daughter Christin stand in what will be the dining room of the C and C Food for Your Soul restaurant in Belleville. Steve Nagy

C and C Food for Your Soul

Christi Robertson plans to open C and C Food for Your Soul at 225 N. Illinois St., just two blocks from downtown Belleville’s Public Square. Robertson expects to have her soul and comfort food restaurant ready by early fall. Fried chicken, a jumbo burger, meatloaf, oxtail, smothered pork chops, black-eyed peas and macaroni and cheese are some of the items she plans to offer in the restaurant. A jazz brunch with live music is planned for Sundays. Lunch and dinner will be offered Wednesdays through Fridays. On Saturdays, she plans to open for breakfast as well as lunch and dinner.

Can’t wait to check it out? Information is available on the restaurant’s page


Hi-Pointe Drive-In

Hi-Pointe Drive-In, a sister restaurant to Sugarfire Smokehouse, plans to open a second location in O’Fallon, according to spokeswoman Megan Brown of Green Olive Media.

From classic burgers ($5.50) and veggie options to grilled cheese tacos ($8.50), Cuban($9) and spicy Italian sandwiches ($8.50), the menu offers a variety of options. Hi-Pointe Drive-In made a splash when it opened its first location on McCausland Avenue in St. Louis. Brown said details about the new O’Fallon location are forthcoming. The burger joint will be the second member of the Sugarfire brand to open in O’Fallon. Sugarfire 64 opened April 30 at 1405 Green Mount Road. Where can you find the new location? That information is yet to be released, but the restaurant is expected to be completed by December, according to St. Louis Magazine.

Can’t wait to check it out, visit this location now: 314-349-2720,, 1033 McCausland Ave. St. Louis.


Mod Pizza

The national franchise MOD Pizza is expected to open a new location in Edwardsville at the end of the year. Charlotte Wayte, spokeswoman for MOD Pizza, said the company hasn’t signed the lease yet, but they do expect to open a location in Madison County.

MOD Pizza was founded in Seattle in 2008 and has seven locations in the St. Louis metro area. The Edwardsville site, located at 2300 Troy Rd. Suite A, will be the chain’s first location in the metro-east. MOD Pizza has over 200 locations nationwide, including restaurants in Wentzville, St. Charles, Ladue, Kirkwood, Ellisville, Maryland Heights and Cottleville in the St. Louis metro area.

Can’t wait to check it out, visit this location now: 314-354-8120,, 8855 Ladue Rd., St. Louis.

Strange Donuts

Strange Donuts has confirmed its plans to open a shop in Edwardsville early next year. The local-franchise with three locations in Missouri and one in Mexico City has not signed a lease yet but does plan to move into to Madison County next year. This will be the first strange donut locatin in metro-east.

Can wait to check it out, visit this location now: 314-932-5851,, 2709 Sutton Blvd., St. Louis.

Global Brew

The local brewer empire will offer food and craft cocktails when it moves into its new location in Edwardsville early next year. Regulars at that tap house should expect a move from 112 S. Buchanan St. to the Ironworks development on Illinois 159. The menu will be similar to the one at the brewery’s O’Fallon location. If you want a bite to eat with your beer, Global Brew Tap House recently debuted its new menu with an unexpected item on the list —gourmet grilled cheese sandwiches. The restaurant’s new menu also features a cheese board ($24) filled with hand-selected meats, cheeses, bread, nuts, jam and a honeycomb. Over-the-top tater tot creations are on the menu, too.

Can’t wait to check it out, visit this location now: (618) 632-1818,, 455 Regency Park Dr B, O’Fallon.


Sugarfire Smokehouse

The nationally recognized St. Louis barbecue operation anticipates opening a new location in Edwardsville but an opening date has not been announced, according to spokeswoman Megan Brown, of Green Olive Media.

This will be the company’s second metro-east location. Sugarfire 64 opened last spring at 1425 N. Green Mount Rd. The barbecue empire has six locations in Missouri.

Can’twait to check it out, visit this location now: 618-360-3473,, 1425 N. Green Mt Rd, O’Fallon.

Now that you’ve read about the restaurants coming to the metro-east, you’ll want to read about unusual places to eat in the area. Be sure to also check out the best patios in the region before fall fades away!

Do you have a tip? Send me an email at Of course, I’m available to chat on Twitter @CaraRAnthony, and if you really want to go old school, call me on my landline at 618-239-2471.
Reporter Mike Koziatek contributed to this report.