The Shaved Duck quietly reopened a few months ago, but it’s only now that they’re getting the word out. The beloved barbecue restaurant, which had been a favorite of both its Tower Grove East neighbors and food writers across the U.S. since its opening in 2008, was struck by catastrophe a little over a year ago.

The terrible cold snap that gripped St. Louis around Christmas of 2022 caused a pipe in the building to burst, resulting in a flood and a collapsed ceiling from water damage. This spelled the end for the Shaved Duck, until now. Recently, word began to spread among neighbors and barbecue lovers that the Shaved Duck is back. And for once, the rumors are true – the restaurant quietly opened its doors in November, with new owners and a fresh look.

The new owners of the Shaved Duck are Adam Kaufman, Joshua Powlishta, and James Heredia. Two of the three owners come from another successful spot in town, BLT’s (Breakfast, Lunch, and Tacos) in downtown St. Louis. The third member of the trio, Adam Kaufman, had previously worked with Heredia, and Heredia was a manager at the Shaved Duck for six years prior to its closure.

Heredia explains that one reason for the soft opening was to ensure that everything was up to par before welcoming diners beyond the eatery’s superfan base. After nearly a year of being closed and with a largely new staff to train, the owners wanted to make sure everything was perfect before opening to the public. Now, Heredia believes they are ready.

However, there is one small hiccup – the city’s onerous process for new liquor licenses. Despite hiring someone to help navigate the various hurdles laid down by city ordinance, the Shaved Duck still does not have a liquor license. Heredia is hopeful that it will only be a few more months at most. In the meantime, he encourages people to support their efforts by ordering takeout or delivery if they want a drink with their barbecue.

The Shaved Duck’s soft opening may have been quiet, but the restaurant is ready to make some noise with its delicious barbecue. The new owners are committed to keeping the food exactly as it was and exactly as it needs to be. So, whether you’re a longtime fan or a newcomer, be sure to stop by and try out the Shaved Duck’s mouthwatering dishes. 

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