A new fast-casual café and catering business recently debuted inside the Regions Centre Building in Clayton, Missouri. UKRAFT, which began as a food truck in 2018, opened its first physical location in early July, featuring items for breakfast and lunch including paninis, avocado toasts and grain bowls. The concept comes from brothers Matt and Mike Ratz, who will open a similar second location at The Foundry in 2020.

“The name comes from our tagline, which is ‘Meals krafted your way,’” says Matt, whose career in hospitality includes serving as the director of two Jimmy John’s franchises. “We have customizable sandwiches, salads and breakfast options. Pretty much everything we do can be customized to what the customer wants.”

As reported by Feast in May, UKRAFT fills a 950-square-foot space previously occupied by Gourmet to Go for nearly 20 years. A communal seating area where visitors can dine on premise is located in the building beside the quick-service counter. 

UKRAFT’s menu mimics that of its food truck, with around eight additional items supplementing the list of offerings including an avocado toast menu. Choose from options such as caprese with avocado spread, heirloom tomato, buffalo mozzarella, fresh basil, an over-medium free range egg and balsamic reduction.

Popular sandwich picks include a steak and cheese panini with grilled marinated steak, sautéed peppers and onions, portobello mushrooms and sharp Cheddar cheese, A chipotle chicken panini comes with antibiotic-free chicken, avocado, tomatoes, onions, pepper jack cheese and chipotle aïoli.

Salads include honey-apple-spinach with baby organic spinach, chicken, apples, strawberries, grapes, blueberries, cucumbers, almonds, granola and honey-apple vinaigrette. True to the brand’s motto, a build-your-own salad option is also available. Soup of the day includes rotating options such as corn chowder and chicken gumbo. Combos include your choice of two items between a half panini, half salad or soup.

For breakfast, selections include a bacon, egg and cheese sandwich or bowl as well as the Southwest Sunrise with turkey sausage, local free-range eggs sourced from Ben Roberts’ Heritage Poultry & Eggs, avocado, pepper jack cheese and chipotle aïoli.

“We’re just trying to hit different flavor profiles and styles of food in terms of various regions, including a lot of Southwest influence,” Mike says. “We want to keep it accessible and tasty.”

To drink, choose from coffee, tea and variety of canned and bottled drinks such as kombucha from Kansas City’s Scoby Masters Tea-Biotics, available in flavors such as hibiscus-watermelon. Online ordering is available for the quickest grab-and-go experience. Catering such as platters and box lunches is also a focus of the brand.

“We think that our concept has value and convenience for the Clayton business worker,” Matt says. “Hopefully folks can wander into the building and give it a try.”

UKRAFT is open Monday through Friday from 6:30am to 2pm.

UKRAFT, 8182 Maryland Ave., Clayton, Missouri, 314.757.7075, ukrafteats.com

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