Mike Randolph is the chef owner of three St. Louis restaurants, including his latest, Publico.
Publico’s logo and entrance sign
Publico avoids Mexican cliché design elements with a blend of contemporary and rustic features that include a central bar and exhibition kitchen. SPACE Architects + Planners came up with the design.
Other than two induction burners, everything on the menu is cooked on the open hearth with Missouri oak wood.
Fire it up!
Publico’s open-hearth design allows magic to happen, including pinto beans cooked with lamb drippings and a customer favorite, spit-roasted al pastor tacos with pork shoulder and pineapple.
A nice small-plate offering is this lamb tartare with arbol chile, mint and puffed rice.
From the sea
Another interesting small plate is this octopus a la parilla with Veracruz-inspired green olive puree, cilantro and chili.
Publico has a “tortilla master” who grinds corn by hand to make tortillas from scratch.
A Publico favorite is lamb barbacoa tacos with spit-roasted lamb leg, mescal crema and charred onion salsa.