St. Louis chef leasing former Eat Rite diner

Tim Eagan has been to the diner many times in the past and didn’t want to let any of his favorites get away

ST. LOUIS – St. Louis is certainly known for great restaurants, but unfortunately some favorites have fallen victim to the COVID-19 pandemic and have closed.

A local favorite is about to make a comeback … the “for Lease” sign is no longer on the front of the Eat Rite Diner.

“I always wanted a small supper,” Chef Tim Eagan told 5 On Your Side.

The ownership of the restaurant has changed hands.

“It’s an icon, it’s historic, and it’s exactly what I’ve been looking for,” he said.

Tim Eagan has been to the diner many times in the past and didn’t want to let any of his St. Louis favorites get away.

“I was worried that someone would get it instead of me,” he said.

He got dinner and made it official a few days ago by signing the lease. It was a good day.

“Grinning ear to ear behind my mask,” he said.

People on social media seemed just as excited. He posted a picture of the signing of the lease on Facebook and the post received 1,000+ likes and 250+ shares.

“The answer was insane,” he said.

People may think it’s crazy to open a restaurant in this day and age. He knows this firsthand.

“It was extremely tough,” said Eagan.

He’s been in business for 26 years. He saw firsthand what the pandemic did to the industry.

“I have a small hot dog business that has been closed for 15 months,” he said.

But he’s confident in this new business.

“Sometimes you have opportunities for a reason,” he said.

Eagan is driven by his love for cooking.

“My mother was always a good cook, so I knew what good food was like,” he said.

He is ready for the food rite to serve good food again.

“A lot of the classic diner will begin,” he said. “I want everyone to know that I won’t mess with tradition too much.”

He’ll be putting his twist on the menu, however.

“Just cook from my heart,” said Eagan.

Eagan’s heart told him that the Eat Rite might be the place for him.

“You can see all of your customers right in front of you. I think that will really make it special. I think it should definitely be like that, ”he said.

Eagan hopes the Eat Rite will be open again by mid-May.

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