For me, by far, Venice Cafe always has been and still is the best spot in St. Louis. I shouldn't have to say more but I will explain why. 20 years ago, I used to read poetry there, and it was the only decent or even excellent place to read poetry in St. Louis.
Now, it still has the best open mic in St. Louis by super far, but now the musicians are outstanding -with original accoustic music by excellent guitarists and singers including members of some of the most exciting bands who play around the area, this is the place. Also, open mic night is free. Drinks are reasonable with great people. What could be better?
I am from St. Louis and have lived in Puerto Rico for over 20 years, and although I sing in many places and jam with salsa and rumba players there, no venue there compares with Venice Cafe.
Those of you who like to perform at open mics or sing Karaoke, know what a hassle it is to perform at most places where people have no respect for music but only want to drink and watch people make fools of themselves.
It is like heaven performing at Venice Cafe since the people in charge and the audience are extra suppotive, and the talent is first rate. So, if you can't keep a tune, you can do Karaoke at Blueberry Hill but you can check out some great talent at Venice Cafe. If you have talent and love music make sure that you go to Venice Cafe on Monday nights for the open mic excellence.
Pros: Great music, drinks, ambience, talent, respect