From a struggling 12-seat diner inherited from his father-in-law in 1927, Joe Gilbert built himself a Kansas City restaurant empire. But the Dean, as they call him, was more than a restaurateur. To the thousands who worked for him, he was a mentor. To our city's thriving restaurant community, he was a leader. To each and every regular, he was a friend. In a city full of culinary icons, he was a bona fide legend. And he showed all of us just what hospitality and fine dining meant.


"I THINK HE HAD 100,000



All the way into his eighties, Mr. Joe this snappily-dressed silver fox kept growing his empire, reaching 48 restaurants. And even still, he never forgot a cook's name or neglected to tend to the tiniest details. At J.Gilbert's, it is this genuine care for people and legendary love of hospitality that inspires us today. And for all of that, we fondly refer to him as "The Dean."



Managing Partner


A native Californian who has lived coast to coast, Tripp and his wife Debra are honored to call St. Louis his home – raising three children in the area. Tripp joined the J. Gilbert’s family of restaurants in 1977, quickly climbing the ranks as an Executive Chef. He is now the Managing Partner, with a passion for business that reflects the same sentiments as founder Joe Gilbert’s: “Treat every customer as a guest,” and “Be kind to everyone you meet every day.” Tripp has opened and managed 12 different restaurants across five different concepts with the company. He’s proud to be at the helm of J. Gilbert’s, which has been awarded “Best Steakhouse” in the St. Louis area, among other awards noting quality and service. On his off days, Tripp enjoys growing and harvesting fresh vegetable garden.

Executive Chef



Career opportunities

Anywhere there are people who have made a career out of serving up great dining experiences, people know Mr. Joe. And whether they worked in his place when they were just getting started or shook hands at the weekly Rotary Club meeting after making it big, we can guarantee their memories are fond. Because more than the restaurant business, more than the food, more than the happy hours ‐ Joe just loved people. And people always returned the favor.
 It’s more than a job at J. Gilbert’s … it’s a family. That’s why we’re honored to accept a 2019 Best Practices Award for workplace excellence. Thanks to all our valued team members who made it happen and who make a difference every day.
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