The Tap: Mendoberri, Sweets Bakeshop, Masu Sushi & Robata, and more

Mendoberri Cafe & Wine Bar (now open)

730 Main St, Mendota Heights | 651.209.3270 | mendoberri.com

As parents sick of searching for quick, local / organic food options, chef Robert Ulrich and wife Ann have opened Mendoberri Cafe & Wine Bar in Mendota Heights, in the former Sage Wine Bar and Market space. Ulrich, an Austrian who is the former chef of Basil’s in Minneapolis’ IDS Center, is “trying to bring a European flair to all the menu items,” according to Ann.

“We’re trying to do a lot of organic and source a lot of local, and we do have gluten-free and vegetarian options,” she says. “Our dairy is from PastureLand and our chicken is from Callister Farm.

“Even though we have a few restaurants out here, there’s just not a whole lot of places in our neighborhood doing what we’re doing. We just felt like this niche was missing here in Mendota Heights.”

That niche has continued to evolve — the locals demanded waitstaff for dinner, for example, instead of the casual counter service employed at lunch — but the healthy, family-friendly yet upscale fare coupled with thoughtful beer and wine options likely is a treat for the tiny, well-heeled suburb.

“The concept was supposed to be around providing local and organic foods to go,” Ann says. “As a family, we’re always on the run and we thought there needs to be something in-between for families. You don’t want to just stick McDonald’s in your mouth, you want wholesome food. That was the genesis of the whole thing.”

Becca Dilley / Heavy Table

Sweets Bakeshop (opens Feb. 4)

4747 Nicollet Ave S, Minneapolis | sweetsbakeshop.com

Adding to Southwest Minneapolis’ embarrassment of pastry riches, the popular St. Paul maker of cupcakes and macarons is opening a second location in the former Madwoman Foods space next to C&G’s Smoking Barbecue. Krista Steinbach, pastry chef and co-owner, says the new store’s menu would pretty much mirror the St. Paul shop. “We are working with Andrew Kopplin at Kopplin’s Coffee in St. Paul for the coffee and will be offering coffee that is paired with particular cupcake flavors,” she says. “For the opening, it will be a great blend that goes with everything. We will also offer a few new items to our menu such as trifles with more to come in the future.” The grand opening Feb. 4 will include samples and a prize drawing.

Masu Sushi & Robata (opens early spring)

330 Hennepin Ave E, Minneapolis | www.masusushiandrobata.com

Asan Yamamoto, formerly of Origami, will be executive sushi chef at the Tim McKee-enhanced Masu Sushi & Robata in Northeast Minneapolis. “Asan was my first choice, and I consider him the best sushi chef in the Twin Cities,” says McKee, who as the restaurant’s consultant also has tapped protege Alex Chase as executive chef. Chase has worked at McKee joints La Belle Vie, Barrio, and Solera, as well as Fuji Ya and the now-shuttered Martini Blu. Besides sushi and robata (a traditional Japanese grilling technique), the menu will include an array of noodles including udon, soba, and ramen.

Pearson’s Edina Restaurant

3808 W 50th St, Minneapolis | 612.927.4464 | pearsonsedinarestaurant.org

A new twist has popped up regarding Pearson’s iconic 50th and France restaurant, long rumored to be on the chopping block to make way for a new Walgreens. Now, however, it appears the site will remain a restaurant, and may remain open during the transition to a new concept, according to sources. A Pearson’s representative Monday declined to comment on the deal or even when the restaurant’s current incarnation would cease. But the rumor is that some of its iconic dishes, and surely its gigantic stone fireplaces, may remain with the new tenant, providing at least some solace to Pearson’s fans.

NOW OPEN

  • The Lowbrow, 4244 Nicollet Ave S, Minneapolis | 612.208.0720 | thelowbrowmpls.com
  • Harriet Brewing, 3036 Minnehaha Ave, Minneapolis | 651.491.8979 | harrietbrewing.com
  • Heidi’s, 2903 Lyndale Ave S, Minneapolis | 612.354.3512 | heidismpls.com
  • Mazopiya, 27571 Credit Union Drive, Prior Lake | 952.233.9140 | mazopiya.com
  • Himalayan Restaurant II, 765 53rd Ave NE, Fridley | 763.586.9800
  • The Herb Box, 755 Prairie Center Dr, Eden Prairie | 952.829.8484 | theherbbox.com
  • Andiamo Italian Ristorante, 1629 Lena Ct, Eagan | 651.289.2000 | andiamomn.com
  • University Buffet,  225 University Ave, St. Paul | 651.366.6858
  • Le CrazyTaste Bakery, 1316 SE 4th St, Minneapolis | 612.331.4388

Sarah McGee / Heavy Table

  • On’s Thai Kitchen, 1613 University Ave W, St Paul | 651.644.1444
  • Lucy’s, 3025 E Franklin Ave, Minneapolis | 612.344.5829
  • Cocina del Barrio, 5036 France Ave S, Edina | 952.920.1860 | barriotequila.com
  • Naviya’s Thai Brasserie, 2812 W 43rd St, Minneapolis | 612.276.5062
  • Pollo Campero, 1572 S Robert St, St. Paul | campero.com
  • Hazel’s Northeast, 2859 Johnson St NE, Minneapolis | 612.788.4778 | hazelsnortheast.com
  • North Washington Cafe, 700 Washington Ave N, Minneapolis | 612.236.9444 | northwashingtoncafe.com
  • Falafel King, 1851 Central Ave NE, Minneapolis | falafelking.com
  • In Season, 5416 Penn Ave S, Minneapolis | 612.926.0105 | inseasonrestaurant.com
  • Blackbird, 3800 Nicollet Ave S, Minneapolis | 612.823.4790 | blackbirdmpls.com
  • The Inn, 89 S 10th St, Minneapolis | 612.886.2377 | inneats.com
  • Mozza Mia, 3910 W 50th St, Edina | 952.288.2882 | mozzamia.com

Becca Dilley / Heavy Table

  • Pizzeria Lola, 5557 Xerxes Ave S, Minneapolis | 612.424.8338 | pizzerialola.com
  • Psycho Suzi’s, 1900 Marshall St NE | 612.788.9069 | psychosuzis.com
  • Saucy Chicken, 625 Marquette Ave (Northstar Building), Minneapolis | 612.332.2194
  • Turkey to Go, 608 2nd Ave S, (also Northstar Building), Minneapolis

CLOSED/CLOSING:

  • Fishman’s Delicatessen and Bakery, 4100 Minnetonka Blvd, Minneapolis, closing Feb. 21 | 952.926.5611 | fishmanskosher.com
  • Margaux’s Table, 4746 Washington Square, White Bear Lake
  • Town Talk Diner, 2707 E Lake St, Minneapolis
  • Liberty Frozen Custard, 5401 Nicollet Ave, Minneapolis

Katie Cannon / Heavy Table

  • Om, 401 First Ave N, Minneapolis
  • Volnay Bistro Bar, 331 Broadway Ave, Wayzata (reopening in new location this spring) | volnaybistro.com
  • The View, 2730 W Lake St, Minneapolis (reopening as Urban Eatery)
  • Nordeast Eatery, 2100 Summer St NE, Minneapolis
  • Classic Pizza, 1048 Rice St, St. Paul
  • Chateau Lamothe, 14351 Nicollet Ct, Burnsville
  • The Kitchen, 324 Main St S, Stillwater
  • Da Afghan, 929 W 80th St, Bloomington
  • Kieran’s Old Pub, 330 2nd Ave S, Minneapolis
  • 501 Club, 501 Washington Ave S, Minneapolis
  • St. Martin’s Table, 2001 Riverside Ave, Minneapolis

COMING UP:

  • Smashburger, 8045 Flying Cloud Drive, Eden Prairie, opening Feb. 2 | smashburger.com
  • Sweets Bakeshop, 4747 Nicollet Ave S, Minneapolis, opening Feb. 4 | sweetsbakeshop.com
  • Humble Pie, 822 W 36th St., Minneapolis (Kim Bartmann’s revamp of Gigi’s, coming in February) | 612.825.0818
  • Boiler Coffee Room, 1820 3rd Ave S, Minneapolis, opening in February

Katie Cannon / Heavy Table

  • Black Sheep Pizza, Rossmor Building, 500 N Robert St, downtown St. Paul, opening in February | 612.342.COAL | blacksheeppizza.com
  • Cowboy Jack’s, 2801 Southtown Dr, Bloomington, opening set for February / March
  • The Bullfrog, 1111 Hennepin Ave, Minneapolis, opening March 1
  • Patriot’s Tavern, 145 New England Place, Stillwater. Will be owned by Brent and Brian Pilrain of Roma Market in Willernie, scheduled to open March 8
  • Sun Street Breads, 4600 Nicollet Ave S, Minneapolis. A brick-and-mortar location for Solveig Tofte, opening in March | sunstreetbreads.com
  • Sopranos Italian Kitchen, 5331 W 16th St, St. Louis Park (former Ringo), opening mid-March | sopranosmn.com
  • Masu Sushi & Robata, 330 E Hennepin Ave, Minneapolis, opening spring 2011 | www.masusushiandrobata.com
  • Turtle Bread, 4205 E 34th St, Minneapolis, opening February / March 2011 | turtlebread.com
  • Pat’s Tap, 3510 Nicollet Ave S, Minneapolis, opening spring 2011 | 612.825.3229
  • Cranky’s Bicycle Bar, east Lake St, Minneapolis, opening spring 2011 | crankysbicyclebar.com
  • Wuollet Bakery, 200 S 6th St (U.S. Bank Plaza skyway), Minneapolis, opening spring 2011 | www.wuollet.com
  • Chilango Cantina, 212 E Seventh St, St. Paul, opening late April/early May
  • Crave, 825 Hennepin Ave, Minneapolis (former Palomino), opening this spring | craveamerica.com
  • American Burger Bar, 800 LaSalle Place (8th and Hennepin), Minneapolis | americanburgerbar.com
  • Blue Point, 4400 78th St, Bloomington, opening spring 2011
  • Las Tortillas Mexican Restaurant, 15051 Crestone Ave, Rosemount
  • Maeve’s Cafe, 300 13th Ave NE, Minneapolis, opening in summer | 612.379.1033 | maeves.com
  • Tilia, 2726 W 43rd St, Minneapolis | 612.618.3069 | tiliampls.com
  • The Lowry Cafe, 2207 Lowry Ave N, Minneapolis | 612.284.7087
  • Bread & Pickle, Lake Harriet bandshell, Minneapolis, opening April 1 (weather permitting)
  • Burger Jones,1617 Cty Rd 42, Burnsville, opening in May | burgerjones.com
  • Rosa Mexicano, 6th and Hennepin, Minneapolis (in City Center next to Fogo de Chao) | rosamexicano.com
  • Pizza Ranch, 1220 Hwy 25 S Suite 104, Monticello | 320.250.8095 | pizzaranch.com
  • Blue Door Pub, 26th and Nicollet, Minneapolis
  • Betty’s Pies, Mall of America | bettyspies.com
  • Little Szechuan, Shops at West End, St. Louis Park | littleszechuan.com
  • La Crepe Nanou, Shops at West End, St. Louis Park | lacrepenanou.com
  • Huey’s 24/7 Diner, Shops at West End, St. Louis Park | hueys247diner.com
  • The Wine Loft, Shops at West End, St. Louis Park | thewineloft.net
  • YO!Sushi | Company says five metro locations coming, first in Minneapolis in 2011 | yosushi.com
  • Mill Valley Kitchen, 3900 Excelsior Blvd, St. Louis Park

The Tap is The Heavy Table’s guide to area restaurant openings, closings, and other major events. The Tap is compiled by Heavy Table writer Jason Walker, and will be published biweekly. If you already subscribe to our newsletter, look for an emailed version of The Tap every other week — otherwise, you can find it on the website on alternating Tuesdays.

If you’ve got tips for The Tap, please email Jason Walker at jason@heavytable.com.

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About the Author

Jason Walker

Jason Walker was born and raised in Kansas, where he grew up loving his grandmother’s homemade noodles and weekly fried fish. A summer internship in Milwaukee turned Jason and his wife, Leita, into die-hard fans of the Northwoods culture, and they moved to Minneapolis in 2006. Immediately the quality of food and drink in the Twin Cities was impressive – that even the most unassuming bar usually had a decent menu – and Jason knew he was home. Now living in the Fulton neighborhood with two kids, Jason grows tomatoes, cans voraciously, and badgers his neighbors with conversations about restaurants.

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