Readers: Win Heavy Table pint glasses
The Tap loves restaurant tips from readers, so we’re awarding a Heavy Table pint glass to the best tipster each month. The Tap is the metro area’s comprehensive restaurant buzz roundup, so if you see a new or newly shuttered restaurant, or anything that’s “coming soon,” email Tap editor Jason Walker at email@example.com.
September’s winner: Christy Prediger of Minneapolis
Cafe Twenty Eight (closing Dec. 31)
2724 W 43rd St, Minneapolis | 612.926.2800 | cafetwentyeight.com
When the news broke that Linden Hills’ popular Cafe Twenty Eight was closing, it was a somewhat shocking development. The restaurant, bolstered by a thoughtful, locally focused menu and a co-owner who happened to be Surly brewmaster Todd Haug, had a loyal following of locals who enjoyed dishes like pulled pork in adobo, quiche, and a terrific Sunday brunch.
But it also had cache in the metro and even the nation – among beer enthusiasts, anyway – who knew Cafe Twenty Eight would always have the latest Surly release on tap. It was rather common for people to fly in from out of town and go straight to Cafe Twenty Eight for a Darkness, Wet, or another Surly specialty.
So when co-owner Linda Haug – Todd’s wife – decided a couple of years ago she was ready for a new challenge, she worked out a plan to hand the thriving business off to longtime employee Russ Conlon. But Linda Haug said the building’s owners, Joanne and Tom Ellison, had other ideas, denying Conlon a lease extension and effectively shuttering Cafe Twenty Eight.
“The email that Joanne sent said that she ‘seriously considered Russ as an option, but the thought of you leaving got me to thinking of envisioning something new,’” Haug said. “Which, I guess, is their right as a landlord. I think that she just wanted to do something new in the space.”
Personally, Haug is giddy about the future. She plans to take a break, travel to Europe, and assist with the Surly brewery project’s restaurant. But she wasn’t expecting the restaurant to close, and a happy farewell turned into a tearful notice to her employees. She said many had been with her for years – even some since Cafe Twenty Eight opened in 2002.
“That’s really a heartbreaking part of it for me,” she said. “I thought I had it worked out where I’d be stepping away but the whole thing would still be moving along without too much disruption in their lives.”
It’s rumored that a new restaurant is already planned for the space, so it likely won’t sit empty for long.
Haug leaves with a slew of great memories.
“We have a lot of loyal people,” she said. “Seeing the kids that were babies and now are 11 or 12 … all the stuff you’ve gone through, it’s so emotional. The customers and staff have been great.
“It’s been [the landlords’] right to do it, but I was just blindsided by how it went down.”
Cafe Twenty Eight will be open through Dec. 31.
Hot Diggity Dog (now open)
614 Washington Ave SE, Minneapolis | 612.331.3759 | hotdiggitydogmpls.com
Finding a high-quality hot dog is getting easier, thanks to guys like Nate Beck of Natedogs and now Cody Swede and Andrew Jorgensen and their Hot Diggity Dog in Stadium Village. The pair got the itch while following the Twins to cities like Chicago, Milwaukee, Detroit, and Cleveland and eating hot dogs in each.
Jorgensen said the relative lack of quality hot dogs in Minneapolis gave he and Swede their idea.
“People in Minnesota are not really big hot dog fans,” he said. “They think of them as either strictly back-yard grilling fodder or SuperAmerica six-hour grillathon oddities. The overwhelming majority of people in this state have never tasted a 100 percent all-beef frank with all the toppings on a steamed poppy-seed bun. So at a Twins-Brewers game earlier this year, we made our pact to spread the hot dog gospel here to the Twin Cities.”
Hot Diggity Dog’s menu has classic dogs like Chicago style alongside ones like the Mexicali, with nacho cheese, jalapenos, and white onions; the Boston with bacon, baked beans, and cheddar; or the Dusseldorf, a brat with kraut, onions, and German mustard.
“We steam both the hot dogs and the buns, and use dogs with a natural casing,” Jorgensen said. “The steaming maintains the flavor of the hot dog itself and tightens the natural casing to give the hot dogs a distinctive ‘snap’ when you bite into them.”
Dangerous Man Brewing (in development stage)
Northeast Minneapolis | dangerousmanbrewing.wordpress.com
Because of thankfully loosening laws, Rob Miller is hoping to open a Northeast Minneapolis brewpub, Dangerous Man Brewing Co., where he would brew several craft beers to sell on-site in pints as well as to-go growlers. Miller has a site in mind at 1300 2nd St. NE, where he hopes to offer four rotating taps and a house-made soda in an atmosphere that will be family-friendly yet still appeal to “the beer connoisseur, urbanite, home brewer, and any adventurous beer drinker.” Food would not be made on-site, but Miller’s hope is that neighborhood take-out and delivery restaurants can fit that bill. However, the City Council must first adopt an ordinance by Councilmember Gary Schiff that would allow for plans like Miller’s, and a hearing on the ordinance is scheduled for Nov. 7.
- Pig & Fiddle, 3808 W 50th St, Minneapolis | 952.955.8385
- Menchie’s, 750 Cleveland Ave, St. Paul | 651.797.6428 | Find it on Facebook
- Pittsburgh Blue, 3200 Galleria, Edina | 952.567.2700 |pittsburghbluesteak.com
- Smashburger, 2138 Ford Pkwy, St. Paul | smashburger.com
- Queen’s Cafe, 2700 E Lake St, Minneapolis
- Mesa Pizza, 1440 W Lake St, Minneapolis | mesapizzamn.com
- Rare Steak and Sushi, 755 Prairie Center Dr (inside Lifetime Fitness), Eden Prairie | 952.829.8484 | rarempls.com
- Technique, 1440 Northland Dr, Mendota Heights | 651.286.2400 | techniquerestaurant.com
- No-Neck Tony’s, 231 Myrtle St, Stillwater | 651.342.1261 | nonecktonys.com
- The Four Firkins, 5630 36th St, St. Louis Park | 952.938.2847 | thefourfirkins.com
- Mojo Monkey Donuts, 1169 7th St W, St. Paul | 651.224.0142 | Find it on Facebook
- Maeve’s Cafe, 300 13th Ave NE, Minneapolis | 612.379.1033 | Find it on Facebook
- Zen Box Izakaya, 602 Washington Ave S, Minneapolis | 612.332.3936 | Find it on Facebook
- Pat’s Tap, 3510 Nicollet Ave S, Minneapolis | 612.822.8216 | Our take
- Rosa Mexicano, 6th St and Hennepin Ave, Minneapolis (in City Center next to Fogo de Chao) | rosamexicano.com
- Sweet Bebe Cakes, 409 15th Ave N, South St. Paul | 651.457.5082 | sweetbebecakes.com
- Pit Stop Chill & Grill, 4000 6th St NE, Columbia Heights | 763.789.7867 | Find it on Facebook
- Carmine’s, 9900 Valley Creek Rd, Woodbury | 651.730.4500 | carmineswoodbury.com
- DixieBlue BarBQue, 2330 Cloud Dr Suite 101, Blaine | 763.208.9394 | dixiebluebbq.com
- St. Louis Park Woodfire Grill, 6501 Wayzata Blvd, St. Louis Park | 952.345.0505 | slpwoodfiregrill.com
- Joan’s in the Park, 631 Snelling Ave S, St. Paul | 651.690.3297 | joansinthepark.com
- Chez Arnaud, 4735 Highway 61, White Bear Lake | myfrenchbakery.net
- Crooked Pint Ale House, 501 Washington Ave S, Minneapolis | 612.877.6900 | crookedpint.com
- Amsterdam, 6 W 6th St, St. Paul | 651.222.3990 | Find it on Facebook
- Adagio Cafe, 5001 Penn Ave S, Minneapolis | 612.922.2233 | Find it on Facebook
- Hot Diggity Dog, 614 Washington Ave SE, Minneapolis | 612.331.3759 | hotdiggitydogmpls.com
- Deg Deg Grill, 2910 Pillsbury Ave S, Minneapolis | 612.825.1466
- Firehouse Subs, 2303 White Bear Ave, Maplewood | 651.731.7827 | firehousesubs.com
- Sonora Grill, 920 E Lake St, Minneapolis (Midtown Global Market) | 612.871.1900 | Our take
- Steel Toe Brewing, 4848 W 35th St, St. Louis Park | Our take
- Mi Sinaloa, 3801 Chicago Ave S, Minneapolis | 612.824.2828
CLOSED / CLOSING:
- Cafe Twenty Eight, 2724 W 43rd St, Minneapolis. Closing Dec. 31. | 612.926.2800 | cafetwentyeight.com
- Shorty & Wags, 3753 Nicollet Ave S. Closes Oct. 30. | shortyandwags.com
- Koyi Sushi, 2111 E Franklin Ave, Minneapolis
- Pacific Islander Cuisine, 920 E Lake St (Midtown Global Market)
- Savories Bistro, 108 N Main St, Stillwater. Closing end of October. | savoriesbistro.com
- The Herb Box, 755 Prairie Center Dr (inside Lifetime Fitness), Eden Prairie
- Blink Bonnie Subs, 237 East 7th St, St. Paul
- NorthCoast, 294 East Grove Ln, Wayzata
- Wayzata Eatery, 1179 Wayzata Blvd E, Wayzata
- Krua Thai, 432 University Ave W, St. Paul
- Hard Rock Cafe, 7th St and Hennepin Ave, Minneapolis
- Ernie’s Pub, & Grille, 14351 Nicollet Ct, Burnsville. Opens Oct. 24 | 952.435.2867 | erniespub.com
- Stout’s Pub, 1611 Larpenteur Ave, Falcon Heights. Opens Oct. 26.
- The Donut Cooperative, 2929 E 25th St, Minneapolis. Opens in October. | thedonutcooperative.com
- Zest! Bar and Grill, 525 Diffley Rd, Eagan. Opens late October. | 651.468.9053 | zesteagan.com
- Valley Tap House, 14889 Florence Tr, Apple Valley. Opens in November. | Find it on Facebook
- Jason’s Deli, 7565 France Ave S, Edina. Opens in early November. | jasonsdeli.com
- Turkey to Go, Baker Center, Minneapolis; Alliance Bank Center, St. Paul. Opens in November. | turkeytogo.com
- My Burger, 3100 Excelsior Blvd, Minneapolis. Opens in November. | Find it on Facebook
- Kopplin’s Coffee, 2038 Marshall Ave, St. Paul (moving to new location). Opens Nov. 25. | kopplinscoffee.com
- American Joe, 344 Wabasha St N, St. Paul. Opens in November.
- Wild Bill’s Sports Saloon, 546 Commons Dr, Woodbury. Opens in November. | 651.357.1050 | wildbills-sportssaloon.com
- Rye Delicatessen & Bar, 1930 Hennepin Ave S, Minneapolis. Opens in November. | Find it on Facebook
- Colossal Cafe, 2315 Como Ave, St. Paul. Opens Dec. 1. | colossalcafe.com
- Blood and Chocolates, 495 Selby Ave, St. Paul | 651.492.4799 | Find it on Facebook
- Eli’s East Food and Cocktails, 815 E Hennepin Ave, Minneapolis | 612.331.0031 | Find it on Facebook
- Fasika, University Ave and Dale St, St. Paul | fasika.com
- Rincon 38, 38th St and Grand Ave, Minneapolis
- Eat Street Social, 14 W 26th St, Minneapolis. Opens this fall.
- Icehouse, 2528 Nicollet Ave, Minneapolis. Opens this fall.
- Rodizio Grill, 12197 Elm Creek Blvd N, Maple Grove. Opens this fall. | rodiziogrill.com
- Butcher and the Boar, 1121 Hennepin Ave, Minneapolis. Opens in December.
- Humble Pie, 822 W 36th St, Minneapolis. Kim Bartmann’s revamp of Gigi’s. | 612.825.0818
- Blue Door Pub, 3448 42nd Ave S, Minneapolis | thebdp.com
- El Loro, 2535 W Highway 10, Mounds View
- Five Guys, 8360 3rd St N, Oakdale | fiveguys.com
- Cupcake, Grand Ave, St. Paul
- Burger Night, Minneapolis
- Kyoto Sushi, 13751 Grove Dr, Maple Grove | 763.488.1588 | kyotomn.com
- Cranky’s Bicycle Bar, E Lake St, Minneapolis | Find it on Facebook
- Dangerous Man Brewing, Northeast Minneapolis | dangerousmanbrewing.wordpress.com
- Smokehouse Brewpub, 38th St and 28th Ave S, Minneapolis. Opens spring 2012.
- Lucid Brewing, 6020 Culligan Way, Minnetonka | lucidbrewing.wordpress.com
- La Crepe Nanou, Huey’s 24 / 7 Diner, The Wine Loft, Shops at West End, St. Louis Park | lacrepenanou.com | hueys247diner.com | thewineloft.net
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 firstname.lastname@example.org. The Tap’s Twitter feed has moved to@heavytable.