The Tap: A Fight for Survival at Mr. Roberts Resort

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This week in the Tap: Recent restaurant openings and closings, plus a call for support for the newly opened Mr. Roberts Resort in Pengilly.

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 James Norton at

Sarah Master / Heavy Table
Becca Dilley / Heavy Table

Do-or-Die Time for Mr. Roberts Resort

Sarah Master is one of the best chefs working in the state. Her tenure at Barbette was understated but glorious, we loved her food at Porter and Frye, and we were blown away by the soft-spoken but impeccably done stuff she’s been turning out at Mr. Roberts Resort in Pengilly. A perfect storm of a lousy winter (not enough snow to encourage winter tourists; too much bad weather to attract visitors from 20+ miles away) and a lack of available loans have put the restaurant in a position where it may have to shut down. Check out the restaurant’s Go Fund Me page; if you find it convincing, you can help turn the tide for a beacon of good eats on the Iron Range.

And if you’d like to learn some gastronomic artistry from Chef Master, join her and our other chef instructors at Chef Camp — six tickets remain for the Sept. 2-4 event.


Isabel Subtil / Heavy Table
Isabel Subtil / Heavy Table
Jane Rosemarin / Heavy Table
Jane Rosemarin / Heavy Table
  • Rose Street Patisserie, 2811 W 43rd St, Minneapolis | The Linden Hills incarnation of Patisserie 46 is a bakery and full-service restaurant with 54 seats.
  • Wildwood Scoop, 460 Stillwater Rd, Willernie
  • Handsome Hog, 203 E 6th St, St. Paul | Former Brasserie Zentral and Meritage chef Justin Sutherland is cooking contemporary Southern food with a high-end twist. Our review.




Screenshot from Wild Mind Ales website
Screenshot from Wild Mind Artisan Ales website
  • Wild Mind Artisan Ales Taproom, 6031 Pillsbury Ave S, Minneapolis | As per the press release: “Wild Mind will predominantly produce wild, sour, farmhouse, saison, and rustic ales in the traditional European method: through barrel aging and blending, which produces beers with rich, deep, complex flavors.
  • Five Watt (Roastery and Cafe), 2904 Harriet Ave S, Minneapolis | August | Former Uptown Imports location.
  • Bad Waitress (second location), 700 Central Avenue NE | November
  • BBQ Joint Name TBA, 816 Lowry Ave. NE, Minneapolis | 2016 | A Kansas City-style BBQ place “with no chairs and tables” opened by some combination of the Travail team.
  • Red Rabbit, 201 Washington Ave N, Minneapolis | Autumn 2016 | Red Cow owner Luke Shimp’s new spot will offer “a variety of dishes including handcrafted pizzas, oysters, pasta, fresh salads and more.”
  • Clockwerks Brewing Company, 25 4th St N, Minneapolis | Late spring.
  • Up-Down Arcade, 3012 Lyndale Ave S, Minneapolis | Mid-summer 2016 | Pizza and video games, hard to top that.
  • Trapeze, 1600 W Lake St, Minneapolis | Early Summer 2016 | A new Kim Bartmann “bubbles and toasts” bar opening next door to Barbette.
  • Lu’s Sandwiches, 10 6th St NE, Minneapolis
  • Mercury Dining Room and Rail, 505 S Marquette Ave, Minneapolis | Autumn 2016 | Scratch fare from the Blue Plate Restaurant Company in the old Brasserie Zentral space. The former Foreign Legion will become the Shindig Event Center.
  • Blackeye Roasting Company, 330 2nd Ave S, Minneapolis (Skyway level) | Spring | An 18-seat cafe located in the skyway with 10 tap lines of nonalcoholic beverages that include nitro cold brew coffee, nitro iced tea, kombucha, and draft cocktails.
  • Erik the Red, 600 1st Ave N, Minneapolis | Summer | Nordic-influenced barbecue from the owner of Devil’s Advocate.
  • Kaiseki Furukawa, 30 N 1st St, Minneapolis | October | Classic kaiseki (progressive small courses) dining. We can’t wait.
  • Costa Blanca, 2416 Central Ave NE, Minneapolis | The latest spot from the opening-restaurants-like-crazy Hector Ruiz. Now hiring cooks and servers, so an opening may be coming soon.
  • Young Joni, 165 13th Ave NE, Minneapolis | Summer 2016 | Anticipation is high for this new wood-fired pizza and Korean spot by Pizzeria Lola / Hello Pizza boss Ann Kim.
Becca Dilley / Heavy Table
Becca Dilley / Heavy Table
  • Bakers’ Field, The Food Building | 2016 | Bread made from grain milled on site at the Food Building in Northeast Minneapolis. The bakery’s owner is Steve Horton, formerly of Rustica. Listen to Steve talk about the project on The Weekend Starts Now podcast.
  • Revival, 525 Selby Ave, St. Paul (former Cheeky Monkey space) | Summer 2016 | A second location for the popular fried chicken spin-off of Corner Table. The original location will also be expanding and offering take-out.
  • Project TBD at old Walker Library in Uptown, 2901 Hennepin Ave S | Architectural details available here.
  • Cafe Alma, 530 University Ave SE, Minneapolis | 2016 | Slated to be an all-day cafe with a liquor license and a six-room hotel upstairs, as Alex Roberts explains in this Q and A with Rick Nelson.
Becca Dilley / Heavy Table
Becca Dilley / Heavy Table
  • Brut, 428 Washington Ave N, Minneapolis | 2016 | With all the culinary firepower of Erik Anderson (above) and Jamie Malone, Brut promises exciting things. It’s going into the old Sapor space on Washington Avenue.
  • Lawless Distilling, 2619 28th Ave S, Minneapolis | June 23
  • Bonicelli Kitchen, 1839 Central Ave NE, Minneapolis | July 1 | Opening in the former Razaaq space on Central Avenue.
  • Twin Spirits Distillery, 2931 Central Ave NE, Minneapolis | 2016
  • McKinney Roe, 550 4th St S, Minneapolis | September 2016 | Contemporary American food by the owner of O’Donovan’s Irish Pub and Lola’s Lakehouse.
  • DiNoko’s Pizzeria, 4457 42nd Ave S, Minneapolis | Delayed | DiNoko’s is a local place that can do deep dish pizza seriously well. Their move from Nokomis to downtown Minneapolis didn’t work out; here’s hoping that their return foray to South Minneapolis does.
  • Utepils (formerly Bryn Mawr) Brewing, 225 Thomas Ave N, Minneapolis | Fall 2016

St. Paul

  • Black Coffee and Waffle Bar, Marshall and Cretin Aves, St. Paul | Second location. Plenty of build-out evident, things seem to be cookin’.
  • Parco 400, 400 N Sibley St, St. Paul | ??? | A new Italian restaurant opening in the old Trattoria Da Vinci spot in Lowertown, the culinary side to be headed up by Troy Unruh, formerly of New York City’s well-known Del Posto. Facebook page is eerily quiet, website is a placeholder.
  • Tori Ramen, 161 N Victoria St, St. Paul | 2016 |  Chicken-focused ramen shop in the former Lee and Dee’s.
  • Bottle Rocket, 1806 St. Clair Ave, St. Paul | 2016 | A reboot by the Blue Plate Restaurant Company of the former Scusi space with craft cocktails.
  • World of Beer, 356 N Sibley St, St. Paul | 2016 | Part of a chain including locations in Wauwatosa and Appleton, Wis., and Naperville, Ill. Opening seems interminably delayed.
Katie Cannon / Heavy Table
Katie Cannon / Heavy Table
  • 11 Wells Millwright Cocktail Room, Historic Hamm Building, St. Paul | 2016 | A restaurant aspect to the space is rumored to be under consideration.
  • The Lexington (new ownership), 1096 Grand Ave, St. Paul | ??? | It’ll be interesting to see how the ambitious team behind this revamp and relaunch tackles the task. Between its facade, its location, and its glorious but stuffy, old-school feel, we’ll find it tough to sort the baby from the bathwater on this one. Their Facebook page says, “Keep calm. We are opening soon.” Last Facebook update: March 8.

Greater Twin Cities Area and Beyond

The Tap is the Heavy Table’s guide to area restaurant openings, closings, and other major events. The Tap is compiled and published biweekly by the Heavy Table. If you have tips for The Tap, please email James Norton at


  1. Kevin Marshall

    A couple St. Paul notes:

    This weekend, I was driving past Grand and Lexington at night and noticed that the signs at the Lexington were lit. That was new to me but I can’t say that it was a new development – perhaps I have missed that previously.

    I also note with mixed emotion the planned opening of Tori Ramen. One one hand, it will be great to have a ramen spot in St. Paul. On the other, I fear this is what gentrification looks like: replacement of a long time restaurant that had ethnically ties to the neighborhood with a place offering trendy new cuisine. Obviously the story is more complicated than that. I will even own some of the guilt for driving past Lee & Dee’s but never stopping to eat.

    Cheers and thanks for the Green Line reviews!

    1. James Norton

      You make an interesting point about Tori Ramen, although I will say that they’re a scrappy, independent outfit with a dream of making great food – not yet another location for Crave (or, far worse, Applebee’s etc.) If we have to be reductive and talk about things being good or bad for the scene, I’d definitely rate this a net neutral transaction – maybe even positive if the ramen is killer and the place is something special. (Although I too hadn’t been to Lee & Dee’s, so I can’t say for certain.)

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