Honey & Rye, Ideal Diner, and More

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Readers: Win The Secret Atlas of North Coast Food

The Tap loves restaurant tips from readers, so we’re awarding a copy of “The Secret Atlas of North Coast Food” to the best tipster of July and August. 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 editor@heavytable.com.

Courtesy of Honey & Rye Bakehouse
Courtesy of Honey and Rye Bakehouse

Honey & Rye Bakehouse (opens late 2013)
4501 Excelsior Blvd, St. Louis Park

Succeeding as a food business is all about having a point of view. If you try to be all things to all people, you’re not really anything to anyone. It’s a subtlety that new entrepreneurs Emily Ackerman (above, left) and Anne Andrus (above, right) seem to have firmly grasped in the process of readying their venture, Honey & Rye Bakehouse, for its grand opening later this autumn.

“We’re anti-cupcake,” says co-founder Ackerman, who brings an advertising and graphic design background to the venture. “We want to stick to the classics. No cronuts! We’re not going to be doing ‘precious’ foods with little spiral-y chocolate swirls on top … or fondant frosting … ”

“People who talk to us always ask if we’re going to have doughnuts,” says lead baker Andrus, who learned how to make artisan bread at the well-regarded San Francisco Baking Institute. “No doughnuts. But we will have pie!”

The artisan-bread focused Honey & Rye will be located in an 1,800-square-foot space, across from the St. Louis Park Trader Joe’s, that used to house S&D Cleaners. Sales will be largely grab-and-go, although there will be five small tables indoors and another four outdoors. Proximity to the high-traffic Trader Joe’s is a happy coincidence, says Ackerman: “There’ll be people going there week by week and there’s that part of the grocery list that they’ll be missing if they value good quality bread.”

Parallels between Honey & Rye and the recently opened Buttered Tin in St. Paul run strong: both are founded by two friends, one with a marketing / communications background, the other with a strong training in baking. But Honey & Rye will put less emphasis on breakfast and lunch (although childhood friends Ackerman and Andrus do hope to offer a small rotation of daily sandwiches) and more on breakfast baked goods and specialty, often seasonal breads. These include a small, somewhat dense loaf featuring honey and rye berries and a yeasted cornbread with jalapeños and chorizo.

Of the art of baking bread Andrus says: “It’s so simple — flour, water, yeast, a little malt powder — it’s very basic. But the process is huge. How the bread is being mixed, how it’s handled, how it’s being shaped and rolled — and the oven is super key. You can be an amazing baker, but if you don’t have the right oven, like a deck oven with steam injection, it’s hard to get the right crispy crust and soft inside, and the right color and crumb.”

Ideal Diner (now re-opened)
1314 Central Ave NE, Minneapolis

After 64 years in business, the Ideal Diner in Northeast Minneapolis closed earlier this year. But don’t count the neighborhood landmark out just yet. Kim Robinson, who spent more than 20 years as a waitress at the diner, jumped in and re-opened the diner last week.

“We put a brand new kitchen in back to bring it up to date and code,” says Robinson. “We tiled the front, there’s a new floor and new stools… but we kept the counter!” she exclaims, referring to the heart of the restaurant. “We put new windows in… did all the vents… everything’s shiny new.” “But old,” she adds, in a nod to the history of the place.

According to Robinson, the core of the old menu remains the same, with the Working Man and Lazy Man breakfast deals sticking around, plus the signature pork tenderloin and “giant pancakes.” But, she adds, “when I took over I added corned beef hash. We do our own brisket and we do the hash to order on the grill. I added Reubens and Rachels and the Polish Man which is polish sausage, two eggs, hashbrowns, and toast. And I added biscuits and gravy.”

For Robinson, the core of the diner’s identity is its location in Northeast Minneapolis, an area in transition from light and heavy industry to artists’ lofts and coffee shops. It is, she says, a vital part of the neighborhood, and its closure earlier this year tore a hole in the fabric of neighborhood life. “I really missed the diner,” she says. “I missed the people coming in, and seeing people meet their friends there, and being a nice cheerful gathering place. I knew it needed to be re-opened, and I knew that I knew how to work it.”

She adds: “It’s a good place. It’s a good place to come in for laughter … or just to regroup for the day. She’s 64 but she’s ready for another 50.”


G Concourse, MSP Airport

OTG, the New York-based food service company behind the opening of locally connected airport restaurants including Mimosa (Russell Klein, consultant), Vero (Ann Kim), and Volante (Doug Flicker) has opened a new eatery focused on Jucy Lucys by way of Matt’s Bar in South Minneapolis.

Scott Nelson of Matt’s has loaned his experience and insight to the new restaurant, whose Jucy Lucy was described in a press release as follows: “This famed burger, which takes two beef patties and melts the cheese on the inside, is akin to Philadelphia’s ‘Cheesesteak’ or a New York ‘Slice,’ and is considered to be a destination in itself.”

Pitchfork Brewing Co. (opens Aug. 4, 2013)
709 Rodeo Circle, Hudson, WI

Owned by Mike and Jessie Fredricksen and Sarah and Jason Edwards, the soon-to-open Pitchfork Brewing Co. will feature a taproom, cask ale in firkins, and three signature beers including Pitchfork Pale, Outwitted (“something like a wit”), and American Gothic IPA.

Guayaquil Restaurant (apparently closed)
1526 E Lake St, Minneapolis

For the past week, lights have been out and chairs have been piled haphazardly on tables at this East Lake restaurant known for its Ecuadorian and Mexican cuisine.

Cafe Sol, Burnsville (Opens September 2013)
12629 Nicollet Ave S, Burnsville

When a reader tipped us off to the upcomng Cafe Sol in Burnsville, we thought: “OK, yet another Mexican restaurant opening up in a non-descript suburban location.” Investigation of the restaurant’s Facebook presence revealed something altogether more interesting — a new place offering a “Fusion of African and African Decent Cuisine. Caribbean, Afro-Latin, African, and African American dishes made with Love from the Soul will electrify taste buds South of the River and Beyond.” We’re intrigued.


Dale Yasunaga / Heavy Table
Dale Yasunaga / Heavy Table
Becca Dilley / Heavy Table
Becca Dilley / Heavy Table


  • Guayaquil, 1526 E Lake St, Minneapolis
  • Peter’s Grill, 114 S 8th St, Minneapolis
  • Buster’s on 28th, 4204 S 28th Ave, Minneapolis | Temporary closure due to fire.
  • Uchu, 4130 Berkshire Ln N, Plymouth
  • Johnny Tequila’s Drinking Taco, 430 N 1st Ave, Minneapolis
  • Birdhouse, 2517 Hennepin Ave S, Minneapolis



  • Vo’s, 3450 Lyndale Ave. South, Minneapolis | Opens autumn 2013.
  • The Rabbit Hole, Midtown Global Market | Opens 2013.
  • Sonora Grill (second location), 3300 E Lake St, Minneapolis
  • Ray J’s, 500 Central Avenue SE (old Arone’s location) | Opens 2013.
  • Heyday, 2702 Lyndale Ave, Minneapolis | Opens December 2013.
  • Baldy’s BBQ, 1501 SE University Ave, Minneapolis | Opens 2013.
  • Ideal Diner, 1314 Central Ave NE, Minneapolis | Opens July, pending inspection.
  • La Fresca, 4750 Grand Ave S, Minneapolis | Opens October.
  • Keen Eye Coffee, 2803 E 38th St, Minneapolis | Opens summer 2013.
  • Lake & Irving, 1513 W Lake St, Minneapolis | Opens August.
  • La Loma Tamales, old Tensuke Sushi spot in Medical Arts Building, Minneapolis, 825 Nicollet Mall
  • Ling & Louie’s Kitchen, 9th St and Nicollet Mall, Minneapolis
  • The Tangiers, 116 1st Ave N, Minneapolis | 612.599.2651 | Opens August.
  • The Nicollet Diner, 1428 Nicollet Ave S, Minneapolis
  • Tiny Diner, 1014 E 38th St, Minneapolis | 612.822.6302
  • Unnamed Gastrotruck restaurant, 2400 University Ave NE, Minneapolis | Opens 2013.
  • Rocky and Shem’s Ice Cream Shoppe, 56th St and Chicago Ave, Minneapolis | Opens 2013.
  • Loose-Wiles Freehouse, 701 Washington Ave N, Minneapolis | Opens September.
  • Kitty’s Corner Cafe, 806 Washington Ave SE, Minneapolis

St. Paul

Greater Twin Cities Area

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 editor@heavytable.com.

Banner for the Tap: Food and Drink News

Readers: Win Pint Glasses

The Tap loves restaurant tips from readers, so we’re awarding a copy of “The Secret Atlas of North Coast Food” to the best tipster of July and August. 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 editor@heavytable.com.


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