The Tap: River Chocolate Company, Harriet Brewing, and more

River Chocolate Company (now open)

2822 W 43rd St, Minneapolis | 612.926.8466

River Chocolate Company, a veteran seller at the Minneapolis, St. Paul, and Mill City farmers markets, just opened a year-round store. Ebullient owner Deirdre Davis’ tidy gourmet shop, located in the former Linden Hills Natural Home store in southwest Minneapolis, sells a variety of chocolates, tortes, candies, and all things cocoa, as well as goodies from local purveyors Martha’s Joy, Angelica’s Garden, Whole Grain Milling, Driving Force Energy, and more. “We want to highlight people who may not otherwise have a format for exposure,” Davis said.

Davis also plans to feature a variety of pies, a soda fountain, and coffee from Brooklyn Center-based Roastery 7.

Market booth regular Dru Gronewold-Pedraza, the shop manager, said with the existing Cafe Twenty-Eight, Zumbro, Naviya’s, and the upcoming Tilia, the Linden Hills area was a great place to set up shop. “We’re going to be able to have a serious food mecca here,” she said.

A recent visit also included an important discovery: a plethora of free product samples, including a giant “sample” slice of decadent chocolate torte that would dwarf many restaurant desserts.

Sarah McGee / Heavy Table

Harriet Brewing (now open)

3036 Minnehaha Ave, Minneapolis | 651.491.8979 |

Harriet Brewing held its “official” grand opening Saturday, but it’s been selling growlers for a few weeks now from its new southside brewery near Lake and Hiawatha. A different beer has been sold each weekend thus far; Saturday was a Belgian-style Dubbel, and last weekend’s was the West Side Belgian IPA, which is also on tap at the Blue Nile.

Previous growler buyers had been entering through the loading area, but Harriet’s grand opening means the main entrance on Minnehaha Ave is now open. Yet the building’s rear, where the beer is brewed, is definitely worth a visit. Owner Jason Sowards started Harriet Brewing in his garage, and the brewery’s spinning turntable, thrift-store chairs and laid-back vibe still makes you feel like you’re a guest in his house.

Although now, he’s brewing for more than just his neighbors.

“Our growth has far exceeded our expectations,” Sowards said. “It’s pretty awesome. We plan on maxing out our brew house, but even then we’ll only be doing a couple thousand barrels a year.”

“It’s a group of friends in a business,” Harriet employee Ginny Herman said. “We’re a great group of team players and we’re turning Harriet Brewing to a well-oiled machine. We’re so thankful for the support of the beer community here in the Longfellow neighborhood.”

Sowards said the initial response to Harriet’s opening had buoyed his confidence for the brewery’s success. “It’s good to know that people who know good beer support us,” he said. “As long as we make good beer, they won’t let us sink.”

The brewery’s hours for growler sales are 1-6 p.m. Saturdays and 4-7 p.m. Wednesdays and Fridays, and growlers run $10-$15 with a $5 deposit on new bottles.

Aperitif Restaurant & Bar (closed)

772 Bielenberg Dr, Woodbury |

Perhaps caught up in the mess surrounding St. Paul developer Jerry Trooien’s bankruptcy is one of his company’s holdings, Woodbury’s Aperitif, which closed Monday, at least temporarily. The closing seems abrupt as the restaurant’s Twitter and Facebook pages were actively being updated as of Feb. 24, and its food was consistently praised.


  • River Chocolate Company, 2822 W 43rd St, Minneapolis | 612.926.3731
  • Boiler Coffee Room, 1830 3rd Ave S, Minneapolis | 612.886.2285
  • Smashburger, 8045 Flying Cloud Dr, Eden Prairie |
  • Sweets Bakeshop, 4747 Nicollet Ave S, Minneapolis |
  • Urban Eatery, 2730 W Lake St, Minneapolis | 612.920.5000 |
  • Aji Japanese, 712 Main St, Hopkins | 952.358.3558 |
  • 50th Street Cafe, 3808 W 50th St, Minneapolis | 612.927.4464 |
  • The Lowbrow, 4244 Nicollet Ave S, Minneapolis | 612.208.0720 |
  • Harriet Brewing, 3036 Minnehaha Ave, Minneapolis | 651.491.8979 |
Katie Cannon / Heavy Table
  • Heidi’s, 2903 Lyndale Ave S, Minneapolis | 612.354.3512 |
  • Mazopiya, 27571 Credit Union Dr, Prior Lake | 952.233.9140 |
  • Himalayan Restaurant II, 765 53rd Ave NE, Fridley | 763.586.9800
  • Andiamo Italian Ristorante, 1629 Lena Ct, Eagan | 651.289.2000 |
  • University Buffet,  225 University Ave, St. Paul | 651.366.6858
  • Le CrazyTaste Bakery, 1316 SE 4th St, Minneapolis | 612.331.4388 | UPDATE: Le CrazyTaste just closed, after being open for about 3 months.
  • On’s Thai Kitchen, 1613 University Ave W, St. Paul | 651.644.1444
  • Lucy’s, 3025 E Franklin Ave, Minneapolis | 612.344.5829
Pear and Gorgonzola flatbread pizza at The Herb Box in Eden Prairie
Katie Cannon / Heavy Table
  • The Herb Box, 755 Prairie Center Dr, Eden Prairie | 952.829.8484 |
  • Cocina del Barrio, 5036 France Ave S, Edina | 952-920-1860 |
  • Naviya’s Thai Brasserie, 2812 W 43rd St, Minneapolis | 612.276.5062
  • Pollo Campero, 1572 S Robert St, St. Paul |
  • Hazel’s Northeast, 2859 Johnson St NE, Minneapolis | 612.788.4778 |
  • North Washington Cafe, 700 Washington Ave N, Minneapolis | 612.236.9444 |


  • Amore Coffee, 917 Grand Ave, St. Paul (closing end of March) | 651.222.6770 |
  • Ansari’s Mediterranean Grill, 1960 Rahn Cliff Court, Eagan (closed temporarily due to fire) | 651.452.0999 |
  • Aperitif Restaurant & Bar, 772 Bielenberg Dr, Woodbury |
  • Lily’s, 3301 Central Ave NE, Minneapolis
Becca Dilley / Heavy Table
  • 20.21, 1750 Hennepin Ave, Minneapolis, closing March 12 | 612.253.3410
  • West Indies Soul Food, 920 E Lake St #114, Minneapolis (Midtown Global Market)
  • Pearson’s Edina Restaurant, 3808 W 50th St, Minneapolis
  • Le CrazyTaste Bakery, 1316 SE 4th St, Minneapolis | 612.331.4388 (UPDATED: 03.01.11)
  • Fishman’s Delicatessen and Bakery, 4100 Minnetonka Blvd, Minneapolis
  • The Favor Cafe, 913 W Lake St, Minneapolis
  • Margaux’s Table, 4746 Washington Sq, White Bear Lake
Becca Dilley / Heavy Table
  • Town Talk Diner, 2707 E Lake St, Minneapolis
  • Liberty Frozen Custard, 5401 Nicollet Ave, Minneapolis
  • Om, 401 First Ave N, Minneapolis
  • Volnay Bistro Bar, 331 Broadway, Wayzata (reopening in new location this spring) |
  • 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


  • Black Sheep Pizza, Rossmor Building, 500 N Robert St, downtown St. Paul, opens March 7. | 612.342.COAL |
  • Cowboy Jack’s, 2801 Southtown Dr, Bloomington. Opening set for March.
  • Patriots Tavern, 145 New England Pl, Stillwater. Will be owned by Brent and Brian Pilrain of Roma Market in Willernie, scheduled to open in March. |
  • Sun Street Breads, 4600 Nicollet Ave S, Minneapolis. A brick-and-mortar location for Solveig Tofte, opening late March. |
  • Sopranos Italian Kitchen, 5331 W 16th St, St. Louis Park, opens late March. |
  • American Burger Bar, 800 LaSalle Place (8th and Hennepin), Minneapolis, opening in March. |
  • The Lowry Cafe, 2207 Lowry Ave N, Minneapolis | 612.284.7087
  • Humble Pie, 822 W 36th St, Minneapolis. Kim Bartmann’s revamp of Gigi’s, opening spring 2011. | 612.825.0818
  • Masu Sushi & Robata, 330 E Hennepin Ave, Minneapolis, opening spring 2011. |
  • Turtle Bread, 4205 E 34th St, Minneapolis, opening spring 2011. |
  • The Bullfrog, 1111 Hennepin Ave, Minneapolis, opens early April.
  • Pat’s Tap, 3510 Nicollet Ave S, Minneapolis, opening spring 2011. | 612-825-3229
  • Cranky’s Bicycle Bar, E Lake St, Minneapolis, opening spring 2011. |
  • Wuollet Bakery, 200 S 6th St (U.S. Bank Plaza skyway), Minneapolis. Opening spring 2011. |
  • Chilango Cantina, 212 E Seventh St, St. Paul. Opening late April / early May.
  • Crave, 825 Hennepin Ave, Minneapolis (former Palomino). Opening this spring. |
  • Gather, 1750 Hennepin Ave, Minneapolis (Walker Art Center). Opening late April.
  • Brasa Viva Brazil, 913 W Lake St, Minneapolis
  • Unnamed Tangletown Gardens restaurant, 5401 Nicollet Ave S, Minneapolis (in former Liberty Frozen Custard)
  • Blue Point, 4400 78th St, Bloomington. Opening this spring.
  • Las Tortillas Mexican Restaurant, 15051 Crestone Ave, Rosemount. Opening this spring.
  • Maeve’s Cafe, 300 13th Ave NE, Minneapolis. Opening spring 2011. | 612.379.1033 |
  • Tilia, 2726 W 43rd St, Minneapolis | 612.618.3069 |
  • Bread & Pickle, Lake Harriet bandshell, Minneapolis. Opening April 1 (weather permitting).
  • Burger Jones, 1617 County Road 42, Burnsville. Opens in May. |
  • Rosa Mexicano, 6th and Hennepin, Minneapolis (in City Center next to Fogo de Chao). Coming this summer. |
  • Pizza Ranch, 1220 Highway 25 S Suite 104, Monticello | 320.250.8095 |
  • Blue Door Pub, 26th St and Nicollet Ave, Minneapolis
  • Betty’s Pies, Mall of America |
  • Little Szechuan, Shops at West End, St. Louis Park. Opens May 1. |
  • La Crepe Nanou, Shops at West End, St. Louis Park |
  • Huey’s 24/7 Diner, Shops at West End, St. Louis Park |
  • The Wine Loft, Shops at West End, St. Louis Park |
  • YO!Sushi | Company says five metro locations coming, first in Minneapolis in 2011. |
  • Mill Valley Kitchen, 3900 Excelsior Blvd, St. Louis Park
  • Unnamed Blue Plate restaurant in old Hollywood Video, 2112 Hennepin Ave S, Minneapolis
  • First National Green Room, 215 S Main St, Stillwater

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 Follow The Tap on Twitter at @jasonwalkermpls.


  1. Marsha

    Cars R Coffins is closing (CRC on Lyndale at 34th) and do you know what is going on at the old Joy’s Kitchen at 34th and Nicollet?

  2. Jason Walker

    Thanks Jen. LeCrazy Taste was not open long.
    Marsha, great tip. I’ll get cracking on the Joy’s Kitchen space.

Comments are closed.