HauteWok Takeover at HauteDish Will Heat Up January Dining

Categories: Events, News

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Haute Dish
General Tso's Sweetbreads will be available during HauteWok week.

Little known fact: Chef Landon Schoenefeld used to be a delivery driver for Ping's, the long-standing, very pink, Nicollet Avenue Chinese spot where fried rice and cream cheese wontons reign supreme.

Seems those long hours trapped in the Pinto with the waft of grease driving him wild had a lasting effect.


See also:
Haute Dish will soon get a BBQ joint makeover

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Verdant Tea Tasting Room Is Now Verdant Lounge With Argentinian Flair

Categories: News, Restaurants

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Verdant Lounge
Verdant has a new look, a new feel, and a new menu.

Tea is the new coffee and kombucha is the new tea and David Duckler is peddling both, which means he's a busy guy and has decided he doesn't need to be into food, too. So he's sold his Verdant Tea Tasting Room to his chef Katriel Menendez and Menendez's partners Ozzy Amelotti and Pablo Vinuesa.

See also:
Verdant's New Menu: More to Taste at This Tea Tasting Room

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Bonfire Uses Servers' Tips to Pay Credit Card Fees

Categories: News

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Image from Google Street View
St. Paul's Bonfire is one of seven state-wide locations.

If you eat at Bonfire, your tips aren't making it into that smiling server's pocket at the end of the day without a grab-and-dash toll tax to the restaurant.

Derek Johnson, a server at Bonfire in St. Paul, has been slinging dishes at the popular wood-fire pizzeria since mid-summer. He says a month after he started, he served a large party that tipped him about $80, but at the end of the shift Bonfire withheld 2 percent.

When Johnson asked where the rest was, his manager explained that the restaurant had a legal right to take a percentage of servers' tips to cover credit card fees. Though Bonfire is actually correct in that according to the federal Fair Labor Standards Act, Johnson's pissed because no one bothered to tell him they were taking his money.

As a result, for a while he was claiming more than he was actually making, and paying taxes on imaginary income, Johnson says.

See also:
Blue Plate Responds to Minimum Wage Increase By Dipping into Servers' Tips


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Terroir Food Symposium Plans 2015 Conference in Minneapolis

Categories: Events, News

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Terroir Symposium

Fact: The Twin Cities is one of the fastest growing restaurant communities in the country, with close to 100 new restaurants opening this year, many if not most of them independent. With national talent -- the kind that could settle anywhere -- making Minneapolis and St. Paul their home, there's a spotlight on us from around the globe.

Case in point: Many of the very biggest names in the local food world came together in one room last week -- it also happened to be probably the best and porkiest potluck we've ever been invited to -- to assist in planning the 2015 Terroir Symposium.

Who was there? Jamie Malone and Erik Anderson of upcoming Brut, Landon Schoenefeld of Haute Dish, Niki Francoli of La Belle Vie, Jim Christiansen of Heyday, Doug Flicker of Piccolo, Tim McKee, and, well, you get the idea.

So what the hell is a Terroir Symposium and why does it matter?

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#Grapegate: Top Tweets From the Great Grape Salad Controvery of 2014

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Maccheek on Wikipedia
The tastiest of controversies
For those of you who don't spend all day on social media, yesterday the New York Times ran a post entitled "The United States of Thanksgiving," in which NYT food writers "scoured the nation for recipes that evoke each of the 50 states."

For Minnesota, they chose grape salad, which led hundreds to beg the question on Twitter and Facebook: What the fuck is a grape salad?

See also:
Where to Get Thanksgiving To-Go in the Twin Cities


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DrinkFly App Brings Fuss-Free Alcohol Delivery to Minneapolis

Categories: News

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We've done it, you've done it, we all do it: miscalculate the booze you've got on hand to get through the night, or to get through the hangover.

If you've had one too many -- or one too few -- getting off your duff to set things straight can be a real bummer, and maybe against the law if you're contemplating a tipsy ride.

Enter DrinkFly, otherwise known as What the Smartphone Was Invented For. A few taps of the fingertip and you're back in the drink.

See also:
From The Jug With Love
On the hairy business of home booze delivery

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Charlie Awards 2014: Winners, a Kitchen Band, and Bad Yelp Reviews

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For the restaurant patrons and peers attending the 4th annual Charlie Awards at the Pantages Theatre, where over a dozen outstanding food industry professionals were honored, the most-heard mantras from award recipients were:

"Holy shit!" and some variation of "Don't thank me, thank my wife/girlfriend/significant other," ostensibly for putting up with the long hours and absenteeism inherent to dedication to the craft.

Highlights included Salty Tart's Michelle Gayer as co-hostess, as well as the Taste Buds (a Steven Brown-assembled crew of restaurant folk banging on pots and pans in lieu of musical instruments; Brown was disappointingly absent) and a big-screening of pro actors reading hilarious Yelp reviews.

See also:
Our Predictions for the Oscars of Local Dining: The 4th Annual Charlie Awards


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New Digs for Prohibition Kombucha

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Prohibition Facebook

The kombucha company inspired by founder Nate Uri's four months on the wagon (he was bored and needed a bevie to quell the cravings) has landed a 5,300-square foot Seward warehouse space, where they'll be able to increase their production five-fold.

See also:
Ky Guse gives us the gist of GYST, an upcoming fermentation bar on Eat Street [VIDEO]

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Eight Years, New Chefs, and Free Vittles at Grand Cafe

Categories: Events, News

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Grand Cafe's Facebook
Grand Cafe celebrates eight years

Eight years is a milestone anniversary for an indie restaurant. Grand Cafe owners Dan and Mary Hunter know this, and they're celebrating the occasion with an upcoming "appreciation open house."

See also:
Best Sunday Brunch Minneapolis: Grand Cafe


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Brian Nelson, Esteemed Veteran Fishmonger for Coastal Seafoods, Has Passed Away

Categories: News

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A big name and an even bigger personality in the world of food has passed away.

Brian Nelson is the name on every chef's lips this morning as word spreads that Nelson, wholesale manager and veteran Coastal Seafoods fishmonger, has died.


See also:
Coastal Seafoods turns 30: Chef Chat, part 3

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