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First Bite: District Fresh Kitchen + Bar
By: Stephanie March | Posted: 08/04/2014
It's been a while in the creating, and if you've trolled the Facebook page you've likely been drooling, but at long last Lyn 65 Kitchen & Bar will open softly tomorrow.
I popped in for a lookee as they were still in training and getting things set up. Right on Lyndale, across from the new Lakewinds Co-op in Richfield, the restaurant anchors a corner spot in a small strip mall. Inside, it's all barrels, buffed concrete floors, and bohemian DIY accents. It's a long space with about 78 seats, the bar on the right (a painted back-bar mirror calls it the Crosstown Cocktail Lounge), with a small kitchen in the back.
The GC on the project is also the chef-owner Ben Rients, who has a serious cooking pedigree as an alum of Restaurant Alma. He's spent that last year polishing floors, working on tables, and trying to get this space open. "I feel like I could teach people how to open a restaurant, because I've done everything wrong," he told me laughing in his kitchen as they prepped for a training party.
A peek at the casual menu in progress (nice to have an editor, yeah?) shows an interesting round of flatbreads that will come from the clay oven, pastas and grains including a fresh tagliatelle, baby octopus on the salad and veg portion, and a meat and fish section that includes housemade sausage, seabass, and buttermilk fried chicken for two. The majority of the menu is under $14 with the sea bass topping at $28. They'll be cooking dinner only to start, with happy hour from 4-6pm. There are plans for fun stuff, like having Sundays dedicated to just bar food that might include a nacho bar, but they're just excited to be opening their doors and start feeding the neighborhood.
Tomorrow's opening is soft, and will be limited in the amount of people they let it (be nice, it's for the best), but Wednesday they will swing the doors wide.
Stephanie March is Mpls.St.Paul Magazine’s food and dining editor. See bio
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