My faith has been restored in humankind . . . well, at least in the cured-meat-maven category. Greg and Kristen at Clancy’s in Linden Hills are doing a lot of cool new stuff these days, and OH MY GOD they are making their own pastrami from scratch. It’s big and bold and AMAZING. Go by a pound of it, sliced.
Take it home, wrap it in foil, and pop it in a 300-degree oven for fifteen minutes, then pile it on to two slabs of fresh rye, smear with mustard, and throw another slice of rye on top and you have a meal for two that will make you weep with joy. Next step: convince Greg to cure and smoke whole briskets, not just the flat end, so that he can slice and sell a fattier cut—his is a little too lean for my taste. But I am grateful, very grateful. Check it out at 4307 Upton Avenue South in Minneapolis's Linden Hills neighborhood. Phone: 612-926-0222.
Mission American Kitchen and 112 Eatery have expanded their footprints. Everyone serving food in this town that is making people happy wants to make more people happy. And apparently customers like to know that the toughest tables in town are available, at least some of the time. The hardest reservation in town is Mission at lunch and 112 at dinner and in an effort to appease the thundering herds, 112 is adding some cool seating on the second floor above the restaurant, and MAK is adding fifty seats in the IDS atrium right outside the front door. Great news.
Ever hear of Max Brenner? It’s an Israeli chocolate company and my wife’s buddy Val (a global gourma-chocoholic of the first order) says it's out of this world. Apparently they won't take online orders. But they will send it via Fed Ex. If Val says this chocolate is good, it must be amazing. Val S. is the only lawyer I know besides John L. who can debate the merits of Maison du Chocolat and Teuscher with any sense of proportion whatsoever.
I collect dumb press releases and dumb press release bits and pieces. Some of them leave me speechless. The latest missive from Five telling all the national food media about its new chef was expected. What was unexpected was the following:
“Under the direction of executive chef David Parson Capaccioli, Five will be re-emerging as the restaurant to discover great finger food, savor comforting bistro fare, and delight in imaginative tasting menus. Capaccioli received his Culinary Arts degree from the prestigious New England Culinary Institute and is certified as a sommelier. He started his career as executive chef of the Sudbury Inn in Bethel, Maine. Recently, he was chef instructor at the Art Institute of Minneapolis-Culinary Arts School. Capaccioli is a close associate of Vincent Francoual, chef of Vincent-A Restaurant and Capaccioli was the former executive chef of Café Un, Deux, Trois. “
Underlining is mine . . . . if your CV needs to list your close associates what are you trying to say? I am puzzled. I am not trying to pile on here, it’s just that the reference is so useless and I think it is actually a tad demeaning to Capaccioli. He can stand on his own, he has experience and some street cred, we don’t need to be told who his friends are in order to convince us that he has some skills. Strange . . . but like many of us, I can’t wait to eat there and see if this place has gotten it together in the post-Woodman era.