Nick Rancone and Thomas Boemer, plotting. Photo by Eliesa Johnson
I like scoop as a birthday present. Last night I learned some really great news.
First of all, Nick and Chenny Rancone, who bought Corner Table from Scott Pampuch a few years back, have formally made Executive Chef Thomas Boemer a partner in the company. Good for them, since he's been killing it in that tiny kitchen.
Now the bigger news, the three of them have purchased the former La Chaya Bistro building just down the block, on the corner of 46th and Nicollet and plan to relocate Corner Table to that spot and be open by mid-March. I got to walk through the space with them and it so clean and fresh that really, there's just a bit of cosmetic surgery to be done so that there can be counter seating along the line and some semblance of a bar created. The bigger size, plus the bonus of parking and patio potential made this a deal they couldn't pass up. The partners are planning expanded dinner service, open Mon-Sat, and adding weekend brunch service.
And fear not, there will be a kitchen table. The legendary multi-course tastings that go until you say stop will continue in the new space. You'll be able to watch construction progress on their website which will be getting a new identity with the move.
But what of the original space? They're keeping it and relaunching it as a casual neighborhood southern bistro (yet to be named) that will open sometime later, in the summer. Don't call it barbecue, Rancone and Boemer want it to be more of a home-cooking eatery with hush puppies, fried chicken cobbler (biscuit pot pie!), fried chicken, and other comforting southern dishes. There's talk of putting together pick-up picnic baskets (which I hope they do). Boemer will be executive chef of both spots, but they plan to bring in a chef de cuisine to help keep things going in the right direction. They both said that it's important to them that the new spots maintain the same standards and practices that have brought them their loyal fans.