The reason we always seem to talk about new restaurants is because they are news. New(s), get it? But that is precisely why I love this issue, because we get to spend some moments thinking about the local eating landscape as a whole and take the time to lob some love to the ladies and gents who continue to kill it day in and day out, despite not trending every moment on Twitter.
And because there was an abundance of new news this last year—what with a record number of openings, new chefs coming to town, not to mention the de rigueur shuffles and moves—it’s more important than ever to take a look at the restaurants that have created the foundation. Our true eating culture isn’t built around a splashy name chef or a spectacular dish that gets some national attention, it’s not built on glitzy, shining concepts, it’s not built on prizes or awards. It’s built every day when the door opens and someone turns on the light. It’s built in the kitchens by Mexicans and Ecuadorians who show up for their third shift in maybe 24 hours, it’s built by those servers who come in early off the clock to proof their tables, it’s built by the investors who continue to risk money and extend credit lines, and it’s built by the eaters who show up again and again.
We are all at the table together. It’s a tale of people, of dedication, of creativity, of tenacity. For a good understanding of this, I hope you take a few moments to watch the video we made this year to showcase a day in the life of Twin Cities restaurants, because it’s kind of a love letter. We shot multiple places from the moment they opened their doors, through deliveries, prep, staff meal, service, and after-shift, and we found a pretty compelling connective thread. I think it’s beautiful.
So this year, as we are all contemplating the new and getting excited for what’s next, let’s just not forget how far we’ve come and who’s responsible for helping us get here.