Photo by Caitlin Abrams
Hot toddy ingredients
We’re in the thick of Holiday Cheer! And many of us are counting down the days until a little time off means quaffing a hot toddy at 11 a.m. on a Tuesday. If you don't have an office Christmas party during which you might cavort unbridled, at least we have multiple ugly sweater parties for you, brunch with bakers, markets-a-plenty, and Dunkin' Donuts to soothe your mornings after.
>> Normandy Kitchen is open again after a refreshing remodel, so you no longer have to feel like you're going to meet Gandalf when you pop into the old pub. They've knocked out a wall and made it much more open and bright with a silver tin ceiling. The bar has been expanded and makes a sweet space for cozy seasonal happy hours.
>> Dunkin Donuts opened in New Hope this week, and it was like a stampede for glazed krullers! This a return to the metro for the national donut shop, which plans to open 40 more locations here over the next few years. Duluth and Rochester already have shops, but next up: Roseville on Dec. 14th.
>> Heritage Breads, which is one of my fave stops at the Mill City Farmers Market, is now baking up a storm at their new shop in Minnetonka. The new bakery's artisan loaves are made from heritage wheat and require a natural 3 day process that begins with their 100 year old starter. It has its own legend, ask them about it. Right now they have limited hours, just Thursday and Friday, but plan to expand time in 2017.
>> Over in the historic downtown of La Crosse WI, a little venture called Lovechild opens tonight. It's the first restaurant of longtime MSP D'Amico vets Joan Ferris and Jay Sparks. Many a big chef in town calls Sparks a mentor, including James Beard award winners Tim McKee and Isaac Becker. Lovechild is a 100 seater serving "uncomplicated food with intriguing ingredients and big flavors", first come first served, open at 5pm.
>> Sad! Good old crusty burger dive Adrian's Tavern will close on Jan. 10 when owner Jim Pratt retires. Not that he doesn't deserve some chill. The slip of a bar and grill has been cranking, in some version, on 48th and Chicago since the 1930's. There will be new owners and it will be different.
>> Bellecour is the name of Gavin Kaysen's new Frenchie that he's opening in Wayzata, some time around March.
>> Also do some peeking inside burgeoning taco shop Pajarito opening on West Seventh before Christmas.
>> You know how when a historic food space closes and you think "why couldn't we find some scrappy young thing to buy the building?!?!" Well Delmonico's did. Jessi Rivera bought the old Italian deli in Nordeast and planned to swing the doors open and operate the joint like the family used to (with some tasty Puerto Rican additions). But, shockingly, the circa-1900 structure wasn't up to code, and she's gonna need some help. Check out her Delmonico's Kickstarter and you can help save some culinary history. Also, $25 gets you the signature family sauce in a spaghetti basket, while for $1,000 you get to craft and name a sandwich that will go on the menu for a year (during which time you will get to eat it for free!)
>> Ugly Sweater Party #1: Peace Coffee has an Ugly Sweater Open House today! Head over to the local coffee icon, which is celebrating 20 damn years, and get free mugs and tours, coffee shots and cheer. The ugliest sweater gets 12 months of free coffee so saddle up.
>> If you come out to the Union Depot Bake Sale on Saturday, I will be there eating all the bakery items and then teaching a class on how to pair cocktails with cookies (hint: bourbon milk punch). And, I'm making a crocktail. In a crock pot.
>> Oh hey, before you go and wrap that shiny new food truck up in a bow and park it in the driveway for Christmas morning, maybe you should take this Food Truck 101 class on Saturday where financiers, food truckers, builders, and government officials will basically try to talk you out of it. I kid, it's a great life.
>> It's time for a Bakers + Makers Brunch at The Draft Horse on Sunday. There's a special menu simply jammed with tasty things constructed from all your FOOD building faves: I can personally vet an egg sandwich on a Baker's Field bun with Lone Grazer Northeazy and Red Table ham, but there are also frittatas, French toast, and biscuits-n-gravy at play. Then when you're stuffed, you can pick up extra ham, jam, scones, breads, and ham to stock your own larder.
>> Glam Doll Donuts is playing the new neighbor game with all the right moves. As they prepare to open a second shop in NE, they're hosting a little soiree at Grumpy's to get to know their new 'hood. Join them on Monday for some glam rock DJ action, signature cocktails, and perhaps that mac-&-cheese donut that broke the internet.
>> Holiday Markets with Perks: Procraftinate at Lakes & Legends Brewery SAT, Winter Pop Up Market at Sisyphus Brewing SUN, Joy-Joy Art Sale at Five Watt Coffee WED, and Modern Market with stylish people at Salty Tart nibbles THU.
>> Ugly Sweater Party #2: Norseman Distillery is having an Ugly Sweater Holiday Sing Along Party on Monday Dec. 19. Don't feel you need to be hemmed in by this particular holiday, you can sing out to any holiday songs: Jingle Pumpkins, Oh Come All Ye Easter Bunnies, Silent Arbor Day ... you know, all the hits.