>> Nutmeg Brewhouse is now open in Burnsville. Besides brewing British style craft beer, the joint is a full-service British Empire restaurant serving foods from all over the former global kingdom (from fish n chips to Indian clay pit roasted meats). Don't let the strip mall appearance fool you, this is a locally owned endeavor by beer nerds trying to bring the goods to the 'burbs. And guess what, if you order an entree before Jan. 27, your first beer is free! Hospitality ahoy.
>> Urban Forage Winery & Cider House is now open for business in Minneapolis. Check out their natural wines, ciders, and mead made right in the city on East Lake Street. Pop by this Saturday from 2-6pm for retail sales (use the side door) of their dry apple wine which is like a non-bubbly cider. They'll be open on Saturdays from 2-6pm with the idea of adding weekday hours soon.
>> Not too far down the road, Savory Bakehouse has opened in Longfellow. If you are a fan of shepherd's pie and savory tarts, count your blessings in the form of owner Sandra Sherva who has worked at Merlin's Rest. There are some righteously savory hand pies on offer, but let's be clear that you can still find some brioche or apple bread or chocolate swirl bread to knock back the weekend with.
>> The Jordan Supper Club is open in the former OK Corral space in Jordan, which might not be a big deal to the city slickers, but actually .... this place looks slick! They're playing the old supper club song, with Baked Alaska tableside and Pink Squirrel ice cream drinks from the bar, but there's also craft beer on tap and a healthy list of whiskey on the bar. The bar area with pool, darts, and meat raffles is call the Taproom, though it's not a brewery, yet there is a planned cidery on site that will open later this year.
>> Cupcake has closed both their St. Paul and Minneapolis shops in order to focus on the MOA and Eagan locations, which are KILLING it apparently.
>> St. Anthony Main is getting a new Mexican restaurant. Jeff Arundel of Aster Cafe will be opening Jefe (heffay) later this spring just down the block in the former St. Anthony Event Center space. The spot will serve Mexican street food and include a full bar and patio seating, butting up to Tuggs Tavern. May IS margarita month you know....
>> The old copper behemoth won't stay hollow for long, Barley & Vine is moving into the former Copper River space in Lakeville. Look for 30 beers on tap and a bigger wine list than the southern suburbs are accustomed to. The owners recently opened the Tamarack Taproom in Woodbury and are also behind the above mentioned Jordan Supper Club.
>> Chef Todd Mcdonald is no longer at Parella in Uptown, he has resigned to "explore another opportunity". The restaurant carries on and is in the process of finding a new chef.
>> The 2nd Annual Kosher Fest is being held this Sunday at the Temple of Aaron in St. Paul. Last year was a booming success so they decided to throw it again. There are around 45 kosher purveyors, including Milt's BBQ for the Perplexed kosher food truck from Chicago and He'Brew The Chosen Beer from Schmalz Brewing in NY. While you're finding out what it really means to be kosher in a warm and tasty environment, you'll still be able to watch the game on big screens, so don't kvetch.
>> January is for ice cream. It is. And it's especially for FREE ice cream when it's served in a brewery. See? You'll go. Sweet Science hangs out at Urban Growler this Sunday from 3-6pm, and there will be 15 flavors to try, and pints to buy! Because: Damn Oprah and her WW commandos.
>> Opera on Tap's Popera! is THE way to embrace the grand tradition of opera. Let local singing divas belt out show tunes, commercials, and other great arias you know from their pop-culture references, while you enjoy a meal and drinks at Honey this Sunday. Where else can you get dinner and a shot of culture for $15? No where.
>> Good news, there's still time to go wassailing. You should plan to head down to the Sweetland Orchard Wassail Party on Sat. 16th, to take part in the old English tradition of wishing the orchard trees good health and good harvest in the coming year. Grab your pots and pans, head into the orchard to scare away evil spirits and hang toast on trees for luck, then gather around the bonfire, eat toast, and make merry.
>> More good news, there's a Winter Market at Mill City tomorrow! Inside!