Photo by Caitlin Abrams
>> Well isn't it just raining taco shops and Mexican wrestlers. Bar Luchador is open in Stadium Village in the old Campus Pizza space, ready to ply returning students with beers, drinks, Mexican street food sided by lots of wrestler art. A mess of tacos include a grilled chicken with "ranch" and a beef hard shell (those still exist!) situation, along with avocado toast, elote, a full sheet tray of chilaquile nachos, and something called luchador fried rice with achiote pork, grilled pineapple, avocado, and a soft egg . . . And then, Taco Libre opened in West St. Paul this week. They too love a luchador, but are going for more of a Mexico City authenticity thing with the food, as in all tacos are topped with cilantro, onions, and lime. But you'll also find tortas, alambres, menudo, and pozole, plus The Machete: a huge fried masa tortilla stuffed with things like salsa, Oaxacan cheese, and perhaps carnitas if you're feeling a smackdown.
>>District Fresh Kitchen & Bar is open in Wayzata. The latest venture from the Hemisphere group (Mission and Tavern on France et al) is kicking in the new center of town. The space is pretty, with conservative modern touches, screen walls, and soaring ceilings. The menu has a clean and healthy living bend to it. Though there's no calorie counting on the menu, there's a definite Mill Valley Kitchen vibe going on.
>>Spyhouse West is open on Washington Avenue in the North Loop as of 6 a.m. this morning. It's on the ground floor of some new construction condos, but don't think it won't have that clean and cool old school vibe that is oh-so-Instagrammable like their other locations.
>>Seward Co-op's Creamery Cafe opens on Saturday on East Franklin. I got to sneak in, and the space (which really was an old creamery, that's not just bespoke marketing) feels like a bright and friendly cafe. Lucas Almendinger is the chef behind the menu, and he's on a mission to sway your brain from thinking of co-op food as chia seeds and granola. Counter service ordering during the day might bring wild rice pancakes, a fried chicken and kimchi rice bowl, a lamb Reuben on dark Russian Rye, or green goddess dressed salads. During evening hours, it's full service and the menu ventures even a little further: from white fish liver mousse with dandelion greens, blueberries, and pine to a grilled basil tomato salad with coconut burrata, things are looking slick. Also of note: NO TIPPING HERE.
>>Oh hey, also . . . MyBurger is opening its newest store on Monday in Richfield at the new Lyndale Station at West 66th Street. NBD, except that they are giving away 250 FREE burgers on both Monday and Tuesday. THAT got your attention, yeah?
>>The Blue Point Restaurants have called it quits. Last night was the end for both the Wayzata and Bloomington locations and they have closed for good. Besides the fact that two of my four kids worked there at some time in their summer-job lives, I did like that Wayzata bar for a scosche of Happy Hour oysters and Scotchy.
>>Zen Box has closed its original skyway location. This should allow owners John Ng and Lina Goh to concentrate more fully on their Mill District location, and hopefully get them off the stick to open that ramen shop I keep asking for.
>>The Spoon & Stable kids are taking a holiday, the restaurant will be closed from Aug. 30—Sept. 9, so get your fix while you can. Or, just drool over the way Gavin Kaysen tries to better his old boss at a picnic. #oneupdanielboulud
>> Um, Ferran Adrià. Ferran Adrià is coming soon, as in coming HERE. In October, the Spanish godfather of modern molecular gastronomy is coming to Mia to cook and eat with some seriously lucky schlubs.
>>From August 17-19 Rudolph's Ribs is going old school. They are rolling back the clock for the 40th anniversary and the menu is coming along for the ride. For those three days they'll be running only the old menu, which means you can tuck into a Clark Gable (1/4 chicken and two beef ribs) for only $4.95! A Humphrey Bogart whole slab of spareribs will run you $6.75, a bacon cheeseburger is $3.75! And just so you know, for those days there are no reservations, takeout or delivery. No other coupons or discounts can be used and there's a limit of one entree per person per visit.
>>Things get a little wackadoo in the old North Loop for you last weekend? Well here's a little something to bring back the memories. The annual Borough Block Party is happening this Sunday from 12 to 7 p.m. Parlour burgers, Borough ribs, Coup d'Etat po'boys, plus live music and libations. Just $7 at the door folks.
>>But for Saturday: Don't forget the Thomas Boemer hog roast out at Garlic Fest, there still might be a ticket left for the bat chat at Two Pony pizza farm, and there's nothing wrong with a little summer Beer Dabbler in Lowertown.