One of Jester Concepts’ Uptown projects has changed names and transitioned its identity from French bistro to Mexican taco emporium — and now a Twin Cities craft syrups company is involved.
Mercado, which took over the former Marché space at 2904 Lyndale Av. S. in the Lime Apartments building, officially celebrated its grand opening last weekend after making the changeover gradually over the past couple of months.
The new iteration features a trimmed-down menu of tacos, tortas and cocktails from now co-owner company Earl Giles, which will also be making its syrups, cordials and other cocktail elixirs from the Uptown location.
Like Marché, Mercado (612-354-7408, mercadompls.com) will serve a variety of coffee and espresso drinks and has added items like the chili-braised chicken taco and fried ham, egg, cheese and tomato torta.
New co-owner Jeff Erkkila said the revamped menu was inspired by his recent four-year stint in Sayulita, Mexico, before he returned to the Twin Cities to start the Earl Giles operation with Jester Concepts bar director Jesse Held.
Expect classic cocktails with south-of-the border flair. A Paloma and the Oaxaca — a mezcal and tequila concoction with mole, orange and cinnamon tincture — join a Negroni, Sazerac and Old Fashioned.
“Having this pantry of syrups and cordials and other back-bar modifiers, we have the ability to make a whole lot of drinks,” Erkkila said. “Our menu is a lot of basic classics, but they’re all made with Earl Giles products and quality spirits.”