Openings, and more openings
Following iterations in Phoenix, Dallas and Anchorage, Ling & Louie’s Asian Bar & Grill (921 Nicollet Mall, www.lingandlouies.com) has landed in downtown Minneapolis, serving lunch and dinner daily in its roomy two-level dining room. A rooftop patio is coming in 2015.
Also in downtown Minneapolis, Brasserie Zentral co-owners Russell and Desta Klein are launching Foreign Legion (505 Marquette Av. S., www.foreignlegion-mpls.com) on Friday.
Expect to encounter grilled cheese sandwiches, a large cheese program, charcuterie and nearly 100 wine selections by the glass, served every evening of the week.
“We want it to be a place to hang out, like the [American] Legion is in small towns, just with a foreign twist,” said Russell Klein. “Sort of a modern speakeasy.”
On Loring Park, Kim Bartmann’s latest, the Third Bird (1612 Harmon Place, www.thethirdbird mpls.com) is now open in the handsomely renovated space previously occupied by Cafe Maude at Loring and, before that, Nick and Eddie.
Chef Lucas Almendinger, formerly of Union Fish Market, is serving lunch and dinner daily, along with weekend brunch, and the expansive and eclectic wine list is the work of former La Belle Vie wine director Bill Summerville.
At the Mall of America, the Hard Rock Cafe (www.hardrock.com) has returned to Minnesota after a three-year hiatus.
The burgers-and-music chain first landed in downtown Minneapolis’ Block E in 2002 and remained until 2011. Its cavernous new home is located in Nickelodeon Universe, near Macy’s, and serves lunch and dinner daily.
So long, farewell
Uptown’s Bar Abilene has closed, after a 16-year run.
Calling all oyster lovers
The fourth-annual OysterFest is set for Oct. 12, starting at noon.
The Meritage (410 St. Peter St., St. Paul, www.meritage-stpaul.com) bivalve bash will feature specimens from both coasts and meet-and-greets with farmers from Massachusetts and Washington state.
As in past years, Summit Brewing Co. will provide oyster-appropriate beers. Expect oyster-related seminars, live music and a chef oyster-shucking contest.
The Meritage kitchen will keep busy with lobster rolls, fried clams, oyster po’ boys and burgers. Tickets ($25 to $120) are available at the restaurant’s website.