Avid runners Kate and Patrick Sidoti met near Bde Maka Ska in Minneapolis when they both happened to be out on a run.
“Ever since that first run, we knew that we wanted to work together and create something,” said Kate Sidoti.
They eventually married and are now making that first-meeting goal a reality. They're collaborating on a restaurant, choosing a site that’s a stone’s throw from the lake.
The menu at Brim (1806 W. Lake St., Mpls.) will focus on nutrient-packed bowls, assembled in a Chipotle-like mix-and-match array of ingredients, most of them sourced locally: base (brown rice, sticky rice, wild rice), sides (crispy Brussels sprouts in a fish sauce, cauliflower-goat cheese gratin), proteins (grass-fed beef, arctic char, baked tempeh, poached eggs), toppings (avocado, microgreens) and dressings (cashew-chipotle aioli, citrus balsamic), each served from a long line of brightly colored Le Creuset Dutch ovens.
“We want to be approachable for all,” said Kate Sidoti. “You can be 100 percent vegan, or you can have a steak-and grain bowl. Ninety-five percent of what’s in each bowl is plant-based. It’s very vegetable-forward. We’ll use meat as a condiment.”
There will also be a set menu of seasonally changing bowls: turmeric-scented basmati brown rice topped with a purple potato salad, baby kale, roast chicken and a lemongrass-coconut dressing, or quinoa paired with charred greens, broccoli, avocado, pesto and pumpkin seeds.
A basic bowl will start at $12.99, with add-ons taking the top price to $16.99.
Kate is the restaurant’s chef. She trained at the Natural Gourmet Institute in New York City and has spent much of her career as a private chef. Patrick works in production for Fallon, the Minneapolis ad agency. This is the couple’s first restaurant.
“It’s a dream experience to be part of this food community,” she said.
Kate Sidoti has been a wheat-free baker since the age of 12. The restaurant’s made-from-scratch baked goods, following paleo and gluten-free norms, will start with a few cookies, including an almond butter-chocolate-cherry combination. Once Brim is up and running, the Sidotis plan to expand into nondairy ice creams.
A standard menu item will be a paleo-style roll that Kate Sidoti has been perfecting over the years, made with almond and coconut flours, eggs and apple cider vinegar.
“It’s kind of a cornmeal muffin-meets-bread,” she said. “I’m not a fan of labels like ‘paleo,’ it’s just good bread.”
Beverages will include local beers, kombucha and biodynamic wines, as well as a high-tech Toper brand coffeemaker that produces, at the push of a button, a wide range of brewed coffee beverages in 20 seconds.
“It’s a big investment,” said Kate Sidoti. “But it’s less expensive than hiring a barista.”
Brim is located in the space formerly occupied by the short-lived JJ’s Wine Bar (pictured, top), and the couple has extensively overhauled both the front and the back of the house (“I learned how to solder,” said Kate Sidoti with a laugh, referring to the construction of a planter that makes use of showy copper tubes). Accordion-style windows link the sunny dining room with a patio that looks out on the neighborhood’s constant parade of walkers, runners and bikers.
The counter-service operation will be one of a growing number of restaurants to operate on a cash-free basis. The plan is to start with lunch and dinner daily (10 a.m. to 10 p.m.), adding weekday breakfast and weekend brunch next winter or spring.
Opening is set for Sept. 22.