The longest, most persistent line of Black Friday in Minneapolis was at a store that's about to close — Kitchen Window, a 35-year-old fixture of the retail scene in Uptown.
The store announced earlier this week that it would close in January, and that its ramp-down would begin with a liquidation sale Friday. For most of the day, a line of shoppers wound out its door and deep into the Seven Points shopping center.
On Friday afternoon, Alla Staroseletskaya of Minnetonka, who said she regularly visited Kitchen Window for 26 years, had been waiting in the line for about 30 minutes and was still behind dozens of people.
"I like to bake and I want to see what they have on sale," said Staroseletskaya, who leads a bilingual cooking club. She hoped to purchase pans and cookbooks.
At the back end of the line, with a long wait ahead of him, Dan Levy of Minneapolis said he hoped to get in to pick up some knives and use a gift card he had for the store. "I think people lined up thinking, 'Maybe I can buy something higher quality at a discount,'" Levy said.
The store, at 3001 Hennepin Av., was one of the few in the Twin Cities region to stock high-end knives from Germany and Japan, along with premium brands of cookware and dishes. With the exit of Sur La Table from the market last year, the brick-and-mortar options for high-end kitchen goods and glassware in the Twin Cities have taken a hit.
Staroseletskaya said she'll miss having the chance to look over high-end brands before making a purchase. She is shopping online more for kitchen goods, she said. "It's not the same experience," she added. "All the years I've lived here, this has been a great store."
In the statement announcing the closing, co-owner Doug Huemoeller said the decision "was personal and internal to the company."
Kitchen Window also offered cooking classes. Its cooking school will hold a "garage sale" of used equipment Dec. 2-5.