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The Most Anticipated Minneapolis and St. Paul New Restaurants, Fall 2015

Everything you need to know about the newest restaurants opening in the Twin Cities

Tearing down and building up the newest restaurants in the Twin Cities
Tearing down and building up the newest restaurants in the Twin Cities
Upton 43's Facebook Page

The Lexington

Location: 1096 Grand Ave, St Paul, MN

Chef: Jack Riebel

Projected Opening: November 2015

Let's start with the Lexington, the most anticipated, anticipated restaurant or at least the longest standing of the anticipated on our list (now that 4Bells is finally open.) It's been a long haul for this historic restaurant that was in need of many extensive and not very exciting construction updates. The roof is in and the second floor has been shored up and the asbestos has been removed. First floor construction is next on the docket and city of St. Paul/ permitting permitted, the restaurant could be opening mid-November. Owners Josh Thoma, Kevin Fitzergald and Jack Riebel will open the second floor event space and the downstairs restaurant at the same time. Christmas could come early this year for fans of the historic restaurant.

Photo courtesy Alma Lights Facebook page

Photo courtesy Alma Lights Facebook page

Cafe Alma

Location: 528 University Ave. SE, Minneapolis, MN

Chef: Alex Roberts

Projected Opening: Late 2015/2016

Cafe Alma is another much-anticipated restaurant that's been slow and steady in historic building renovations. James Beard Award winning chef and owner Alex Roberts can now speak inside and out about zoning, building codes and the intricacies of converting a space into a boutique hotel. The Alma team isn't in a rush to complete the project and has been hosting a series of pop-ups inside the erstwhile coffee shop space next door to Restaurant Alma. On Wednesday September 16 Alma Lights will host a grand opening with an art installation in conjunction with Northern Lights Minnesota. When completed, Cafe Alma will be a bakery/cafe space will serve fresh-baked goods, a more casual menu and a bar program put together by Bittercube - the same cocktail masters behind Eat Street Social.

Photo by Stephanie A. Meyer

Chef Steven Brown at Tilia. Photo by Stephanie A. Meyer

St. Genevieve

Location: 5003 Bryant Ave. Minneapolis, MN

Chef: Steven Brown

Projected Opening: Late 2015/2016

Roberts pacing on his large project sounds similar to Steven Brown's approach to his second restaurant, St. Genevieve. We'll get there when we get there. The chef isn't quick to pull together this project just to get those doors open. In an extended interview with Brown, he explained to Eater his desire to create a neighborhood experience in South Minneapolis much like Tilia has brought to Linden Hills. The French fare will be approachable and not over-wrought. The dining room will also be much more cohesive than the previous tenant at 50th and Bryant. Before, it felt like the front and the back of the restaurant were two entirely different dining experiences. Expect the eatery to open before the end of the year.

Eater file photo


Location: TBD

Chefs: Erik Anderson and Jamie Malone

Projected Opening: Late 2015/2016

It seems that every conversation about what's on the horizon for Minneapolis restaurants must include mention of Brut. Erik Anderson and Jamie Malone's North Loop restaurant is likely a 2016 project, but the duo have been far from twiddling their thumbs. Anderson took at turn at Chicago's Intro and both are consulting on the soon-to-come Scena Tavern. Although Malone assures us that a Brut update is coming, "very, very soon."

Menu preview from Scena. Photo courtesy Facebook

Menu preview from Scena. Photo courtesy Facebook

Scena Tavern

Location: 2943 Girard Ave. Minneapolis, MN

(Consulting) Chefs: Erik Anderson and Jamie Malone

Projected Opening: Early October 2015

Scena is Paul Dzubnar's new restaurant taking shape at Girard and Lake Street in Uptown. Dzubnar was once the owner of 27 Green Mill restaurants and is a partner in the Town Hall Brewery establishments (among others.) In addition to the culinary power couple's input, Nick Kosevich has also been consulting on the project. Kosevich is best known as the local leader for Bittercube, the bitters company and bar consulting company. The menu will be American with Mediterranean influences. The menu will undoubtedly boast plenty of exciting dishes and take part in two menu trends of the moment: a chef-made bar burger and crudo. Before rolling your eyes at the crudo, remember that Malone and Anderson both gave us the beauty that is the raw bar at Sea Change. This is something to be excited about. A fall opening is expected. Until the opening, we can bide our time drooling over the menu photos on Scena's Facebook page.

Construction at Upton 43. Photo courtesy Upton 43's Facebook page

Construction at Upton 43. Photo courtesy Upton 43's Facebook page

Location: 4312 Upton Avenue, Minneapolis, MN

Chef: Erick Harcey

Projected Opening: October 2015

Neighbors have been pressing their noses against the glass in Linden Hills to get a better look at the goings on inside Upton 43. Chef Erick Harcey's second restaurant (joining sister/similarly named Victory 44) will actually be two concepts. The restaurant takes inspiration from Harcey's grandfather — a cook and a "proud Swede." Harcy says he "will be using and slightly modifying some of my grandparents' old recipes, adding new and modern techniques to Swedish cuisine, and really relying on the flavors and smells I grew up with. So its not going to necessarily be a 'Swedish' restaurant, but it is going to be an 'Erick Harcey family heritage restaurant.'" The Upton Avenue space will also be home to Harcey's the Dirty Bird, a "grab-and-go rotisserie chicken concept with healthy farm sides.

Photo courtesy The Bachelor Farmer

Photo courtesy The Bachelor Farmer

The Bachelor Farmer Cafe

Location: Minneapolis, MN

Chef: Paul Berglund

Projected Opening: Late Fall

Now that Askov Finlayson has moved into its new location, the cafe can begin to take shape inside the space next to The Bachelor Farmer. The space is being designed by James Dayton Design, who also created TBF and Marvel Bar's beautiful rooms. Eric Dayton tells us, "It's going to feature beautiful tile work by Mercury Mosaics."

Chef Paul Berglund and TBF's pastry team are creating the menu which will feature baked goods in the morning and sandwiches for the midday meal. The open faced sandwich will be prominently featured and naturally, there will be toast.

Peder Schweigert of Marvel Bar and the team of talented barkeeps are hard at work on the coffee program. Fun fact, many of the top bartenders (including those employed here) are some of the best baristas in town.

Another fun tidbit is that the little pocket park between the two buildings will be the lively location for a retrofitted Airstream trailer that will be installed in the courtyard early next spring. Teases Dayton, "When the cafe closes in the late afternoon, the Airstream will pop open a hatch and that will become the service window for ordering beer, wine, and a handful of food options."