Chef and restaurant owner Gavin Kaysen has learned his lesson about the importance of naming a new restaurant. When first announced that the New York based chef would be leaving Manhattan for Minnesota, people couldn’t get enough of the story and immediately began badgering him about the name. He decided to call his first restaurant in the North Loop neighborhood of Minneapolis, Merchant. The only trouble was, that name wasn’t quite the right fit. As the project moved on, it because clear to the chef that not only was the name ever-so-slightly confusing (and there’s already a Midwestern Merchant in Madison), but that wasn’t what the space was. He re-christened the eatery Spoon and Stable and there was much rejoicing.
With his second location, Kaysen was determined not to make the same mistake twice. That is why when it was announced in June that he would be giving new life to the former Blue Point restaurant at 739 Lake Street East, he refused to share the detail of the name.
Today he announced Bellecour via press release and social media that the name is derived from, “Place Bellecour in the center of Lyon. The restaurant is a nod to Kaysen’s relationships with close friends, mentors, and lauded chefs Daniel Boulud and Paul Bocuse. Chef Boulud was born in Lyon, and Chef Bocuse is based there. The Place Bellecour connects the old town and the new town and is a place where Kaysen spends time and finds inspiration during his travels to Lyon for the Bocuse d’Or.”
The extensive remodel has been a fun and exhaustive experience for the chef who revels in the old details of the room that have been unearthed - like a wood burning stove. His wife and collaborator Linda Kaysen is working with Shea Design just as they did with Spoon and Stable to create a serene space befitting of the location and the name’s inspiration.
Meanwhile, chef and his team are hard at work on the menu, which will feature some classic French by way of the Midwest dishes. Expect to see escargots and French onion soup.
There will also be a bakery on site from super star pastry chef Diane Yang.
Bellecour is on track to open in the spring of next year.