The Buttered Tin's owner Alicia Hinze is beaming. Fresh faced with round, excited eyes and a satisfied gait she gave me a tour of the newly leased, neighboring space soon be the extended seating area for her bakery and restaurant. "Once that wall is opened up, we'll move this chandelier back and you will be able to see straight through. Just like here, open and fresh." The 50 additional seats will increase capacity by 50%.
Opened in 2013 (with co-owner Jen Lueck who is no longer affiliated with the business), TBT arrived just before the Lowertown neighborhood experienced the restaurant boom of late. This little place with its pastry case filled with cupcakes, counter lined with apothecary jars containing even more goodies and a modestly sized kitchen turning out savory dishes cooked to order has been a success from day one. As apartments have filled in the area, the lines have been out the door. "On weekends, the lines can get up to 45 minutes to an hour and a half wait time," said Hinze. "That's just too much. That's too long."
The extra seats should alleviate that wait time, but there is also some expanded production we can expect. There will be an entire case dedicated to cakes and pies. That means any late-planners can pop in the day of an event, grab a strawberry almond cake swathed in buttercream and have it personalized right there in the shop.
For the first time ever, there will be a walk in cooler and a walk in freezer. Hinze looks forward to doing even more wedding cakes and some of those gorgeous tiered beauties the betrothed are so fond of these days.
On the savory side, don't expect much to change, except the kitchen staff will be given more room to move and prep space to work with. The now-classic dishes like bacon studded butter topped pancakes and stuffed hash browns aren't going anywhere.
With the added room, there will be a private dining space available for special events and at some point, likely an added boxed lunch and breakfast service for nearby offices.
That's not all the expansion, either! The bar menu is getting a little refresh, including fresh, seasonal mimosa varieties and a new bloody mary with a mix from Dan Oskey that tastes like freshly picked summer mingled with cucumber sake that will make its debut this weekend. Look for both a red and white sangria to arrive soon.
Construction is moving along swiftly and as of today, it looks like the expansion should open to the public mid-June.