It’s been two guacamole filled years on the corner of Bryant Avenue and Lake Street in Uptown, as Tinto Cocina + Cantina served its customers tacos and margaritas, but now it’s time for a new era. The restaurant is picking up and moving to a new location, the former Bead Monkey at 4959 Penn Avenue South. But that’s not the only change afoot, the menu will also get an added dose of French fare along with added focus on wine.
Owner Rebecca Illingworth-Penichot and her husband Thierry Penichot told City Pages that they think the new location will be more friendly to their future designs for the restaurant. Illingworth-Penichot used to own Bin Wine Bar in St. Paul’s Lowertown neighborhood (now the Handsome Hog) and she reportedly misses the wine focus of that business. Meanwhile Penichot is a trained chef originally from Normandy and is itching to put a stamp on the menu. That said, the restaurant will retain its Mexican heritage and classic menu items. Although, it is unlikely that the new space will have a full liquor license, so it might be adios margaritas.
The location is nearby Terzo, considered by many to be the best wine bar in the Twin Cities and it’s a stone’s throw from James Beard Award-nominee chef Steven Brown’s French buvette concept, St. Genevieve. Will the next chapter for Tinto compete with or complement its new neighbors? We’ll have to wait until early this summer to see. That is when Tinto Cocina + Cantina 2.0 shall rise and serve again.
The original location will close by the end of the month.