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The Five Most Anticipated Restaurants in the Twin Cities, Fall 2017

The coolest new places on tap in the Twin Cities

Inside a pop up for Popol Vuh, the Lyn 65 team’s next project
Ali Hormann / Lyn 65

As the temperatures dip low, the news on the new fall restaurants planned for 2017 heats up. While there are plenty on the horizon, these are the first few that we can’t wait to get into.

Popol Vuh / Centro

Location: 712 15th Ave. NE Minneapolis

Key Players: Chef Jose Alacron and the Lyn 65 Players

Projected Opening: Centro, mid-November; Popol Vuh opening a month later

This dual restaurant space is fast taking shape in Northeast, not far from the intersection of Broadway and Central. Centro will be a more casual, taco restaurant and Popol Vuh will serve elevated Mexcian fare from chef Jose Alacron. Behind the bar on the Centro side will be margaritas and sangria on tap, plenty of local beers, plus large mezcal and tequila selections. Plus, the bar team is hard at work on a guava mezcal slushy. The space will be light, bright and colorful.

The team behind the project with chef Jose Alacron center
Popol Vuh / Facebook

Popol Vuh will have more exclusive wines and more refined cocktails in a room accented with pops of green and a large fire that will be viewable from every seat.

Asian street food and tropical cocktails on deck for Northeast
Hai Hai / Facebook

Hai Hai

Location: 2121 University Ave NE, Minneapolis

Key Players: Christina Nguyen and Birk Stefan Grudem, owners Hola Arepa

Projected Opening: October

The former strip club/dive bar will bear little resemblance to its past incarnations, but Hai Hai has a couple of planned winks in the that direction. The name means two in Vietnamese, which is also a nod to co-owner and chef Christina Nguyen’s heritage. She, along with husband Birk Stefan Grudem were Eater Young Guns and are owners of South Minneapolis’ wildly popular Hola Arepa.

Because dive bars and strip clubs aren’t big on tons of natural light, construction includes a lot of windows
Christina Nguyen / Hai Hai

Of the new project she says, “We’re keeping some things like the beautiful old hex tile floors that are original to the space and the famous brass pole might be repurposed into the decor.” New will be plenty of windows and an expanded kitchen and patio. The interior design is inspired by French Indochina and tropical climates.

“We really hope that the space transports people to a cafe in Saigon on the other side of the world,” Nguyen said. The restaurant will be open for happy hour and dinner and likely brunch as well.

They bought a bar!
Photo courtesy Amy Greeley

Bull’s Horn

Location: 4563 S 34th Ave, Minneapolis

Key Players: Doug Flicker and Amy Greeley

Projected Opening: Mid-October

The return of the neighborhood bar is being heralded by one of the finest chefs in the Twin Cities. A leader in his field, Doug Flicker and his business partner and wife Amy Greeley are transforming the former Sunrise Inn into Bull’s Horn Food & Drink which will include bubble hockey, an awesomely stocked jukebox and definitely some great bar eats. The bar had been only licensed to serve 3.2 beer, but has now gotten the go-ahead to serve full-strength beer and wine.

Outside the old Sunrise Inn
Bull’s Horn / Instagram

The room construction is underway to make the entire room accessible and windows have been opened up to allow for more light. Beloved bar sustenance Heggie’s Pizza has worked with Flicker to create his own flavor (it’s not fancy, but there are olives) and it will be in production in time for the opening. There will also be pull-tabs on site courtesy of the Minneapolis Hockey Association, benefitting youth hockey.

Chef Tim McKee inside the Market House Collaborative space
Joy Summers / Eater Twin Cities

Market House Collaborative

Location: 289 5th St E, Saint Paul, MN

Key Players: Tim McKee

Projected Opening: Late 2017

James Beard Award winning chef Tim McKee has taken over much of the former Heartland space in St. Paul’s Lowertown neighborhood. The massive restaurant and market will be home to a fish counter, butcher shop, casual seafood restaurant, bakery and more. All businesses will be under one business name, which means guests will be able to shop while sipping a glass of wine in one hand and pay for it all in one fell swoop.

Key players, like who will operate each component are still being solidified. Initial plans for an October opening have likely been delayed until later in the year.

Marty Collins, chef Peter Hoff and Brett Johnson outside Nolo Kitchen & Bar
Nolo Kitchen and Bar / Instagram

Nolo Kitchen & Bar and the Basement Bar

Location: 515 Washington Avenue North Minneapolis

Key Players: Peter Hoff, Marty Collins and Brett Johnson

Projected Opening: October 6

The restaurant and bar inside North Loop’s Gardner’s Hardware building will be a refined dinner party upstairs and a slightly more casual, rocking party downstairs bar. Behind the restaurants are Marty Collins of McCoy’s Public House, Brett Johnson of The Hilltop Restaurant and chef Peter Hoff. Nolo will serve breakfast, lunch and dinner and the Basement Bar will be more casual and open at 4 p.m. daily.

Market House Collaborative

289 5th Street East, , MN 55101 Visit Website

Hai Hai

2121 University Ave NE, Minneapolis, MN 55418 Visit Website


222 East Hennepin Avenue, , MN 55414 (612) 886-8404 Visit Website