When chef Justin Sutherland opened his egg sandwich shop, Big E, in downtown Portland’s Moxy hotel last June, the question at the time was — why not here? Now the Star Tribune reports that Big E is homeward-bound: Sutherland plans to take over the Grand Pizzeria space adjacent to Grand Ole Creamery in St. Paul.
Big E, named for rapper Biggie Smalls, has nine hefty egg sandwiches on its menu — everything from a reliable shaved ham and dijon to a surprising combination of steak, American cheese, and Welch’s grape jelly, layered with a fried egg and served on an Oyatsupan milk bun. All of the sandwich names reference Sutherland’s favorite musicians — the “When Doves Cry” sandwich is an edible homage to Prince. The Strib reports Sutherland plans to open before summer, and prices should range between $14 and $17.
Modist has a massive expansion in the works
Big things are underway at Modist Brewing Co. in the North Loop. The brewery announced in a blog post that it’s invested $2 million in adding an event space, which will have a capacity of 100. The vibe? In Modist’s own words: “a brand new, multi-level, mural-infested, mirrored-ceilinged, neon-overdosed, brewer zoo of an event space.” Looks like the space will be available to rent for parties, baby showers, wedding receptions, etc. The brewery is also adding new employee offices and lounges and a “science lab.” Expect a mid-summer opening.
’Tis (almost) the season of seasonal openings
Highly anticipated seasonal openings are coming around the bend. Animales is kicking off barbecue season at Bauhaus Brew Labs this Saturday, April 1. (In regards to Animales’ conflict with the city of Minneapolis over its use of offset smokers, owner Jon Wipfli wrote on Instagram that he’s still unable to use the smokers at this time, but expects that to change within the year. Boomin’ Barbecue has moved out to Nova Bar in Hudson for the time being, and is open there.) Conny’s Creamy Cone is open in St. Paul for spring soft-serve delight. No word yet on Parks and Rec restaurants, the true harbingers of summer, but it’s a big year for lakeside eating: Pimento Jamaican Kitchen will be partnering with Lola’s on the Lake at the Bde Maka Ska pavilion, and a new restaurant called the Painted Turtle is taking over Sandcastle’s spot at Lake Nokomis.