Mpls.St.Paul Magazine and the Star Tribune report that celebrated chef Danny del Prado will soon add a new restaurant to his Twin Cities roster: Macanda will debut on the shores of Lake Minnetonka this summer. Del Prado, who grew up in Buenos Aires, Argentina, says that his latest restaurant is influenced by literary magical realism — in particular, the fantastical family drama of Gabriel García Márquez’s One Hundred Years of Solitude, set in the fictional village of Macondo. Del Prado told the Star Tribune that though the restaurant’s menu will be rooted in Latin American cuisine, the dishes will incorporate international flavors, from French and Italian styles to Cajun touches like fried oysters with a celery remoulade.
Macanda will occupy the former Wayzata Brew Works space in Wayzata: In addition to the indoor dining room, the restaurant will feature a 120-seat four-season patio with lake views. (In the chilly months, the patio will be covered and insulated.) Chef Steve McMullen will lead the kitchen, and del Prado’s business partner Aaron Switz is at work assembling a vinyl record lounge.
One of the Twin Cities’ most notable restaurateurs, del Prado adds Macanda to an already impressive lineup of local restaurants: Martina, Colita, Rosalia, Josefina, Sanjusan (in partnership with Shigeyuki Furukawa), and Café Cerés and Cardamom (in partnership with Shawn McKenzie).
Craft Brewers Conference arrives in Minneapolis this week
From May 2 through May 4, the Craft Brewers Conference — an event presented by the Brewer’s Association that brings thousands of brewers together — is taking place in Minneapolis. The conference focuses on brewing education: It offers workshops on business management, on-premise sales, consumer insights, packaging, and more to small and independent brewers. Accordingly, a slate of Twin Cities breweries will roll out special events this week. Check out Racket’s round-up of events and collaborations at Prye’s, Indeed, Lift Bridge, and Bent Paddle.
A second Minnesota Starbucks officially unionizes
Workers at a Cedar Avenue Starbucks in Minneapolis have become Minnesota’s second to successfully unionize after an 11 to 3 vote tally was announced today. The Starbucks unionization wave, which has seen more than 200 stores seek union recognition nationwide, began to catch on in Minnesota this February — five local stores have since joined the wave. In a historic election last week, workers at a Snelling Avenue Starbucks became Minnesota’s first to successfully unionize, and votes at three other metro-area stores (St. Anthony, Mall of America, and Minneapolis) are expected in the coming months. Starbucks has been rattled by recent movement on the union front: In March, the company brought back historically anti-union CEO Howard Schultz, who allegedly confronted a pro-union barista in Long Beach, California, in April.
Taco John’s sues Taco Chon
According to Minneapolis / St. Paul Business Journal, fast food company Taco John’s is suing a Minnesota restaurant with a similar name: Taco Chon, which has locations in Burnsville and St. Cloud. The company’s lawsuit alleges that Taco Chon operates in the “exact same trade channel” and is copycatting Taco John’s image and likeness — in February, it sent a cease-and-desist order to owner Juan Ramos Gutierez. Ramos Gutierez did not change the restaurants’ name: He believes that the company’s actions are overblown. “It’s only two little restaurants in Minnesota,” Ramos Gutierez told the Biz Journal. “I don’t think I’ll be able to hire a lawyer. I’ll represent myself and fight for my dream.”
Lawless Distilling and Boomin Barbecue are back for the season
Two Twin Cities notables have returned to the scene, just in time for summer. Lawless Distilling is open once again in Minneapolis’s Seward neighborhood, as of April 29th. Expect new drinks like the “Hot Knives” cocktail — made with whiskey, hot chili pepper honey, and Blackstrap bitters — plus a new neighborhood deal: Bring a receipt from nearby restaurants Cafe Racer, Midori’s Floating World Cafe, or Milkweed Coffee, reports Mpls.St.Paul Magazine, and get 20 percent off cocktails. Mpls.St.Paul Magazine also reports that Boomin’ Barbecue is open for another season in the Ombibulous parking lot in Northeast Minneapolis. Look for a revamped Juicy Lucy burger and online ordering, new this year. Keep an eye out for more updates on restaurant openings later this week.