The ability to move 600 people through a restaurant in one night is no small feat.
It’s a challenge the staff at Dakota Jazz Club and Restaurant regularly confronts, when two-set nights give them just 20 minutes to reset some 300 covers before the next act takes the stage—and another wave of guests arrive.
“Our record is 12 minutes,” says General Manager Martina Priadka. “This is something I’m really proud of with my staff and it shows their skill level.”
While dinner is becoming the show at many restaurants, for the Dakota it’s about integrating the two experiences, mixing music with a sophisticated menu—and having a team that can make it appear effortless.
When Paul Dzubnar thinks about his business strategy as a restaurant owner, it comes down to diversification.
“I think about it like investing in the stock market,” says Dzubnar. “You don’t want to put all your eggs in one basket.”
With his sixth and seventh restaurant concepts in the works, Dzubnar stays true to that philosophy.
The atmosphere at the St. Paul RiverCentre was most hospitable Tuesday, September 16, as nearly 200 booths filled the exhibit hall for the inaugural Minnesota Hospitality Expo.
With vendors offering services from accounting and payroll to marketing, design and real estate, attendees were able to learn about the local companies ready to help them build their businesses. Foodservice distributors, including platinum sponsor Upper Lakes Foods, were on hand to showcase their offerings, as were other restaurant suppliers and beverage companies.
It is free to enter, and each participating restaurant will be able to post details on their establishment along with a photo of what they consider to be its top dish in order to vie for Outstanding Restaurant Food Item.
The fourth annual Charlie Awards, which showcases the Twin Cities local and thriving independent food and beverage industry, will be held Sunday, November 16 at the Pantages Theater (710 Hennepin Ave., Minneapolis) beginning at 3:30 p.m.
By Nancy Weingartner
It’s not often one solitary restaurant can help rid the world of an aggressive invader—and at the same time feed a rowdy crowd all the crayfish they can eat (or 2,200 pounds, whichever comes first) along with bottomless Hurricanes and beer.
Rusty crayfish (orconectes rusticus) have created havoc in Minnesota lakes by eating coveted walleye eggs, bullying the indigenous Minnesota-nicer crayfish and tearing out oxygen-producing vegetation that’s an important part of the lakes’ ecosystem.
Although the invasive species can be found in at least 50 Minnesota lakes, Northern Minnesota’s Woman Lake is the site of the collaboration between trappers, whose full-time job is catching walleye, and The Fish Guys, who supplied the 2,200 pounds of crayfish to Smack Shack for its second annual Crayfest.
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