News Briefs: Minneapolis Ranks 17th in Food Obsession

Bardo, a Northeast Minneapolis bistro, will reopen as BardoG, "an approachable and affordable concept focused on gourmet sausages and live music." It will start back as to-go and take out, and then add high-end tasting menus paired with live music later this summer. To that end, owner Remy Pettus has added Wain McFarland as music director and partner. The two have developed a full recording studio in the dining room. Bardo Studios is equipped to record live music as it is made, and the Bardo team will produce original music to be released every month. It also will be available for rent to musicians looking for a space to independently record their own music, with the option to be fully catered by Pettis and his team.


Personnel changes at The Lynhall: Steph Hedrick has signed on to be the new executive chef, and Chef Annette "Nettie’ Colón has retired. Colón joined the Lynhall team in June of last year. Hedrick was the executive chef at The Woman’s Club of Minneapolis and has been working in the hospitality industry in the Twin Cities for 25 years. ranked Minneapolis No. 17 for the most food-obsessed city in the U.S., with approximately 328 restaurants per 100,000 people. The top-rated local restaurant is Butcher & The Boar, according to the business site. The No. 1 city is Las Vegas, followed by Atlanta; Portland, Oregon; San Francisco; and Tampa. Surprisingly, New York City was No. 50 (its 8.3 million people have just 10,910 restaurants to visit) and its top restaurant was not a Michelin-starred establishment, but The Halal Guys. The criteria used to find the top-rated restaurant in each city was the most recommended restaurant within 20 miles of each city’s center based on Yelp reviews. 


Open Arms Minnesota delivered its 7-millionth meal in July with the help of Senator Tina Smith. Smith and Open Arms’ Executive Director Leah Hébert Welles delivered the meal directly to one of their clients,  Patience, a retired college professor with ALS. Speaking on food insecurity, Senator Smith said, "It was a big deal before COVID, but now with COVID, we're seeing a dramatic upsurge in people who don't have the food that they need." Since the outbreak of COVID-19, the nonprofit has seen a 30 percent increase in demand for their services of delivering healthy, made-from-scratch meals for people dealing with life-threatening illnesses. In addition, Open Arms is now shipping meals to a select group of clients throughout the state. To help facilitate this new service, they will be looking for volunteers to help pack and ship the boxes on Tuesdays and Wednesdays. 


The F12 People’s Kitchen (F12PK) led by a group of unemployed service-industry workers in South Minneapolis, was "born in the midst of the world-changing Minneapolis uprising, and consists of queer, trans, non-binary, multi-racial people who believe in the power of food to gather people together emotionally and politically."

The group is currently providing 2,400 meals a week to the Powderhorn Sanctuary, but are in need of funding to continue their work. To help in this effort they launched a GoFundMe with a goal of raising $35,400 to help cover food costs and rent for the building they operate in. Currently, each meal costs $1 to make, putting their weekly budget at $2,400. The group said it has the space, time and capacity to increase the number of meals and level of outreach, but a stronger and more secure financial infrastructure would support expanding delivery to camps for unsheltered people, and increasing their output. 


Bonnie Carlson, president and CEO of the Bloomington, Minnesota Convention and Visitors Bureau, was inducted into the Destinations International Hall of Fame, the highest honor that Destinations International can bestow. Carlson was the second female chair of Destinations International’s Board of Directors when the organization was known as the International Association of Convention & Visitors Bureaus. She has been in her role at the Bloomington CVB for more than 35 years and has been involved with the travel and tourism industry for 45-plus years. In addition to her position as president and CEO of the CVB, Carlson is a member U.S. Travel Association’s Board of Directors and is the finance chair of Meeting Professionals International’s Board of Directors. She also remains active with the American Society of Association Executives, Professional Convention Management Association, and Destinations International. 

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