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Category: Restaurants

A Dozen Excuses Donuts on Tower Avenue »

A Dozen Excuses opened on Wednesday, serving donuts, coffee, sandwiches, coney dogs, etc. at 1112 Tower Ave., in the Still-point Building next to the Palace Bar in Superior. It’s the former location of Northwoods Guitar.

  • Open 6 a.m. to 4 p.m., Monday through Saturday
  • Owners: Melissa Hyatt and Cliff Lindberg
  • Baker: Joe Dougherty

Guy Fieri in West Duluth and Superior »

Guy Fieri is back in town shooting for future episodes of the Food Network’s Diners, Drive-ins, and Dives. So far he’s been to Gannucci’s Italian Market and Pak’s Green Corner in West Duluth, and Shorty’s Pizza & Smoked Meats and the Kounty Quarthouse in Superior.

Endion Station Public House opening soon »

Endion Station Public House is opening July 25. It will serve pulled-meat sandwiches and Brewhouse beer in the historic train depot on the Lakewalk, and there are plans for live music on the patio.

Spirit Room Tapas Bar & Restaurant is open »

Spirit Room Tapas Bar & Restaurant opened on Monday in the Trade and Commerce Marketplace in Superior. It’s a classy joint, from the tapas on down to the intricate details in the mural. Check out the menu …
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New food truck: The Happy Wanderer »

The Happy Wanderer is a food truck that will soon be hitting the streets of Duluth selling specialty egg rolls. To learn more visit the Kickstarter page.

Cloud 9 Asian Bistro is open »

Cloud 9 Asian Bistro opened on Monday in the Canal Park spot formerally occupied by Thia Krathong — 308 S. Lake Ave. It’s owned by the Wang family, the same folks behind the Duluth Osaka Sushi Hibachi Steakhouse in the Burning Tree Plaza. If last night was any indication, Cloud 9 a very quiet place to eat, and the food is excellent.
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Russ Kendall’s Smokehouse: A few pre-fire photos of the adjoining bar »

The May 11 fire that destroyed the processing area of Russ Kendall’s Smokehouse in Knife River didn’t do much damage to the adjoining bar area, but nonetheless I thought I’d share some pre-fire snapshots I took of it in the fall of 2012, before it got “smoked” … so to speak. (The shot above is obviously of the fire, taken from the smokehouse’s Facebook page.)


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Ummm … seriously? Arby’s is airing a 13-hour Duluth-only commercial? »

So, according to this Slate article, not only is Arby’s showing a 13-hour commercial, but it’s only airing in Duluth.

Arby’s is airing 13 straight hours of smoked brisket on television

I checked the date, and it’s not April 1, and I don’t think the NSA has gone so low as to manipulate my poor MacBook Air to fool me.

Jefferson People’s House »

In a world where people, food and information are treated like commodities, a new worker-owned cooperative wants to turn them back into things that build local connections. After many years of people wanting a radical bookstore/café and a progressive community incubator in Duluth, we’ve come together to start the Jefferson People’s House, a democratic worker-owned, collectively managed space.

The motto: Coffee – Books – Social Justice – Toast
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Farley’s Grill in Downtown Duluth »

Farley’s Grill opened two weeks ago at the old Mr. Nick’s location — 220 W. Superior St. in Downtown Duluth.

The Duluth News Tribune reports: “A new lease worked out with building owner Nick Patronas — Mr. Nick himself — commits (owners Kelly and Elizabeth Trumpold) to 7½ years.”

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Smokehaus on Wheels »

Beginning May 5, Northern Waters Smokehaus sandwiches will be available by bike. We began developing this fantasy years ago, spurred by intense store congestion and the problematic nature of (car) delivery from dead center in Canal Park, where not much speed is possible during the summer months because of the bridge and the gawkers.

Reactions to this plan have ranged from a scale of “awesome” to “that’s hilarious.” While most people seem to really dig the green aspects of ped-powered delivery, many feel that biking in Duluth (in general) is risky. Sometimes it seems that, perhaps due to the lack of bike lanes/awareness, the mere sight of a biker in the traffic lane pisses drivers off. Our bikers are very experienced and bike in Duluth nearly year-round. They know the rules, the dangers, and the potential for road-rage. But this kind of delivery is still an experiment here. As is our policy at the Smokehaus, we hope we mostly delight the public.

What do you think, PDDers? Is rapid-fire bike delivery a viable venture in our frosty little luge track? And speaking of frosty, how insane would it be to offer it year-round?

Happy 60th anniversary, Sammy’s Pizza »

It all began 60 years ago. Sam and Louise Perrella moved their small cafe from Keewatin to Hibbing. And with that move, expanded the menu with pizza. Sam had learned about the Italian item from the men who worked in the mines.

Jolly Fisher: “If it swims, we have it.” »

Jolly Fisher is one of Duluth’s best-remembered old restaurants. It was in business for 50 years, from 1942 to 1992. The original location was at 15 E. Superior St., where the Duluth Technology Village sits today. After 1979 it was at 10 W. Superior St., presently the Minnesota Power Plaza.

Jumbo fried shrimp was the specialty, but as the slogan noted, Jolly Fisher had everything that swims. Chet and Mary Turnbull were the original owners, followed by Paul Andrews. “Skipper Andy” and Gloria Maras ran it for its last 30 years, until competition from Red Lobster proved to be too much.
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Fish fry Fridays??? »

I see Tycoons has a new Friday Fish Fry. What are the other Fish Fry Fridays in the Duluth / Superior / South Shore / North Shore area? I’m willing to drive a while if the fish is good … any suggestions?

Duluth Grill on Diners, Drive-ins and Dives »

Duluth Grill - Diners, Drive-ins and Dives



Duluth Grill
was featured on the Food Network’s Diners, Drive-ins and Dives program back in 2010. The segment has finally made it to the Internet. So here is host Guy Fieri sampling the grass-fed bison pot roast that made the West End famous.

20th Anniversary of Chinese Lantern fire »


(Duluth News Tribune photo of Jan. 16, 1994, Chinese Lantern fire)

It’s the 20th anniversary of the fire that closed the old Chinese Lantern.
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Best … er, any fried chicken in Duluth? »

Where can you get a good fried-chicken dinner in Duluth and/or the surrounding area? I’m not referring to KFC, or any take-home places, but a sit-down restaurant that serves fried-chicken diner that’s fresh and hot and doesn’t get cold by taking it into the house from the car during our cold winters. I’ve been searching and I’ve come up with nothing, I even found a post here that’s from a month shy of a year ago:

Best Fried Chicken in Duluth

However, the closest thing listed, Sammy’s, only has wings now, (which are great), but is not a real fried (or broasted) chicken dinner, no matter how many you eat. Cassidy’s down in Hinckley had a decent one, but last time I was there they no longer serve it and vaguely said they might bring it back at times. It seemed more commonplace when I was a kid, but no one seems to have a good fried-chicken dinner anymore, at least around here, because I see them all the time on Diners, Drive-ins and Dives. Fresh batch of suggestions welcome!

Perfect Pizza Restaurant: Thirsty Pagan »

For half a century, Sammy’s Pizza dominated the local Italian pie scene with its trademark thin crust and tasty sauce. Pizza Lucé came along in 2001 and shook things up with unusual toppings and a funky vibe. These days, however, Thirsty Pagan Brewing has won over pizza connoisseurs in the Twin Ports with its deep-dish pies, loaded with Wisconsin cheese. The TPB was the clear winner in PDD’s best pizza restaurant poll.
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Perfect Burger Restaurant: Anchor Bar »

There is no shortage of great burger joints in the Duluth area, but the undisputed king of them all for the past three decades has been the Anchor Bar. Among the other dozen nominees in Perfect Duluth Day’s poll, only the Fitger’s Brewhouse pulled a significant chunk of the vote. When the two went head to head, the Anchor took 61 percent, and the Brewhouse took 39.
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Chipotle and Qdoba coming to Duluth »


Chipotle Mexican Grill | Qdoba Mexican Grill

Apparently it’s really happening.

  • Chipotle will open at Miller Hill Mall.
  • Qdoba has announced it’s coming, but not when or where.
  • Big Burrito will be locating in the BlueStone Lofts area by UMD, according to the Statesman.

Update: The UMD Statesman report seems to have been in error. Numerous other sources have reported it is Qdoba that is locating in Bluestone Commons. Both Qdoba and Chipolte are expected to open in summer 2014.

So here’s one more post where folks can comment about how having chain burrito joints come to Duluth either completely fulfills us as people and as a city, or how everyone who gets excited about it is some kind of rube. Get it all out of your system now, if you haven’t already on Facebook.

Duluth News Tribune: Chipotle, Qdoba restaurant chains plan to open locations in Duluth
Fox 21 News: Qdoba and Chipotle both coming to Duluth
Eyewitness News: “Two burrito chains coming to Duluth
Northland’s NewsCenter: Chipotle to open at Miller Hill Mall in March of 2014