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Restaurants Posts

PDD News Sieve: King of Creams, Tycoons, Sala Thai

The King of CreamsCourtland Powe, owner of the Duluth ice cream truck and cruisin’ kitchen called the King of Creams, has announced a restaurant of the same name will open in the Central Hillside at 502 E. Fourth St. this Saturday, March 14. The storefront had previously served as a Quiznos sandwich shop, and is better known as one of Duluth’s four former Jim’s Hamburgers locations. The new fast-casual restaurant will feature a menu that includes cheese-steak sandwiches, burgers, deep-fried pickles, malts and hand-scooped ice cream. Grand opening events will be held March 14 and 15, with all menu items at half price. Regular hours will be 10:30 a.m. to 7 p.m., seven days a week.

Tycoons vs Slippery NoodleTycoons Alehouse is in PreservationNation’s online competition to determine America’s favorite historic watering hole. The Historic Bars Tournament has tapped 32 historic drinkeries to compete against one another in an NCAA Tournament-style, single-elimination format. Each week the blog will serve another round of pairings where readers will vote for their favorite inns and alehouses. When the matchups run dry on April 3, only one bar will claim the top shelf. Voting for each round will last one week and close every Friday morning at 7 a.m. Once each round is complete, the bracket will be updated with vote counts and winners.

Sumlee BeedeThe Duluth News Tribune reported on Monday that Sumlee Beede is moving her Sala Thai restaurant from Woodland Avenue to Downtown Duluth. “Beede is buying the two-story brick building at 114 W. First St. where she started in the restaurant business in 1999,” the story notes. “That year, she opened Thai Krathong, which developed a loyal following for its authentic Thai food. After she sold the business, it moved to Canal Park and closed in 2013.” The move would displace the Giant Panda restaurant, and could result in legal action to execute the eviction. According to the DNT, a court hearing on the matter is scheduled for next week. Sala Thai is Duluth’s only Thai restaurant. Beede plans to close the Woodland location on March 26 and open the downtown location in April.

A place to enjoy a book and a brew

I am looking for a place in Duluth to read a book and enjoy a beer. Are there any bars/pubs that you recommend which have more of a quiet and calm atmosphere? I enjoy reading at coffee houses, but when it’s the evening I’d much prefer a beer over a coffee or tea.

Duluth Matchbook Collection

Duluth Matchbook Collection

Inspired by the Duluth Button Collection, Perfect Duluth Day now presents the Duluth Matchbook Collection — a gallery of small cardboard folders with a striking surface on one side, featuring images promoting select enterprises of the Arrowhead region.

Sweeto Burrito, eh?

Something curious popped up in the last couple months, via Facebook.

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Finally, a burrito joint in the Twin Ports. I’ve been waiting so long … hopefully Chipotle catches the hint?

If this is actually real, it’s interesting how the Duluth burrito market went from 0 to saturated in a matter of months. Sure, we had/still have Burrito Union, but I haven’t ever exactly heard rave reviews for the place, nor have I ever generated rave reviews myself after going there. The two new burrito establishments are handy to have around for decent food in a quick pinch, but nothing earth-shattering. I frequent one or the other a couple times per month. I haven’t bothered to set foot in Burrito Union in at least two or three years.

After creeping the corporate website for this new Sweeto Burrito, it appears that its food differs vastly from the current three options, but perhaps not in a good way. The tacos look OK, but the ambitious burrito combinations don’t exactly seem to be my cup of tea. If this new restaurant comes to fruition, will it hold its own against the other players? How many burritos can a smallish city consume? Apparently a lot, judging by the line that forms outside the Chipotle almost every time I drive by.

Duluth Grill looking for more local food suppliers

Duluth Grill is looking to expand its local suppliers and is specifically interested in a place to find lamb … as well as other good local products. The restaurant spent over $399,000 with local farms and businesses last year, and is looking to expand.

Perfect New Restaurant: The Spirit Room

PDD-New-Restaurant-Award-Logo-2014Sometimes less is more.

The Spirit Room, a 1,000-square-foot drinking establishment with a tapas menu featuring just a dozen items, came out on top in Perfect Duluth Day’s poll to name the area’s best new restaurant. Tavern on the Hill, a full-menu eatery with literally 10 times the square footage of the Spirit Room, placed a distant second.

Spirit Room - Lindsey Graskey and Curtis LaBreche

Poll: Best New Restaurant (Final Round)

Best New Restaurants 2014

Sixteen eateries went up against each other in the elimination round of Perfect Duluth Day’s poll to name the area’s best new restaurant. The top three have made it to the final round: Shorty’s Pizza and Smoked Meat, Spirit Room Tapas Bar & Restaurant and Tavern on the Hill. So once again we ask …

What is the best new restaurant in the Duluth area?

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This poll is closed. The results were:

The Spirit Room – 52.6 percent
Tavern on the Hill – 26.9 percent
Shorty’s Pizza and Smoked Meat – 20.5 percent

Poll: Best New Restaurant (Elimination Round)

The vital task of naming the best new restaurant in the Duluth area begins with this elimination round of voting. Choose your favorite among the 16 options below; the top vote getters will move on to the final round.

What is the best new restaurant in the Duluth area?

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This poll is now closed. Three restaurants will advance to the final ballot:

Shorty’s Pizza and Smoked Meat
Spirit Room Tapas Bar & Restaurant
Tavern on the Hill

We need a newer best new restaurant

It was getting close to the time when we’d need to do this poll anyway, but since the owners of the reigning Perfect New Restaurant, Pak’s Green Corner, have sold their building and will cease operations this week, the time is now to choose a newer best new restaurant.

Before we open the voting, of course, we have to establish a list of nominees. What qualifies as a new restaurant? Well, these have all opened in the past two years:

Dickey’s Barbecue Pit (Oct. 2014)
Izzy’s BBQ Lounge & Grill (Aug. 2014)
Tavern on the Hill (August 2014)
Iron Mug Coffeehouse (July 2014)
Endion Station Public House (July 2014)
Qdoba Mexican Grill (July 2014)
Miller Hill Chipotle (June 2014)
Spirit Room Tapas Bar & Restaurant (June 2014)
Cloud 9 Asian Bistro (June 2014)
Farley’s Grill (April 2014)
Shorty’s Pizza and Smoked Meat (Aug. 2013)
Citys 58th Street Diner (June 2013)

What territory are we talking about? Anything in Duluth or 10 miles of its border – so new restaurants in Superior, Hermantown, Proctor and the various bordering townships all qualify; Two Harbors and Cloquet are out of bounds.

Are there any good nominees we didn’t think to include in the list above?

Izzy’s BBQ Lounge & Grill in Superior

Izzy's Exterior Izzy's Philly Izzy's Bar

It’s been two months since Izzy Turner opened his new restaurant in the former Whiskey Ward / Shenanigan’s / J.T.’s / Johnny’s Bar location, 1506 North Third St. in Superior. Does anyone have any thoughts to share about Izzy’s BBQ Lounge & Grill?

Ten Years Ago: The End of Salsafication in Duluth

ChiChi

On this date in history — Sept. 19, 2004 — Chi-Chi’s Mexican Restaurante in Duluth closed following corporate bankruptcy. It had been located in the Fitger’s Brewery Complex for 20 years. Baja Billy’s Cantina and Grill replaced it in 2005, but closed four years later. Mexico Lindo opened in April 2010 and remains there today.

Toasty’s on East Ninth now open

ToastysNight_MG_9732

The sign on the building has been up since last Spring, and now Toasty’s is open.

Hours: 11 a.m. to 9 p.m. daily
Address: 1032 E. Ninth St.
Owners: Rachael and Tom Hagen

Iron Mug Coffee House in Morgan Park

There is a new coffee shop, deli and pizza place in Duluth’s Morgan Park neighborhood — and it also happens to be the only coffee shop or restaurant of any kind in that neighborhood.

Iron Mug opened on July 30 in the old Lakeview Store building, which was constructed in 1916 to serve as one of the first indoor shopping malls in the United States. The building once housed a grocery store and post office, among other things. The largest major tenant in recent years was Advantage Emblem & Screen Printing, which was located in the building from about 1991 to 2008, before moving to the corner of Haines and Arrowhead roads, near the airport.

Some Iron Mug facts:

  • Owned by: Felisha and Brandon Johnson
  • Address: 1096 88th Ave. W.
  • Phone: 218-464-5408
  • Coffee served: Backroads brand from Hayward
  • Hours: Open seven days a week, from 6 a.m. to 7 p.m.

The Swamp Sisters of Saginaw

About a half-hour drive northwest of Duluth, in the unincorporated community of Saginaw, Swamp Sisters summer restaurant kicks out breakfast and lunch grub to fleets of mostly white-haired patrons who fill the gravel driveway with their cars and assisted-living-community shuttle vans. It’s open for about two months each year, on Fridays and Saturdays only, from 8 a.m. to 2 p.m., on the swampy old Armstrong farmstead. And all of that, of course, makes this place awesome.

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 2 p.m., Monday through Saturday;
    8 a.m. to 1 p.m. Sunday
  • Phone: 218-409-2525
  • Owners: Melissa Hyatt and Cliff Lindberg
  • Baker: Joe Dougherty