West Duluth event center planned as MidCoast Catering expands

MidCoast Catering owner Jonathan Reznick stands outside his Central Avenue buildings. Reznick is remodeling the property on the left to create a new event center called The Tasting Room. (Photos by Mark Nicklawske)

A popular Duluth food truck and catering business plans to expand operations later this summer when it opens a new event center adjacent to its West Duluth headquarters.

The Rambler food truck and MidCoast Catering owner Jonathan Reznick said he purchased the Michael Talarico law offices at 313 N. Central Ave. last May. Reznick connected the building to his catering kitchen next door and launched remodeling efforts this spring. The new space will be called the Tasting Room.

“It’s going to be a small event space,” said Reznick. “There’s not a lot of those around that people can just rent out for smaller parties that will do full-service food, bar, all of the above.”

The Tasting Room will be designed to host business luncheons, groom’s dinners, holiday parties or any other private social gatherings. Ticketed events may also be part of the project in the future.

“It’ll be a nice little extension,” said Reznick. “It’ll be nice to be able to do some stuff on site.”

Reznick founded The Rambler Food Truck in Duluth in 2012 and routinely parks the portable kitchen at breweries, sporting events or busy business districts. He opened a kitchen for MidCoast Catering at 315 N. Central Ave. in 2017.

The Rambler Food truck was established by owner Jonathan Reznick in 2012. Here the kitchen on wheels is parked outside Bent Paddle Brewing.

But Minnesota law requires caterers to have a restaurant or event space to obtain a liquor license. Reznick said he needed the license to offer full-service catering for events at places like Glensheen or rustic wedding barns, which do not have their own liquor license.

“It prevented us from getting clients sometimes,” he said. “We’re in the service industry, the hospitality industry, we should be able to service our customers 100 percent. They should be able to get all their needs met from us.”

MidCoast Catering has now obtained a liquor license and will be able to serve alcohol with its meals at all events and at its new event center.

The Tasting Room will have seating for 40-50 people. Service staff will be able to move freely between the MidCoast kitchen and the dining room. The new space will be equipped for presentations and entertainment.

Eventually, Reznick said he plans to promote special tasting events — serving six- or seven-course meals with wine pairings. These events could take place during the off-peak winter season for food-truck operations and catered celebrations.

“Once we get going and operations are running smoothly, it’ll be really fun to do different tastings here,” he said. “That way we can really showcase our talents and the people who work with us.”

Reznick said it was fortunate to be able to buy the place next door rather than find a new location.

Talarico said it was not a difficult decision to sell. Reznick has had a long standing offer to buy the building and in 2023 needed to expand at his current location or move elsewhere. Talarico said he and Reznick agreed to a price and made a handshake deal.

“I feel he’s a valuable asset. Not only with his catering, but the way he hires people and takes care of people,” said Talarico. “I’m happy that he’s able to just knock out a wall and stay in West Duluth.”

Talarico has practiced law in West Duluth for 44 years and purchased 313 N. Central Ave., a former laundry business, more than 20 years ago after it suffered a roof collapse. He said he will continue to practice law from a home office in Norton Park.

“Business hasn’t slowed down. I thought it might but it hasn’t. I don’t feel like I need to retire, I enjoy my job so I’ll keep on working from home,” he said. “It’s rather nice — I’m sitting here right now looking out at the river and enjoying the view.”

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