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Restaurants Posts

Carnivores rejoice: OMC Smokehouse opens next week

OMCCrewFor more than two years, Duluth carnivores have been salivating at the prospect of OMC Smokehouse, Tom Hanson’s new restaurant venture. The wait will be over when OMC opens Wednesday, Feb. 15.

Juice Pharm taking over Vintage Kitchen space

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Set aside the biscuits and gravy, and get ready for freshly squeezed. The Juice Pharm has announced it’s taking over the space formerly occupied by Vintage Kitchen at 12 S. 15th Ave. E.

Avenue C restaurant opens Monday in Cloquet

Avenue C in CloquetThe long-awaited Avenue C restaurant in Cloquet will open its doors to the public on Monday, Jan. 23.

Perfect Duluth Day reported in November the eatery was on track to open by Christmas, but delays in deliveries and construction pushed the date back. General Manager Ryan Kolak says, “We’re here and kicking now.”

Lucky’s 13 Pub opening Jan. 30 at Miller Hill Mall

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Drinking and dining options at Miller Hill Mall will improve by month’s end. Lucky’s 13 Pub is set to open at 1600 Miller Trunk Highway on Jan. 30. Duluthians will barely recognize the space, which was occupied for 25 years by Old Country Buffet.

The Boat Club Restaurant & Bar to replace Midi

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Jason Vincent

After one last New Year’s Eve celebration, Midi shuttered its doors for good. But the prime location the restaurant occupied in the lower level of the historic Fitger’s Brewery Complex, with its patio and unparalleled lake view, won’t be dormant for long.

Renovations are already underway for the Boat Club Restaurant & Bar, a fine dining establishment set to open in Midi’s old space Valentine’s Day weekend.

O’Neill’s Pub and Liquor in Superior is closed

oneills-pub-superior-wiAfter 23 years in business, the owners of O’Neill’s Pub and Liquor closed its doors after ringing in the new year with customers on Saturday.

The laid back Irish pub at 3333 Tower Avenue in Superior featured weekly $1 tap beer and $2 Bloody Mary specials and had the distinction of being Superior’s only drive-through liquor store.

In 2014, Thrillest touted O’Neill’s as one of the top ten drive-through liquor stores in the country. Wisconsin is one of only six states where this modern convenience is legal.

The Lifespan of the Herring on My Sandwich

I had guests in from Ontario, from the part of Canada that is south by a long drive from Duluth. We talk often about that oddity, about how strange it feels to drive north to the United States from Waterloo.

They wanted to know what eateries had opened in Duluth since their last visit. I took them to Northern Waters Restaurant in the Mount Royal Shopping Center, where we enjoyed a two-hour lunch.

There are two joys about eating at Northern Waters. One is the unique pricing. Tax and tip are rolled in, so I never worry about whether my companions tip well enough, or whether I tip well enough. That is a greater relief than I expected.

The more substantive dimension is the food, of course. I had the sandwich with the catch of the day. It was a herring sandwich, and I ordered it with a sense of adventure. My whole life, my only experience of herring was pickled, typically stabbed with a toothpick and put on a cracker. I giggled nervously as I ordered it. It was so very tasty.

R.I.P. Fizzy Waters, Crabby Ol’ Bill’s

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Two Duluth businesses owned by Steve and Susan Smith are closed. Fizzy Waters was a specialty soda and candy shop that recently moved from Canal Park to West Superior Street. Crabby Ol’ Bill’s was a food stand that operated out of an old boat in Canal Park.

New Vietnamese restaurant open in Superior

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Fans of phở have a new place to enjoy the savory Vietnamese soup. Phở Cali Vietnamese Noodles Restaurant opened Dec. 17 in the former Lan Chi’s building at 1320 Belknap St. in Superior.

Brewhouse gets new master brewer

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Ted Briggs, the new brew master at Fitger’s Brewhouse

Just Take Action announced Ted Briggs as the new master brewer for Fitger’s Brewhouse this week. “Mr. Briggs will continue to build on the great legacy of quality Lake Superior craft beer first initiated by Dave Hoops and later, Frank Kaszuba,” the company stated in a news release.

Downtown eatery supports aviation education

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Lark o’ the Lake Café is an eatery with an unusual secondary purpose: to promote aviation education. “The Lark,” as it’s more commonly known, celebrated a year in business last month.

Sandra Ettestad, Mark Marino and Don Monaco own the restaurant at 231 E. Superior St. in the Greysolon Plaza. All three are trustees of the Duluth Aviation Institute and founders of its Gilruth Continuum Path to Aviation program.

Pita Pit opens Monday in Downtown Duluth

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Monday marks the grand opening of Duluth’s first Pita Pit at 425 W. Superior St. in the new Maurices building. A ribbon cutting ceremony will take place at 11 a.m. The restaurant will be giving away samples and coupons during the grand opening from 11 a.m. to 1 p.m.

Pita Pit’s tagline is “Fresh thinking. Healthy eating.” Company spokesperson Monica Hendrickson says the franchise offers a fresh and healthy alternative to fast food. She calls it “faster food” since pitas are made to order, similar to Subway sandwich shops.

What is the best Duluth-area bakery?

baked-goodsThe decline of the corner bakery in modern America could be considered one of the greatest food-related tragedies of our time. An 85 percent decrease in standalone retail bakeries occurred in the United States over the past 40 years, according to Retail Bakers of America.

With this in mind, it seems important to show our local bakeries some love. That’s why our latest poll will decide the perfect Duluth bakery.

Nominate your favorite by commenting on this post. It will be a purely subjective poll, of course. Comparing an old-school institution stocked with traditional sweets like Long Johns and Bismarcks and a newfangled shop specializing in artisan breads and delicate pastries is a bit like comparing apples to oranges, but the idea is to choose an overall favorite.

Feel free to nominate bakeries that double as coffee shops and serve food or the supermarket variety, if you’re so inclined.

After much geographical consideration, we’ve determined any bakery within 16 miles of the Aerial Lift Bridge is eligible for nomination. That means establishments in Superior, Hermantown, Proctor and the many bordering townships qualify for nomination, but more distant places like Two Harbors and Cloquet do not.

Once we have a good pool of nominees, the poll will commence.

Avenue C restaurant in Cloquet could open by year’s end

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Doug Smith anticipates Avenue C, his new Cloquet restaurant, will open soon. The build-out was about 70 percent complete when it hit some financing snags that delayed the process. Work has now resumed and he estimates the establishment could be up and running by Christmas.

Bagels, coffee and pizza coming to Endion

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A co-branded Caribou Coffee and Einstein Bros. Bagels will open in a new luxury apartment complex that’s been quickly taking shape in Duluth’s Endion neighborhood.