Duluth Grill was featured on the Food Network’s Diners, Drive-ins and Dives program on Nov. 26, 2010. The segment can be viewed at foodnetwork.com. Host Guy Fieri samples the grass-fed bison pot roast that made the West End famous.
This is the complete Topline News broadcast from May 20, 1993. You’ll notice it’s pretty short; that’s because from 1992 to 1998 KBJR experimented with an abbreviated 10 p.m. news program that ran about six minutes, not counting commercials, followed by a re-run of Roseanne with sports scores at bottom screen.
What’s not to like about Duluth Grill? It’s a truck-stop style diner in the friendly West End neighborhood that buys from local farmers and grows some of its vegetables around its parking lot in raised-bed gardens. Owner Tom Hanson and his family have plans to build an urban orchard on the lot as well, with plum trees, black-cap raspberries, lingonberries, choke cherries and other deliciousness. They even get their honey from hives on the roof of the building. Duluth Grill is much more than a simple breakfast joint, but readers of Perfect Duluth Day strongly agreed in a recent poll that it is indeed the best breakfast restaurant in the area.
Is it the Scotch eggs? The breakfast stir fry? The curried polenta skillet? The smoked salmon omelet? The caramel apple French toast? Yes, yes, yes, yes and yes. It’s all that and more.
The paper over the windows at this classic restaurant on the ground floor of the Seaway Hotel, 2005 W. Superior St. in Duluth’s friendly West End, reveals it is out of business. (Jim’s Hamburgers was included in the “Breakfast in Duluth” post just 10 months ago.)
This was the last of four Jim’s Hamburger locations in Duluth. Jim Overlie was the founder, opening the first one in 1937. I think the West End location opened in the 1940s. Overlie sold in 1985 to Dick and Mary Christensen. Dick died in 2000 and Mary died in 2006. Their son Denny took over ownership.
Other Jim’s Hamburger locations were at:
502 E. Fourth St. (closed in 2005)
414 W. Superior (closed in 1995)
502 E. First St. (closed in 1982)
From 1991 to 2008, Yoshikas Sauna served the West End with its famous “erotic” massages. Everyone in town knew prostitution was going on there, but somehow the long arm of the law seemed to ignore it.
It was finally shut down when the city decided not to grant a massage establishment license to owner Suzy Woo-Young in November 2008. (Woo-Young had operated Yoshikas without a license all those years, and decided to finally apply for one. Oops.)
Kevin Lund bought the building and had it torn down last Thursday.
Any Yoshikas memories for the record, PDD commenters? (You know, stories that won’t gross us all out.)
By the way, people always called the place “Yoshiko’s Sauna.” The News Tribune refers to it as “Yoshiko Sauna,” which is also how it appeared in the phone book. The sign (pictured above) said “Yoshikas Sauna,” so I spell it that way. It seems like there should be a possessive apostrophe, but I’m not sure who or what a Yoshika is.