This Fresh Forkin’ Friday, I have something to tell you: It’s September. I have this crabapple tree in my front yard and it started losing leaves in mid-July. Given the phenomenal string of hottness we had in July, I have to say that THAT was actually August, and now we’re in September. Are your allergies acting up like mine? Yup, September. I may be hyper-sensitive, and lord knows my meteorological degree is a forgery, but I’m telling you that Fall is knocking on what is supposed to be our last lazy days of summer. Instead of lolling in an innertube in some random lake, I’m thinking about which boots need fixing. Instead of lemonade and tomatoes, I’m thinking about braised beef. I’m hoping this means a long, luxurious autumn with bright sunny days and brilliant leaves and lots of potential for chunky sweaters. I’m just worried it means snow by Halloween.
Lone Oak Grill is now open in the former Joe Senser’s in Eagan. Rumors in the sewing circle had this place as a Blue Plate resto, but it turns out that it’s the first venture from Luke Shimp, the brother/partner who recently left the Blue Plate top tier. This new joint has a touch of the city in it, with lots of steel, garage door windows, servers in mechanic shirts, and a “Burgers. Bourbon. Beer” manifesto. It will be interesting to watch this one, I think.
Travail is finally open again as of tonight, after a long summer vacay. Maybe they’ve got some good campfire stories to tell you.
Indeed Brewing opens its taproom today up Nordeast, in the shadow of the Northrup King. It’s a nicely turned room, with dark woods and a long bar, plus there’s a quiet (until the train rolls by) patio and some v. good pale ale and summer ale. Couple of nice laid-back dudes at this one.
Well, those crafty Chef Shack ladies have some news. They announced plans to open a Chef Shack brick and mortar in Bay City, WI (near Lake Pepin) in the old River Bay Cafe. The joint will only be open on weekends and hopes to open sometime this Fall. And what a gorgeous drive for nosh THAT will be.
And there’s a new club on the horizon, Insert Coins is a video game lounge that started in Vegas and is hitting downtown Mpls. this fall. Do you think it will be like that cool skateboard/video arena club in Hackers? Hope so.
Garlic Fest is this weekend out in Hutch. This is one awesome festival, and it looks like we might finally get a dry day for it. Don’t be surprised to see some big names on the demo stage: Steven Brown is on, Joe Hatch-Surisook of Sen Yai Sen Lek, and Marshall Paulson of Birchwood to boot. There will be kites, bagpipes, and of course all the garlic you can handle. If you think garlic stinks, maybe you’re just not eating enough.
The Twin Cities Beer Fest is this weekend, out at the old Met Stadium (read: the parking lot across from MOA). The MN Beer kids have some great tips on how to survive and thrive at a beer fest. For this one I’d say maybe don’t plan to hit up Lego Land after four hours of beer. Just a thought.
And it’s Irish Fair this weekend on Harriet Island.
And it’s Polish Fest this weekend in Nordeast.
And you can warm up for the big fair by attending the Carver Country Fair out Waconia way (I will have cheese curds in hand as I witness the demolitin derby this Saturday, you betcha).
And, finally, it’s Corn Days in my own humble town of Long Lake. Over the years you’ve heard me wax on about memories of shucking barrels full of corn as a kid the night before the fest, of my sister as corn princess, and of the candy-chucking parade floats and our water-balloon revenge. Good times. Good times.