Bright Colors, Deep Flavors: In Hai Hai, chef Christina Nguyen has created an autobiographical powerhouse

Three facts about Christina Nguyen, chef-owner at Hai Hai and Hola Arepa: 1. She believes that the customer is right…unless the subject is omelette larb. “It’s the one dish I won’t allow people to get less spicy, because I am a total tyrant and crazy person,” she says. “There are certain things that you should … [ Read more]

MSP well-represented on longlist of James Beard Awards 2018 semifinalists

The James Beard Award Foundation released their longlist of semifinalists for their 2018 honors Thursday morning. Minneapolis–St. Paul was well represented, placing seven entries in the regional powerhouse category of Best Chef: Midwest. For national honors, the 2010 Best Chef: Midwest, Alex Roberts of Restaurant Alma, nabbed his second consecutive semifinal nod for Outstanding Chef nationwide. … [ Read more]

Restauranteurs breathe life into the Schmidt Brewery Keg House

For nearly a decade after 2004, the Schmidt Brewery sat empty on St. Paul’s West Seventh Street—a fossil of Minnesota’s golden age of brewing. In 2013, the historic “castle” brewery and bottling house were once again filled with the bustle of people as residents filled the the newly developed Schmidt Artist Lofts. But still, a piece of the … [ Read more]

Eat This Now! Shiitake Cachapas at Hola Arepa

By John Garland You knew about their gorgeous arepas. And you had to guess that by luring Dan Oskey away from Strip Club Meat & Fish in St. Paul, the cocktail program was going to be killer. And you’d be right on both counts. But what remained to be seen about Hola Arepa‘s new bricks-and-mortar … [ Read more]