Now Open: The Third Bird

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August 26, 2014 // UPDATED 7:12 pm - August 28, 2014
By: Ben Johnson
Wood-fire chicken with stuffing, gravy and greens
All photos by Ben Johnson
Ben Johnson

Local restaurateur Kim Bartmann opened her latest concept, The Third Bird, in the former home of Café Maude on Aug. 19.

The renovated space pairs a laid-back, coffee shop vibe with an upscale menu and extensive wine list in an attempt to establish itself as a dependable neighborhood hangout.

“It’s a casual, neighborhood restaurant with really good food,” said head chef Lucas Almendinger, who previously ran the well-reviewed but short-lived Union Fish Market.

The food, artfully plated by Almendinger, uses produce from Bartmann’s Tiny Diner farm and will frequently change with the seasons.

“The first couple months it won’t change quite as quickly as we still are getting our feet under us, but once the machine is up and running smoothly there will be small or even major menu changes as we see fit about every two, three weeks,” he said.

A beautiful, long, circular wooden bar dominates the back of room, which looks out at Loring Park through tall, brand-new windows. Bartmann got into a bit of a dispute with the Historic Planning Commission in trying to replace the windows, but eventually a compromise was found.

The entrance can be a little tricky to find. Instead of coming in from the Loring Park side of the restaurant, it’s in the alley out back, but the initial confusion caused by coming in the back does reduce traffic in front of the nice view.

This is Bartmann’s eighth restaurant. She also owns Bryant Lake Bowl, Pat’s Tap, Red Stag Supper Club, Cafe Barbette, Gigi’s Café, Bread and Pickle and Tiny Diner.

The Third Bird offers a brunch, lunch and dinner menu, and there's mezzanine seating available for large groups. During the week it’s open 11 a.m.-2 a.m., and on weekends 9 a.m.-2 a.m. Happy hour is Monday-Friday 3-6 p.m., where all taps, cocktails and glasses of wine are $2 off.

The Third Bird bar -- photo by Ben Johnson

(BELOW: An interactive map of recent business openings in Journal land.)