Craves Downtown location prepares for opening

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May 3, 2011
By: Jeremy Zoss
Jeremy Zoss

HENNEPIN AVENUE – One of the summer’s hottest restaurant openings is right around the corner. Crave’s new Minneapolis location is scheduled to open on May 19 in the former Palomino space in LaSalle Plaza. However, one of the restaurant’s main attractions, the rooftop patio, won’t open until June 4.

The Downtown location is the sixth restaurant in the Crave chain, which opened its first location at Edina’s Galleria in 2007. Since then, locations have been opened at The Mall of America and the Shops at West End in St. Louis Park, as well as locations in Omaha and Coral Gables, Florida.

“We weren’t looking for a space downtown, but we got a call from the landlord looking for a tenant,” says Crave Founder and CEO Kam Talebi. “But once we saw the space, I felt this location was poised well for the Crave concept, especially given the vibrancy of what’s happening Downtown.”

The LaSalle plaza location features two private dining rooms that bring the interior space to around 13,000 square feet. The rooftop patio will add 7,000 square feet of outside dining and feature its own kitchen, bar and menu items.

The Journal recently had a chance to tour the massive space. Construction crews were hard at work installing some of the traditional features of a Crave restaurant, including the massive bar and enormous wine tower that will signal the separation of the bar area and dining room. A new staircase had to be built to access the roof, which was not used for dining by the previous tenant. While touring the incomplete rooftop, Kam Talebi pointed out the massive bank of fans and vents that had to be relocated for more dining space on the roof. The rooftop bathrooms, bar and kitchen were little more than roughed-out areas during our visit, but Talebi’s animated explanations of the space made it easy to picture the finished product. With its breathtaking view of Downtown, it’s no wonder that the opening of Crave and its rooftop patio are so eagerly anticipated.