Seriously, if you’re not signed up for our email, you’re missing out
Week after week, Mike S. impresses us with the depth and breadth of his burger knowledge. He gets fan mail from our readers and from restaurants! Check out all The Burger Hunter’s meaty exploits at the #GreatAmericanBurgerHunter tag on Instagram.
Now that things have settled down a little in the Northeast Minneapolis Arts District, it’s a good time to go hunting! The Sheridan Room precisely at 337 on 13th is quite possibly the hipster capitol of the world. So roll up your skinnies and park your fixie right up front cause we’re rolling hard for meat. The Sheridan Room Burger is all scratchy and totes chef driven. Bun is onion and semi-sweet. Liked it. The grind is chuck and brisket so the pedigree is strong. Major league juicy town. Beard wipes galore. Medium be doing, which is nice. V loose pack on the meat. The burger is smothered in a super smooth gruyere. It’s yummy. There’s a magical cipollini onion jam that’s really just there the whole time. Adding depth to each bite. The lettuce is on the bottom where it belongs. Some sneaky mushrooms and a dijonnaise finalize the show. It’s a journey but they’re all together. Top marks chef. Comes with fries or an artsy salad. Loved the burger, love the place. Now there’s a nice aftershock of flavor that’s very lasting, reminding you of all its glory. Pro tip: Glass block windows are almost always a score. You see them you go in.
Scorecard: Flavor: 8.7 Presentation: 9 Originality: 9
The Sheridan Room, 337 13th Ave NE, MPLS; thesheridanroom.com
Nearly 5,000 of the most savy and active MPLS + STPL goer-outers regularly read our Secrets of the City newsletter. Isn’t that wild? You can help us keep spread our love for under-the-radar arts and cultures happenings here by sponsoring us! Just reply to this email or hit us up at advertise at secretsofthecity.com and we’ll get you more info.
It’s almost impossible to keep up with the arts and the culture and the entertainment and food and drink and the people and the places here in MPLS + STPL, so we’ve put together this list of stuff that we’re using as talking points this week and sharing them with you to pretend like they’re you’re own.
Who: Esko Thompson
We’ve been a little hard on Art-a-Whirl since it felt like that certain punk DIY spark went missing and the music fest took over. We were won back this weekend by—no not Bonnie Bear’s “surprise” set at Indeed Brewing, lol—Esko Thompson (pictured), the pop-up installation that captured the ‘NORTHer’ spirit. A jab at the movement to brand us The North (which we support, btw), Esko Thompson is even further North than Askov Finlayson, in branding and actual MN geography. The store squatted in a barely under-construction space to sell camping cups, beanie hats that say NORTHER (which we bought), t-shirts, axes, and more of the stuff you see in hipster high end stores. It was social commentary, it was brilliantly executed, it was hilarious, it was art.
What: Square Lake Film Fest
With it’s mix of films, bands, and quick trip out of the city during the summer, the Square Lake Film Fest the easily one of the best block party/fests of the summer, which is why it also always sells out. This year’s music is even bigger than ever: Roma di Luna, Gramma’s Boyfriend, The Black Eyed Snakes, iNMiGRATiON, and a live film score and set by ZULUZULUU. Better get them tix!
Where: Head Flyer Brewing
We told someone that we just had some pretty good beer at the new tap room on Hennepin and their response was “which one”. Says a lot about our brewery growth! But we were bellied up on East Hennepin at the new Head Flyer, right by Familia Skate Shop. The beers were good—particularly the Juicy IPA and the “Tessellation” Pale Ale—and the space was fun, especially the extra cute puppy melting everyone’s hearts. Still not enough tap rooms!
Why (Oh, Why)?: Later bar close time for the Super Bowl
The omnibus liquor bill didn’t make it through the Minnesota Legislature, which means that the state hasn’t authorized bars to be open until 4 AM during the Super Bowl. For fans who come into town want to experience a taste of the our “Bold North”, we can’t think of a better way than saying “sorry, bar’s closed, we have these things called Blue Laws and you gotta find somewhere else to go” at 2 AM. And kidding aside, it’s total BS that the bill’s provision to let small breweries that become medium sized breweries like Fulton sell growlers not becoming law is a dereliction of legislative duty, but what else is new.
Of all the histories of not-that-long-ago local music, we’re maybe most excited for Cyn Collins‘ Complicated Fun: The Birth of Minneapolis Punk And Indie Rock, 1974-1984 thanks to both its subject matter near and dear to our hearts. Quotes like this one from award winning author Marlon James are also an easy sell: “Complicated Fun is a great rock book that works the same way as a great rock song. Find the right voices, lead with a riff, spit some truth, then watch everything explode. The result? Punk messing with punk, and birthing indie rock.” Count us in.
And since you can’t have a book release on local punk and indie rock without the punk and indie rock, Collins will be joined on Friday at the Hook & Ladder by the Flamingo/Flamin’ Oh’s, Curtiss A and the Dark Click, and others firebrands from that era.
We have a debate raging in our office about the context for this book. Some say you’re making a great case for the MPLS + STPL punk and indie rock as a wave of Post-Boomerism (without the Boomers?), but others say it’s the glory days of the Gen Xers (but somehow too early?). Which is it?
I’d say the context is a little of both, yet more the former—a wave of post-boomers (without the boomers) as most of the foundational musicians and fans were in their late teens, early 20s when they were performing at/going to the Longhorn starting in 1977. They were rejecting mainstream music and culture and generating their own new revolutionary music scene, which would inspire the Generation X to attend shows and form their own bands.
How long have you been developing this book? Is it a natural extension of your deep connection to the local music scene?
I began developing this book about 6 years ago when I produced a KFAI/Ampers radio documentary on this subject. The book idea originated before then, and from that research and those interviews. I devoted most of my time researching and writing it since The Minnesota Historical Society Press accepted my proposal in Spring of 2015. Yes, indeed it is a natural extension of my deep connection to the local music scene! I’m very inspired to share musicians stories with audiences.
Were the bars back at this time just cooler than our bars now? They sound like it.
Some of the interviewees note the bars then were cooler than our bars now. They note things like it was a small number of the same people (couple hundred) who went to the Longhorn every night, you’d see your friends there, who were also outside of the norm. There was a camaraderie, and they were there for the music, too.
We love the book readings matched up with shows, like Friday’s set at Hook & Ladder with Curtiss A & Dark Click and Flamingo/Flamin’ Oh’s and the past reading at Electric Fetus with Kevin Cole and Flamingo. How much of you doing the book was for the release shows?
I’d say doing the book for the release shows, was part of it, hoping to celebrate the great artists who shared stories, many whom are still performing to this day and releasing new records this spring and summer, such as the Suicide Commandos and the Suburbs. I enjoy organizing these shows in relation to the book and possibly increasing interest and awareness of the foundation of our great music scene and these fantastic artists who deserve more recognition for their music.
How underrated is KFAI? We listen to it all the time.
We will be 40 years old next year! We have a large number of devoted member listeners and continue to reach new listeners, who love us and support us by becoming members as well! People who appreciate a vast range of great music in all genres curated by knowledgeable DJ’s listen to us. People who haven’t, are missing lots of cool music and guests you would rarely, if ever, hear anywhere else. You can hear us streaming live at kfai.org or 90.3 FM Mpls/106.7 FM St. Paul.