The rooftop restaurant at a new concept designed to bring art, food and entertainment together in Uptown, Minneapolis opens Friday.
The grand opening of the rooftop at Art + Rec Uptown will coincide with the Uptown Art Fair and the new anchor tenant at Seven Points is planning to open additional attractions and dining this fall.
Minneapolis-based Graves Hospitality is overseeing the development and operations of Art + Rec, which will span over 20,000-square-feet once completed this fall.
Ben Graves, the group’s chief executive officer, said the full concept will include a mini-golf course, black box theater and speakeasy, in addition to a restaurant and bar that’ll be separate from the rooftop patio.
Artwork, curated by co-executive artistic director Esther Callahan, will be the focus of each space within Art + Rec.
“Our artwork will offer both local residents and out-of-town guests a sense of local culture, a sense of place, and an opportunity to support artists’ exposure in and beyond their own communities,” Callahan said in a news release.
Art installations from local artists on the rooftop include a three-dimensional mural from Witt Siasoco, sculptural metal work from Alan Christian, and a mural from local artist, Bo Young An.
On the patio, which seats 95, a newly-constructed kitchen will serve a menu the team describes as “gastrofair”.
“It’s kind of reminiscent of finger food that you’d have at the State Fair, but elevated,” Graves said.
The culinary team is led by chef Brandon Randolph, whose career in the Twin Cities has included stints at Solera, Heartland and The Bachelor Farmer.
Menu offerings at the Art + Rec rooftop include Dorito-battered fish sticks and a burger with house-made “kid’s sauce”, which is made with equal parts mayonnaise, mustard and ketchup. A vegan take on a traditional Chicago dog is also on the menu.
And while Art + Rec aims to be family-friendly, it’s also looking to make a splash in the Twin Cities craft cocktail scene.
“We’ve created a beverage program as creative and playful as the art selected to share the space,” said Andrew Avila, the corporate director of food and beverage at Graves Hospitality and general manager of Arts + Rec Uptown, in a news release. “From exploring modern techniques and working with our amazing local producers to sourcing interesting ingredients from around the world; each aspect tells a different story to our guests.”
Non-traditional drinkware — such as a boba cup for the matcha green tea cocktail and pouches similar to what you’d find shopping for kids’ juice — add a quirky element to the bar experience.
Tables can also order craft cocktails in a mini-keg, which Graves said offers a fresh take on something akin to ordering bottle service or a pitcher of beer.
Art + Rec Uptown will be the latest project in Graves Hospitality’s portfolio, which includes owning and operating The Tasting Room, La Voya Brasserie, Bradstreet Crafthouse and the two Moxy hotel lobby bars.
Graves said Art + Rec will bring something unique to the community and hopefully help improve safety in the neighborhood.
“It’s truly a group of local artists and peacemakers that really wanted to do something special for Uptown,” he said.