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Star Tribune - Taste 50 Birthday Feast

Monday, October 28, 2019 - 6:00pm to 10:00pm

The Star Tribune celebrates five decades of the Taste section.

Commemorate 50 years of great Taste with a one-of-a-kind feast featuring six James Beard Award-winners, hosted by the American Swedish Institute and FIKA Executive Chef Blake Meier.

Event details:

  • 6 p.m. – Social hour with music and early seating
  • 7 p.m. – Dinner served
  • The feast consists of seven courses – one from each chef – with drink pairings. Plus a "surprise" extra course! . 
  • Cost: $295, inclusive of dinner, drink pairings, tax and gratuity 
  • For questions, including those about dietary restrictions, please email or call 612-871-4907

The Star Tribune’s Taste section will celebrate the half-century mark of all-things-food in October with its print edition. What better way to note the occasion than with a meal hosted by the American Swedish Institute that reflects the significance of the local restaurant scene.

The Taste 50 Birthday Feast is a seven-course dining experience to celebrate our collective fascination - and indulgence - in good food. A meal of such significance calls for a special set of chefs. Those in white jackets that night, representing the best of the best locally, are the six James Beard award-winners for Best Chef Midwest, who will be cooking together for the first time.

The award-winning chefs are Tim McKee (Octo Fishbar and Market House Collaborative), Isaac Becker (112 Eatery, Bar La Grassa, Burch Steak), Alex Roberts (Restaurant Alma, Brasa, Cafe Alma), Paul Berglund (formerly of The Bachelor Farmer), Gavin Kaysen (Spoon and Stable, Bellecour, Demi) and Ann Kim (Young Joni, Hello Pizza, Pizzeria Lola).

They will be joined by executive chef Blake Meier of Fika at ASI, who is the mastermind of other recent commemorative meals, including the dinners for the current The Vikings Begin exhibit. 

Chef bios for the Taste 50 Birthday Feast

  • Tim McKee: In 2009, Tim was the first Minnesota chef to be named Best Chef Midwest by the James Beard Foundation.  He’s a veteran of D’Amico Cucina and Azur, and created La Belle Vie and a half-dozen other restaurants. Tim is currently chef/owner of Octo Fishbar and vice president of the Fish Guys.
  • Isaac Becker:  Isaac, along with his wife and business partner Nancy St. Pierre, operates three Minneapolis restaurants: 112 Eatery, Bar La Grassa and Burch Restaurant. A fourth, Snack Bar, is opening soon in the North Loop. He won Best Chef Midwest from the James Beard Foundation in 2011.
  • Alex Roberts:  Alex launched Restaurant Alma in 1999, expanding it in 2016 to include a casual cafe and boutique hotel. He created Brasa Rotisserie in northeast Minneapolis in 2007 and added a St. Paul location two years later. Alex won Best Chef Midwest from the James Beard Foundation in 2010.
  • Paul Berglund:  Paul had a six-year tenure at The Bachelor Farmer, then a year-long stint at Vestalia Hospitality. The former naval officer, a native of St. Louis, Mo., cooked at Oliveto in Oakland, Calif., and later baked at Heartland Restaurant Farm Direct Market when he arrived in Minnesota. He won Best Chef Midwest from the James Beard Foundation in 2016.
  • Gavin Kaysen: Gavin trained and worked in Switzerland, San Diego and New York City before returning to the Twin Cities in 2014 to open Spoon and Stable, Bellecour and Demi. He won Best Chef Midwest from the James Beard Foundation in 2018. He was named Rising Star Chef of the Year by the foundation in 2008 during his tenure at Cafe Boulud in New York City.
  • Ann Kim:  Ann, partnering with her husband and business partner Conrad Leifur, operates the Vestalia Hospitality family of restaurants — Young Joni, Pizzeria Lola and Hello Pizza — and is developing a tortilla-centric restaurant in Uptown Minneapolis. She won Best Chef Midwest from the James Beard Foundation in 2019.
  • Blake Meier: Blake is executive chef of Fika at the American Swedish Institute, after more than a decade in the Twin Cities culinary industry, including Porter & Frye, Cosmos and Bradstreet Neighborhood Craftshouse. He has developed commemorative meals at ASI, including dinners for the current The Vikings Begin exhibit.
$295 – inclusive of dinner, beverages, tax and gratuity


For information, call 612-871-4907

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