Restaurant Preview: All Saints Opens in Former Bardo Space

Two dining-industry vets have a new Minneapolis spot where vegetables take the starring role

In the coming months, we’re going to get a better look at what some of our most talented restaurant people see as the future for dining out. So much to anticipate: Ann Ahmed (Lat 14) and her Khaluna in south Minneapolis; chef Tommy Begnaud (Butcher & the Boar) and cocktail master Nick Kosevich teaming up for Mr. Paul’s Supper Club at 50th & France; and the first to open will be All Saints in the former Bardo space in the Surdyk’s neighborhood.

Dennis Leaf-Smith and Kim Tong worked together at Esker Grove at the Walker Art Center. Leaf-Smith has been the executive chef at Eastside and 112 Eatery, and Tong is one of the best in the state at running a dining room—she’s been general manager of Borough and Parlour, among others.

They call the menu “veggie-forward” yet “meat-friendly.” They did a couple test meals this week and will start serving Tuesday. We dropped in and tried a number of things, and while you can never tell how a place will end up from previews, the concept here is extremely promising.

The menu is set up around a collection of smaller plates: charred cucumbers, hamachi crudo with white ponzu, lightly fried salt-and-pepper pieces of mushrooms (crazily addictive). Then there are four entrees: a New York strip steak with charmoula, a pork chop, a half-chicken, and striped bass. Prices are perfect for this growing neighborhood; the small plates will be in the $12-$15 range, and the entrees are all under $30.

They’ve moved the bar (which used to be right at the front door of Bardo) to the side of the room, and it creates an energy. This is the kind of place I can’t wait to revisit. Sit at the bar, grab a couple small plates, order a great cocktail or glass of wine, and just enjoy.

All Saints, 222 E. Hennepin Ave., Minneapolis

The menus:

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