Regenerative agriculture, a Parcelle mini-review, and other food news

Kamal Mohamed, owner of Parcelle and StepChld


Openings, closings and other news

The Seward Cafe (2129 E. Franklin Ave.) is now serving brunch all day (8 a.m. to 4 p.m.) from Thursday to Sunday. It is closed Monday to Wednesday. A branch of Cafe Ceres, helmed by famed pastry chef Shawn McKenzie, opened in the Wakpada Apartments near 46th Street and Minnehaha.
Planning to open next month, Sip Society Cafe will be a venue in the huge apartment complex called Inspire at 2837 Emerson Ave. S. This is the project of Sacad Guled, a young entrepreneur who has already had success with a transportation company. The cafe will serve coffee from Wesley Andrews, Somali tea, wraps, sandwiches and smoothies.
Picnic, in Linden Hills at 4307 Upton Ave. S., had its grand opening on April 2. The crowd-funded and already popular neighborhood spot in the former Clancey’s Meats space serves casual cafe food, but also restaurant-style plates and bowls, and it has a full bar. No reservations, order at the bar, closed Sundays, open until 1 a.m. on Friday and Saturday.

Picnic in Linden Hills prior to opening

Origami Sushi in Uptown, which closed earlier this year, reopened in April as Origami Tiger Sushi, and is now owned by its head chef. Vegan East closed its longtime cafe location at 24th and Lyndale Avenue South. Its bakery location at 5500 34th Ave. S. is still open, but they don’t have sandwiches and drinks, just cakes, cupcakes and bars to go, or cakes by special order. Diane Moua’s highly anticipated Diane’s Place, a Hmong-American restaurant, opened April 6 in the Northeast Minneapolis Food Building.

Regenerative agriculture – the next big thing that might save the human race

(I’m starting to say this now instead of “save the planet,” since wiser heads have pointed out that it’s not the actual spinning globe

Sacad Guled is opening Sip Society Cafe in Uptown

the anthropocene is damaging, just the far more fragile biosphere that we anthropos need to survive.)
Civil Eats is one of my favorite information sources, covering agriculture, food politics, global and local hunger, nutrition, food waste, health and more. It’s mainly through them that I even learned about the concept of regenerative agriculture. What is that, you may ask?
It’s agriculture that rebuilds soil rather than depleting it of life (which leads to the use of chemical fertilizers and could at length mean mass starvation). It’s agriculture that takes into account the impact on atmospheric carbon, by building soil and raising crops that capture carbon. It also takes food waste and plant and animal diversity into account.

Cafe Ceres in Wakpada Apartments

If you care about this kind of thing, you’ll want to read this excellent piece in Civil Eats,, which addresses how some regenerative-ag pioneers are trying to transform state legislatures and ag departments to implement these life-saving ideas.

Other food news and views

Here are four pieces in the last few months from Twin Cities Eater that caught my interest:
• 14 Underrated Restaurants to Explore in the Twin Cities (Feb. 6)
• 15 Essential Twin Cities Coffee Shops (Feb. 15)
• Where to Get Great Vegan and Vegetarian Food (March 29)
• 10 Twin Cities Restaurants That Solve the Pre-theater Dinner Dilemma (April 12)

Inside Parcelle

Mini-review – Parcelle Organics

I went to lunch with My Last Boss recently and used the opportunity to check out the latest organic cafe I had heard about: Parcelle. This bright, cheery place made me feel rather old. Mainly because almost all of the seating is on high stools, lining the picture windows, or surrounding a large and high round table. (Sitting perched on a thing where our feet can’t reach the floor is unattainable to many of us olds.) And it has a pervasive Gen Z vibe to it, but that’s not necessarily bad.
Parcelle is billed as “clean eating,” and is owned by Kamal Mohamed, also known for StepChld and Nashville Coop and some other enterprises. Its location is 233 E. Hennepin Ave., until 2019 the home of a beloved sausage shop.

Bento box from Parcelle

Parcelle is open from 7 a.m. (8 a.m. on weekends) to 5 p.m. seven days a week. At the counter, they serve breakfast from opening until 11 a.m., and lunch – salad bowls, panini, or a burrito – from 11 a.m. to closing. They also have a lunch bento box served cafeteria style as one main and two sides, selecting randomly from about eight items that include things like several kinds of roasted vegetables, chicken coconut curry, couscous, and buffalo cauliflower, all organic. The bento is available until 2 p.m. Additionally, Parcelle serves coffee from Wesley Andrews (the second time I’ve mentioned this brand, which I had never heard of before today), a nice variety of teas, and several uber-healthy smoothies.
I had their most popular panino, the Caprese, with jasmine iced tea. I also got a bento box to take home for later with buffalo cauliflower, and roasted sweet potatoes, carrots and Brussels sprouts. It was all excellent.

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