New Group Blog for Foodies: Chef's Table

In case you haven’t already noticed – we have started a new group
blog here at the Rake called Chef’s
. It isn’t just for chefs, though – it’s for restaurateurs, servers, gourmets,
gourmands, wine sellers, cheese mongers, etc. – anybody who is an active
participant in the Twin Cities’ lively food scene.

It’s a chance for chefs and other foodies to tell diners how to get the most our of their restaurant, or invite them to sign up a special dinner, share photos and stories from their latest gastronomic field trip, weigh in on the latest trends, or sound off on obnoxious customers or pet peeves.

Anybody can post comments on Chef’s Table, but so far,
membership is by invitation only. If you would like to participate, drop me a
line at, and tell me
a bit about yourself.

The most recent post is by Henry Chan, owner of Giapponese Sushi
in Woodbury – the second installment in a series that gives you the
down-and-dirty about cheap sushi: "To cut costs, frozen tuna is often used,
lower in quality with almost no flavor, still safe to eat, at almost half the
price of good fresh tuna…Tuna, salmon, whitefish, just about every fish is
now available frozen, trimmed and pre-cut. Hell, I’ve even been approached by
American fish companies asking if I would be interested in buying pre-made
frozen ready to eat California and spicy tuna rolls!!
" To read more, go to the

Niki Stavrou, owner of Victor’s 1959 Café, 3756 Grand Ave. S., Minneapolis, also put up a post recently, to clear up a common misconception about Cuban cuisine: "Cuban culture
is certainly spicy; the people, the music, the politics, you name it. But when
it comes to cooking we leave the hot peppers for other cultures…

Niki also sent
out an email recently to customers on the café’s email list, suggesting a
dinner-and-a-movie combination for tonight: "Thought you would like to know that the Walker
Art Center is showing a Cuban film this Friday night, February 29th at
7:30pm. It’s called "The Sugar Curtain" and from everything
I’ve read on it, sounds like it will be a very interesting film.

remember, we open at 4:30pm for dinner so why not make it Cuban dinner and a
Cuban movie? Make your reservations now and mention that you will be
attending the film – if you arrive by 6:00pm we promise to have you well-fed
with plenty of time to get to the movie. (I’m even going to try to sneak out so
I can see it too!)

Call the cafe at 612-827-8948 for reservations. To be added to Niki’s email list, send her an email at