We can't talk about the old Figlio space without talking about The Curse.
After the Uptown Italian institution closed in 2009, nothing’s been able to gain a foothold at 3001 Hennepin Ave. S. for long. Il Gatto couldn't do it; Primebar lasted just a few months before shuttering abruptly; Parella was similarly short-lived.
At the risk of being the ones to put on the jinx, Fig + Farro—the entirely meat-free eatery that’s the latest to give it a go—might just be the one to make it work at this Calhoun Square address. Why? We stopped by recently to check it out and chat with the new owners. Here’s what you should know before you go.
5. It’s practically a J. Selby’s frenzy all over again.
Not to the point that Fig + Farro had to shut the doors entirely and regroup, as the St. Paul vegan eatery did upon opening last April. But overwhelming early demand did lead F+F to run with a limited chef’s choice menu for a bit. They’re adding to it over time; recent introductions include a taco trio made with the Herbivorous Butcher's vegan "chicken," house pickled eggs, falafel medallions, and more.
4. Yes, it’s vegetarian. Yes, you’ll still leave satisfied.
A hearty, stick-to-your-ribs shakshuka topped with crumbled cheese and a poached egg warmed our winter-worn souls, and you’ll definitely want to go for the goat cheese croquettes—trust us on that. Not one for dairy? They have a milk-free mac and cheese our vegan companions thought could be the best they’ve had in the Twin Cities—creamy, rich, and, well, cheesy, just… not. The meat eaters at the table dug it, too.
3. This is a restaurant with a purpose.
It’s not vegetarian for the sake of being vegetarian—is that even a thing? The point here is, in some small way, to help cut down on the environmental toll meat production takes. The keg wine system is more eco-friendly than bottles, and sticking with local beer behind the bar cuts down on fuel for transportation.
2. And you can leave your “vegetarians care more about animals than human rights” noise at the door...
...because their purpose-driven mission extends to the waitstaff, too, who get a $15 hourly base pay plus pooled tips, profit sharing, paid vacation, medical and dental benefits, a 401(k), and a $2,500 travel stipend. (You can apply here, for what it’s worth.)
1. Pint-sized plant eaters are welcome.
And encouraged! There’s a whole play area in Fig + Farro where kids can work off all the energy they have thanks to their plant-based diet.
Fig + Farro
3001 Hennepin Ave. S., Minneapolis