A sneak peek at Hewing Hotel and Tullibee Restaurant, opening in the North Loop

Use your imagination. The open bar and kitchen will be the heart of the space.

Use your imagination. The open bar and kitchen will be the heart of the space. Mecca Bos

The historic Jackson Building is one of the many once-underutilized buildings in the North Loop, née Warehouse District.

At the turn of the century, farmers stood around in this former farm equipment showroom, inspecting the tractors that they would or would not buy. They couldn't have had any inkling that a hundred years later mod designers would be mimicking hewn wood patterns for a rooftop sauna. (The hotel, you may have guessed, takes its name from the process of hewing wood.)

So goes progress. 

The Hewing Hotel will open around mid-November, with a splashy restaurant named Tullibee, headed up by a splashy chef named Grae Nonas who arrives all but dripping with natioanl accolades. It will also boast a rooftop pool and cocktail bar.

We got a sneak peek of the construction site, and with the help of some imagination and artist's renderings, we got a sense of the place. 

As reported previously, the menu will focus on Nordic traditon. Nonas reportedly has Scandihoovian bloodlines so he says the culinary customs come naturally to him. 

The view from the rooftop bar area.

The view from the rooftop bar area. Mecca Bos

Inside, exposed brick and timber abound, with plenty of floor-to-ceiling windows, natural light, and more Nordic-inspired touches like custom wallpapers decked with loons, fish hooks, acorns, and oars. Think mod Scandinavian design, not Northwoods cabin.

The restaurant will be the focal point of the hotel, with the exposed bar and partially exposed kitchen being its “center hearth." Owners would like you to envision an exposed fireplace, baskets of “farm fresh” eggs, daily produce, and collaborations with ultra hip Twin Cities food producers including Spyhouse Coffee, Tattersall Distillery, Sociable Cider Werks, and Bauhaus Brewery.


A photo posted by Hewing Hotel (@hewinghotel) on

Other things to expect: smoked fish, fire roasted meats and vegetables, and whole-animal butchery which will render “chalkboard cuts” of specialty meats daily; plus biscuits and gravy with duck sausage, Scandinavian rye bread with gravlax, and “lots of bone broths.” In other words, comfort food with a strong Swedish/Norwegian bent. 

Naturally, there will be other ways to dine and imbibe at the hotel aside from the main restaurant, including a private dining area with a nightly curated chef’s menu, a ballroom for large groups, and most notably, a rooftop pool, sauna, and glass-walled cocktail bar with a drink menu to entertain winter quaffing. We are ready for the cold so long as we can have “warm white spice hot toddies” in hand.

Want in? You'll need to be a member of the "social club" to gain access to the pool and sauna, but a bar area with vast open views of downtown will be open to the public by night. 

There are 124 rooms offfering amenities centered on the "local" theme. Picture Faribault Woolen Mills throws, and Northeast Minneapolis-based Blue Dot furniture. 

It will be interesting to see how the Hewing and Tullibee make a go of it. Traditionally, the format hasn't worked all that well locally. Recall the Ivy with Steven Brown (now of Tilia, St. Genevieve) and Chambers Hotel with internationally known chef Jean Georges Vongerichten at the helm of the kitchen. 

But that was before we had a billion dollar ball citadel down the street and our own version of Graceland on the horizon.

Stay tuned. 

The Hewing Hotel and Tullibee open mid-November
300 Washington Ave. N., Minneapolis