Caribe moving to Northeast? Owners make their case on Kickstarter

In the last year we've written about several successful food businesses that all started with seed money from Kickstarter backers. Food trucks like Aussie's Kebabs and Bloomy's Roast Beef, farmers market vendors like 10,000 Licks, and full-scale restaurant additions like Hell's Kitchen's recently opened Angel Food Bakery have all benefited from the financial and moral support of their fans. Caribe Caribbean Bistro owners Tony and Heidi Panelli hope their efforts to relaunch their restaurant using Kickstarter funding will be met with equal enthusiasm.

After a scant two years in operation, Caribe closed on April 15, citing construction in the Central Corridor as one of the main reasons the business struggled. Just as soon as they had served their last brunch, the talk of trying to reopen the bistro closer to the Panelli's home in northeast Minneapolis began. Now there's an official Kickstarter campaign and even a proposed site: the former Amici Pizza and Bistro on Johnson and 29th.

It's a great idea, but certainly not risk-free. Kickstarter runs on an "all or nothing" funding model, meaning that the goal amount must be met within the allotted time frame or no money is awarded to the project whatsoever. The Panelli's goal is to raise $50,000 by Wednesday, June 13, and they are sweetening the deal with rewards at every pledge level, from a free hug from Tony ($25 or more) to the privilege of eating free for life at Caribe for you and a guest ($10,000 or more).

If they meet their goal by the 15th, the plan is to start building the very next day and have their doors open to the public at their new Northeast home by August. Interested in becoming a backer? Visit their campaign page for more information.

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