At the top of our list of new fall restaurant openings is Merchant, the forthcoming Minneapolis spot from 2007 Best New Chef Gavin Kaysen. We’re super excited for his French-inflected menu, which is still top-secret, but, we can confirm, perfect for cozy fall weather. The restaurant's design will reveal the chef’s incorrigible pickpocket habits: Gavin Kaysen is a shameless spoon stealer. At Merchant, he’ll display a selection from his collection of nearly 500 spoons, pinched from restaurants around the world.
“It started when I was about 20, working as a pastry cook at Auberge de Lavaux in Switzerland,” he says. “The pastry chef was trying to teach me how to do a quenelle of ice cream and I couldn’t figure it out. I took his spoon home to practice in my apartment, and when I finally realized that it was the spoon itself that was the key, I took it. When I look at that spoon now, I think back fondly to the six months of my life I spent practicing in my apartment with a tub of beef fat from the restaurant.” From there, he began pocketing spoons everywhere.
A few of his favorites: