Rock-star chef Tim McKee bringing four-part concept to former Heartland space

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Tim McKee in 2015 [Photo: Tom Sweeney] Star Tribune

Tim McKee is betting treats from the deep will lure customers to St. Paul's Lowertown neighborhood. 

The esteemed Twin Cities chef's forthcoming Market House Collaborative concept will take over the former Heartland restaurant space, Minneapolis-St. Paul Magazine reported Wednesday.

So what the hell is Market House? It's a four-headed, fish-focused collab with The Fish Guys that breaks down thusly: 

-- Almanac Fish Market: You buy fish here. McKee got into fishmongering earlier this year.

-- A 100-ish-seat casual seafood restaurant: You eat fish here. "It's totally going to be a Tim McKee restaurant," McKee, a James Beard award winner, assures Mpls.-St. Paul Mag. 

-- A butcher shop: You buy meat (or land-fish) here. McKee & Co. are aiming to add a second location of an existing Minneapolis butcher shop to the 12,000-square-foot complex. 

-- A bakery: You buy baked goods here. Expect an existing "big freaking deal" bakery, as MSP's Dara Moskowitz Grumdahl phrases it, to put down anchor at Market House.

McKee became Minneapolis' hottest-shit chef while at fine-dining destination La Belle Vie, which closed in 2015. He's since consulted for the Parasole network of restaurants.

Chef Lenny Russo's Heartland -- itself a hot-shit commodity in the local dining scene -- closed up shop last year. Russo, seen below blowing up our comment section, clarified via Facebook that he and business partner Kris Maritz still own the former Heartland space. Market House is leasing three of the five available spots within it; the other two spots remain for sale or for lease. 


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