Biz buzz // Ah, Sugar Sugar

There’s a candy girl coming soon to the Kingfield neighborhood.  

Her name is Joni Wheeler and her new store, Sugar Sugar, named after the 1969 hit song by The Archies, is slated to open by the end of this month in a section of the former Fairy Godmother space at the corner of 38th Street and Grand Avenue.   

The focus, as the name implies, is candy. Chocolate bars from around the world will be the specialty, but the shop will also carry a variety of nostalgic sweets such as Sugar Babies, Skybars and Valomilk cups, as well as unusual treats including chocolate mustaches on a stick and chocolate-covered cocoa beans from independent candy makers.  

Wheeler has a 20-year history in retail, most recently as the national training manager for Paper Source. She’s also been a florist, baked wedding cakes, managed a boutique and worked for a theatrical supply company.

So, why candy?

“I’m in love with packaging,” Wheeler said. “I’ve always been in love with packaging and I like candy, so it seemed like the perfect marriage between packaging and something I enjoy, like candy.”

The South Minneapolis resident said she chose 3803 Grand Ave. as her store’s location because of her familiarity with the area and the “hot” mix of restaurants and retail already at the corner.

Wheeler said earlier this month that she was still making her way through the city’s licensing process. Remodeling is complete and candy is arriving.  

For updates on the store, check out Sugar Sugar’s page on Facebook, visit
sugar-sugarcandy.com or call 823-0261. Store hours will be 11 a.m.–7 p.m. Tuesday–Saturday and noon–5 p.m. Sunday.

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Cocina Latina spices up Kingfield corner

A new South American restaurant named Cocina Latina, Spanish for Latin Kitchen, opened Oct. 10 at 3764 Nicollet Ave.

It replaces Taco Blass, which closed earlier this year.

Cocina Latina owner Luis Sacta, who previously managed a restaurant on East Lake Street, spent months renovating and refurnishing the space. He launched the venture with three of his sisters.

“We decided it was time to be our own bosses,” he said.

Sacta is originally from Ecuador and his native cuisine makes up much of the menu, mixed in with other South American fare and some Italian and American offerings. Sacta said he and his siblings each contribute their own unique cooking talents to the restaurant, but steaks are undoubtedly the specialty.

Most entrees, including steaks, are in the $10–$13 range and all but one of the appetizers, fried calamari, are under $5.

Sacta said he’s working on getting a license to serve wine and beer.

Hours are 11 a.m.-9 p.m. Monday, 11 a.m.–10 p.m. Thursday and Sunday and 11 a.m.–11 p.m. Friday–Saturday. The restaurant can be reached at 354-2971. For more information, go to wix.com/cocinalatina/mn.

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Noted

Java Jack’s Coffee Café Inc., located at 818 W. 46th St., is in the planning stages of expanding its business from a coffee shop to a full restaurant. Owner Jerry Nelson confirmed that he is applying for a beer and wine license and planning to serve food once all is said and done. More details about the expansion will be released starting the week of Oct. 19.

Apartment Search by CORT closed its 2756 Hennepin Ave. office Oct. 14, according to a sign on the door. The sign said to visit the apartment locating and consulting company’s new location at 8925 Lyndale Ave. in Bloomington, Minn., or to call 870-0525 or 952-881-9298.