Biz buzz // Guse Green Grocer

Guse Green Grocer opens at 46th & Bryant

When Tom and Terry Thomson, owners of the long-awaited Guse Green Grocer, put in an order for 40 pounds of organic bananas, their supplier commented that the order was too much for such a little store. When the following Monday morning rolled around, however, it seemed the supplier could eat his words.

“I called him and said, ‘We only have five bananas left!’” Terry Thomson said.

Located on the corner of 46th Street and Bryant Avenue, the grocery store celebrated its soft opening on Jan. 23 and 24. It didn’t have an advertising scheme or a grand event, but 400 eager customers showed up on day one and the weekend was full of positive feedback and neighborhood support.

“There are a lot of foodies in the neighborhood,” Terry Thomson said. “They like to eat, they like to know what they’re eating, and they also like to try different things.”

This awareness, as well the Thomsons’ tireless experience with food allergies in their own family, paved the way for what Guse Green Grocer has become. The store carries the snacks, drinks and quick foods of a corner convenience store, but offers the health-conscious food items that customers might expect to see in a co-op as well. This includes gluten-free and dairy-free products, organic products and local foods such as produce, eggs, milk, meat and pastas. Additionally, Guse Green Grocer carries fresh Rustica baked goods, Holy Land products and flower arrangements from a local florist.

“Our idea was, let’s get back to basics when food was simpler, when it came locally from farms, and the reputation and success [of the store] depends on the freshness and goodness of their food,” Terry Thomson said.

With this mindset, the Thomsons designed the space to feel like a step back to the good ol’ days as well. The wood floor and cabinet-style shelves are reminiscent of a traditional country store, and the face of a big red barn surrounding one wall of coolers is a nostalgic reminder of where the food originates.

The shelves of the store are a little bare now, but the Thomsons are confident it won’t be that way for long. The suggestion box from the opening weekend was overflowing with hundreds of requests for food products; the pair is open to the ideas and hopeful for a few of their own. Though they are not licensed to cook in the store, there is a deli that will be open during lunch hours. Additionally, the Thomsons will post a recipe of the week on the website and customers will be able to pick up a package of the ingredients necessary to make it at their convenience.

“If people can get used to the fact that we’ll have some surprises along with the staples of a convenience store, I think this is going to be great,” Terry Thomson said.

Guse Green Grocer will have an official grand opening in a couple of weeks, but is currently open Monday–Saturday, 7 a.m.–9 p.m. Sunday hours are undetermined, but will be shorter than the rest of the week.

Check out gusegreengrocer.com for more about the store.

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Birch clothing goes online-only

After close to five years of business at 2309 W. 50th St., the owners of Birch Clothing closed their shop Jan. 30 and transitioned to online-only sales.   

Marti Markus, co-owner of the clothing and accessories boutique, said the business saw significant growth online during the last year and decided to consolidate. Much of the same inventory will still be available online, but the focus will be on undergarments, intimates, socks, tights, camisoles, T-shirts and other “first-layer” items. Jewelry and other accessories will still be available. Birch prides itself on offering organic, sustainable and fair-trade merchandise.  

Markus said she was met with some sad customers during the boutique’s final days and wanted to thank patrons for their support over the years.

The business can be found online at birchclothing.com.      

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CorePower Yoga expanding

The Minneapolis Planning commission on Jan. 25 approved a conditional use permit for a “major” sports and health facility at 2930 Emerson Ave. S., allowing CorePower Yoga to expand its site there.

The expansion will include a second heated yoga studio and upgrades to the locker rooms and lobby. All of the changes are internal and won’t alter the exterior dimensions of the Lumen on Lagoon condominium building, where the center has been since 2007.

Along with the expansion, CorePower plans to roll out more class types and times. Hours will be 6 a.m.–9 p.m. daily. For more information and expansion updates, go to corepoweryoga.com/locations/Minnesota/uptown.  

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Gallery combines art and facials

Esthetician and art collector Michelle Dudar is opening a gallery next month at 4404 Abbott Ave. S. that will offer a variety of art and facials in a private, relaxed setting.

Galleri M’s first show is scheduled for the second week in March and will include photography, sculpture, paintings and jewelry from throughout the world. Dudar said she met her featured artists while traveling during the past 20 years. She said she would like to continue traveling and collecting art for the gallery “so people can have a view of what’s going on in the world through an artist’s eyes.”

Galleri M will be open from 10 a.m.–4 p.m. Thursday, Friday and Sunday and from 10 a.m.–10 p.m. Saturday. The gallery can be reached at 920-3600. A website, gallerim.net, is in the works.