Blackbird Cafe closes in Kingfield

Blackbird Cafe announced it has closed as of Jan. 8. The Southwest restaurant moved to Kingfield in 2010 after a fire destroyed its original 50th & Bryant location. file photo

Longtime Southwest Minneapolis favorite Blackbird Cafe has closed. 

The Kingfield restaurant announced it was closing in a Facebook post Jan. 8, with owner Todd Zallaps saying he couldn’t continue running the cafe any longer. 

“It has been an uphill battle since I took over approximately a year and a half ago, and I can no longer justify trying to hang on,” he wrote. “We fought through the road closures, burglary, a dwindling talented workforce and ever increasing costs to try and provide a neighborhood establishment that was welcoming to all. Unfortunately, no matter how much we tried, it just wasn’t enough to keep this place relevant.”

Zallaps bought Blackbird in 2018, taking over from longtime operators Gail Mollner and Chris Stevens. 

After launching at 50th & Bryant in 2007, Blackbird Cafe suffered a tragic fire that destroyed its original location in 2010. Nine months later, the restaurant reopened at 38th & Nicollet. 

It was a daytime destination that focused on a large brunch during the week and offered dinner service on the weekends. Blackbird was a regular winner of the Southwest Journal’s “Best of Southwest” awards for best American fare. 

Calls seeking comment on the closure were not immediately returned.