Ingrams’ Apostle Supper Club transports downtown diners to Palm Springs circa 1960

Saint Paul has another option for upscale dining with the opening of the Apostle Supper Club on the ground floor of a new apartment building at Kellogg Boulevard and West Seventh Street. The 400-seat restaurant is the most ambitious undertaking to date for Brian and Sarah Ingram’s Purpose Driven Restaurants, which also owns Hope Breakfast Bar off West Seventh, the Gnome on Selby Avenue and the Apostle Supper Club atop the Radisson Hotel in Duluth.

Apostle Supper Club
Brian Ingram was all smiles as he readied his new Apostle Supper Club for what he hoped would be a good turnout on the evening of his first Minnesota Wild hockey game across the street at the Xcel Energy Center. Photo by Brad Stauffer

“This is something new for the Twin Cities,” Ingram said of the Apostle and its 1960s Palm Springs supper club atmosphere.

No ordinary eatery

The Apostle’s expansive dining room is laid out with several seating arrangements, including upholstered booths big enough for small groups, counter seating overlooking the kitchen, a sunken living room with a fireplace at its center, a piano bar, and the False Eye Doll Lounge tiki bar.

The furnishings are done in colors that were popular in the 1960s, such as turquoise and coral. The windows are blacked out to help patrons forget where they are, Ingram said. Come spring, an outdoor patio is planned with another 400 seats for diners.

Entrees from $40-$14

Ingram is excited to be offering the kind of food he formerly prepared as a chef at major restaurants in New York and Chicago. Many of the menu items come in large portions that are intended for sharing. Among the entrées in the $40 price range are the Tomahawk pork chop, the halibut with white wine butter sauce and caviar, the Manhattan strip steak, and the chicken-fried lobster.

A menu more suited to the budget-conscious is available in the tiki bar. It includes Hawaiian chicken salad, fried Spam tacos and a chili dog, all for under $14. Some retro items are available, including shrimp cocktails and ice cream cakes. Ingram also plans to introduce special chef dinners on Tuesday nights, featuring the creations of out-of-town chefs on occasion.

The Apostle boasts a comprehensive list of contemporary cocktails along with such classics as the grasshopper, the brandy alexander and the old-fashioned. The tiki bar has a variety of tropical-themed drinks made with rum, fresh fruit juices and house-made syrups. A martini cart with all of the trimmings is wheeled up tableside for patrons who want to watch their libations being prepared to order. The restaurant also has a sizable spirit-free drink list.

 

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Apostle Supper Club
The piano bar at the new Apostle Supper Club. Photo by Brad Stauffer

Downtown welcomes the Apostle

The Apostle has been welcomed by downtown restaurateurs and tourism officials. “We’re super-excited for Brian and his team,” said Joe Spencer, president of the Saint Paul Downtown Alliance. “It’s cool because it’s a brand new addition created from scratch.”

Jaimee Hendrikson of the Visit Saint Paul convention and visitors bureau predicted the Apostle will attract its share of patrons who come downtown for Minnesota Wild games or concerts and plays at the Xcel Energy Center, the Ordway, Park Square and History theaters and other venues.

“Brian (Ingram) has been very successful,” said Richard Dobransky, president of Morrissey Hospitality, which manages the Saint Paul Hotel and Saint Paul Grill and Momento restaurants. “If he can bring more people downtown, let’s do it. It’s great to have another option for upscale dining.”

Business is picking up

The workforce in downtown Saint Paul has yet to return to its prepandemic levels. However, Momento has been doing pretty good dinner business, Dobransky said. The casual restaurant, which is in the space formerly occupied by Pazzaluna, plans to add breakfast in January, he said.

Business has also been picking up at Noyes & Cutler, the upscale restaurant that opened in July in the former Public Bar & Kitchen space near Mears Park, according to general manager Jorge Robertson.

Although Noyes & Cutler specializes in steak and other high-end items, Robertson does not call it fine dining but rather “polished casual.” It plans to begin serving lunch soon, Robertson said, and then to reopen the Green Lantern nightclub on the lower level with live music, stand-up comedy and open-mic nights.

— Carolyn Walkup

Apostle Supper Club
The Apostle Supper Club is located on the first floor of a new apartment building across Kellogg Boulevard from the Xcel Energy Center. Photo by Brad Stauffer

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