Minnesota may be the Land of 10,000 Lakes, but it's not exactly known for lobster. The owners of Smack Shack, a Minneapolis food truck-turned restaurant, try to change that. They're partnering with Four Corners Tavern Group (Benchmark, Ranalli's, etc.) to bring Smack Shack to the new Google building at 1K Fulton.
Smack Shack's restaurant debuted in February 2013 after slinging its popular lobster rolls from a food truck since 2010. Their brick-and-mortar location has become a Twin Cities stalwart, leading to further expansion plans including a spot at the Minneapolis-St. Paul International Airport, reports the St. Paul Business Journal. The journal reports the Chicago spot will open early next year and seat about 300 inside a 9,000-square-foot space. Four Corners management met Smack Shack's team through Minneapolis-based ESG Architects, which counts both as clients. The Chicago location will share many of the same design elements as the Minnesota spot.
Four Corners' Matt Menna talked to Crain's and lauded Smack Shack's team of John Thomas and Kevin Fitzgerald, saying the casual and neighborhood concept is unique and will be a hit in Chicago. The aforementioned lobster rolls, stone crab and shrimp po' boys will appear on the menu. The group emailed a statement attributed to Ryan Indovina, Four Corners' director, mentioning Swift & Sons (formerly Armour & Swift), a collaborative steakhouse with Boka Restaurant Group: "Part of the Four Corners Tavern Group expansion strategy moving forward will be investing with other successful operators like Smack Shack and Swift & Sons."