What led A.J. Brown to open Knead Bakehouse + Provisions

“In late high school and early college, I used to brew small-batch beers with my brothers and dad just as a hobby,” Brown said.

ST. LOUIS — Food has always been an important part of A.J. Brown‘s life, starting as a kid growing up in Wentzville with his two older brothers and his parents. Brown’s family spent the majority of their time together in the kitchen and he quickly developed a passion for it.

This led Brown — today the co-owner and baker behind Knead Bakehouse + Provisions — to obtain a nutrition and food science degree and to pursue fermentation science in the beverage industry.

“In late high school and early college, I used to brew small-batch beers with my brothers and dad just as a hobby,” Brown said. “So I always enjoyed the scientific aspect of food.”

This led to jobs with O’Fallon Brewery and Noboleis Vineyards

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Why Would Anyone Open a Restaurant in a Pandemic?

The Covid baby boom that many people predicted last year has not happened, but another kind of baby boom is underway. Restaurants and food businesses have been born during the pandemic at a rate that almost no one predicted a year ago, when dining rooms across the United States were ordered to close.

After a steep plunge that reached its lowest point last April, openings have bounced back nearly to prepandemic levels, according to a year-end analysis by Yelp. The company reported that 18,207 restaurants and food businesses were first listed on its service during the last three months of 2020, just 4 percent less than in the same period in 2019. In one category, “grab-and-go services,” including food trucks and bakeries, new listings even went up.

Starting a restaurant in the middle of a pandemic may sound about as ill-advised as going for a cruise in a

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The Dallas Restaurants We’re Most Excited to See Open in 2021

This year follows a nightmarish nine months for the restaurant industry. No, it wasn’t all bad in 2020, as we did see many brave new arrivals. The really good news is that 2021 promises a slate of food and drink newcomers about which we’re duly excited. While 2020 brought us a lot of comfort food in form of Detroit pizza and Nashville hot chicken, it seems we’re yearning for a return to finer-ish dining, from omakase to tasting menu formats. While 2021 has had a rocky start, to say the least, we’re still anticipating what’s next for Dallas’ robust dining scene.

Loro Dallas

Mere weeks into my tenure as the new SideDish editor I received an email from someone inquiring about the status of Loro. The Asian smokehouse and bar from Franklin Barbecue’s Aaron Franklin and Uchi’s Tyson Cole was purported to open sometime in 2020. As much as I

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Popular Ramen Chain Ramen Ryoma Will Open a New Yakitori Restaurant Downtown

Portland will soon have a new downtown restaurant dedicated to yakitori. Popular Beaverton restaurant Ramen Ryoma will bring Japanese-style grilled meat skewers to a space in downtown Portland later this year.



a person cooking food on a table: A chef making yakitori


© Photo by Ore Huiying/Getty Images for ISETAN MITSUKOSHI
A chef making yakitori

Although the location is still in negotiations, Ryoma hopes to open its next restaurant SW Morrison Street sometime between April and May of 2021. The location will serve all of Ramen Ryoma’s classic offerings, including corn butter miso ramen, spicy umami ramen, and Japanese style-curry. At night, the location will focus on yakitori, serving grilled chicken and vegetables coated in Ryoma’s special tare, a sweet soy sauce base that clings to the surface of the crisped meat. “We wanted to bring yakitori and more accessible Japanese food that isn’t too expensive or pricey to the Portland community,” says Ryoma floor manager Andy Koida.

Ryoma’s yakitori enterprise

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