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Disco Balls Will Be A Feature Of New Two-Level Bar On Third Avenue

When his two-level bar, Ava, opens this spring in the North Loop, Ben Taheri hopes the street-level lounge will become a cozy new neighborhood hangout. “Kind of a comfortable boutique, more classic vibe,” as he described it.

Renderings: Henke Design

But as guests head downstairs to a sparkly gold bar and the adjacent lounge with clusters of disco balls and a large shimmering pink wall, the mood will turn noticeably more playful.

“Visually, it’s going to resemble an old classic discotheque,” Taheri said, “but I don’t have an actual dance floor. I’ll have furniture and booths. But there’s space where if people wanted to kick up their heels and dance, absolutely they can.”

Ava will also feature a menu of shareable “American tapas,” as Taheri described them, from local chef Kamal Mohamed, the man behind several ventures like Nashville Coop Chicken, Stepchld and Parcelle.

Ava is going into the space next to Fairgrounds Coffee at 124 Third Avenue North where Stilheart Distillery used to be.

Taheri is a downtown Minneapolis resident and “North Loop regular” who owned the former Tangiers restaurant from 2012-2017 in the 1st Avenue space that’s now occupied by Billy Sushi.

“I feel very privileged to be back, especially in a neighborhood I think is one of the better neighborhoods in the city when it comes to upscale, sophisticated hospitality,” he said.

Design consultant James Henke, a North Loop resident, designed the interior spaces. “I think it’ll just be a pretty bar to hang out in that doesn’t feel ‘bar-ish,’” he said.

Taheri is tentatively planning to open Ava in May, pending the last few approvals from the city.

By Mike Binkley, North Loop volunteer

Renderings by Henke Design

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