Demonstrating how it can leverage its client partnerships, Delaware North on March 22 was joined by representatives of both the Minnesota Twins and Minneapolis-St. Paul International Airport to formally celebrate the opening of Twins Grill, a sports bar and restaurant themed after the Major League Baseball team.
Developed by Delaware North with local restaurant partner Hell’s Kitchen, Twins Grill opened in mid-February in Concourse C of Terminal 1, serving airport travelers from 6 a.m. to 9 p.m. daily.
"The Twins are a beloved institution in the Twin Cities and a key part of the identity of the region," said Kevin Kelly, president of Delaware North’s travel division. "We want everyone passing through the airport to get a little taste of the ballpark with a great meal and experience what it’s like to be a Twins fan by soaking in an atmosphere that showcases the team’s past and present."
Delaware North now operates three restaurants and 14 retail locations at the airport, most of them newly developed since the company expanded its presence in the airport with a new contract in 2015.
Dennis Probst, chief operations officer for the Metropolitan Airports Commission, said Twins Grill is a natural fit for airport customers, with its extensive food and bar offerings having already proven popular with families and business travelers alike.
"We’re delighted. The venue is incredible and fulfills what we try to do with all of our venues," Probst said at the grand opening. "We want to have a variety of products and opportunities for the 37 million passengers who come through here every year. We want it to feel like Minnesota, and nothing feels more like Minnesota than the Twins."
At 6,100 square feet, Twins Grill can seat up to 220 guests amid a ballpark atmosphere with an interior designed after the Twins’ Target Field, where Delaware North Sportservice operates food, beverage and retail services for the team. The restaurant’s décor features graphics celebrating Twins history, pieces of team memorabilia and a unique wall treatment created with 3,000 baseball bats.
"From a Twins perspective, this has been a tremendous opportunity for us to extend our relationship with Delaware North," Matt Hoy, the Twins’ senior vice president of operations," said at the grand opening. "Coming to the airport and creating such a vibrant, wonderful space is not only an extension of the Target Field brand but of the Twins brand, itself. We’re just tremendously proud of the collaboration."
The restaurant’s menu — featuring classic ballpark fare such as nachos, cheese curds, onion rings and chicken quesadillas — was designed by Twins Grill Executive Chef Scott Parks, with assistance from Sportservice Executive Chef Kurt Chenier and his team at Target Field. A full bar features a rotating tap of 16 beers, including many local brews, and a grab-and-go kiosk is available for travelers in a time crunch.
PHOTO CAPTION: From left to right at the opening of Twins Grill are Kevin Kelly, president of Delaware North’s travel business; Cynthia Gerdes, CEO and co-owner of Hell’s Kitchen; Matt Hoy, senior vice president of operations with the Twins; and Dennis Probst, chief operations officer for the Metropolitan Airports Commission.