David Burley and Stephanie Shimp. Two servers working together at The Nicollet Island Inn during the 1990s honed their skills in one of the Twin Cities premier restaurant/hotels. After work - cocktails fueled the ideas for what became the Highland Grill.
They formed a simple business plan and in 1993 the duo opened the Highland Grill. What was previously an ice cream shop became the start of the neighborhood’s “second kitchen.” Initially working alone, (with a bit of free help from family) David and Stephanie began to develop a loyal following of neighbors, regulars and foodies that liked what they had going on.
With each year becoming busier than the last, David and Stephanie felt like they were on to something. It was time to grow.
Where We Are Today
Staying on the east side of town, they purchased Groveland Tap. Not long after, building on the comfort food with a twist, Blue Plate Restaurant Company opened their third location in Edina. The Edina Grill was born out of the same concept; a neighborhood grill that offered great comfort food with warm hospitality.
Over the last few years the growth has continued. Longfellow Grill was opened in February of 2005 to strong reviews. In September 2006 Edina Grill relocated around the corner at 50th and France, doubling in size and adding a full bar. Our fifth restaurant 3 Squares opened in May of 2008 in Maple Grove, bringing out neighborhood grill to the northwest portion of the Twin Cities. Scusi, the small plate Italian concept, is in the the Mac-Groveland neighborhood of St. Paul - just across the street from Groveland Tap. The Lowry opened August 2011 in Uptown as the new urban diner. The Freehouse, which includes a brewery, opened in December of 2013. The newest addition to the Blue Plate family is the Blue Barn, a new food vendor at the 2014 Minnesota State Fair.