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Launched in 2014 by journalist Sean Baker, Med City Beat is an independent news source covering government, business and culture in Rochester, Minnesota.

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Plans unveiled for restaurant inside Rochester's Armory

Plans unveiled for restaurant inside Rochester's Armory

The group behind the Armory renovation project has unveiled plans for a first-floor restaurant to be known as Cameo at the Castle.

The restaurant will be owned and operated by Zach Ohly, a well-known local chef who currently manages catering for Morrison Healthcare at Mayo Clinic. He previously worked at Pescara, where he was executive chef.

Ohly's vision for Cameo, previously called 44 North, is to offer a variety of dishes not typically found in Rochester. He plans to introduce flavors "influenced by cultures around the world, while still having Midwestern appeal." The menu, according to a news release, "will feature technique-driven dishes created with quality, responsibly sourced ingredients."

 Exterior of the Armory building at 115 1/2 N. Broadway / Med City Beat

Exterior of the Armory building at 115 1/2 N. Broadway / Med City Beat

Joing Ohly will be his wife, Danika, who will handle special events, and Kiefer Manning, who will serve as general manager. Notably, the Cameo team will also feature Aynsley Jones running the restaurant's beverage program. Jones owned and operated The Doggery, a popular cocktail bar downtown that closed its doors last month.

As we have reported previously, the Castle Community project calls for a complete makeover of the century-old structure. In addition to the restaurant, the building will include a used book store, art studios, a rotating gallery and an event space for concerts and other large gatherings.

Construction on the project will begin in early July with an expected opening in late November. The ownership team — made up of Eric Deutsch, Ross Henderson, Scott Hoss and Leyzer Topel — has hired Benike Construction to handle the renovation. Benike has experience restoring historic buildings, including the Conley-Maass-Downs building a few blocks south.

A complete overview of the project can be found here.

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