The Whistling Bird to reopen: Caribbean food on the Iron Range!

UPDATE: The Duluth News Tribune confirms the report, interviewing new owner Jessica Antonovich and chef Patrick Berg. Berg was mentored by the late Whistling Bird co-owner JoPat Curtis during a three year stint as kitchen manager at the original restaurant. The new Whistling Bird will include a wider variety of Caribbean food than before.

I mean, look at the mine dumps in the background! This place was an enigma!

New management plans to reopen the Whistling Bird, a Jamaican restaurant that once provided the most refreshingly unusual and delicious dining experience on the entirety of the Mesabi Iron Range. This according to a new Facebook page for the restaurant. The target opening date is July 3, the night of the Gilbert’s legendary Independence Day street dance.

The Whistling Bird was where my wife and I would go nearly every anniversary and special occasion. It closed in 2009 after the sad passing of one of its co-owners. This is unmitigated good news, though I imagine a major challenge for the new owners to undertake.


  1. This makes my heart glad. When it first opened, I was a rink attendant down the hill. The aroma of spices and meat char would waft enticingly out of the kitchen vent and past the outdoor ice where I’d stand with the flooding hose at twilight. A little upscale at the time for a 16-year old making $6 an hour, but I patronized the place a fair bit in high school and college.

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