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Fargo restaurant features ‘unique atmosphere’

The exterior of The Boiler Room located in downtown Fargo. Photo by Liv Ulring.

The Boiler Room, a new restaurant in downtown Fargo, offers Concordia students and the Fargo-Moorhead area unique and casual dining.

Originally an actual boiler room, exposed brick walls and gear wall art are just a few of unique attributes the restaurant has.

“Kind of the design take was, lets enhance that it used to be a boiler room with a dirt floor,” said Hailey Kassulker, communications major and hostess of The Boiler Room.

Brittany Widseth an English writing major and server and lead hostess at The Boiler Room, feels comfortable in the restaurant and thinks it has a really fun vibe.

“A lot of the decorations and the interior remind me of a location that fits well in downtown and could fit well in downtown Minneapolis as well,” Widseth said.

The Kilbourne Group, owners of the building, were hoping to change the empty space into a downtown breakfast spot; rather, it became what general manager Paul McMahon described as a new American bar or restaurant.

McMahon is alum of Concordia College and he graduated in December of 1995. He has had 15 years of experience in the food and beverage industry and spent the last seven years in management. McMahon heard of The Boiler Room through some people he knew in the industry.

The Boiler Room got its name through a Facebook contest where people could post which name they thought would work the best. Two people chose to call it The Boiler Room and are recognized as the names of two menu items, the Sarah Spinach and Bacon Dip and the Blotsky Burger.

The restaurant’s executive chef puts a twist on familiar bar food from his fine dining experience cooking at Montes restaurant, co-owners of The Boiler Room.

There are three main menus at The Boiler Room: the breakfast and lunch menu, 6:30 a.m.–4 p.m., the main dinner menu, 4 p.m.–10 p.m. and the late night menu, 10 p.m.–1:30 a.m. The most expensive items on the menu peak around 22 dollars while drink prices range from 4 to 7 dollars.

The Boiler room also has a variety of specials separate from the seasonally based cocktails. Happy hour is every day, where beer, wine, mixed drinks or an appetizer costs 3 dollars. Sundays and Mondays are “service recognition nights” with 3 dollar drinks, Tuesdays are “young professional night” with 3 dollar drinks, and Wednesdays the restaurant serves 3 dollar whiskies along with thei  “ladies night” serving 3 dollar drinks.

A bartender at the Boiler Room prepares drinks for customers. Photo by Liv Ulring.

According to the staff at The Boiler Room, the restaurant has certain aspects that make it distinct from other local places.

“The whole of what The Boiler Room represents [is unique].” Kassulker said. She continues to explain that the food menu’s complexity is what makes them stand out as well.

According to McMahon, another interesting aspect of the restaurant is that it is geared toward a more young, professional age group. Yet, despite its deliberate focus on that particular demographic, the restaurant also attracts a variety of other customers as well.

“All ages enjoy the space,” McMahon said. “We hit a broader market than we originally were anticipating.”

According to McMahon, The Boiler Room also has phenomenal servers and bartenders that make a visit to the restaurant worthwhile. Their goal as a restaurant is to provide all of their customers with the best possible experience, and his job is to ensure that the staff is properly trained to do so.

“The whole staff makes sure that everyone is passionate about what they are doing, and they all want to be here,” Widseth said.

The Boiler Room offers a new and exciting environment for Fargo-Moorhead.

“It draws a great crowd; it’s never really loud, and it’s never unnecessarily obnoxious,” Widseth said, “[The Boiler Room] is a great atmosphere to sit with friends and talk.

The specialty cocktails are geared toward the seasons, so stop by in October for the release of the fall special.

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