About Us

Dakota HistoryNoteworthy Food & Music

Established in 1985, the Dakota Jazz Club & Restaurant opened in St. Paul and has since moved to downtown Minneapolis. We are proud of our history as a part of the Twin Cities community. Read a little about it below!

Over the last nearly three decades the Dakota has taken new approaches to evolve our music styles, outreach, audience and approach to fine dining.

Opened in October of 1985 by Lowell Pickett, the Dakota was originally located in St. Paul’s Bandana Square.  Some years later with the intention to expand, Lowell partnered with current co-owner Richard Erickson and traveled across the river to Minneapolis’ Nicollet Mall. Currently located at Target world headquarters, the Dakota has blossomed in its new home as a premier music venue in the Midwest.

Over the years we have housed acclaimed chefs, shelved exotic spirits and hosted the best and most talented musicians of the century: from Prince, Martha Reeves and the Vandellas, Ramsey Lewis and Betty LaVette to Larry Graham and Dave Brubeck.  Among the best musicians from both a local, national and international perspective, artists often request to play at the Dakota and it has become a bench mark location for many artists in terms of their musical success.

As we’ve grown, our resources have allowed us to expand our philanthropic efforts. The Dakota Foundation for Jazz Education provides resources for Minnesota’s youth to learn jazz from a traditional perspective. We believe strongly in the preservation of jazz as an immense piece of American tradition. By giving our youth the inspiration of great musicians, we allow them a foundation from which to form their own music and maybe, just maybe create a completely new genre and style of music. Appreciation and mastery of musical arts is what the Dakota has promoted in every way possible for nearly 30 years.


Monheit Delivers

Star Tribune: October 12, 2004 Jane Monheit definitely delivers, as she performs live at the Dakota. Click here to view article.

A Versatile Pleasure

Star Tribune: October 27, 2004 Ann Callaway “swings easily from cabaret to jazz to R&B”…Click here to view article.

Jazzing Up Dishes

Boston Globe:  January 12, 2005 Minnesota style…Click here to view article.

Counter Intelligence

Star Tribune:  April 13, 2005 Chef Goff leaves the Dakota…Click here to view article.

Giving It Up For Jazz

Louisville:  May 1, 2005 Imitation is the greatest form of flattery…Click here to view article.

Playing On Borrowed Time

Star Tribune: August 19, 2005 Irv Williams is doing what he does best, playing jazz at the Dakota. Click here to view article.

Dakota Review

Star Tribune:  November 23, 2005 Chef in tune with new digs…Click here to view article.

Restaurant Review

MPLS/St. Paul:  November 24, 2005 Andrew Zimmern reviews the Dakota…Click here to view article.

Mina Agnossi

MPLS/St. Paul: October 31, 2006 Parisian native sings and beatboxes at the Dakota.Click here to view article.

The Bad Plus

MPLS/St. Paul: December 28, 2006 Receives a standing ovation at the Dakota after a night revolutionary jazz. Click here to view article.