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Buyers will rebuild after ‘restaurant capital of the world’ burned down


The "Restaurant Capital of the World" will soon return to its former glory.

Half the restaurants in the tiny Minnesota town of Dorset, located in northwestern Minnesota, were destroyed in a fire last fall.

And Rich Kempnich – the owner of Companeros and Dorset House – said he wanted to sell instead of rebuild, but he was looking for the right buyer.

He's now found that in Levi and Beth Durgin, he announced on restaurant's Facebook page Tuesday. The couple met while they both worked at Companeros, before moving away and starting a family that includes six children.

"They love Dorset as most of us do and Companeros was always a dream of theirs. They have decided to return, rebuild and take over the reins!!!," Kempnich wrote in the post.

The hope is to keep things as they were before the fire, including the menu, drinks and ice cream, Kempnich says.

"I think with the enthusiasm of Levi, Beth, our old crew, us, and hopefully you, we can bring back old traditions, the fun and excitement and start building new traditions!" Kempnich wrote.

Kempnich says the Durgins are also looking into crowdfunding to help support the endeavor.

Updates on the project will come on the restaurant's Facebook page, Kempnich says. WCCO reports they hope to reopen in the spring.

Dorset is not only known for its restaurants. The town also made headlines for the elections that saw 3-year-old Bobby Tufts was named mayor. This summer, Bobby's younger brother won the election.

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