'They came after us': Calgary-area restaurant gets Fargo bump

A Calgary-area restaurant is riding a wave of recognition after being featured in a popular, award-winning American black comedy/crime drama.

Thanks to a local location scout, the Bears Den gets exposure in the award-winning U.S. comedy/crime drama

Fargo characters Sy Feltz and Ruby Goldfarb from a Fargo scene shot at the Bears Den in Bearspaw, just northwest of Calgary. (GameSpot Universe/YouTube)

A Calgary-area restaurant is riding a wave of recognition after being featured in a popular, award-winning American black comedy/crime drama.

"We were really lucky, for sure," Scott Winograd told the Calgary Eyeopener on Monday.

"It was a great experience, the cast and crew just really took over the place and transformed our restaurant, but kept all of the original bones of the place, which is wonderful."

Winograd is the co-owner and general manager of the Bears Den restaurant in Bearspaw. The restaurant was used in the filming of the third season of Fargo.

"We've had a lot of guests come in and say, 'Oh, where was this scene shot?' that sort of thing, and even got our sign in there as well. We are really happy that this whole thing happened."

He said it all started a few months back.

Scott Winograd, co-owner and general manager at the Bears Den, says they are getting reservations based on the restaurant appearing in Fargo. (Submitted by Scott Winograd)

"They came after us," Winograd explained.

"They came in back in February. The location scout is from the area and knew about us. He had us in mind for this scene right from the get-go. He came in and brought all the producers in and they were wowed when they walked in. They said, 'This is perfect, don't change a thing,' but they ended up changing a whole bunch of stuff."

Winograd is a wee bit biased, but says it's not hard to understand the appeal.

"Our restaurant is pretty timeless," he said.

"We have 16-foot high ceilings, solid cherry walls, iconic artwork throughout the whole restaurant, with bears, deer and antelope carved into the walls. I guess it worked for the producers, all the Hollywood types really were looking for something like that so they didn't have to recreate us in a soundstage."

Despite two massive fireplaces in the restaurant, the Fargo folks built a third, including the walls around it.

"We've had lots of guests call to book the Fargo table, but that Fargo table doesn't really exist," Winograd said with a laugh.

But has it been good for business?

"It has, a bit," he said.

"It is starting to really break out now for sure, since the Emmy nominations. We've had several tables in the last few days actually call and book because of this."


With files from The Calgary Eyeopener