Corner Table
Hola Arepa
Tiny Diner
Brasserie Zentral
Spoon & Stable/ Bonjwing Photography
©William LaVigne
Travail Kitchen and Amusements
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1. Heyday 2700 Lyndale Ave S, Minneapolis, MN 55408

When it comes to affordable yet elegant cuisine, Heyday is your spot. It's easily one of the best restaurants in the Twin Cities, if not the country. Head to this rustic-chic space (it sports exposed brick and a gorgeous wooden-beamed ceiling) for favorites like the chicken liver tart, chilled blue mussels, and grilled quail, which all help to create a downright exquisite menu. Be sure to leave room for at least one of the inventive desserts including pea shell sorbet, and wash it all down with a creative cocktail like the Don't Think Twice with pisco, aperol, grapefruit, and elderflower.

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2. Corner Table 4257 Nicollet Ave, Minneapolis, MN 55409

With a larger beer list, a patio, and a brunch service, Corner Table has expanded from the former La Chaya Bistro location down the road. Be sure to try the pork belly, the fried rabbit, and the sweet potato waffles will.

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3. Kyatchi 3758 Nicollet Ave, Minneapolis, MN 55409

Kyatchi lives to serve Japanese-style cuisine with an American twist. The Minneapolis sushi hotspot dishes out soups, salads, small plates, grilled fish and seafood, meat skewers, rice, noodles, and, in a true cultural mélange, hot dogs. If you’re intrigued, good; hot dogs, like the kimchi dog with mustard, sesame oil, and Japanese mayo, all come with Japanese potato salad, whose savory flavor gives any typical ballpark frank a run for its money. If it’s more traditional cuisine you’re craving, try veggie or pork ramen, or scallop yuzu kosho, with raw scallops, veggies, chili pepper, yuzu peel, and sea salt. Kyatchi emphasizes sustainable ingredients and delivers them to you in a casual, open dining space decorated with Japanese artwork.

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4. Hola Arepa 3501 Nicollet Ave, Minneapolis, MN 55408

Originally a food truck, the brick and mortar incarnation has a menu is stuffed with long-braised meats, crumbly cheese and their fiery sauces. They've got a great drinks menu too.

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5. Tongue In Cheek 989 Payne Ave, Saint Paul, MN 55130

Sustainably sourced stuff is served with style at Tongue in Cheek. The menu has must-tries like the fries with gravy and popcorn shrimp. There's a happy hour from 4-7pm every day too.

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6. Tiny Diner 1024 E 38th St, Minneapolis, MN 55407

Tiny Diner is not, in fact, a literal, miniature diner, but a small restaurant in Powderhorn Park that's all about sustainability, from the way it sources its food to the way the restaurant itself is built. Using mostly its own garden to grow its ingredients, this spot provides the freshest fare possible in the form of all-day breakfast, lunch and dinner. Aim for a patio spot when you come here so you can admire the view of the garden out back while you polish off your country scramble or scallops.

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7. Brasserie Zentral 505 S. Marquette Ave, Minneapolis, MN 55402

The menu's full of dumpling and spätzle and other European comfort foods from Chef Klein's heritage.

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8. Libertine 3001 Hennepin Ave, Minneapolis, MN 55408

This Uptown restaurant is bringing the beef, pork, and lamb hard, plus serving up some exotic cuts of meat in the process: lesser known chops like feather steaks, point steak, and onglets are on the menu here. But don’t worry veg-heads, they’ve got plenty to offer you too, like an entire section of the menu that's dedicated to vegetarian dishes.

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9. Spoon and Stable 211 North First St, Minneapolis, MN 55401

The crew puts a lot of work and effort into the array of exquisite dishes and cocktails at this Downtown/Northloop. While nabbing a reservation might still be a little difficult, walking into the bar hasn’t ever really been an issue -- and you can order the full menu there, or choose from the equally delectable bar-only menu. The pastries are a solid choice for brunch, and mix up your typical Sunday mimosa morning with a Coffee 43 cocktail, which features cold-press coffee, Licor 43, tequila, and cream.

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10. Coup d'Ă©tat 2923 Girard Ave N, Minneapolis, MN 55411

Coup d’etat, a modern American eatery in the heart of Uptown serves food and cocktails with a whole lot of class.

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11. Travail Kitchen & Amusements 4124 W Broadway Ave, Robbinsdale, MN 55422

The gastropub rocking a chalkboard menu oft-scrawled with duck, quail, and rabbit (all of which's perpetually served by the chefs themselves) serves up a rotating selection of adventurous eats in Robbinsdale.

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12. Rookery 4124 West Broadway, Robbinsdale, MN 55422

This Robbinsdael spot serves a great brunch that includes dishes like mussels with fennel, apple, and orange, and an egg dog -- which is ecactly what you think it is: eggs stuffed in a casing posing as sausage.