Here's Our Travel Guide to This Nation of Over 7,000 Islands
1. Bar La Grassa800 Washington Ave N, Minneapolis
2. Lucia's Wine Bar1432 W 31st St, Minneapolis
3. Vincent: A Restaurant1100 Nicollet Mall, Minneapolis
4. Heyday2700 Lyndale Ave S, Minneapolis
5. The Strip Club Meat & Fish378 Maria Ave, St. Paul
6. Corner Table4257 Nicollet Ave, Minneapolis
7. Meritage410 Saint Peter St, St. Paul
8. Restaurant Alma528 University Ave SE, Minneapolis
9. La Belle Vie510 Groveland Ave, Minneapolis
10. WA Frost & Company374 Selby Ave, Saint Paul
From James Beard-winning Chef Isaac Becker, accolade-heavy Bar La Grassa serves up sumptuous Italian eats like bucatini bolognese in their cozy North Loop digs.
Escape the mega-bustle of Henn-Lake's shopping for a Pimms Cup, Campari, or Rob Roy at the greatest place you didn't know existed: Lucia's, where the vino and booze selection is classic, and the happy hour deals are robust, both of which suggest that perhaps you did know it existed, but just forgot.
Vincent's got French cuisine influenced by a contemporary American style, but all you really need to know is that they have one of the best damn burgers in the Twin Cities.
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.
Grass-fed beef is the name of the game at St. Paul’s premier meatery, an independent St. Paul chop and fish house, helmed by chef JD Fratzke. Strip House exhibits incredible use of ingredients from small, local farms, but it’s also distinctly unique and almost rustic despite its overall level of refinement and balance. The drink menu changes seasonally and the results are always spectacular, but even the long-standing staple drinks, like the Cobra Kai, are simply stunning.
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.
With tiled floors, warm wooden accents, and high ceilings that capture tons of natural light, Meritage has all the trimmings of a classic Parisian brasserie, including the exceptional fare and expert wine list. Situated in Downtown St Paul, it's a prime spot for date night or dinner before a show, though stopping in for weekend brunch is highly encouraged too, when dishes like an omelet du jour, eggs Benedict, and eggs en cocotte are prepared. At lunch and dinner, you'll find traditional plates like steak frites, roasted duck breast, and swordfish au vin, plus plenty of fresh selections from the oyster bar.
The low-lit, brick interior creates an intimate feel ideal for when you’re aiming to impress, and it also doesn’t hurt that the food is easily some of the best in the Twin Cities.
Critically acclaimed La Belle Vie on the outskirts of downtown is the birthplace of two of the finest culinary careers in the Midwest: Chef Tim McKee and Sazerac slinger Johnny Michaels.
Classic American food, prepared with local ingredients -- like tons of other places. But, at W.A. Frost they've been local sourcing since the beginning and have a killer outdoor space in their flower covered patio. Look out for seasonal menu changes and their expansive wine list.