Food & Drink

More like Holiday Inn-credible

Unless it's in the lobby of a Holiday Inn and Chingy is flowing nice, most hotel restaurants get a bad rap. For one who definitely doesn't deserve it: Prairie Kitchen & Bar

The capstone of the Hyatt Regency's $25M remodel, the 5500sqft, 168-seat Prairie fills the old Taxxi space with a rectangular walnut bar overlooking Nicollet Mall, a two-story stone fireplace, and a stable of adult bevs & locally grown, seasonal eats that "evoke the Scandinavian and farming heritage of Minnesota". Breakfast starts with lingonberry and chestnut butter PB&J on cinnamon bread, smoked trout benedict, or vanilla malted waffles; there's Amish bologna & goat cheese sandwiches for lunch; and come din-din, garlic & veal meatballs in chardonnay-gruyere cream, and "waterzooi", a classic Dutch stew that just can't be serious with that name, right? That 80-seat, mirror-backed bar's got a massive selection of wine plus and brews (from Big Bay Wavehopper, to Fulton Sweet Child), but lives and dies by an old-school cocktail menu with cuts like the absinthe/Kronan Swedish Punsch "Corpse Reviver", and the Aquavit/ Chinato/ Campari "Viking Quest" -- though if they're talking about the football team, they better start with the Corpse Reviver

Should your fancy-pants be on permanent hiatus at the cleaner's, Prairie's also got a more casual lounge that serves stuff like a Meyer natural angus burger, veal meatball fondue, and pastrami fries with "trout cake sliders, all of which'll ensure you don't just have to order a bad wrap.