This post represent my first out of state restaurant visit. Last month, we traveled to Chicago to attend the Coldplay concert at Soldier Field. We dined at Bar Siena prior to the concert. We found Bar Siena courtesy of Yelp and Open Table. We picked it because we liked the menu which mostly consisted of different Italian dishes and it was easy to make a reservation. Bar Siena draws its inspiration in size, style, and energy from a casual, energetic bar and restaurant called La Taverna in Siena, Italy.
A few weekends ago, we found ourselves in Bayport, MN, a quaint little town along the St. Croix River, one mile south of Stillwater, MN. During our visit, we took the kids to Lakeside Park, but before that we had the privilege of dining at this charming little cafe called L’Etoile Du Nord. L’Etoile Du Nord is a french phrase meaning “The Star of the North”. I also found out that L’Etoile Du Nord is the motto of the U.S. State of Minnesota chosen by the state’s first governor, and was adopted in 1861, 3 years after admission of Minnesota to the Union. As for the cafe, it is Belgium inspired thanks to the owner who is from there. The cafe prides itself as using only the freshest ingredients which they source locally from farmers in the St. Croix River Valley. One of their motto is that everything they offer is made from scratch with only the finest, local, organic, and seasonally available ingredients.
While attending the Stone Arch Bridge Festival, we were looking for a dinner place and found JEFE with the help of Yelp. It is located on St Anthony Main and is a little more than a month old. The restaurant was launched by the same people that own Aster Cafe, which is just down the street. JEFE Urban Hacienda is described as a comfortable hang out where you are cared for in vintage Spanish style. Lovingly built cocktails, Mexican tap beer, grotto-cooled wines, fresh Mexican street food, and sweet ambiance all await you.
Public kitchen + bar is located in the St. Paul Lowertown neighborhood. The restaurant overlooks Mears Park. In the last couple of years, Lowertown has quickly become one of the hottest neighborhoods in the Twin Cities. The city is now home to the newly opened CHS field (home to the St. Paul Saints) and countless of new bars and restaurants.
We were looking for a place for Sunday Brunch after a fun filled wedding weekend and the Hen House Eatery was recommended. They specialize in local food and drink. They use the freshest locally-source ingredients and serve breakfast all-day. Their bar also features a variety of craft beers and specialty bloody mary’s. The restaurant also has a bakery.
This past weekend, I rediscovered one of my favorite places in the Cities, Victor’s 1959 Cafe. We stopped in for lunch with some friends, prior to taking a stroll around Lake Calhoun. On their website, the restaurant calls itself a place where you can escape from everyday life, eat some mighty tasty food, experience another culture, and maybe even feel like you are on a mini-vacation. In a nutshell, you go there to experience some delicious Cuban food.
I love working downtown because you have access to great restaurants like IL Foro, that’s Italian for “the Forum”. This restaurant with it’s Art Deco style dining room is housed in the former space of the Forum Cafeteria.
Before catching Riverdance at the State Theatre, we made a pit stop into Victory 44 for dinner. Victory 44 had long been on my list and I was looking forward to this. It is nestled in the middle of a residential area in North Minneapolis. On its website, Victory 44 calls itself a casual neighborhood restaurant offering a seasonal menu highlighting local foods and farms paired with great beer and wine.
Hi! My name is Chris, and I absolutely love great food. Over the years, I have discovered some great places to eat in this great city. I will be posting some of my favorites here. As I continue to discover great places to eat or rediscover old ones, I will be sharing them with you. I will post them on this site. In the meantime, please checkout this newly published list by Minneapolis/St. Paul magazine of thetop 50 restaurants in 2016.