My tastes: I love Basque food, which you can't get here. I love many foods, in fact, that you can't get here, such as raw lobster, fresh oysters, and good Mexican food. My one strong bias is against raw onions.
My Hangout: Bryant Lake Bowl. The only think I wouldn't suggest there is the vegetarian chili, unless you reeeeeeeeally love tomato sauce.
Hunan Garden in Saint Paul
Rainbow in Minneapolis
Northern - Natraj
Southern - Udapai
Northern - Figlio - but I haven't been to D'Amico Cucina, which I've heard is the best. My favorite dishes at Figlio are the tortelini and the beef carpaccio.
Southern - I don't care for southern Italian food and have no strong recommendations.
Buca di Beppo Minneapolis gets points for having a really fun crowd.
Odaa and Red Sea have closed; the only good one I know of now is Blue Nile. Get a platter.
Greek, Vietnamese and Mexican:
I'm open to suggestions. I've had no good Mexican food in Minnesota since Rio Bravo closed. I'm not sure what constitutes excellent Vietnamese food, but I know it isn't the Lotus! I have had good Greek food but not in the state of Minnesota.
Generally really excellent food in Minneapolis:
The 510 Restaurant ("French-Inspired")
Jax Cafe (Steak) http://www.jaxcafe.com/
I can't afford to eat out as much as I want in general, and when traveling I'm limited by time as well as by money, but here are some of my favorites:
Perlan/The Pearl, Reykjavik Perlan, Post 5252, 125 Reykjavik, Iceland Tel: 562 0200. Fax: 562 0207. E-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org Website: www.perlan.is
Sherlock Holmes, London 10 Northumberland Avenue, Westminster London, WC2N 5DA Telephone: +44 (0) 20 7930 2644 Facsimile: +44 (0) 20 7839 0263 http://www.sherlockholmespub.homestead.com/
My role will be to represent the bland, midwestern-Lutheran palete here in the Twin Cities. Born & raised here in Mpls., I grew up on overcooked vegetables and canned fruit, tuna ring salad, and the horrifying but uniquely midwestern concept of the "Hot Dish." (The variables to “the Hot Dish” are considerable, but always have the same 2 constants: gelatinous cream of mushroom soup, and those godawful dried onion bits in a can. And it's an unwritten law that every pot luck in the midwest must serve at least 5 pasta salads that consist of several pounds of mayonnaise with a few stray noodles and bits of tuna thrown in. Don't even get me started on "Franks and Beans.")
As an adult, I have decided to cut out all factory farmed meat from my diet, and to go completely vegetarian when possible. I firmly believe that factory farming causes disease, and eating sick, weak, and diseased animals make for a sick, weak and diseased human being. Unfortunately, I’m a vegetarian wannabe who hates most vegetables, so I’m just a joy to cook for! However, I ’m a big fan of eating locally grown food in season, and for eating in a socially and politically responsible fashion. Which is why I am completely unable to give an unbiased revue of the “Black Forest” restaurant, as pretty much everything on the menu contains either veal or sauerkraut, two foods I have always believed are inherently EVIL.
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