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Jun 2, 2006 09:40 AM

Onion rings - MSP

  • b

I'm relatively new to Chowhound, so if the subject of onion rings has been recently examined, tell me and I'll wait for a decent interval.

But, failing that, where can I find onion rings that haven't been hopelessly mistreated. Onion rings that are actually ONION...RINGS instead of extruded or reassembled or God knows what and have been fried in oil somewhere close to the optimal temperature for something approximating the proper length of time and are...well, you get the picture.

Any suggestions will be appreciated.

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  1. To clarify: do you like the wide cut or thin cut, tempura style batter (smooth) or the crunchy, rolled in ground up corn flakes type coating (rough)? It's kind of like pizza and fries -- there are some pretty diverse definitions of "greatness".

    That said, and shocking I know, the Red Robin burger places have pretty good onion rings in my opinion. They're wide cut, thick, and have the rough coating. That's my onion ring style preference, so it works for me.

    The Gold Nugget out in Minnetonka has thin, tempura style that people swear by. I've had them and they're fine, but it's hard to not have that stringy quality with thin onion rings. The bigger ones in the container were a bit too chewy for me.

    I'm sure I'm forgetting many notable ones I've had -- I'm looking forward to seeing other replies.

    1 Reply
    1. re: MSPD

      Thanks for the warning about The Gold Nugget. I was there for the first time a few weeks and had fries with my burger. The burger was fine (not worth driving across town for) but I didn't like the fries at all. Undercooked. I planned to order onion rings next time but perhaps I'll stay away from those as well and just get another beer.

      I think the onion rings at Skinner's Pub in St. Paul are pretty good. Although I only had a few as I stole them off someone else's plate.

    2. You might try the Wild Onion on Grand Ave in St. Paul. I was always skeptical of this place, but I've been pleasantly surprised when I've eaten there with coworkers. It's pretty good for bar & grill type food!
      They have the smooth flour batter-type rings. They're presented very dramatically, in a leaning tower anchored by a long skewer. Good luck!

      Disclaimer: This recommendation is based on a) my visual observation of the rings (they looked fabulous), and b) my coworker's testament that they were really good.

      1. My all-time favorite rings are at Porky's on University Ave. in St. Paul. A single ring is put on top of each burger, but I usually buy a separate side as well.

        They were also served at Nora's and may still be served at Tryg's on West Lake Street in Minneapolis near Lake Calhoun.


        11 Replies
        1. re: Bob S.

          Porky's is not the same anymore. I had their onion rings last month and they were absolutely terrible. You're living in the past even mentioning that place.

          1. re: Davydd

            That's really too bad. I haven't been there in over a year, so I didn't know that it had changed so drastically.


          2. re: Bob S.

            I'm with you Bob S - Porky's, even if it has gone down hill. There is just something about them that is unlike any other.

            I also like the onion straws at 5-8.

            1. re: ssioff

              Here's some Porky's onion rings for ya! :)

              1. re: Davydd

                Makes me want to run out and get an order. Thanks Davydd.

                1. re: Davydd

                  So has your opinion changed on Porky's or their onion rings, Davydd?

                  1. re: bob s

                    The onion rings were actually terrible, overly greasy and stuck together. I'll never go back to Porky's. First of all it is just a cheap take out place and no longer a traditional drive-in. The pork tenderloin sandwich I had there was the worst I've had in the Twin Cities against over 30 other restaurants. It is nothing but a tired fast food joint that has cut its cost to the bone and living off the goodwill of the past for unsuspecting patrons that might believe the press clippings of decades ago. Sorry, telling it like it is.

                    1. re: Davydd

                      That's fine. I was just surprised to see that you had posted a picture of the rings from Porky's given your 2006 statements above! I've been back since my 2006 statements - I still like the rings, but most of the other stuff is still pretty bad.

                        1. re: Davydd

                          Yes - I don't know if it says more about me or the onion rings, but they look like they always do... ;-0

                          1. re: Davydd

                            I also thought they looked awesome in the photo...Made me want to eat onion rings.

                            If you want to make someone not eat onion rings, show a picture of Burger King rings...worst. on. the. planet.

              2. I typically don't go out of my way to order onion rings, because of the objections raised so far. Take one bite, and you pull the whole onion out of its shell, leaving just the batter for the remaining bites.

                However, recently I ordered the Cook's Revenge at the Triple Rock, and it came with onion rings. I was actually pretty impressed with them, and even mentioned this to my dining companion at the time. The batter was a little thick, but they were really done perfectly. Each bite had both onion and ring, and the inside melted away effortlessly.

                You might also consider one of the local Japanese restaurants (Midori's being our current favorite) and see if they can do a batch of tempura onion rings for you... they would probably do them well, with a lighter batter than Triple Rock, depending on what you prefer.

                1. The Onion Rings at the Town Talk Diner look amazing, those would be the real deal. (If you really want to go deep fried crazy, get their fried cheese curds too.)