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Friday night in Mpls

We will be going to a concert on Friday night at the Target Center. It would be most convenient to eat somewhere within walking distance. Any suggestions for fun atmosphere, good steak/seafood? Also, since we'll be up there for the weekend, my husband is wondering about a great German restaurant. Thanks!

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  1. The quintessential steak restaurant is two blocks away from Target Center on 6th. That is Murray's. It hasn't changed since the 40s. Seafood would be McCormick & Schmick's on 9th and Nicollet Mall about 4 blocks away. German? Not great but certainly an enjoyable place is Gluek's on 6th a block away. There are a lot of other restaurants to choose from. Another steak restaurant would be the Capitol Grill on Hennepin a couple of blocks away.

    1. Seafood would be the Oceanaire - in the Hyatt Regency at Nicollet Mall and 11th (not McCormick & Scmick's). Manny's (terrific steak) is accross the hall in the same hotel. For German - you need to get in a car and go to Nicollet Ave / eat street to Black Forest Inn - about a 10 min drive from downtown.

      1 Reply
      1. re: MSP Flyer

        I love the patio at Black Forest Inn--wonderful this time of year. I had a lovely rabbit dish with a nice Riesling there this time of year about two years ago. One of my fondest Mpls moments ever.


      2. Black Forest Inn----that might be what he's remembering... Is it full of schtick---like liederhosen and dirndls?

        3 Replies
        1. re: maxwelz

          I logged back in to say I also like the red cabbage sauerkraut at Black Forest. I don't remember the schtick as much at Black Forest because my strongest memory was eating on the patio. I ate inside once, and mostly I remember it being dark'ish--I think there were dark wooden booths.

          The place I remember that's more full of schtick and decorated like a German beer hall is Glockenspiel on West 7th in St. Paul--they have an accordian player on Fridays and Saturdays and (though I've never tried it) live polka on Wednesdays. I've also never been for their fish fry on Fridays. I like Glockenspiel--I think the appetizer platter is fantastic--and your entree is bound to be very good if you order one of the menu specials for the night.

          605 7th St W
          St Paul, MN 55102
          (651) 292-9421



          1. re: The Dairy Queen

            If German food is a must, you can take a bus from downtown to the Black Forest. The number 18 bus runs down Nicollet and goes right past the restaurant - get off at 26th Ave.


            Me, I'm not a fan of their food (although the beer is good and the patio is great), so I would stay downtown. I would go to Solera, because I love Spanish food. But that's my non-steak-eating tastebuds talking...


            1. re: AnneInMpls

              I agree with Anne that the menu at Black Forest is not universally exceptional. Unfortunately. :(

              I thought the rabbit and the red sauerkraut were standouts.


        2. I believe the question said "walking distance" from the Target Center. If you feel you need to try to recommend the best then I suggest flying to Boston for seafood, Dallas for steak and Munich, Germany for German. ;)

          What might help better is what to stay away from around the Target Center.

          1 Reply
          1. re: Davydd

            Davydd's right--you can't realistically walk to Glockenspiel from the Target Center. I've never tried to walk to Black Forest Inn--I'm sure it's not impossible in terms of distance, but I'm not sure what it's like in terms of "neighborhood security" shall we say.

            Whereever you decide to go, don't forget to come back and tell us about it!


          2. Have fun at the concert -

            Steak - Mannys or murrarys would be better (vs. capital grill/ruth chris/mortons)

            seafood - oceanarie is much better than McCormick &S (which is average)

            all 3 of those recommended are spendy and I'd call ahead - longish walk from target (10 blocks?) Murrays is only a few blocks away (2 or 3) -

            Plently of average places closer to Target - check out 112 eatery which is a few blocks away. Call ahead as well.

            1 Reply
            1. re: St Paul Susie

              I agree about the "oceanaire." They have a great oyster selection and the fish is fresh...though some of their non-seafood items are disappointing. I was not impressed with the food at McCormicks and our waitress treated us like children. Sushi, which was forever a problem when I was living in Minneapolis, is best at Nami if you are downtown. And it's actually pretty affordable too. Good luck.

            2. Getting into 112 might be difficult, Nami (Japanese) is also an excellent choice (with a fun atmosphere) at pretty much the same intersection. (Both have at least a few steak and seafood options on the menu.)

              If you're not interested in one of the expensive steakhouses, Nami might fit the bill. For the steak side, their Teriyaki Beef is consistantly excellent. On the seafood side, there's a few options as well. (One in particular that I've enjoyed is on the appetizer menu: Hamachi-Kama - broiled yellowtail collar.)


              1. One of the charms of the Warehouse District is its embarassment of riches regarding restos, ranging from abysmal chains (Hard Rock Cafe across the street from TC) through grungy pubs (Loon and District/Rosens) to haute. Here are some within a block or so with higher-end options that would include steak or seafood.

                112 Eatery, 112 N 3rd St, www.112eatery.com
                perennial chowhound fave, probably too late for reservations so expect to be eating at the bar

                Cafe Brenda, 300 1st Ave N, www.cafebrenda.com
                another fave, great organic/vegetarian/seafood selections

                D'Amico Cucina, 100 N 6th St, www.damico.com
                one of D'Amico's flagships, across the street from Target Cntr, high end Italian

                Nami Sushi, 241 1st Ave N, www.namisushi.com
                mmmmm. sushi. mmmmm. One of the best in town.

                Murray's, 26 S 6th St, www.murraysrestaurant.com
                another perennial rec, but I don't eat steak and have never been there.

                Ike's, 50 S 6th St, web site inactive
                quirky little place, my nabe loved her steak, i loved my salmon, but overall more pubby than fine dining.

                The Dakota Jazz Club/Resto, 1010 Nicollet, www.dakotacooks.com
                with live jazz, how can you lose? good menu, though

                Bellanotte, 6th St & 1st Ave N, www.bellanottempls.com
                serious meat market pickup joint night club late night

                Solera, 900 Hennepin, www.solera-restaurant.com
                tapas and movies on the roof!

                Enjoy the show, enjoy the chow!

                p.s. Love Gluek's but for their own beer and great onion rings. Definitely pub food, though, and not German. They do have an all-you-can-eat NOLA style fish fry on Fridays, and live music, too. The Black Forest is probably the German place you're thinking about. Somewhat kitschy, but good German food. Several miles from Target Center, though.

                1. Don't forget about Sawatdee and Old Spaghetti Factory

                  2 Replies
                  1. re: chefschmitty

                    are you mentioning Sawatdee and Old Spaghetti as suggestions or as examples of "abysmal chains" in Loren3's words? My memory of OSF is boxed pasta with jarred sauce, one of the worst dining experiences I have had. Sawatdee is passable, but nothing special, in my opinion. I don't mean to sound condemnatory, but would like a clarification for the sake of the original poster.

                    1. re: AliceS

                      I should have clarified...I did truly mean for the examples to be in the category of "abysmal chains". OSF couldn't be any more unchowish!

                  2. As a lifer in Mpls and a downtown resident, I can only reiterate Loren3's comments above. Among the non-chain options - and there are several - I'd recommend:

                    Murray's for steak - but only if you like those places that over-hype their history (old red leather booths, etc). The best steak in town, bar none, is Marry's in the Hyatt Regency. A little bit of a hike and very much a traditional steak house that serves outrageous portions, but still the best. A close second is a chain - yes, a chain: Capital Bar and Grill, which is within 3 blocks of Target Center.

                    Best seafood and fish- again head and shoulders above any others - is Oceanaire. Its also in the Hyatt (right across from Manny's). Sitting at the oyster bar is a fun start to the night: you can order from the full menu there too. The McCormick/Schmick's in town is dismal compared to others in other cities; I don't know why. I would highly recommend skipping it, unless you only want to capture their cheap apps during their happy hour (none of which include fish/seafood save salmon cakes).

                    The Hyatt is about 10 blocks from Target Center - easily walkable if you enjoy it. Park by Target and walk over to Nicollet Mall, and stroll down to 12th or hop the bus down Nicollet for, I think, 25c.

                    If its a nice night, consider sitting outside on Nicollet Mall: you could try Zelo (still a little trendy but the food is fairly reliable, and they usually have a decent fish feature), or just have drinks at any one of the others (not great food anywhere else with a patio).

                    If you want sushi: Origami is better food than NAMI Loren3'S suggestion) but NAMI has better atmosphere. Sit at the sushi bar at Origami for best selection/service.

                    Cafe Brenda is wonderful: not entirely vegetarian but no beef on menu. Reliable high quality ingredients.

                    Ike's is a pub feel - with great food. Don't expect frou-frou prep but do enjoy: everything I've ever had there is above average... including their drinks.

                    For German, Black Forest Inn is your best bet. Definately try this on the night after the Target Center - its too far to walk and a totally different feel, anyway.
                    You might also check out places in NE Mpls... this area was once a strong Polish community and is undergoing a renaissance. Most places are a bit trendy but some serve still serve good food with slavic and germanic influences. I'd also recommend, if you're doing any food shopping, a stop at Surdyk's wine and cheese shop: the best selections of both - at the best prices in town.

                    Hope this helps.

                    1. Oops - in the steak house recommendation above, I meant to type MANNY'S as the best option. Sorry for the typo.

                      1. Zelo is generally solid & safe - & if you can snag a spot at the bar you can get in and out quickly.....

                        and an FYI... as stated above Manny's and Oceaniare serve large portions of food!

                        1. I recently went to Sapor and enjoyed it very much. LOVED the calamari appetizer, we split the GREAT Chicken Pakora, nice details and touches in the food and atmosphere. It's a bit spendy for my budget right now to have a full dinner for myself, but definitely high quality.

                          It's located in the Warehouse District- a short walk (in my opinion) from the Target Center in good weather.