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MSP Month-End Review

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OK Everyone, I'm doing that big brave thing, starting an end-of-month thread since no one
else has yet. Please give us succinct highlights of the notable moments you have spent
eating in restaurants this past month.

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  1. Pardon the interruption, folks, but please try to keep these guidelines in mind when posting in this, and future, update thread(s). http://www.chowhound.com/topics/39709... Thank you.

    1. Highlights- A very delicious lunch at the Lucky Dragon buffet. These people actually
      know how to cook without msg and make it very tasty. They even had turnip cakes!
      and steamed buns- 2 kinds- a couple of dishes with black bean sauce, one vegetarian
      dish with huge portobello slices, and a partridge in a pear tree as well. All for $5.95.
      Great asparagus soup at Firelake. Oversalted farro risotto also at Firelake. Great
      walleye burger at FireLake. Confirmed FireLake is using wild walleye from Canada,
      very nice flavor.
      Always get good soups and salads at Moose and Sadie's.
      Excellent buffet takout lunch at Everest 's stand in Midtown Global Mkt.

      1. Faith - Thanks for kicking this off!

        I was out of town for part of the month. So not too much from here.

        Koyi sushi for the first time in downtown mpls. Excellent. Can't wait to return. Ate at the bar and really enjoyed it. Place was less than 1/2 full on a Thursday night.

        Midori - take out a few times & sit down 2x as well. Pretty stellar.

        La Grolla - finally after a few years of excellent meals & service I got a feel for why other chowhounds are lukewarm about this spot. 6 people, food was good for some, average for others & I won't be rushing back.

        And we've been having wine nightcaps at Il Veso Vino - the patio is open and they added another bar/patio menu which has some more causual food (sandwiches, pizzas) and we saw a sandwich that looked very very tasty. Something to keep in mind.

        1. Loved watching the sunset on the stonearch bridge while dining outdoors at Spoonriver this week. The potato leek soup was bland, but I loved loved loved the crunchy rosemary crackers out of the bread basket and I thought the Perrin, a Cote du Rhone, was surprisingly pleasant (and cheap!).

          1. Thanks, Faith, for starting a May thread! I always enjoy seeing where others have eaten recently.

            Me, I mostly fed my obsession for payapa salad (as described here: http://www.chowhound.com/topics/404651 ). I ate papaya salad at:

            Va Lor Super Excellent Papaya Salad (twice). Even the mild papaya salad is REALLY spicy! The steamed rice rolls are blessedly bland, and a good counterpoint to the fiery p. salad. I really like this friendly, bare-bones, mom & pop place. My thanks to Danny and Josh Resnick for posting about it! I'm going again soon so I can try the bean-and-coconut desserts and drinks.


            True Thai - Great papaya salad, especially when ordered with the crispy sweet beef. Yum!

            Jasmine Orchid - Another nice version of papaya salad. I wish it came with sticky rice to sop up the soupy sauce.

            Pho Ca Dao - I wanted papaya salad, but they were out, so I had pho instead. Luckily, it's really good pho.

            Ketsana's Thai Restaurant - Also out of papaya salad the night I was there, so I had chicken larb. It's good, but the medium isn't spicy enough for me - or perhaps I blew out my tastebuds at Va Lor.

            And I managed a few non-papaya outings in May:

            Birchwood for asparagus-pea-prosciutto risotto (good stuff). The cream-cheese and strawberry topping for the turkey burger is less successful, in my opinion. But it's not bad.

            Vincent (the bar) for my first Vincent burger. Wonderful! I love the taste of the ground beef with the shredded braised short ribs. But I shouldn't have gotten fries on the side - the burger is very, very rich. (They were great fries, though, so I ate them all anyway.) And I was too full for dessert, but I managed a bite of each of the Three Creams dessert, which was lovely as always.

            South Asian Foods for a quick eat-in-my-car lunch on a frantic race-across-town day. I had a spicy veggie wrap, which was very tasty - chickpeas or mashed beans with lettuce, onions, and tomato in a tortilla-like wrap.

            My favorite for the month was South Asian Foods. This little grocery/deli is a hidden treasure! I never would have known about it if I hadn't seen good comments on this board. My thanks to those of you who posted about it.


            I plan to get back up there soon for something more complex than a wrap. I hear that the weekend "brunch" is worth a visit.


            1. My new commute takes me past Patrick's French Bakery in Richfield. I've tried their croissants (good), coffee (not very good), pastries (excellent), and a croque monsieur for lunch. The sandwich comes with a nice side salad and is heated up in a panini. I liked the ham and gruyere but found that the large amount of bechamel sauce was a distraction. A swab of the sauce would be nice, though, if it's possible to have one made fresh with less sauce.

              Had a terrific dinner at Fugaise, consisting of an appetizer of seared scallops with saffron potatoes and a simple entree of roast chicken breast in a Mediterranean-style pan sauce with olives. They seem to be doing more business these days, which is a good sign, I hope!

              Weekend brunch at Lucia's is highly recommended. I had one of their simple but perfectly composed omelettes with black beans and some kind of sharp white cheese (can't recall, I'm afraid) with roasted potatoes. We also split a great apricot-ginger scone. We then stopped by the carry-out shop to get chicken breasts and a salad of pear, apple, and arugula for dinner, along with a couple of cheese gougeres. This made a terrific dinner that evening.

              Dinner at Sapor was a mixed experience. On the one hand, the service was very good, and the cocktail menu had some fun, unusual choices. The appetizer of barbacoa with fried masa wedges was addictive. We tried two entrees --- the lamb chops were very good, but the pork tenderloin was terribly overcooked. We had to send that back.

              1 Reply
              1. re: Jordan

                I tried Tanpopo for the first time, had a great sandwich at the Black Dog, went to Punch with my sister, ate at Manana a few times, and had a few very nice lunches at Swede Hollow. Oh, yeah, I tried China Jen for the first time too...

              2. Last Saturday drove over to El Burrito Mercado (SP) for lunch. Had just an excellent shredded/chunk chicken breast which was simply simmered (2-3hrs) in chicken stock, tomato, onion, sea salt, and chipotle chiles.....I believe it was called Chicken Mexicalla, served with beans and rice, it was outstanding.