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MSP - Last minute rec. for Anniversary dinner

Good news: I don't have to cook for our anniversary this year. (Can you hear me smiling?)

Bad news, after being almost exclusively a home cook for years, I have no idea how to answer the Hub's questions: "Where would you like to go?"


Our parameters: Most any cuisine. A room that's not too fancy (i.e., be don't want to "seriously dress" for a Sunday evening meal), but is still rather charming and intimate...maybe soft lighting to hide my wrinkles. Not too noisy (the Hub has hearing issues). Entrees in the 15-25 dollar range. Don't worry about any recs that are heavy on luscious desserts, as we're not sweets eaters (have some nice Prosecco to have in the garden afterwards). Prefer not too far out of town.

Any ideas? I welcome all of them, as I'm still thinking it's easier to cook myself than to make a decision!

Thanks so much. Sorry about the last-minute, but I only just heard myself.


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  1. Is there a neighborhood preference? I can think of several places - too many, probably.

    I think in Uptown, both of these would work:

    Amore Victoria Ristorante



    Amore Victoria Ristorante
    1601 West Lake Street, Minneapolis, MN 55408

    Giorgio Restaurant [CLOSED]
    2451 Hennepin Ave, Minneapolis, MN 55405

    1 Reply
    1. re: pgokey

      I had a horrible meal at Amore Victoria recently. I would not recommend it at all. The food was bad and the service was terrible. It was very memorable, but in a bad way.

    2. My vote is for Alma. It meets all of your requirements, not extremely fancy, entrees around $20-$25 (3 course price fix for $42), intimate, calm and quiet, etc. It's one of my favorite restaurants in the city.

      1 Reply
      1. re: katebauer

        Kate beat me to Alma - just about to type the same thing. Its my fave as well

        Grand cafe in minneapolis is also excellent & fits into your outline.


        1. re: St Paul Susie

          Here are the places

          Restaurant Alma
          528 University Ave SE, Minneapolis, MN 55414

          Grand Cafe
          3804 Grand Avenue South, Minneapolis, MN 55409

          1. re: pgokey

            PG thanks - I couldn't get the GC one to go....

        2. I would recommend Kafe 421 in Dinkytown. The food is excellent and interesting, but at a very good price. Make sure you get sat in the back room, the atmosphere is much better back there, and it is quiet. Great prices too.

          1. Heck, this isn't last minute - it's only Friday. Last minute would be posting at 5pm on Sunday!

            My standard "nice dinner" places are Alma and Vincent. Both are very quiet and not too terribly fancy. I've seen more dressed-up people at Vincent, but it is right next to Orchestra Hall, after all. Alma has romantic dim lighting (but wrinkles rule, sez I, so go for whatever lighting you want).

            I wish I could recommend some other places, but I don't get out enough. I've yet to visit Fugaise, La Belle Vie, or Heartland. And I haven't been to Lucia's for years, so I'm not qualified to recommend it (but my memory is that it's also quiet and not-too-fancy with wonderful, award-winning food).

            Oh - one more nice, quiet, romantic place: Al Vento. Small, candle-lit bistro with lovely Italian food.

            Happy anniversary!


            Lucia's Restaurant
            1432 W 31st St, Minneapolis, MN 55408

            Vincent A Restaurant
            1100 Nicollet Mall, Minneapolis, MN 55403

            Al Vento
            5001 34th Avenue South, Minneapolis, MN 55417

            1 Reply
            1. re: AnneInMpls

              A strong second on Lucias. I think that La Belle Vie and Heartland may be a little above the OP's price point.

              Another favorite of mine with a romantic feel is Cafe Lurcat, which looks out onto Loring Park. I think that most of the entrees fall below $25, but everything is a la carte. I'd call first if this is a concern.

            2. If Alma is a little spendy for what you're looking for, you could try one of our romantic evening standbys - Signature Cafe.

              They're almost exactly on the border between Minneapolis and St. Paul, the residential neighborhood is about as quiet as they come, and everyone and everything oozes charm. It is probably as close as you'll come to feel like you're having a(n excellent) meal at home without actually being at home.

              Signature Cafe & Catering
              130 Warwick St SE, Minneapolis, MN 55414

              1. Thank you all so much for coming to the rescue! Since our weekend is pretty busy, it's nice to have reservations on Fri. for Sun.

                To all those recommending Lucia's, Alma and Georgio - I thank you and concur, as I have dined at these wonderful places. We have, tho, chosen Danny's rec of Signature in Prospect Park. Not JUST for the Air America ads, and probably a little more for the sustainable and good labor practices, but the menu and atmosphere sounds just right. We've not eaten there before, and have meant to. Thanks, Danny, for jogging our memory.

                Oh! All the other recs are valuable to me - thank you so. I'd love to hear from Danny about what is good to to order. I will follow up after our dinner, as I love to suppport the small-dining food-loving community, and give kudos where due.


                2 Replies
                1. re: cayjohan

                  Gee... no pressure there! ;)

                  I can't say I've ever had a bad meal at Signature. It really depends on your mood. So, I'm going to suggest that you just chat with Nathalie. She'll help find something that matches your mood, and is really good. The more you ask, the more information you'll get in return.

                  1. re: Danny

                    Sorry, Danny - didn't mean to put you on the spot! Your statement of never having had a bad meal says it all. And thanks again.

                    When I called to make reservations, I spoke to the husband portion of the pair. He was fantastic in dealing with the call and with our needs. Can't wait. I think I am partial to the crab cakes. as I always am...Oh? is it Sunday yet?

                    Thanks again,

                2. I know this is an old thread, but what about Forpaugh's?

                  2 Replies
                  1. re: jenniegirl

                    cayjohan's anniversary has come and gone, but for the benefit of future posters who stumble across this thread, here's a link to a discussion about Forepaugh's http://www.chowhound.com/topics/40360...


                    1. re: jenniegirl

                      In addition to the discussion TDQ has listed, there are current updates elsewhere that Forepaugh's has been sold in the last two months or so, and is closed right now.

                      Until the renovation is completed and the new owner's menu is available to check out, Forepaugh's probably belongs in the "all bets are off" category.