Thanks, connie and flyerfan--we had a nice stay in Bismarck (beautiful scenery). We ended up not choosing our own restaurants, but we got taken to Peacock Alley, Meriweathers, Fiesta Villa, and the restaurant in the Ramkota hotel. The hotel meal was actually the best (a nice sauteed walleye fillet there). Meriweathers had a nice relaxing atmosphere and good food. I made a bad choice at Peacock Alley (Cajun combo=orange glop, mostly), but everyone else enjoyed their meals. We weren't able to get a table outside in the back at Fiesta Villa, so we ate inside and I wouldn't recommend it for the food. It looked like the people out back were having a great time drinking margaritas, though! Sorry that I missed some of your other recommendations--I walked by Pirogue and the menu looked very impressive.
Bismarck's Pirogue Grill, www.piroguegrill.com is a must visit. I keep hearing rave reviews. It features prairie cuisine and seasonal food--walleye, bison, duck, housemade sausage and North Dakota lamb and beef. I'm crazy about their polenta fries. I order them in the bar with a lamb burger, also delicious. Entree prices mostly in the 20's. Nice ambiance with original art and the walnut bar and hostess stand fronted with metal, designed by a Grand Forks artist. They open at 5.
Two other fine restaurants, in a similar price range, are East 40 Chophouse & Tavern, right off Interstate 94, and the Bistro. Both have outdoor dining. The East 40 has good food, nice atmosphere, good service. Their buffet food is above average. The Bistro has a nice atmosphere, good food. My last meal was a chicken tarragon salad that was excellent.
The Walrus is a very popular restaurant with an Italian emphasis. Food is good and reasonable, and it's often very busy. It's in our neighborhood so we go often.
Downtown has Fiesta Via and Peacock Alley. From reports I've heard, Fiesta's food has gone downhill. However, their margaritas are considered the best. They have a nice outdoor eating area. Directly across the street is the Peacock, a popular bar gathering spot. We eat there occasionally. I would grab a margarita on Fiesta's patio and eat across the street in the dining room. Bar food is just ok.
I want to mention Captain Merriweather's, a restaurant on the Missouri River. It has a nice view from the deck. I always order their shrimp quesadilla.
I have lunch once a month at Minerva's and enjoy their salmon salad.
Welcome to our fine city of Bismarck.
Go to DiDonna's for Italian. The pastas are extremely good.
Ground Round is always a great place to go despite the fact its a chain. The food is typical grill and bar, however, its always very well.
I second the Bistro and Walrus. The Bistro has by far the best Buffalo Burger I have ever had! I miss it, everytime I get back to Bismarck for holidays I hit this place up.
Space Aliens is an interesting place to check out. Not super great, but the theme is fun and its known for its ribs and pizzas.
Minerva's is another good restaurant. They serve all cuisines. The salads are really wonderful. Portions are big!
Roby's Super Club is a MUST. By far some of the best steak I have ever ate. This place is way out in the country, but its worth the drive believe me.