Food near MOA?
Alright - my wife and I are meeting friends after a painful day of xmas shopping at the Mall of America on Saturday. We'd like to meet up for dinner/drinks.....any recommendations? We're completely open in terms of style of food.........but I don't mean "Major's Sports Cafe" open......
My guess is that people are going to say Jun Bo (http://www.jun-bo.com/) or Aribels (http://www.chowhound.com/topics/440061), but I want to warn you that I heard Aribel's may no longer have a liquor license. Someone @ my work said they ran into some trouble in a recent city council meeting!.. may want to call 'em first.
If you're staying in MSP, I bet the team here can come up with some great little local spots (I know a few) to get into that are around 5 mi from the MOA, but do involve some neighborhood driving. Which direction are you / your friends heading after?
Good luck at the mall btw. I was there last Fri & didn't make it past Sears (which is connected to the parking lot).. mostly because it made me tired.
One option is to eat IN the MOA.
Twin City Grill
Napa Valley Grill (technically a chain, but a better than average one
It's been a couple of years, but last time I ate at Tiger, I found service to be slow (it was lunch time) and the price a little high for the quality. But it's a nicer ambience than Wok'n'Roll in the food court!
And if you need a sustenance break - there's a creperie and a teavana in the mall also.
Other than hotel restos (Split Rock in the Grand Lodge, Wooley's in the Embassy Suites) and commercial striped awning chains (TGIFriday's, Chevy's, Outback), there's precious little in the immediate vicinity of MOA. You would have to drive west a couple of miles to Nicollet or Lyndale to find anything better.
7717 Nicollet Ave, Minneapolis, MN 55423
8766 Lyndale Ave S, Minneapolis, MN 55420
8405 Lyndale Ave S, Minneapolis, MN 55420
You'd have to be absolutely insane to try and eat at the Mall of America on the last Saturday before the Christmas weekend.
From the MOA, you are about 5 miles of dozens of easily accessed south Minneapolis places. I just did Bagu Sushi and Turtle Bread Company (48th and Chicago Ave) with some friends last night. Cafe Levain is at the same intersection, as is Pizza Biga and Pumphouse Creamery. 5.4 miles from the mall.
To the east, you've got Highland Park. Highland Grill, Punch, the wine bar at Heartland, Groveland Tap. 8.5 miles.
To the south you have Mediterranean Cruise Cafe (Cedar and Highway 13). 5.5 miles.
Loren has places to the west covered. All within a few miles. These are just a few examples. Reann had a good question...which direction are you heading to and from? I would send you somewhere away from the mall in that direction.