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(MSP) Best Pork Chops in Town?

Hi hounds! I'm relatively new to this, but I know that based what I've seen thus far, someone out there in Chow-land will be able to guide me. Here goes...

The hubby & I were chowing about this weekend when he said, "The next time you're on Chowhound, find out where the best pork chops are." He's always game for the fun, chow-ish places I want to try, but he's really a meat & potatoes guy at heart - and he's a pork chop fiend. If it's on the menu, he's ordering it! So, with your help - I'd love to be able to take him to a restaurant I know he'll truly enjoy (and not the other way around for once).

Relevant info:
- Live downtown, but willing to drive
- I'll score extra points if really delicious bacon and/or garlic mashed potatoes are involved
- He loves a great dirty vodka martini
- Tried a chop at Monte Carlo & he wasn't impressed

Thanks!! (I apologize if this is re-hashing an old topic, but I searched & didn't really find anything)

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  1. I don't eat pork chops in restaurants that often. But I have fond memories of the gigantic chops I got once at JD Hoyt's. They're downtown and wi'll be able to fulfill the mashed potatoes portion of your request. I don't recall the drinks there.

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    J D Hoyt's
    301 Washington Ave. North, Minneapolis, MN 55401

    2 Replies
    1. re: bob s

      I'm not a huge pork chop fan - but everytime my dining companions get one at JD hoyts they look great.

      good sides & service as well.

      1. re: St Paul Susie

        i haven't been to jd hoyt's in several years but i think it's a great rec. whenever steak in msp comes up i always forget about the place-- it does a great job for its price point imo. i appreciate the huge hardwood charcoal-fired grill they cook all their meats with. the last time i was there, our companion we were taking out got the pork chop and a baked sweet potato, which he loved. according to the website they also have garlic mashed, per the op.

    2. MMMM...that sounds like a craving Craftsman could take care of for you, though you might have to make a special request on the mashed potatoes. http://www.craftsmanrestaurant.com/di... They do have a full bar.

      I also have really enjoyed the pork chops at the St. Paul Grill at the St. Paul Hotel.
      https://www.stpaulgrill.com/client_fi...

      And, when he's got it, I'm sure Lenny Russo at Heartland won't disappoint you.
      http://www.heartlandrestaurant.com/ Not sure about Heartland's ability to bring you a nice martini, though. I always get wine there. But, if there's charcuterie involved, Lenny's your guy. So, there might be some other meat-related joys you might be able to indulge in.

      I hate to mention a chain, but, Kincaid's in St. Paul does a nice job with pork chops, too. Very thick cut, bone in. They could probably do the martini for you.

      The menus at both Heartland and Craftsman are constantly changing. I'm certain they would nearly always have some kind of pork loin on the menu, just may not be a chop.

      P.S. Welcome to the board. You'll earn our undying affection by reporting back on where you end up, how you liked it, and telling us about any other little gems you know about.

      ~TDQ

      1. Manny's Steakhouse - Has pretty much all of your requirements, if you don't mind spending the $$$$. Great people watching too.

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        Manny's Steakhouse
        825 Marquette

        3 Replies
        1. re: autmommy

          Jensens Supper club in Eagan has a bacon wrapped pork chop with mushroom sauce that I have enjoyed. They have also served complimentary popovers that were very good, not sure if they still offer that. They have a web site also.http://www.jensenssupperclub.com.

          1. re: otps

            The martinis at Jensens are huge.......I felt like I needed to start dinner a couple hours earlier than normal just to down the martini before the salad arrives...it's gotta be a 12-16oz. tumbler when ordered on the rocks.

            1. re: otps

              I'm not a popover expert, but I like the ones at Jensen's.

              ~TDQ

          2. One of my favorite dishes in the entire MSP area are the pork chops at First Course. Applewood smoked. They come with some shoestring potatoes that might be a little froo-froo for your husband but they are good.

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            First Course
            5607 Chicago Ave S, Minneapolis, MN 55417

            1. When David Vlach was at Town Talk Diner, the pork chop was outstanding (with brussels sprouts and an apple cider reduction). I can't remember ever having a better pork chop. They still have a Fisher Farms pork chop on the menu but I haven't tried this version. You'll score the bonus points for drink options for sure.

              For a more standard BBQ chop, Cap's Grill on Hiawatha is excellent. They get a lot of disproportionate acclaim for their ribs; to me their pork chop is the standout. You'll have to go elsewhere for the martini.

              1. It's on the "other side of the river," but Phil Tara's Hideaway just outside of Stillwater does a great Greek pork chop and they make killer martini's. It is definitely a meat and potato kind of place with a Greek twist to the menu.

                http://www.tarahideaway.com/index.html

                1. Hey gang - thanks for all the recco's. After some thought, my husband remembered that he's had the chop at both Jensen's and St. Paul Grill and agreed that they were both very good. So, we decided to try someplace new...

                  Our first choice was Town Talk - not only for the chop, but we were also sent on a cocktail re-con mission of sorts by a bartender friend of ours. But, after seeing very loooong line out the door, we decided to drive down the street to Craftsman. Will definitely try Town Talk again sometime - all those people waiting in the wind can't be wrong :-) JD Hoyt's is also on the short list since it's close.

                  (Now, I saw that someone recently bumped a previous Craftsman post, so I'll keep my comments here related to my op. But, I will go back to the other post & leave a review.) My husband did his due diligence & ordered the chop (although, after perusing the menu I know he really wanted the elk dish!). Overall he was pleased - the chop was a great cut & prepared very well. It was served with espresso baked beans & a savory bread pudding, which he thought was the star of the plate. I sampled everything and I thought the dish was pretty good, although a little one-note - flavors and textures were a little too evenly matched for my taste. But, if he had to base it on the chop alone - the hubby was happy. Oh, and just to throw me off he ordered an old fashioned, instead of a martini. Figures. And the pork chop quest continues....

                  1 Reply
                  1. re: pm1013

                    Terrific report, thank you. I look forward to your future posts regarding "chopquest 2008" (apologies to soupkitten who coined "brunchquest 2008").

                    ~TDQ

                  2. I was just at Porter House in Little Canada and they had a special of center cut pork chops with, I want to say, a rhubarb relish/chutney on them. I didn't order them, but I've had their blackened pork chops and they were very good; huge, not over cooked with a good blackening seasoning on them.