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Sep 1, 2008 05:29 AM

Best bars in MSP? Liquor stores?


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  1. Best bars for what?

    For vodka I go to Moscow on the Hill in St Paul, which also has tasty Russian food.

    We tend to end up at the Bulldog NE for Burgers and Belgian beer because, we like the beer and we frequently slide into Surdyks (half a block away) while we are there.

    For liquor stores we typically start at South Lyndale liquor or Surdyks and then branch out to Haskells on 394, France 44 or The Cellars.

    Surdyks Liquor and Bistro 2go
    303 E Hennepin Ave, Minneapolis, MN 55414

    Bulldog NE
    401 E Hennepin Ave, Minneapolis, MN 55414



    South Lyndale Liquors
    5300 Lyndale Ave S, Minneapolis, MN

    2 Replies
    1. re: frittering_away

      Perhaps they've improved since I moved out of the neighborhood five years ago but South Lyndale Liquors is pretty iffy when it comes to wine. And their prices for everything are at least a buck more than Richfield Municipal Liquor stores. I really like the proprietor Joe, but walking distance was the only reason I bought anything at So Lyn.

      1. re: MplsM ary

        We typically only buy wine and liquor from any stores in the area during the sales or from their wine clubs. SLL is so convenient to Kowalski's which if you get the 10% discount on your checkout slip, coupled with the gas and time savings seems far more sensible for us than Richfield. They've also increased their spirits selection.

        It's also hard to resist the St. Bernard.

    2. for liquor, I usually go to Surdyks.

      for wine, The Cellars, Solo Vino, Thomas Liquors, and Haskells are all good. Surdyks isn't too bad.

      for beer, Heritage Liquor, Blue Max and sometimes Surdyks.

      bars can be pretty varied, kinda depends what you are looking for in a bar.

      1 Reply
      1. re: getgot211

        Let me start by saying this thread could become a formidable can of worms

        I agree with most on the bar thing... Bars are good (and bad) for so many different reasons.

        Major Variables could include: neighborhood, cost, size of party, weather/season, type of event(i.e. - friends, date, work), taste, atmosphere... ad nauseam.

        My personal top picks:

        Grumpy's Bar & Grill
        1111 Washington Ave S, Minneapolis, MN 55415

        Surdyks Liquor and Bistro 2go
        303 E Hennepin Ave, Minneapolis, MN 55414

        Eli's Bar & Grill
        1225 Hennepin Ave, Minneapolis, MN 55403

        France 44 Wines & Spirits
        4351 France Ave S, Minneapolis, MN 55410

        Zipp's Liquor Store
        2618 E Franklin Ave, Minneapolis, MN

        Bryant Lake Bowl
        810 W Lake St, Minneapolis, MN

        Grumpy's Bar
        2200 4th St NE, Minneapolis, MN

        331 Club
        331 13th Ave NE, Minneapolis, MN 55413

        Cuzzy's Grill & Bar
        507 Washington Ave N, Minneapolis, MN 55401

        Hennepin Lake Liquor Store
        1200 W Lake St, Minneapolis, MN

      2. For cocktails, I love the Monte Carlo. I am always on the lookout for good cocktail bars myself. Other ones with good drink menus are Cafe Maude on 54 and Penn and La Belle Vie (same bar chef - less expensive at Cafe Maude. I also just had a good Sidecar at the Red Stag.

        I too am a fan of Surdyk's and have also had thoughtful help at France 44.

        1. Blue Max. Beer and Single Malt.
          Four Firkins. Beer.
          Wine Thief. Wine.

          1. The best wine shop is Hennepin Lake Liquors. It's a tight fit and they don't take plastic but for an amazing selection and price, it can't be beat. Plus they have a very helpful staff.
            South Lyndale Liquors is only worth going to if you live close by. It's truly limited in imagination.

            2 Replies
            1. re: meljohns

              I'm sorry but Hennepin Lake has one of the worst quality wine selections in the city. Instead of having someone help me while I am there, I get a bunch of hipster dorks sitting on beer boxes and staring at me like I am a thief. South Lyndale on the other hand has a friendly staff that know their stuff. Not to mention one of the best wine shops in the city. Also, the liquor selection is better than I've seen anywhere and they have really expanded the beer isle in the last few months. I highly recommend shopping there. I also like Surdyk's downtown.

              1. re: pillzsix


                nice name, but i couldn't disagree more...

                I walked into Henn-Lake two days ago looking for a Viognier to pair with some crab legs, and within a minute (or less) i was greeted by a competent and friendly employee, who promptly showed me to the Viognier, the Pinot Blanc and something else that I didn't even know about... Despite their despotic laws against credit card use, I'd say they are one of the better places to buy wine on the south side... hipsters or not.

                As far as South Lyndale goes, I think it certainly has it's merits. It is family owned and carries a great selection of spirits and warm beers. But I don't think you could possibly compare South Lyndale's wine selection to Henn-Lake's?

                Even with that said, I would rather go to France 44 if i'm already that far south... They definitely trump the selection and service of both aforementioned establishments...

                France 44 Wines & Spirits
                4351 France Ave S, Minneapolis, MN 55410