Psst... We're working on the next generation of Chowhound! View >
HOME > Chowhound > Minneapolis-St. Paul >
Dec 21, 2009 06:17 AM

(MSP) Date Night (1 Yr Together) - Italian or Mexican

Looking for a nice place to take my girlfriend tonight. Looking for a nice Italian or Mexican place to go. Any Suggestions?

  1. Click to Upload a photo (10 MB limit)
  1. Run don't walk to Bar La Grassa for Italian. I recommend the cold pork plate for a starter; at least one of the bruschettas (I've had the ricotta & roasted tomato and the roasted pork shoulder -- both good); and absolutely order the gnocchi with cauliflower and orange.

    Bar La Grassa
    800 N Washington Ave, Minneapolis, MN 55401

    1 Reply
    1. re: StPauliGirl

      If you go to Bar La Grassa, do walk. It's slippery out there. Alternately, I recommend Rinata, which provides exceptional value and also happens to feature 1/2 price bottles of wine tonight. It's a cozy little spot in Uptown, and I have always been happy with my meals from the Al Vento/Rinata sisters.

    2. 100% agree with Bar La Grassa....and it's a Monday so you might be able to get a seat last minute. It's not authentic Mexican, but Barrio is solid choice on that side. Cool atmosphere, and we've had consistently good food. Lots of small plates to share.

      1. Our go-to Italian has always been Osteria I Nonni but their chef left and I haven't been since, so can't say that it's as good as it was. But it's a nice, romantic place to have a good Italian meal.

        I'd say try Bar La Grassa, if you can get in, or Trattoria Tosca. I've not been to either but both have gotten good press. Butcher Block is also on our list to try, the chef there used to be at I Nonni.

        As far as "nice" Mexican (ie, not a taqueria) Masa would be my only recommendation, I think.

        1 Reply
        1. re: turtlebella

          I can highly recommend Trattoria Tosca. I don't think of it as traditional Italian though. They have pasta dishes, but much of the menu is not "traditional" Italian. Take a look at the menu to see if it fits the bill.

          Masa's also nice.

          1070 Nicollet Mall, Minneapolis, MN 55403

          3415 w 44th St, Minneapolis, MN

        2. jfood has enjoyed BLG twoice now and it is fantastic. Majoir hit last time was the pork and the soft polenta. The pasta are the major hit and they should not be missed as well. jfood really liked the rabbit and the pulled pork brusshetta was fantastic as well.

          Rinata and Al Vento are owned by the same people and both have very good pastas as well, BLG is better. Nonni was a year ago and jfood placed that in the A-class.

          Mexican are Masa and Barrio. Masa a little more upscale and Barrio more fun especially when the weather is much warmer and you can sit outside.

          Call BLG and see if there are seats at one of the bars.


          1. Or for the best Mexican of your life, in a totally unromantic place, go for Los Ocampo at Chicago and Lake.

            2 Replies
            1. re: churchka

              Agreed, if you're going for real Mexican don't go to Masa or Barrio. Wander down East Lake and hit up a place.

              1. re: salvage7

                We have hit up a few places on Lake before and enjoyed them. I do agree with Los Ocampo being very good.