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Quiet Restaurant in NE/University?

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  • AmyMo Apr 26, 2010 04:26 PM
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I'm looking for recommendations for a restaurant in the NE/University area that isn't incredibly loud and will take reservation. I'm open to all price points and types of food. The quiet factor and sitting down relatively quickly is most important. Thoughts?

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  1. AmyMo,

    Are you looking for Breakfast, Lunch or Dinner?

    You also might want to mention the purpose? For example, do you just want to finish the last 200 pages of "War and Peace" or are you meeting an old friend?

    1 Reply
    1. re: dalewest

      another detail in addition to time of day: weekend or weekday? (some area restaurants are mellow during the week but get bumping during the weekend, or at happy hour times)

    2. Alma may be your best bet.

      2 Replies
      1. re: lstereo

        Agreed. The Sample Room is also a quieter spot for dinner. Both are smaller restaurants.

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        Sample Room
        2124 Marshall St NE, Minneapolis, MN 55418

        1. re: girl_friday

          Are you kidding!?? The Sample Room? That is one of the louder places in the cities! I was at the tie breaker game between the Twins and Tigers last year at the dome and it was quieter than The Sample Room. Great food, but great deals of noise too.

      2. Thanks for helping me frame this better everyone. We're looking for dinner on a Friday night- after 8. There's 3 of us celebrating Family, really Mother's Day but not on the actual day- starting the evening at the Aveda Institute.

        3 Replies
        1. re: AmyMo

          AmyMo,

          As already suggested, Alma is probably the nicest spot in the neighborhood as far great chef-run restaurants go. Great good and service, and yet it should be quiet. For the neighborhood it is a bit expensive but still great value if you like fine dining.

          Other places to consider would be the RedStag Supper Club and the Loring Pasta Bar in Dinkytown. The food is very good at the Redstag and it has nice hip vibe and a cool north woods supper club decor. Loring Pasta Bar in dinkytown has decent food in one of the visually attractive decors you will find in town. The renovation job they did on the old Gray drug store is just amazing. It might have music but when I have been there it has very nice Jazz music that worked well with dinner conversation.

          Let us know what you decide and how your night goes.

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          Restaurant Alma
          528 University Ave SE, Minneapolis, MN 55414

          Loring Pasta Bar
          327 14th Ave SE, Minneapolis, MN 55414

          Red Stag Supper Club
          509 1st Ave NE, Minneapolis, MN 55413

          1. re: dalewest

            I have liked Loring Pasta Bar when we have gone there. That has usually been when they have live music. I've been there with someone who does not hear well and it has been just impossible. I myself had trouble hearing under those circumstances. So definitely not quiet then. I think that may have been on Sunday nights. Maybe the jazz Dale mentions is not live. You may want to check that out.

            I concur that Alma has excellent food and is quiet. A restful environment, I think. May depend a bit on seating though (eg whether you are near the kitchen.) When you make reservations, mention that you are looking for quiet seating and I'm sure they will know what works.

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            Loring Pasta Bar
            327 14th Ave SE, Minneapolis, MN 55414

            1. re: dalewest

              I like the atmosphere of Loring Pasta Bar, but the food has never been very great-after about five times of trying it.

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              Loring Pasta Bar
              327 14th Ave SE, Minneapolis, MN 55414

          2. Northeast Social

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            Northeast Social
            359 13th Ave NE, Minneapolis, MN 55418

            1. AmyMo,

              Restaurant Alma is an over-rated snoozer but it is nice and quiet. Your bill will become costly, quickly. Also, does your group enjoy food like pheasant or rabbit? They have other stuff, of course but...I love the breakfast at Red Stag but wouldn't go there for a Mother's Day-esque meal.

              Jack's and Nicollet Island Inn seem the most fitting; however, the Sample Room, Modern Cafe, Wilde Roast or Erte could be unique, as well as fitting.
              -The Sample Room should be quieter at 8 pm. I like the smaller scale food and flights of wine/scotch here. This is a pretty darn great place.
              -Erte isn't A+ food but it is good, the price is nice and I really enjoy the atmosphere of the connected Peacock Lounge. It's a large, open space that could get loud but I've never experienced this. Every time I go, it's nearly whisper quiet.
              -Wilde Roast is within walking distance of Aveda and has good food, people watching, GREAT coffee, desserts and atmosphere.
              -The Modern is not as 'pretty' inside; however does serve up pretty great food.

              If you're looking for ethnic, I just cannot give enough praise for Chindian Cafe. I've never dined in but it's a great spot in your desired area.

              -----
              Restaurant Alma
              528 University Ave SE, Minneapolis, MN 55414

              Nicollet Island Inn
              95 Merriam, Minneapolis, MN 55401

              Sample Room
              2124 Marshall St NE, Minneapolis, MN 55418

              Wilde Roast Cafe
              518 E Hennepin Ave, Minneapolis, MN 55414

              Erte
              323 13th Ave NE, Minneapolis, MN

              Chindian Cafe
              1500 E Hennepin Ave, Minneapolis, MN 55414

              2 Replies
              1. re: savvyguy

                i can see Savvyguy likes steakhouse/supperclub type places :) nic island inn and jax cafe (not Jack's) are very good recs, but they won't be cheaper than alma, and the food will trend toward old school. jax is getting a bit far afield and imho all the real cooking talent at nic is inn left a bit ago and is currently working at victory 44. . . but both places have great service and definitely take reservations.

                wilde roast is a nice spot, and is one of my favorite places to hang with a coffee and a dessert in the morning or at odd times of day. . . but it is *not* a quiet place to have dinner w your mom after 8 pm on a friday night. more like a noisy wine-bar/pick up scene (gay male) at that time. they don't do reservations, it's counter service, and getting a table would be a crapshoot. skip this rec for mother's day, but go another time.

                i like chindian too. it's a small pan-asian fusion place at a lower price point. i don't know if they do reservations or not. i don't think they have a lq license, or perhaps they have a limited wine/beer list? additionally, the kitchen is open to the small dining area and the ambiance may not be what you're looking for, but who knows? note that the google map for chindian is totally wrong-- the marker shows the restaurant on hennepin ave by loring park, but the restaurant is actually on *east* hennepin, in the se/como neighborhood, on the other side of the river and the other side of 35w-- again, possibly getting too far afield.

                1. re: savvyguy

                  whoops. red stag's google map marker is also wrong. it should be across the river.

                  adding jax cafe link

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                  Jax Cafe
                  1928 University Avenue, Minneapolis, MN 55418

                2. On the way to Jax Friday night, I notice Emily's Lebanese was only about 40% full. They are quiet, and I'm not sure if they take reservations, but they probably won't be necessary since lunch and takeout is their bread and butter. They close at 10p, so keep that in mind.

                  Erte will have live rock music, which will make things rather less quiet.

                  -----
                  Jax Cafe
                  1928 University Avenue, Minneapolis, MN 55418

                  Erte
                  323 13th Ave NE, Minneapolis, MN

                  1. never mind restaurant alma. since tonight, alex roberts just won james beard award best chef midwest (equivalent of a culinary oscar)--- you won't be able to get a reservation there. for quite some time.

                    2 Replies
                    1. re: soupkitten

                      Woo-hoo! About friggin' time.

                      1. re: KTFoley

                        i know. i yelled. really loud obnoxious sports-fan type noises, when i got the news. congrats chef roberts. :)