Question for BAR lovers
I'm ready to cocktail on this steamy Friday with a good friend. And I'm looking for a moderate sound-leveled, non-fraternity house sort of a bar with solid drink selections.
My favorites include Bradstreet, Speakeasy and Vincent for DT Minneapolis and Lucia's and Rinata for Uptown.
2451 Hennepin Ave, Minneapolis, MN 55405
re: Brad Ballinger
sea change actually has some decent craft cocktails, i was surprised at how easy their bourbon-strawberry velvet-hammer thing went down (forget its real name). . . the atmosphere can be a little weird because of being attached to the theater. lots of folks all in a rush at different times, others who seem like they're getting out of their homes for the first time in a year and can't quite deal, then throw a few random wandering arena sports goers in the mix, motioning for beers over the heads of some little old ladies out for the matinee. . . sitting at the drink bar is non-ideal. sitting at the raw bar is a little better. . . but still not as entertaining as it sounds. a lovely room though, no argument. many folks don't realize you can wander the whole guthrie building without holding a ticket, so if you do go to sea change be sure to walk around upstairs and enjoy the river views, endless bridge etc. btw the op cites "solid drink selections" as criteria--sea change has some okay-to-good cocktails, decent wine list, but their beer selection *sucks* --like in an embarrassing, 1982, guinness is cool-neato-it's-black-beer! way. i don't think you can even get a craft beer, let alone a local brew.
It's definitely more of a restaurant, but each time I've eaten at Solera, I've really enjoyed the cocktails I've had as did the friends I was with. They do have a bar area in the front of the restaurant though I can't speak for its noise level as I've never sat there. My only complaint would be that the cocktails may seem a bit weak, but still, they were very tasty.
900 Hennepin Avenue, Minneapolis, MN 55403
A couple of places to add to your list:
I love sitting at the bar at La Belle Vie - they make some of the best cocktails I have had in the Twin Cities.
In St. Paul, I really like the cocktails at Strip Club Meat and Fish.
La Belle Vie
510 Groveland Avenue, Minneapolis, MN 55405
The Strip Club
378 Maria Ave, Saint Paul, MN 55106