Where to go around MOA
Hi! I am visiting Minneapolis for work tomorrow through Saturday and will be staying at the Ramada Mall of America. I won't have a car, so just places I can walk to, but any suggestions on places to eat for dinner? I am from DC and love Asian cuisine in particular, but pretty much anything else as well. I don't eat meat - just seafood. Thank you in advance!!
Boy, you don't have many walking options in Bloomington but you can hop on the lightrail if you want to venture towards and into downtown. The MOA has many dining options from fastfood to nice sit-down restaurants. Some will chime in to say that everything is bad there, but it's only true if you walk around with your nose in the air. Most people find something there to eat that they enjoy. There is a small sushi restaurant there as well.
On the opposite side of MOA from your hotel is a Chevy's fresh/mex restaurant. You know what you'll get at a place like that. I think that there is also a TGI Fridays.
If you walked to MOA and got on the light rail, you could take that up to Capp's for some ribs. That's at the 50th Street station. A little further up the line at the 38th Street station is The Cardinal (bar with bar food) and Ted Cook's 19th Hole BBQ. Ted Cook's is a take-out only restaurant so you'll either have to take it back to your hotel or take the lightrail back to Minnehaha Park and sit at a picnic table.
Otherwise, take the train to the West Bank or downtown and you'll find tons of food options. The ride from MOA to downtown is approximately 30 minutes.
My office is in between your hotel and the Mall and it's tough to find a good meal there.
Crave is the best restaurant within walking distance. It's not going to blow anyone away, but is miles ahead of most other Mall of America options, especially if you don't eat meat. Honestly, in your situation, I would eat most of my meals there...the menu is extensive. Warning on the price though. If you're not able to rent a car, it sounds like your employer might be skimpy and might balk on $15-20 entrees. (If you are allowed to rent a car, I would encourage you to do so).
Wolfgang Puck Express and Napa Valley Grille are other passable options. I've had some good dishes from the Ruby Thai Kitchen (on the end of the 3rd floor south food court) especially the "Bang Bang Shrimp" and the eggplant dish.
The recommendation to get on the light rail and head towards downtown is a great one. Your options are limitless that way and the train stops very close to your hotel. That's probably how you would/should get over to the Mall of America anyway. GutGrease missed the part of your post re: not eating meat so ignore the Ted Cook's and Capp's recommendations. Instead, search on Sea Salt Eatery which is a glorified seafood shack in Minnehaha Park and a pleasant walk from the light rail.
Good luck and welcome.
Sea Salt Eatery
4801 Minnehaha Ave, Minneapolis, MN 55417
Napa Valley Grille
220 W Market, Minneapolis, MN 55425
Wolfgang Puck Express
100 N Garden, Minneapolis, MN 55425
Ruby Thai Kitchen
379 S Avenue, Minneapolis, MN 55425
If you're in town for 4 days you will DEFINITELY want to take advantage of the light rail and get away from the mall. The food at MOA is edible but you might go crazy if you have to eat multiple meals there. Having said that, I would agree that Crave is probably your best bet in the mall itself. Nothing on the menu really stands out, but it's diverse enough that you'll be able to find something, especially if you like sushi/sashimi.
And if you really can't get away from the MOA, you have to promise to come back another time when you can :)
But if you can, I'd also like to throw Sea Change out there, which is my favorite spot for seafood in town. Take the light rail to the Metrodome Station and walk a couple blocks east to the giant blue building that you will definitely not be able to miss. If you like seafood I promise you will leave happy.
806 Second Street S., Minneapolis, MN 55415