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do we have a best of list?

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best of the best in the twin cities?
and is there a best of the best on a budget(sub $20/person)?

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  1. Not on Chowhound as it would end up being a list of every restaurant in town at some point since there is no editor.

    Yelp does this as does Citypages and MSP Mag (and probably Minnesota Monthly).

    1. There are probably a couple places that everyone would agree on (La Belle Vie comes to mind) but after that, I doubt you'd get a consensus. Everybody's got their personal favorites. What's a board without opinionated locals, right?

      But for places to eat well on a strict budget (er, do you mean before or after beverage?), I'll make some suggestions and I would guess others could too:
      Victory 44
      I haven't been to Travail, but hear the raves and imagine it would fit
      Rinata (especially at late night happy hour)
      Not fancy, but Black Sheep Pizza is very good
      Sea Salt when in season
      Tanpopo

      Actually there are quite a few places where you could keep down the costs but have a good meal by sitting in the lounge/bar, taking advantage of whatever specials are available, and/or especially sharing some smaller plates. I'm thinking of the 112 and Bar LaGrassa in particular.

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      Victory 44
      2203 44th Ave N, Minneapolis, MN

      Rinata
      2451 Hennepin Ave, Minneapolis, MN 55405

      1. Bar La Grassa's menu makes it very easy to have excellent food at a variety of budgets.

        If you're willing to go to $30 per person, Travail's 10 course tasting menu for 2 people is probably one of the best deals in the area.

        Midtown global market has some great food (e.g. La Sirena Gorda) for pretty cheap.

        Turtle Bread Company on Chicago in MPLS has a fantastic lunch offering, for pretty cheap. Nothing fancy, but their soups are excellent and reasonably priced. Their quiches are also very good.

        Lastly, while I hate to spoil the secret, Pardon My French on Cliff Road in Eagan is great. Lunches are in the $7 - $9 range, and are very good - I've had most of their sandwiches, some of their soups, and a couple of their more substantial lunches, and it's all excellent quality, very well prepared. I'm looking forward to going there for dinner soon, their evening menu looks quite interesting. Oh - their deserts, pastries, and breads are fantastic, and are very reasonably priced compared to similar quality goods in other MPLS area bakeries.

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        La Sirena Gorda
        920 E Lake St, Minneapolis, MN 55407

        Pardon My French
        1565 Cliff Rd Ste 1A, Saint Paul, MN 55122

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

        3 Replies
        1. re: foreverhungry

          So glad to hear this about Pardon My French. I work in Eagan and have been meaning to try it for a lunch off campus one day. Just haven't made it there yet.

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          Pardon My French
          1565 Cliff Rd Ste 1A, Saint Paul, MN 55122

          1. re: Seige

            It's well worth a visit. Their sandwiches are very good, and both sides are great. The side salad is a good portion with a very good vinaigrette (with a touch of honey?) and their other side, the crudite, is julliened radish, carrot, and beet. Their soups are great too. I've really been wanting to try dinner there - the menu looks great, and if the quality is as good as their lunch, it should be a great value.

          2. re: foreverhungry

            I second Bar La Grassa you can easily have an app a main and split a bottle of wine for $30 with groups of 3 or more.

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

          3. As far as best-of-the-best on a budget, there's such a wealth of good cheap food here! For guidance, see Jeremy Iggers' blog on TCfoodies - he does a great job of finding and reviewing excellent cheap food.
            http://www.tcfoodies.com/profiles/blo...

            My votes for b-o-t-b-o-a-b: Obento-Ya, Chimborazo, Saigon, Kafe 421, La Sirena Gorda, Keefer Court, Brasa, Ghandi Mahal, Punch, Caspian Bistro, Birchwood (tho dinners can over $20), Holy Land, Seward Cafe, ... there would be more, but I don't get out much!

            Anne

            1 Reply
            1. re: AnneInMpls

              "...but I don't get out much" All in perspective, I guess :)

            2. It's an old thread, so not totally current, but you might get some idea ideas in this old "cheap fancypants challenge" thread.

              http://chowhound.chow.com/topics/345700

              ~TDQ

              5 Replies
              1. re: The Dairy Queen

                A classic and valuable thread! Some places have closed (like Bon Xai, Jay's, and Mairin's Table), but the other reqs are still great.

                1. re: AnneInMpls

                  how bout a best of in each style/category/ethnic foods?

                  1. re: wannabfat

                    Well, in the past year we've covered

                    Best pizza: http://chowhound.chow.com/topics/749383

                    Best Vietnamese: http://chowhound.chow.com/topics/581796

                    Best donuts http://chowhound.chow.com/topics/693867

                    Best sandwich http://chowhound.chow.com/topics/743492 and again http://chowhound.chow.com/topics/701034

                    Best gyros http://chowhound.chow.com/topics/465910

                    Best wings http://chowhound.chow.com/topics/715727

                    Best BBQ brisket http://chowhound.chow.com/topics/707990

                    Best Indian http://chowhound.chow.com/topics/716644

                    Best nachos http://chowhound.chow.com/topics/519406

                    Best French: http://chowhound.chow.com/topics/7284...

                    Best Italian and Spanish: http://chowhound.chow.com/topics/744551

                    Favorite meal under $10: http://chowhound.chow.com/topics/6955...

                    Best of Minneapolis http://chowhound.chow.com/topics/7037...

                    Best of St. Paul http://chowhound.chow.com/topics/705767

                    Fill in the gaps?

                    ~TDQ

                    1. re: The Dairy Queen

                      Best Fried Chicken http://chowhound.chow.com/topics/692738

                      Philly Cheese http://chowhound.chow.com/topics/442373

                      Ribs http://chowhound.chow.com/topics/718923

                      Ruben Sandwich http://chowhound.chow.com/topics/730950

                      Deli Meats http://chowhound.chow.com/topics/732999

                      Fish Fry http://chowhound.chow.com/topics/594845

                      Mexican http://chowhound.chow.com/topics/683689

                      Vietnamese http://chowhound.chow.com/topics/581796

                      Samosas http://chowhound.chow.com/topics/704909

                      Soup http://chowhound.chow.com/topics/701592

                      Beef Jerky http://chowhound.chow.com/topics/417972

                      1. re: alpa chino

                        You people rock. I'm coming to Minneapolis in a couple weeks, and these links are like solid gold.