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Dec 2, 2012 07:28 PM

Date Night Recommendation

Looking to buy a gift certificate for Christmas for my in laws to something lovely in St. Paul or Minneapolis (they live in St. Paul). They're big fans of farm-to-table or local organic fare and definitely have high standards, though I suspect they don't eat out much (they are excellent cooks). I'd like a recommendation for something great that they'll love where a $200 gift certificate would be plenty for a date night for two.

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  1. Heartland (downtown St. Paul) certainly checks all the boxes on your list and has the virtue of being in St. Paul and accepting reservations (some of the other great restaurants in town that do the locally-sourced thing do not take reservations; don't know how your ILs feel about that).

    1 Reply
    1. re: steve_in_stpaul

      As an added bonus, if they have some extra money on their card, they can spend it at the market on their way out, yes?

    2. Corner Table in Minneapolis. They take reservations. WA Frost in St. Paul may work, they do similar things to Heartland, they just don't get (over) credited for it. Meritage would be another good option.

      1 Reply
      1. re: american_idle

        I haven't been to Corner Table for a while but have really enjoyed it whenever we've gone.

      2. Thanks guys. These look great!

        1. My wife was just saying that a valentines dinner we had at Alma several years ago is still her running top meal of all time. its not outwardly all that romantic, but i love that it is in between high standards (great food) and casual enough (no tableclothes, super unpretentous service).

          2 Replies
          1. re: tex.s.toast

            That's a great way of describing Alma. Very nice but not stuffy. And the service is so good that it makes you feel special. With, of course, outstanding food.

            1. re: karykat

              it could be that my lovely wife has been away on business for over a week, but even the thought of date night at alma is making me want to plan something special out here in nyc . . .

              if i could find such good food even at 1.5x the price in an atmosphere half as convivial id be thrilled.

          2. I know you said Mpls/St Paul, but if they're willing to drive a bit and only eat Mar-Nov, I'd suggest Harbor View Cafe in Pepin, WI. The drive from St. Paul to Pepin along the Mississippi is gorgeous and the food at Harbor View is top notch! Completely unassuming bordering on rustic, but seriously - I love this place! It's one of my favorite places for special occasions just because the food is so damn good. And $200 would be MORE than enough for a date night for 2 there.


            3 Replies
            1. re: Seige

              To the OP: Reservations not taken at Harbor View, and on a gorgeous day the wait can approach two hours.

              1. re: Brad Ballinger

                True. Which is why we always get there right away when they open or roughly when the first wave finishes. There are cute little shops to peruse while you wait.

              2. re: Seige

                Harborview is closed until mid-March. Maybe something they can enjoy sooner?