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Apr 9, 2013 03:38 PM

Local restaurant review blogs

I'm looking for some local food blogs to add to my list. I like trying new restaurants but prefer to read RECENT reviews first so I don't waste any money. I love Chowhound (duh), Heavy Table, and You Care What We Think...any others I should check out?

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  1. I usually start here and then their list of blogs on the right side is about as comprehensive as it gets:

    1. This thread will likely be deleted. That said, I'm a big fan of Nom Nom Foodie. Also, of course there is Urbanspoon, who are a lot more lenient. The Facebook group - I can't remember the name - is not so useful.

      1. Stay far away from "We Got Served"

        3 Replies
        1. re: Hoppygoodness

          I have visited there a few times. Just curious, what's the problem with their site?

          1. re: justalex

            Because it's easier to be a critic than to provide something constructive? Sure, some blogs are better than others, but I agree with justalex, I've still found We Got Served useful to at least provide context on a few restaurants, or more so a few dishes at a few restaurants (by that I mean local food porn).

            After all, if I'm spending time on the interwebs reading about a couple's dining experiences, I'm not sure I'm in a place to be critical of the context (energy would be better spent on a new hobby - anyone know of a place to go bungee jumping around here? Any certified pilots that can make getting my license somewhat reasonably attainable?). Perhaps there are more refined palates and purveyors posting quasi-anonymous things on the internet than I give credit for (e.g., MSP Chowhound - though, for the most part they are few and far between on a site named below that sounds like something I scream when I stub my toe), other than I'll agree, We Got Served wouldn't be near the top of the list I'd recommend, but I'll at least give them credit for something that has become recognizable (while also continuing to motivate me not to become so bogged down with other things that an occasional meal out is worthy of spending a couple of hours documenting on the net - hypocrisy will be a common theme in this diatribe, if not already evident - so will run on sentences). Follow Db's link below for an all-inclusive list.

            The ones I waste cubicle time on are (excluding the usual suspects of Heavy Table, Yelp, etc.):

            - City Pages (although I admit this incredibly begrudgingly, it's pretty much an A&E blog that turned into a blog for a pissed off guy that can't afford his rent and cites Twitter as a source geared towards getting hits from self-righteous trolls, I still read the shell of what Hot Dish used to be - no offense towards Emily, she does a good job. And Joy deserves credit for keeping St. Paul and the aforementioned food trucks on the radar).
            - You Care What We Think - For no reason other than it's relatable and covers a lot of holes in the wall (and Heavy Table has plugged them a lot). Oh, and it has pictures, so the food porn thing. And the BBQ challenge. Q Fanatic - please open a location in St. Paul. And Minneapolis, but St. Paul first. And if you can take a page from Brasa and source like them, you should own TC BBQ.
            - TC Foodies (Daily Planet) - Mostly the same reasons as just mentioned, but with a broader brush (e.g., grocery stores, Iggers, etc.) and mostly sans the BBQ.
            - Rick Nelson - Yes, he mostly reviews new stuff, and it's generally complimentary, but this is MN, and passive aggressive is how people are critical of things here. If he gives a glowing endorsement it's a compliment (or a restaurant that cost a $&^% ton of money to open - though some of them are still good), if it's just positive, it's synonymous with par for the course. And to be honest, I haven't been to many of the new hip and freshly painted joints that I thought were bad - this burg is getting much better at the food biz (just wish they had the density to sustain more of it - though maybe we do and or will, those that are doing it well seem to stick around - uninformed folks like myself are gobbling it up). It feels like there's something new opening every day, which is where I enjoy the MN passive aggressive, because most of them are very approachable/casual whilst not skimping on the quality (by that I mean they'll have a bar I can cozy up to and enjoy a good meal without being dressed to the nines and responsible sourcing has become par for the course).

            Ones that I have given up on at some point (some longer ago than others): Pioneer Press (slightly less so since Kathy Jenkins is gone, though there's a lot less content these days and I still don't care which fast food joint is opening up soon), City Pages (hooray for hypocrisy, but anyone can make a best of list - other than food truck updates, concert schedules and the weekly restaurant reviews, it's pretty much drivel - damn the interwebs for killing free-lots-of-advertisement-but-still-always-within-arms-reach-if-I-didn't-have-a-smartphone/intweb-device-trendsetting-because-you-don't-hear-anything-else media) and somewhat MSP Mag (by that I mean Dara, but I'll get that from social media).

            More opinionated and even more so a rant than I had planned on, but I look forward to the disagreement. Oh, and having another beer while enjoying my day off. And no offense to the content providers above - you're still providing a lot more constructive content than yours truly. And no offense to the Chowhound community, you've seldom strayed me wrong on my ventures locally and in other cities - I think I've just been reading too much internet commentary lately that is baseless, incoherent, if not worse (the latter mostly on other sites) that I needed to have an interwebs passive aggressive rant.

            1. re: mull0263

              I agree with you about CP. Rupar has turned a once awesome weekly into The Minneapolis National Enquirer. As far as the restaurant review section, I feel than once Dara left, the review section has become a "Well, whatever....we'll just report on restaurants just to fill in the blanks." But the good news is that Rupar will give us 24-7 updates on Michelle Bachmann!