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Downtown Minneapolis Restaurant recommendations?

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We are going to be in downtown Minneapolis for two nights in a couple of weeks. We've been many times and would love to try some new restaurants this time around. We've been to Eatery 112 and have loved it (though it's been awhile since we were there).

Can someone recommend some great Breakfast/Lunch/Dinner options that are downtown? I'm not sure where we're staying but it'll probably be somewhere close to the Hilton/Hyatt/W Hotels.

We are willing to take a short cab for the right place. We love all kinds of food (Seriously... pretty much everything) but I think we'd probably prefer a restaurant that has great food but not a super fancy/stuffy atmosphere (kinda like Eatery 112, though doesn't have to be as small as this place).

Any suggestions? I'm looking for suggestions for all meals :)

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  1. Be prepared to get about 20 different recommendations.

    I'll stick to dinner recommendations and defer breakfast to the others...

    -Saffron is across the street from 112 and has consistently been one of the best restaurants in DT for the last few years.

    Washington Ave has a great stretch of restaurants worth trying (any of the following):

    -Bar La Grassa is an Italian restaurant from the same owner/head chef as 112. I was there a few weeks ago (for the 4th or 5th time) and really enjoyed it. Much bigger space, but I would still recommend a reservation.

    -Borough is a new spot right down from Bar La Grassa. I haven't been, but it's getting a lot of good press, as is their bar in the basement (Parlour).

    -For less fancy fair, Black Sheep is my favorite pizza spot in town.

    -Sanctuary is an under appreciated (IMO) gem with an outstanding tasting menu deal; 4 courses for $35 (M-Th only). This is on the other end of Washington. The previous restaurants listed are within a few blocks of each other.

    My experiences with lunch have been limited to Vincent and Masa, but I've generally enjoyed both. They happen to sit across the street from each other on Nicollet. Minneapolis also has a booming food truck scene and you'll probably be staying right in the middle of it (though I don't think they run on weekends, if that's when you're here).

    I hope this helps :)

    1. Big E is right. You are going to get a huge list of restaurants. All of Big E's are excellent and you won't be disappointed. Personally, I'd second Borough and Sanctuary based on my experiences. That $35 week night tasting menu at Sancturary is the best deal in town right now. A few others that he didn't mention:

      -Haute Dish: Creative takes on MN comfort foods like Tater Tot hot dish and Lobster Mac N'Cheese. They do a Vegetarian tasting dinner on Sunday nights that even this carnivore finds hard to resist

      -Bachelor Farmer: I find it relaxing and their unique take on Scandanavian cuisine has been a huge hit.

      -Oceanaire: Check out their website for their Happy Hour. You can get some pretty great apps and cocktails for cheap at certain times.

      -Solera: It's on the rebound and I still find ordering different tapas to share to be a very enjoyable experience. Their rooftop has good views of the warehouse district too.

      1. For breakfast, I recommend Firelake in the Radisson. Recently, I had the most wonderful in-house smoked, Duroc pork chop with a delicious biscuit and gravy. As one who never eats pork chops, I can't rave enough about the texture and flavor of this one. I fantasize about going back just to have that dish again. Plus there are a whole lot of other things I'd like to try. It'd probably be a short taxi ride.

        http://www.firelakerestaurant.com/pla...

        1. If you're in town on a weekday - explore the truck scene - many are on Marquette, and you'll find other's on 2nd between 5th and 6th.

          1. Thanks so much for all the recommendations :)

            Any Gastropub recommendations?

            My hubby just mentioned he wouldn't mind going someplace like that.

            2 Replies
            1. re: Staceyy

              The best ones are going to be a cab ride out of downtown to either Uptown or NorthEast Minneapolis. I don't know if it qualifies technically, but you could look at Butcher and The Boar which gets good reviews on this board. With meat and bourbon, it's hard to go wrong. BATB is in downtown Minneapolis so you might not have to cab that one.

              Outside of downtown, here are a few to consider that I've had good experiences with and are no more than a 10 to 15 minute cab ride:
              NE Social
              Icehouse
              Republic
              Lyndale Tap House

              1. re: Db Cooper

                I'll second Republic (although I've only been to the 7 Corners location), and also throw in The Gray House in LynLake. Had a very nice dinner there Tuesday.