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Aug 12, 2014 07:47 PM

2014 MSP Visit Recap

It was my goal to add at least two new places to my usual MSP rotation. When I go to MSP, I usually focus on Middle Eastern and Mexican foods, since I can't get good Middle Eastern or Mexican foods where I live. Here's where I ended up (including grocery stores):

Eastside Food Coop (new)
Holy Land (gotta fill up on za'atar pita chips!)
Smack Shack (new)

Rustica (new)
Bogart's (new)
Patisserie 46 (new)
Sea Salt (new)

Minneapolis Farmer's Market (bought a lot of Thai basil, cilantro with roots, eggs, cheeses, etc etc and had a corn dog and draft root beer, then a pork tamale and breakfast burrity from the Mexican place where I also got 5 packs of tortillas. They were heavy!!)
Smoke in the Pit (new)
Pumphouse Creamery (new though I've had their ice cream before
Trader Joe's (I forgot to look for the kouign amann!!)
Costco (what happened to marcona almonds?)
On's (just hor mak for take out)
El Burrito Mercado (mostly for shopping, but got menudo and chicharon to go)


Mississippi Market (new)
Trung Nam

I'm sure I'm missing things. I think I did pretty well in terms of trying new things. Unfortunately, I missed my daily visits to Al's Breakfast and for the first time in the last dozen visits, I did not go to Al's at all. (well, I did but I didn't get to eat there--long story)

I think I wrote up most of my new places in their respective threads, but if I've missed one and you're interested in my thoughts, let me know!

I still have my google map which has all your suggestions. Hopefully I'll add a few more new places next time! (Meritage is high on my list for brunch!)

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  1. When you were at Holy Land, did you try the Rotisserie Chicken?

    1 Reply
    1. re: JimGrinsfelder

      No! I remember reading about it, but I forgot when I was there! Plus I had just had lunch at Filfillah. I'll put it on "must try" list for next time (probably next year).

    2. Thanks for this report. It's fun reading a outsider's viewpoint of the culinary spots in our city. You are a true chowhound.

      1. Caspian Bistro in Minneapolis is fabulous for Middle Eastern (Persian) food, surprised it's not mentioned in this thread, definitely check it out next time you are here. They also have a small deli/shop for good Middle Eastern pastries, snacks, etc. Highly recommended.

        4 Replies
        1. re: chocolatemint

          I've been there. It was several years ago but I wasn't as impressed as most seemed to be. I may give it another try but with so many places I know are great, it's hard to fit in a place I know may not be.

          And why surprised it's not mentioned?

          1. re: prasantrin

            Kind of hilarious and tragic that you forgot to look for the kouign amann at TJ's! Bummer about Al's Breakfast, too.

            Where do you visit from (if you don't mind my asking. It does help to give a sense of what your day-to-day culinary environment is like...)? I didn't realize until recently that you didn't actually live here!


            1. re: The Dairy Queen

              Winnipeg. That's why I focus on middle eastern and mexican when in MSP--can't get good versions where I am (either in restaurants or grocery stores!). But I don't bother with Chinese, Vietnamese (other than Trung Nam--we don't have Vietnamese bakeries here), or Indian there because I think I can probably find better versions of those here.

              I can't get good kouign here, either. The one bakery that occasionally makes it doesn't make it very well. Not enough caramelization!

              1. re: prasantrin

                Interesting! Well, thank you for your terrific report and I look forward to reading what you try on your next visit!


        2. I've been getting stuck into the TJ's kouign amanns. Really good, only problem is it's too easy to eat 2 at one sitting.