The Twin Cities are an incredible destination for foodies, offering an array of restaurants serving delicious eats that range from Midwestern and New American cuisine to Mediterranean, Swedish, Irish, Greek and Latin American dishes. Stop by one of these cafes to relax while sightseeing, or plan a romantic dinner followed by an evening at the theater at one of these top restaurants in Minneapolis. Find more ideas: 25 Best Things to Do in Minneapolis. CDC information for travelers. Hours/availability may have changed.
Meritage is a sophisticated French-style bistro in St. Paul, opened in 2007 by married duo Desta and Russell Klein. The polished restaurant is housed within an historic 1919 space in the city's downtown district, named for a play on words combining the concepts of merit and heritage. Upscale brasserie fare includes Portuguese-style roasted Atlantic hake, seared Montauk-style porgy, grilled Minnesota pork neck, and herb-crusted lamb loin with pistachio cream and fava beans. Diners can also enjoy classic steakhouse fare such as beef tenderloin Oscar and steak frites or try the restaurant's signature hamburger, which is topped with shallot confit and Emmanthaler cheese. A fine wine program focuses on Old World styles from around America and Europe.
410 St Peter St, St Paul, MN 55102, Phone: 651-222-5670
The welcoming atmosphere at Borough will draw you in and make you never want to leave. The restaurant opened in 2013 and has been serving contemporary American cuisine ever since.
Stop in and try the Pappardelle or the Pan-Seared Scallops paired with just the right wine from Borough’s impressive wine list. Relax in the Parlour, a lower level bar where you can munch on yummy pub fare and sip handcrafted signature cocktails. Executive Chef Drew Yancey has control of the kitchen, while one of city’s best bartenders, Jesse Held, mans the Parlour.
Pastry Chef Karyn Tomlinson whips up spectacular, must-try sweets and desserts. You’ll find Borough in the North Loop neighborhood of Minneapolis.
730 North Washington Ave., Minneapolis, 612-354-3135
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3.WSK (World Street Kitchen)
If you are in the mood for international street food with bold flavors, then you’ll definitely want to pay a visit to WSK (World Street Kitchen).
Try delicious plates such as the Bangkok Burrito or the MFC (Moroccan Fried Chicken) Biscuit Sandwich. Thirsty? They’ve got wine and beer available too! Co-owners and siblings Sameh and Saed Wadi opened the Uptown Minneapolis restaurant in 2012 after their food truck of the same name gained incredible popularity.
You can still find the WSK food truck on the streets of downtown Minneapolis during the warmer months.
2743 Lyndale Ave. S. Minneapolis, 612-424-8855
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4.Sea Change Restaurant & Bar
© Sea Change Restaurant
The Sea Change Restaurant & Bar focuses on sustainable seafood and only does business with fisheries that use environmentally responsible methods of gathering and farming seafood.
Come for dinner and order the exquisitely prepared Bouillabaisse. If you are not in the mood for fish, the kitchen can prepare a number of other dishes, including the ribeye with asparagus and mizuna. Restaurateur and James Beard Award winner Chef Tim McKee is the mastermind behind Sea Change Restaurant & Bar. Shea Design helped develop the restaurant’s green design, which matches their green menu.
Sea Change is located in the former Guthrie Theater Restaurant in downtown Minneapolis.
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5.Minneapolis Restaurants: Emmett's Public House
© Emmett's Public House
Emmett's Public House is a traditional Irish pub that serves savory Irish cuisine and offers a wide selection of whiskeys and both Irish and local beers.
It’s a friendly pub perfect for a happy hour meeting or for grabbing a bite to eat with friends. You won’t regret trying out this place, especially when you have delicious options like the Irish Mac and Cheese, the Claddagh Fries, or the 695 Brick-Pressed (Corned Beef) sandwich. If you enjoy traditional Irish pub ambiance, this is one of the best St. Paul restaurants to try.
You’ll find Emmett’s Public House on Grand Avenue right next to Dixie’s in downtown St. Paul.
695 Grand Ave., St. Paul, 651-225-8248
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6.Top restaurants in Minneapolis: Himalayan Restaurant
© Himalayan Restaurant
Himalayan Restaurant highlights the bold flavors and traditions of the Himalayan regions of Nepal, India, and Tibet, bringing an unforgettable dining experience to Minneapolis.
Take in the intimate atmosphere while you dine on incredible dishes such as the Biryani or the Bhata Aaloo (eggplant and potato in flavorful spices). Otherwise, you can try something from their Tandoori Oven like the Choyala (a meat dish cooked in Kathmandu-style herbs).
Naveen Shrestha and Pravin Shrestha opened the Himalayan Restaurant in 2008, and they just recently moved to their new location on East Lake Street in Minneapolis. They are open Tuesday through Sunday for a lunch buffet and dinner.
2910 East Lake Street, Minneapolis, 612-332-0880
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7.Top Restaurants in Minneapolis: Northbound Smokehouse Brew Pub
© Northbound Smokehouse Brew Pub
The award-winning Northbound Smokehouse Brew Pub in Minneapolis is known for tasty smoked American pub fare in addition to their renowned craft beers. You can’t go wrong when you order any one of their delicious smoked dishes.
The 18-Hour Porketta Sandwich, the Smoked Wings, and the Northbound Burger are just a few examples. Wash it all down with one of their award-winning brews, which include both year-round and seasonal beers. Their Snownami beer won the 2014 World Beer Cup.
General Manager Amy Johnson, Head Chef Jason Foster, and Head Brewer Jamie Robinson are responsible for keeping Northbound running smoothly. Open since 2012, you’ll find them in downtown Minneapolis on East 38th Street.
2716 East 38th Street, Minneapolis, 612-208-1450
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8.Top Restaurants in Minneapolis: Fika Cafe
© Fika Cafe
If you are in the mood for something different, you’ll want to check out Nordic-inspired Fika Café in Minneapolis. In Sweden, ‘fika’ is a daily break, traditionally involving coffee, treats, and socialization.
The café blends delicious regional ingredients with Nordic cuisine traditions to create phenomenal dishes like the Swedish Hot Dog, the Braised Chicken Smorgas, Meatballs or the Potato Sausage. Owner and Executive Chef John Krattenmaker opened the café in 2012 after many years of gaining experience in renowned restaurants throughout the Twin Cities area.
Enjoy views of the historic Turnblad Mansion while dining at Fika Café, located inside the Nelson Cultural Center at downtown Minneapolis’ American Swedish Institute.
2600 Park Avenue, Minneapolis, 612-871-4907
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9.Minneapolis Restaurants: Nighthawks
Nighthawks is one of the newest and hippest restaurants in Minneapolis. They have become incredibly well known for their post-modern rendition of America’s favorite diner foods.
Their menu offers five different kinds of hot dogs and other delicious options such as French Dip or Frito Pie. They’ve also got a number of beers, wines, and signature cocktails (like the Hopper) to quench your thirst. You might even want to stop in for weekend brunch. Chef and owner London Schoenefeld just opened Nighthawks in May 2015 and also owns HauteDish restaurant in Minneapolis.
Nighthawks Diner and Bar is located on Nicollet Avenue in the Kingfield neighborhood.
3753 Nicollet Avenue South, Minneapolis, 612-248-8111
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10.Best Restaurants in Minneapolis: Joan's in the Park
© Joan's in the Park
For an intimate night highlighted by extraordinary, seasonal North American fare, you’ll want to check out St. Paul’s charming restaurant Joan’s in the Park.
Start your meal off with a delicious appetizer like the Calamari and Mussels before diving into tasty à la carte-style dishes such as the Roasted Beef Short Ribs or the Herbed Spaetzle.
Don’t forget to save room for dessert. Joan’s in the Park also offers an extensive wine list. Long-time friends and co-owners Joan Schmitt and Chef Susan Dunlop opened the restaurant in 2011.
Enjoy organic, farm fresh dishes at Joan’s in the Park, located in the heart of St. Paul’s Highland Park neighborhood.
631 Snelling Avenue South, Saint Paul, 651-690-3297
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11.Tongue in Cheek
© Tongue in Cheek
Tongue in Cheek restaurant serves fresh, sustainable new American cuisine in a sophisticated environment.
Come in for the ten-course tasting menu or try a dish from their daily menu like the Corn Risotto. Poached Eggs & Grits and other yummy breakfast foods are available during weekend brunches.
When Chef Leonard Anderson opened the place in 2014, he founded it on a principle that he feels strongly about: the restaurant is committed to exclusively using animal products that are raised or caught in a humane and sustainable manner. You’ll find Tongue in Cheek in the Payne-Phalen neighborhood in St Paul’s East Side.
989 Payne Ave., St. Paul, 651-888-6148
© Colossal Cafe
Colossal Café is a charming neighborhood café serving New American cuisine for breakfast and lunch at two locations in St. Paul.
Their fabulous dishes are made from the very best seasonal ingredients. Stop in and try the Roasted Vegetables Omelet and Feta or the Spiced Turkey Breast Sandwich. Although Colossal Café was originally opened in Minneapolis (and that location is still open today) in 2005, the Tinucci family purchased it in 2010 and has maintained its timeless traditions.
Visit them at either of their St. Paul locations – one on the corner of Grand and Hamline and the other on Como Avenue in the former St. Anthony Park Clinic.
1340 Grand Ave., St. Paul, 651-414-0543; 2315 Como Ave., St. Paul, 651-797-4027
13.Black Sheep Pizza
© Black Sheep Pizza
Black Sheep Pizzais known for serving some of the best pizza in the Twin Cities area. All the dishes at this coal-burning pizza restaurant are made with the freshest ingredients. You can choose your own toppings or try a signature pizza like the Meatball, Ricotta, and Garlic Pizza or a thick crust Sicilian.
They also have fresh salads, appetizers, wine, and beer to complete your meal. Black Sheep Pizza is run by a husband-and-wife team, Jordan Smith and Colleen Doran. Black Sheep Pizza is Minnesota’s first coal-fired pizzeria, and has locations in both cities.
North Loop, 600 Washington Ave N., Minneapolis, 612-342-2625; 512 N. Robert St., St. Paul, 651-227-4337; Eat Street, 2550 Nicollet Ave S., Minneapolis, 612-886-1233
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© Hola Arepa
One of Minneapolis’ favorite food trucks also has a great restaurant that serves dinner, drinks, and weekend brunch. Hola Arepa serves delicious, made-from-scratch Latin food and craft cocktails. They are known for their handmade Venezuelan stuffed arepas, made fresh daily.
Choose from a variety of arepa flavors such as the Black Bean & Queso Fresco or the Slow-Roasted Pork. Whatever you decide, don’t forget to try the yucca fries. Dine at the restaurant located on Nicollet Avenue or follow Hola Arepa on Twitter to find their food truck location in downtown Minneapolis from April through October.
3501 Nicollet Avenue, Minneapolis, 612-345-5583
15.Top restaurants in Minneapolis: Cafe Racer
© Cafe Racer
Feasting on healthy and delicious Latin American cuisine at the Café Racer food truck and restaurant is always an experience to remember. The restaurant serves memorable dishes such as the Paella de Calle (a shrimp, chicken, and rice dish) or the Arepa Benedict, a specialty from their brunch menu.
When ordering from the food truck, you can completely customize your order with a variety of options. Both the restaurant and the food truck offer vegan, vegetarian, and gluten-free options.
Good service, excellent quality, and passion-infused dishes are the most important aspects at Café Racer. Their restaurant is located on East 25th Street in downtown Minneapolis.
2929 East 25th Street, Minneapolis, 612-208-1695
16.Spoon and Stable
© Spoon and Stable
The Spoon and Stable offers seasonal Midwest cuisine with European influences. Everything is made with fresh, regional ingredients. Your taste buds will thank you for ordering appetizing dishes like the Bison Tartare or Crispy Suckling Pork.
Their Sunday brunch menu includes tempting dishes such as the Spinach and Caramelized Onion Quiche. They also have tasty signature cocktails like the Salty Dog. Owner and Chef Gavin Kaysen, winner of the James Beard Award, really puts his heart into his cooking.
Spoon and Stable is situated in what was once a horse stable that dates back to 1906, right in the heart of the North Loop neighborhood in Minneapolis.
211 North First Street, Minneapolis, 612-224-9850
If you’re craving Southern comfort food while visiting the Twin Cities, you’ll definitely want to visit Brasa restaurant. Their cuisine is inspired by Southern, Caribbean, and Mexican flavors.
Treat your taste buds to something bold and fabulous, such as the Gumbo Fried Rice or the Spicy Masa Corn Cake Plate. They also offer gluten-free and vegetarian options. Everything that comes out of the Brasa kitchen is made from scratch. Dishes are usually organic and created with locally sourced ingredients.
They have two locations – one on Hennepin Avenue between Minneapolis’ St. Anthony East and Marcy-Holmes districts and the other on Grand Avenue in downtown St. Paul.
600 Hennepin Ave. E., Minneapolis, 612-379-3030; 777 Grand Ave. St. Paul, 651-224-1302
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20 Best Restaurants in Minneapolis & St. Paul
- Meritage, Photo: Meritage
- Borough, Photo: Borough
- WSK (World Street Kitchen), Photo: WSK
- Sea Change Restaurant & Bar, Photo: Sea Change Restaurant
- Minneapolis Restaurants: Emmett's Public House, Photo: Emmett's Public House
- Top restaurants in Minneapolis: Himalayan Restaurant, Photo: Himalayan Restaurant
- Top Restaurants in Minneapolis: Northbound Smokehouse Brew Pub, Photo: Northbound Smokehouse Brew Pub
- Top Restaurants in Minneapolis: Fika Cafe, Photo: Fika Cafe
- Minneapolis Restaurants: Nighthawks, Photo: Nighthawks
- Best Restaurants in Minneapolis: Joan's in the Park, Photo: Joan's in the Park
- Tongue in Cheek, Photo: Tongue in Cheek
- Colossal Cafe, Photo: Colossal Cafe
- Black Sheep Pizza, Photo: Black Sheep Pizza
- Hola Arepa, Photo: Hola Arepa
- Top restaurants in Minneapolis: Cafe Racer, Photo: Cafe Racer
- Spoon and Stable, Photo: Spoon and Stable
- Brasa, Photo: Brasa
- Cover Photo: Courtesy of Heartland Restaurant
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