3311 East 25th Street Minneapolis MN 55406
This place wins my "tucked away so youthat would rarely even stumble on it restaurant". It does pay not to take the freeway during rush hour and take the road less traveled. Last time Google said 3 crashes on 35W I stumbled upon this gem in the Seward neighborhood. Everything in it is good for you, I'm convinced of it. They make their own bread, for god's sake. There's a yoga studio across the street. And if you get a bit tipsy from the organic, vegan wine there is a Nice Ride in front. Just pay $6 and you burn off that hangover peddling home....
3311 East 25th Street Minneapolis MN 55406
This is the other new place I checked out. Seward Co-op has figured out how to take more of my hard-earned cash. They opened a kid-friendly restaurant with wine. I may as well just make them my primary beneficiary. My only complaint was that the portions (at least the sweetbreads pictured above were on the small side). Also, the wine could have been a big larger of a pour.
Seward Co-op Creamery
2601 East Franklin Ave. Minneapolis, MN 55406
Ha! I tricked my offspring into eating raw food! They called it macaroni and cheese.
2409 Lyndale Ave. S. Minneapolis, MN 55405
I am one of those annoying people who take a pint of ice cream and pick out all the chunks of whatever the ice cream has in it. Oreo cookies, peanut butter cups, chocolate chunks, you name it. For those of you like me, Sweet Science's Coffee Toffee ice cream is for you. Now that the Seward Co-op carries Sweet Science Ice Cream, I was able to pick up four pints and bring them to my day job for a Thursday treat/taste test. And although the Toasted Coconut flavor won by a landslide, the second place winner was described as "a toffee bar with a bit of ice cream". The creator of Sweet Science doesn't deprive, that much is certain. You didn't have to pick out the pieces of toffee. Every spoonful had a generous amount. Not like your bargain ice creams where you have a moon-like landscape with quarter-size craters where one is digging for the add-in. Same with the Berry Crumble, the third place winner. But here's how good they all were. My favorite, The Big Easy, came in last. I don't know why. Flavored with coffee and chicory, it's perfect with morning coffee. Mademoiselle Miel recommended the fellow St. Paul girl to me, and these local ladies do not disappoint.
Check out their website for the complete list of vendors.
Sweet Science Ice Cream
Banh Mi. What is it about pork? I say I don't like it, but every once in a awhile I'm surprised. Banh Mi is tough too. It has to be reaaally good for me to overlook the juices of the jalapeno peppers once I've peeled them off. But Agra Culture delivered. I wasn't sure if they would to be perfectly honest. They try to be everything trendy - gluten-free, vegan, paelo, farm-to-table, sushi, you-name-it kinda place. Of course, location is everything, and the new location is right off of 50th & France in Edina, so they do have some competition there and the place still had a fair few people for the lunchtime crowd. I know it was a hit with us girls, so I think it might be around for a bit, at least until the next dietary craze that says potato chips are healthy. (I'm so looking forward to that fad).
Agra Culture 3717 West 50th Street Edina, MN
This is a cool little place in the Galleria in Edina. They even have a selection of organic wines, biodyamic wine, and vegan wine. And sometimes a wine that is all three. I had the vegan hash. Pretty decent, but I recommend adding protein unless you want to stuff your face full of sugar after lunch 'cause that's all there is and you are starving.
3545 Galleria, Edina, MN 55435
Saturday mornings pose a challenge for me. After watching New Scandinavian Cooking with my BFF Andreas Viestad, I have the option of watching either Wisconsin Foodie (assuming it's not an episode about making cheese) or Peg + Cat. I used to live in Milwaukee, so I'm happy to see a show that portrays the town as more than just a beer and Harley destination. But really, who can resist a show about a little girl and her cat teaching math (complete with graph paper as the background) with such ditties as "One two three, I've got chickens all over me".
Anyway, one of the trademark lines in Peg + Cat is Peg stating, "we've got a reeeaally BIIIIG problem!" Tonight at the Co-op I ran into a reeeaally BIIIIG problem. In the medicinal herbs section, I saw that vanilla beans are $139.00 per lb.
I know right? Then how much is the saffron? Do they have saffron? They would have to keep in locked section with the cigarettes. Oh wait, they don't sell cigarettes.
But I had to have them to make the malt milkshake I saw Andreas make. Besides looking scrumptious, I found all the ingredients I needed for once. Quark, which tastes like the most amazing cream cheese that you will ever eat, and barley malt syrup which I thought would only be available at a brewing supply store. I bought two vanilla beans and it set me back $7. but still in the end cheaper than going out to dinner, combined with the equally amazing Taste of India selections from the hot bar cost a total of $46. Waaay cheaper than any restaurant on you'll find on VDay.
Note: I added a healthy dose of maple syrup to make it palatable. Very different.
OMG if anyone has the recipe for Carolina Pork like the Co-op makes at the hot bar send it to me NOW.
A Minnesota native returns after 13 years away discovering a whole new food landscape.