Here’s a restaurant that lives up to it’s hype. No wonder why it’s a tough reservation… just ask Bob Harper (http://www.startribune…). It’s a good thing we wanted to eat there on a Monday night. I called in the afternoon and was able to get a reservation for two with no problem for that night.
Parking wasn’t bad. We were able to find street parking two blocks away. Once inside, it only took a few minutes for them to seat us. The tables are close together so you better like dining two feet away from the party next to you. Before we sat down we saw the back bar facing the open kitchen and decided to eat there instead. In my opinion, it’s the best place to eat. I love seeing what’s going on in the kitchen. Plus there were only two other people at the bar so we had plenty of space to stretch out.
We only tried a few items since we weren’t that hungry but everything was top notch. There was a fava bean amuse bouche in a shallow dish with pickled veggies. It’s hard to get excited about fava beans, but these were tasty.
I wanted to try the egg and lobster bruschetta but they were out. So, we went with the spiced beef carpaccio bruschetta ($15) instead. Absolutely amazing! I was expecting paper thin slices of beef, but instead it was thick slices of seared beef with a deep, peppery flavor on top of the bruschetta with an arugula salad on top. It was some of the best beef I’ve had in a while and it was a fairly large portion to share.
The gnocchi with cauliflower and orange ($8) was ok. I wasn’t crazy about the citrus flavor. I definitely prefer the gnocchi at BLG’s sister restaurant, 112, instead.
The mushroom agnolotti with red wine butter sauce ($9) was another hit. The small order of the agnolotti comes six to a plate. I love fresh pasta! It’s hard to eat any other kind once you try it. It was a great dish that was slightly tangy and sweet from the sauce.
For dessert we had the salted butter and caramel crespelle ($7) — two delicate crepes sitting in a caramel sauce and topped with ice cream. It was a deliciously sweet and light way to end the meal.
The service throughout the meal was great. Because we were sitting at the bar the waiter was always there if we needed anything.
The atmosphere was hip and modern with exposed piping, dark wood, a brushed metal bar top, and old-fashioned looking plates that felt retro within the setting. It’s definitely a hot spot for hipsters and the late-night crowd. The music was cool also. It was nice listening to the Black Keys as we were chowing down. Just make sure you call ahead to get reservations.
800 Washington Ave N
Minneapolis, MN 55401