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Drink of the Week: Ngon Bistro’s Oriflamme


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photo by joy summers

Strangely, the most common refrain I hear when I bring up dining at Ngon Bistro on University Avenue is, “Oh, I forget about them.” There are times when the restaurant cycles through my favor—when I’m caught up in eating out at the new and the now, it’s easy to overlook the old favorites. However, there’s a strong argument easily made for visiting this ideal date-night spot at least once a week. The sunlight streams through the curtains for a lovely lunch. The golden lighting enhances everyone’s natural good looks. And on warm days, the patio is a secret little sanctuary in the midst of a busy city. The food is expertly crafted, inspired, and utilizes local ingredients. If these arguments aren’t enough to satisfy you, there are also a full, gorgeous bar and handcrafted sodas to sip.

The sodas are ideal for those who don’t imbibe—especially an anise-spiked concoction that dances on the edge between being a cream soda and a savory liquid meal enhancer. (Ask for the selection of sodas, as it changes often.)

On the boozy beverage side, the Oriflamme is a seductive sipper that lives somewhere in the same profile neighborhood as the sazerac. It’s a tart, bitter balance of spirit and citrus spark. Mixed with Calvados Coquerel, Gamle Ode holiday aquavit, blood orange liqueur, and tawny port, it’s served in a frosty glass with an orange peel. Like this charming restaurant, it’s a cocktail ideal for any occasion.

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Minnesota Monthly's Taste Blog answers your restaurant and dining questions, dishes on latest discoveries, reflects on breaking news, and generally brings the plate to the page with a skilled crew of experts: Learn more about the Taste bloggers.

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