Edit ModuleShow Tags

Best New Bars of 2011


Published:

The issue of Minnesota Monthly on newsstands now celebrates the best new restaurants of the year—but what about all the new bars? It was a significant year for new and improved drinking in Minneapolis and St. Paul. Here’s my top three:

1. Marvel Bar (Beneath The Bachelor Farmer)
Culinary cocktails have been one of the most amusing and enjoyable trends of the last few years, and bartender Pip Hansen’s showcase Marvel Bar (impossible to find, and beneath the impossible to get into The Bachelor Farmer) takes the amusement and enjoyment up a notch. Try the Borealis, a variation on a sweet martini, made with rhubarb bitters and luster dust, or the variation on a Tom Collins brightened with pickle brine. Marvel Bar, 50 2nd Ave. N., Mpls., 612-206-3929

2. Amsterdam Bar and Hall
Belgian ales have long had pockets of cult enthusiasm throughout the Twin Cities (the Bryant Lake Bowl, for instance, springs to mind). But a bar with a whole Low Country focus is entirely new. Fries with garlic mayo and a tangy Rodenbach in a footed goblet? Now that’s a Dutch treat. Amsterdam Bar and Hall, 6 W. 6th St., St. Paul, 651-222-3990

3. Zen Box Izakaya
Izakayas are Japanese bar food specialists, and this new one on Washington, near the Guthrie, is better truly Japanese drinking than we’ve ever had in Minnesota before. Asahi draft on tap, Hitachino white ale on tap—those are rare beers. Add the area’s best shochu and sake list, and a truly craveable version of Japanese fried chicken (the chicken Kara-Age), and Minnesota has something brand new: Tokyo-class Japanese drinking. Zen Box Izakaya, 602 Washington Ave S., Mpls., 612-332-3936

Tell me what you think. And tell the truth: Was it a crime to leave off Meritage’s revamped oyster bar?

Edit ModuleShow Tags

About This Blog

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.

Have a food-related question? Email rhutton@mnmo.com

Edit ModuleShow Tags
Edit ModuleShow Tags

More »Taste Blog

Stout-Marinated Grilled Tri-Tip Recipe

Treat dad or any lucky guest to flavorful, juicy beef with a splash of beer in the mix with this recipe from meat expert Bruce Aidells

6 Foods to Pack for the Cabin

Don't head north to the cabin without these delicious necessities

The Driscoll’s Difference

Driscoll’s goes to great lengths to ensure every clamshell on the shelves is packed with only the most flavorful, deliciously ripe berries.

Meet the Joy Makers

Meet the Joy Makers

Back to School Prep! Bento boxes are Easy Breakfasts that can be Prepped Ahead

The strategy for conquering the crazy weekday mornings is the all important prep.

Top 6 Frozen Drinks in the Twin Cities

Find the best spiked slushees and frozen rosé here

Summer Events for Food Lovers

From quirky small town get-togethers to “The Great Minnesota Get-Together,” make sure not to miss these summer events celebrating delicious food.

Rosé All Summer

Start by raising a glass to National Rosé Day, but keep it up all summer with one of the most food-friendly wines—plus whip up icy frosé

Review: Red Sauce Rebellion in Excelsior

Excelsior's newest Water Street restaurant brings familiar Italian flavors with a well-executed red sauce
Edit ModuleShow Tags
Edit ModuleShow Tags