Edit ModuleShow Tags

Two New Restaurants Worth Checking Out: Delicata and Mercy

Delicata in St. Paul and Mercy in Downtown Minneapolis are worth your time and money


The fair is done, and we're on the precipice of the end-of-the-year openings. Maybe you missed some of the newer restaurants that popped up over the summer (I know I missed some of them). Anyway, I checked out two new spots—and can recommend them both!

Mercy Bar & Dining RoomCan anything succeed in the Le Meridien Chambers hotel? Jean Georges couldn't succeed. D'Amico couldn't do it. Neither could the health-focused Marin. But the chef at Marin, Mike Rakun (rhymes with bacon), bought the space and is doing a great job. Buffalo fish ribs? The menu says "don't be scared," and for $10, this is a fantastic appetizer. They look like regular pork ribs, but they're pacu white fish, smothered in a zippy, tangy buffalo sauce. And they're awesome.

There's also a hot pastrami sandwich—"because Aric makes a good one"—for $14, and indeed, sous chef Aric Miech does make a good one. Fatty, with a nice peppery, spicy crust, this isn't thin pastrami; it's thick and chunky and slawed up. It's fabulous, and $16. Entrees are nice, too. The $32 scallops dish was served with grits, succotash, and bacon—a nice combination of creamy and fresh, crispy textures, plus perfectly seared scallops.

In summer, crowds get split between cavernous dining rooms and spacious outdoor patios, which can make it feel empty and make you feel like you've made a bad choice of restaurant. The best way to combat this is by going to Mercy. It's a fun, accessible, delicious menu for breakfast, lunch, and dinner.

Mercy, 901 Hennepin Ave., Minneapolis, MercyMpls.com 

Delicata Pizza & GelatoThere aren't a ton of restaurants in the Como neighborhood between the State Fairgrounds and Como Park. So, Delicata is in many ways my dream neighborhood restaurant. A great place for adults and an easy place to bring kids, too, it's the Matty O'Reilly special—the brains behind Republic, Red River Kitchen, and Bar Brigade. O'Reilly has a knack for taking an existing restaurant space, giving it a spit shine, and creating something new. Chef and culinary director J.D. Fratzke's fingerprints are all over this one, as are chef Noah Barton's, who runs the joint.

Delicata has a lovely wine list, where everything is priced by the glass. Get a bottle for the price of three glasses (around $27 usually—you should just get the bottle, drink two glasses, and take the rest home). I liked, not loved, the pizza. The crust is softer than a thin crust but firmer than a Punch Neapolitan. I will say that I did like the squash pizza with bleu cheese and prosciutto quite a bit.

The starters have some real winners: The gigande beans are giant white beans in olive oil. I'm still craving the grilled artichokes in a lively romesco sauce ($7). And the fontina fondue (cheese dip), with a hint of giardinera (could use more) and crostini, is a $6 bargain. 

If you live near Delicata, consider yourself lucky. If you live within a 20-minute drive, I wouldn't hesitate to add this spot to your rotation. 

Delicata Pizza, 1341 Pascal St., St. Paul, DelicataStP.com

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

Toast the Royal Wedding with British-Gin Cocktails

As Britain’s Prince Harry and U.S.-actress Megan Markle tie the knot, raise a glass to the happy couple—and those close to you—with wedding-themed tipples

Bottoms-Up Cinnamon Caramel Pinwheels Recipe

With this fast version of a sticky bun, baking at home can be no muss, no fuss—and delicious

Leslie Bock's Newest Bar Wants to Save the Future

"We're attempting to show humans as messy and complicated."

Rosé All Day: The Best Tastings (Some Free)

More than 100 different rosé wines available to try—many for free

Wine Clubs: The Perfect Mother's Day Gift

Sip Better figures out your taste for wine and goes deep

Gavin Kaysen Takes Midwest Gold

A quick note on our 2018 James Beard Best Chef: Midwest

Sue Z.'s Charitable Check-In: May

This month, Sue Z. recommends supporting local student chefs with a dinner at Saint Dinette

Greek Yogurt Marinated Chicken Kebabs Recipe

Get fired up for grilling season with tender, flavorful chicken kebabs by meat guru Bruce Aidells and a marinade that also works well with other proteins

My Name Is Jason and I Used to Hate Brunch

Brunch has undergone a renaissance in the Twin Cities. Food critic Jason DeRusha picks his top spots for brunch this year.
Edit ModuleShow Tags
Edit ModuleShow Tags