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Why I Love Love LoLo in Stillwater

LoLo's incredible cocktails and fantastic food have this restaurant expanding to Hudson and the MSP Airport


Photo by Jason Derusha

It's Stillwater season. Sunny summer days. The beautiful St. Croix River. Antique shops, galleries, bars, restaurants, bike rides along the Gateway Trail. For years, people have been raving to me about LoLo American Kitchen, and I'm here to tell you that they're right.

Last year, I biked to the restaurant from St. Paul, and with $10 in my pocket I opted to spend my money on a cocktail instead of food. The Escargot, My Car Go was a $10 Rittenhouse-Rye-with-10-year-brandy boozy special. After my visit, they promised to name a drink after me, and indeed, Kylie's Arm Candy ($11) is awesome. (Kylie is my co-anchor on WCCO MidMorning, weekdays at 9 a.m., and owner Joe Ehlenz is a fan of our show because I am absolutely Kylie's sidekick.)

The drink is both frothy and bitter—with green tea, scotch, Amaro Montenegro, Madeira wine, black currant mead, and lemon ginger. I'm not exaggerating when I say the cocktails at LoLo are as good or better than anywhere in the Twin Cities, and our cocktail scene here is excellent.

So, how's the food? It's really good! We started with fried asparagus drizzled in miso sauce and topped with fried onions. Perfect.

They have a large number of tacos. We did the pork Cubano tacos, which tasted as you'd hope: pork, ham, swiss, mustard, pickle, and a little bit of lime to brighten things up. The Korean BBQ tacos were good, too: hanger steak with cabbage slaw and a lemongrass aioli. Both were served with a side of fresh chips or a greens salad. Prices ranged from $12 to $15.

I've heard a lot about the LoLo Burger, and it lived up to its reputation. A blend of short rib and brisket pattied up thicker than the trendiest burgers right now, the LoLo's meaty flavor was fabulous, topped with bacon, a sneaky spicy ghost pepperjack cheese, and a balsamic A1-style sauce. $13.

The service is nice, the drinks are great, and they named a drink after me and Kylie. It's going so well, LoLo will soon open in Hudson. (Ehlenz is a Stillwater native who lives across the river now.) And it's already open at the airport. It's worth the drive.

LoLo American Kitchen and Craft Bar
233 Main St. N., Stillwater

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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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