2014 Best of the Twin Cities: Food and Drink

Best Bakery: Patisserie 46

“The first minute or two that you walk in to Patisserie 46— besides it always being busy—you notice how calm and happy everyone is. It’s understated, warm, and inviting. Then you see the showcase, and the bread, and this feeling creeps in—one that says, ‘You are standing in one of the greatest bakeries in the country,’ and it’s so laid-back that you wonder (and hope) that everyone notices!  

When people ask me who I think the best chef in town is, I never hesitate. I tell them John Kraus, every time. To see and eat his work—how can that not put you in a happy place? I think my response surprises people maybe, but that’s only because he’s so chill and humble. But don’t let that fool you; that is an incredibly talented dude, with a very talented team, and we are lucky to have them.”
–Nick Rancone, Corner Table

Best Twin Cities Cocktails
Photo by Carlos Gonzalez. Pictured left to right: Marvel Bar, Eat Street Social, La Belle Vie

Best Cocktails: Tie between Marvel Bar, Eat Street Social, and La Belle Vie

“Nick Kosevich at Eat Street Social is a serious craftsman who has mastered his trade and is sharing his craft with others.” 
–Donald Gonzalez, Forepaugh’s 

Best Coffee Roaster: Tie between Peace Coffee, Bull Run Coffee, Dogwood Coffee

Best Late-Night Dining: 112 Eatery

Best Farmers Market: Tie between St. Paul and Kingfield

Quangs Minneapolis St. Paul
Photo by Todd Buchanan

Best Cheap Eats: Quang

“Quang has been a tradition of mine for more than a decade. It is hard to choose between a bánh mì or pho, so I usually do both!” 
–Mike Rakun, Marin

Chef Shack Twin Cities
Photo by Todd Buchanan

Best Food Truck: Chef Shack

“Quality ingredients, unique flavors, excellent service!” –
Kim Bartmann, Barbette/Bread & Pickle/Bryant-Lake Bowl/Kyatchi/PAT’s TAP/Red Stag/The Third Bird/Tiny Diner

Dangerous Man Brewery
Photo by TJ Turner

Best Craft Brewer: Dangerous Man

“I’m a former brewer and think Dangerous Man does so much so well.” 
–Mitch Omer, Hell’s Kitchen

“Dangerous Man because one day I found his mom sweeping the front sidewalk and she introduced herself as ‘Dangerous Mom.’” 
–Cynthia Gerdes, Hell’s Kitchen

“Dangerous Man is just a great place to hang out. And the plus side is they have some amazingly tasty beers. It gets pretty busy but manages to never feel over-packed, uncomfortable, or like a douche-y bar scene. Plus, if you’re not a big beer drinker, they also make house-made sodas (blueberry coconut was delicious!).” 
–Katy Gerdes, Angel Food Bakery

Best Dive Bar: Palmer’s

The dive bar to end all dive bars, where shots are poured double and the urinal is a trough, was memorialized by David Wondrich in Esquire’s 2014 Best Bars in America: “There are dives and dives in this world. There’s the type Guy Fieri calls out, old joints that might not feel like they need to get their hair done before seeing company but are nonetheless fundamentally clean and comfortable and unchallenging. Then there’s Palmer’s.” 

Best Breakfast: Birchwood Café 

“Birchwood Café all the way.” 
–Carrie Summer, Chef Shack

Pizzeria Lola

Photo by TJ Turner

Best Pizza: Pizzeria Lola

“I thought I was a pizza purist until I met the Korean BBQ pizza at Lola. My mouth is watering as I’m thinking of it.” 
–Paul Berglund, The Bachelor Farmer

Best Special Occasion: Brasserie Zentral

“Start with champagne and foie gras for a real celebration in this beautiful space with a fantastic menu and stunning wine list.” 
–Molly Broder, Broders’ Pasta Bar/ Broders’ Deli/Terzo

Anne Rucker, Matt's Bar
Photo by Carlos Gonzalez

Best Burger: Matt’s Bar

“Although this place is better known for the Jucy Lucy, the double cheeseburger at Matt’s Bar is hands down my favorite burger in town. It has all the deliciousness of the Jucy without having to wait to take your first bite. Fried onions are a must.” –Anne Rucker, Bogart’s Doughnut Co.

Foodies Pick their Personal Faves

Bakery Personal Fave: A Baker’s Wife 

Doug Flicker of Piccolo and Sandcastle picks his favorite Bakery

“You get a contact sugar buzz as soon as you walk in the door.” 
–Doug Flicker, Piccolo/Sandcastle

Bonus: Watch Doug Flicker juggle doughnuts


A video posted by Minnesota Monthly (@mnmomag) on


Dive Bar Personal Fave: The Dubliner

“As most attempts at Irish pubs in Minnesota either serve more Mexican and Italian food than traditional Irish and/or look like a Gabberts bomb went off, I guess this place is what I picture would best mirror an actual neighborhood pub in Ireland (being an O’Reilly but never having been to Ireland). It’s not trying to be anything it’s not. It’s also a place I can go by myself for a beer and watch some good music and feel comfortable. Bonus fact: My wife and I had one of our first dates here, and even she liked it! It must have some kind of magic.”
–Matty O’Reilly, 318 Cafe/Republic/Red River Kitchen

Breakfast Personal Fave: The Kenwood

Ann Kim Best Pancake Minneapolis

“Perfecting a simple dish isn’t always so simple. Don Saunders has elevated the pancake to another level. Light, fluffy, melt-in-your-mouth good. No need for butter. Simple perfection. Trust me, it’s the best pancake I’ve ever had.” 
–Ann Kim, Pizzeria Lola/Hello Pizza

Burger Personal Fave: Lions Tap

“For me, a good burger needs to be griddled, have a steamed bun, be heavily salted with an MSG component, American cheese, and fried onions—Lions Tap does this perfectly every time.”  
–Jim Christiansen, Heyday

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