Everywhere I go, people are smiling and doing the Minnesota thing of talking non-stop about the weather. Finally, there are new restaurants and events popping up all over town and so many tasty things to do. I’ve barely been home, and I have to tell you, these are the three very best bites of a very busy and delicious couple of weeks. Eat these and make your mouth happy.
Waldemann Brewery’s Nutella-Stuffed Pretzel: This historic brewery, in a deeply cool part of St. Paul’s West 7th neighborhood, has just started doing brunch, and this pretzel is the kind of genius dish that we didn’t even know we needed. An Aki’s Bakery pretzel is sliced open, spread with a chocolate/nutty spread, sprinkled with pearl sugar, and baked until it’s all kinds of warm and gooshy, crusty and chewy.
Grand Catch’s Fried Chicken Sandwich: This new seafood-boil restaurant on Grand Avenue is serving up buckets of insanely delicious shellfish, but the dish I fell straight head-over-heels for was the perfect fried-chicken sandwich. While I was interviewing chef Sameh Wadi, he generously shared a few dishes from the kitchen, and he mentioned his total obsession with crispy chicken between two slices of bread stuff (see the MFC at World Street Kitchen): toasty bun, absolutely perfect chicken with crusty coating, and an oozy, creamy, pickle-flecked sauce that is a delightful foil. It was so good, my husband and I went back for seconds later that same day. Could this be the best fried-chicken sandwich in the Twin Cities? It’s possible.
A Cupcake Social’s Mississippi Mud Cupcake: This darling little shop serves phenomenal cupcakes. My nearly-9-year-old and I stopped for an after-school treat this week, and he devoured this cupcake in three bites flat, then immediately asked if we could get some for his birthday next week. (I should probably start planning that soon.) I’ve loved these cupcakes since the shop was just a food truck, and I adore that the storefront has a little play-kitchen area for wee ones to enjoy play-baking their own desserts. It’s a gem for a midweek mommy get-together. The cupcake flavors rotate often, but each one is a little scoop of happiness served in a paper wrapper.