New Restaurant Review: Toma Mojo in Minnetonka

Fast casual near Ridgedale Mall from two fine-dining veterans

It’s all about the sauce at this inventive, ready-to-be-franchised fast casual restaurant inspired by the flavors of Spain and Portugal. Choose a chicken thigh and leg, pulled chicken breast, or pulled pork and pair it with one of seven homemade sauces.

I loved the simplicity of the herby green mojo sauce (Cilantro, parsley, bell pepper, garlic and spices are blended with lemon juice and olive oil), and crave the bright, just-spicy-enough citrus piri-piri.

These are serious sauces. That citrus piri-piri is made with bird’s-eye chiles, garlic, peppers, and spices and blended with lemon, lime, and orange juice. I mean, consider what’s happening with the spicy sofrito sauce: tomatoes, sun-dried tomatoes, onions, garlic, and peppers seasoned with black pepper, cayenne, and smoked paprika then blended with agave, lemon juice, vinegar, and oil. Whoa!

Do it as a sandwich or a platter, and the sides are rock solid, too: lightly fried Brussels sprouts (which hit with a splash of orange), earthy braised kale and chickpeas, and seasoned corn on the cob.

Two veterans of Tilia (Paul Backer, former executive chef, and Michael Knox, former manager) prove real food and bold flavors deserve a spot in the western burbs. 

977 Ridgedale Dr., Minnetonka, 952-405-9179,

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