Last year brought so many new date night dining options into the Twin Cities landscape, including a revitalization of two lovely Minneapolis restaurants. When looking for somewhere to snuggle in over low light, delicious food, and maybe even a bottle of something special, these are four new dining rooms waiting for your reservation.
3804 Grand Ave., Minneapolis
Jamie Malone first began in the kitchen of this modest neighborhood restaurant under different ownership. When she took over the business, the room was given a gorgeous upgrade, with soft pink and lush green accents.
The food is old school French with a few modern and worldly touches. Can’t-miss dishes are the foie gras royale, a fluffy savory mousse topped with creme fraiche in the cutest egg cup this side of Normand, and the pike quenelle, a creamy near custard-y dish with a rich crayfish sauce.
528 University Ave. SE, Minneapolis
This classically romantic restaurant from James Beard Award-winning chef Alex Roberts somehow managed to get even better with a room refresh. The room is more modern, with blue and dark wood accents, and the food continues to shine with the Minnesota seasons.
With the addition of an outrageously gorgeous and comfortable boutique hotel above and a pastry-stocked cafe next door, there’s really no reason to ever leave.
4312 Upton Ave. S, Minneapolis
This restaurant address seems to hold nothing but greatness. Chef Daniel del Prado opened Martina late last year in the space that last held Upton 43 in Linden Hills and again, this kitchen is serving extraordinary (although very different) food. Del Prado pulls from his heritage, cooking the Argentinian food from his youth that takes great advantage of the wood-fired grill, and some Southern Italian dishes influenced by his mother. The pasta is all made fresh on-site and cooked to toothsome perfection. Seafood dishes are especially flavor dense and light on the tongue.
739 Lake St. E, Wayzata
Chef Gavin Kaysen is internationally renowned and respected. The food world reacted with surprise when he announced he would be returning to Minnesota to cook, but we are so glad that he did. His second restaurant, located in downtown Wayzata, is an ode to comfortable French dining, with classics like duck a l’orange and outrageously tasty roasted cauliflower existing in perfect harmony. In the summer, boaters are comfortable just rolling up as is, but the best dining here is on a date.
Linger into the late hours over exquisitely decadent dishes and end with as many desserts as possible. The wine list is also second to none and a special treat if you’d like a little splurge.