Tag Archive | Twin Cities

Things to do on a beautiful day in the Twin Cities


Today is going to be one of those days. It is a day that most of us have been waiting for, for months. It is supposed to hit 70 degrees today!

Stop what you are doing and take a second to think about how you want to spend today.

“The purpose of life is to live it, to taste experience to the utmost, to reach out eagerly and without fear for newer and richer experience.” -Eleanor Roosevelt

My suggestion is do something that you have never done. Explore some place you have never been to before. Try a food that you have never tried before.  Why? Because it might just put a smile on your face.

Here are a few things you could try:

– Pick up a picnic at a co-op, Maybe one that you haven’t been to before. I am a huge fan of Seward Co-op because they have many grab and go items.  Then head to a park that you haven’t been to before.

-Stop at a library and pick up a book that you have been meaning to read. Or ask the librarian for a suggestion. Take that book to a small coffee shop like Rustica.

-Cut out of work at lunch and take a day trip to Red Wing or Stillwater. Buy something for yourself.

-Head to the Walker Sculpture Garden and snap a few pictures. Then go to Gather and try out some of the items from chef Tyler Shipton from Borough.

-Go for a walk around Loring Park and stop by Brits Pub for a hard cider.

-Enjoy a meal outdoors on a patio or rooftop. Spill the Wine and Moto-i will have their outdoor sections open today! When you are there try something that you never have tried before such as a wine flight or a new kind of sake.

-Jump on the light rail and go exploring. Seriously, it can be a ton of fun.

because sometimes you just need to switch things up and disrupt your day to day routine.


What adventure are you going to go on today?


So, you waited until the last minute to plan Valentine’s Day in the Twin Cities?

Valentine's Day, Twin Cities, Last Minute

Hey, it happens. I’ve been there.

Don’t fret because I have some ideas of how to wow your Valentine on Valentine’s Day. Which you must have just found out it was today.

My best suggestion is to quickly at least handwrite a card and go to the grocery and pick up dinner to make.

But, here are some other ideas too.

If you like to do things in epic proportions: 

Tell your partner to wear comfy clothes. Then head out to the Mall of America! Spend the night riding the rides and eating food at one of the local establishments. You could even go shopping for a gift while you are there. You will get 10 bonus points for creativity. Just remember to keep up the enthusiasm and pretend that you’ve had this plan for months.

If you will be watching House of Cards tonight on Netflix but you still want to impress your Valentine:

Go to a place that can help you with the meal like Surdyks. They will be able to point you in the correct direction.  You can make a cheese plate and a meal that is fancy with some help from your friends. Then, stop by Patina and pick up a gift.

If your Valentine thinks you are going out to dinner and that you already made reservations but, you didn’t:

Tell them that you heard of this really cool restaurant. But, they don’t take reservations. There are several places that don’t take reservations like The Sample Room, Brasa, or World Street Kitchen.

Play it cool like you had this plan all along. And buy a gift that can be used while you are waiting for a table or food.

If you want to have fun on Valentine’s Day and your Valentine is cool with having a relaxed night:

Go to a dive bar. Or a bar. They tend to not be very busy on Valentine’s Day because people go out to fancy restaurants.

You better have an awesome gift. Just sayin’….

If your single:

Order Toppers taco pizza and watch House of Cards. (Hey, it sounds like a great night to me.)


Go to this event and support Secondhand Hounds with other singles. More information HERE.

Tonight, I will be eating a homemade dinner and binge watching House of Cards because nothing says love like that does.

Because it doesn’t matter what you do, it just matters that you make the person feel special.


Add in your ideas. What are you doing for Valentine’s Day?

What food inspires you?

What food inspires you

Today is dreary, yesterday I noticed all of the restaurant patios have been taken down, and we are now back to the time of leaving for work when it is dark and coming home when it is dark.

When this transition happens each year I feel my body want to go into hibernation. I force myself to make plans to accomplish something when I get off of work and ultimately they never happen. Currently, I have been organizing my recipes for three weeks.

I know I am not the only one who feels this way.

One thing I actually accomplish when I feel this way is making really good comfort foods. This includes thick soups, chili, and any type of squash I can get my hands on. Slow cooking foods and the smell that comes from them is rewarding. During the fall this is the type of food that inspires me.

I have been to the Cheeky Monkey in Saint Paul twice recently because their soup is exactly what fall tastes like. Don’t worry I will include them in a future post. Those soups have exactly what I need to warm my bones.

What other restaurants around the Twin Cities are making really good comfort foods? What foods inspire you when we lose our daylight time?

because sometimes I need to try something new.


Reuters: 48 hours in the Twin Cities: What you really should do

Travel, Twin Cities, 48 hours

Reuters shared this article on their website about 48 hours in the Twin Cities and what you should do if you are traveling here. I honestly would suggest very little on their list and I am guessing whoever wrote this did a google search and did not actually come to Minnesota since Potbelly is not open for breakfast during weekends. It is too bad since we have some neat things going on in the Twin Cities.

Dear Mark,

We are all wondering who are these local Reuters correspondents who sent you to these places? You need some new friends in Minnesota.

I know you are catching a lot of flack from us local experts but we hold the Twin Cities very dear to our hearts and we are sick and tired of people telling us that this is not a place they want to visit. I know you tried to make it look great, but telling people about the tornado shelters and the ‘tram’ does not put the city in the greatest light. Can we really blame you for some bad advice from your correspondents? No.

I am sorry to tell you that you missed out on the best that the Twin Cities has to offer.

This 48 hour itinerary is what I would love to do if I were coming here to visit.

Here is what you missed:


5 p.m.- Head right on over to the W hotel in Minneapolis. It is located in the historic Foshay Tower. See if you can find the speak-easy bar.

7 p.m.-Go to the Smack Shack in the warehouse district and spend the night checking out the Marvel Bar and other hot spots in the area. It is the newest up and coming food scene in Minneapolis.

9 p.m.-If you are into music we have First Avenue, the Dakota Jazz Club, and many other places you can hear a good set.



9 a.m.-  Hells Kitchen is right by the W Hotel and has some awesome lemon ricotta pancakes.

10:30 a.m.- If you want to get some exercise Core Power Yoga is doing morning classes at Lake Calhoun during the summer for free.

11:30 a.m.-Take a walk around Lake Calhoun or Minnehaha Falls. If you are really adventurous take a bike ride with Nice Ride bikes that are located all over the city.

1:00pm-Eat lunch at one of the outdoor restaurants such as the newly opened Sandcastle or Sea Salt Eatery.

2:00 p.m. -If you really want to go to the MOA, I guess you could go there. It is a really big mall. I think the Mall of America is a whole day event and if you only have 48 hours here with good weather this would not be my first choice.

Instead you should go to the Como Zoo and Conservatory to see the new bonsai garden and gorilla forest. If you are looking to go shopping head to Grand Avenue in Saint Paul.

4:00 p.m.- Fulton Tap Room and eating from a food truck. Located near Target Field this is a must go to place before the big game.

6 p.m.- Walk over to the game. Find the AZ Canteen booth and get a burger.  Then pick up a Surly beer.

10 p.m.- After the game and when you have digested a little bit walk over to Butcher and The Boar. The beer garden has a wonderful feel and the food is excellent. This place is all about the atmosphere and the meat.


10 a.m.- Breakfast at Lucia’s in Uptown and get whatever is on special. Afterwards walk to one of the local coffee houses and explore Uptown.

1 p.m.- Either head to Secret Beach to enjoy some relaxing time with a good book or walk around historic Saint Paul and snap some photos.

3 p.m.- Grab and go at Cosetta’s in Saint Paul.

I would love if you would come to Minnesota and try some of the items on my list and tell me if you had a good time. I can guarantee that you will. (Reuters you should send him back with the company credit card and this awesome list)

because if you have 48 hours in Minnesota you should do what the locals do


What advice do you give someone who is coming to the Twin Cities and only has 48 hours to explore?

Cheeky Monkey Deli

I want to move into the Selby-Dale neighborhood because of this restaurant. Cheeky Monkey does breakfast, lunch, and dinner right with fresh, local, seasonal fare. I cannot tell you how much I have enjoyed the food here.

This visit was the first time I had been on the patio out back. It is beautiful. I would suggest sitting there on a warm fall day.

I went here for brunch where they had available both the brunch menu and the lunch menu. I opted for the french toast which is pictured above and as you can tell it was delicious.  The berry compote was to die for.

We also had a mushroom and brie omelette with the hash-browns after seeing someone else eating it. I would also suggest the coffee here, it is very good and made correctly. The servers always keep your cup filled.

I love going here for a calm meal. It is a relaxed atmosphere and the food is great. The prices are right as well.

because a good brunch can make a weekend great.

Cheeky Monkey on Urbanspoon

Urban Assault Ride


Check out this post on Cycle Twin Cities about the Urban Assault Ride on June 10th. You and a teammate will compete bike to check points where you will have to complete a challenge.  Sort of like the Amazing Race on bikes.  Although, I don’t think they will have you go skydiving or climb a building. There are prizes and the cost is only $100 until this Saturday then goes up to $120.

I am not sure if I have the skillz to participate, but if you do, give it a try. Plusm there is beer at the end of the race. You can’t really go wrong there.


(Thanks for the correction! The cost is now updated so that it is correct:))

Fish Fries Minnesota

It is Catholics favorite time of the year Lent! The Catholics give up eating meat on Fridays but they get to have something delicious instead: FISH!

You don’t have to be a Catholic to enjoy the fish fries around the state during the Lenten season. Welcome one and all to the fish fries!

A full list can be found at The Catholic Spirit.

Here is a few of my picks: 

St. Albert the Great Catholic Church
2836 33rd Avenue South



They feed about 700 people every Friday night.  It is the Twin Cities most popular fish fry. They have bingo and many other activities but be prepared to stand in a line.


Any of the VFW’s are a great spot to go because you can get beer as well. Richfield VFW is always highly rated. Beer always enhances the flavors of the fish or at least that is my perception.  Knights of Columbus Hall in  Bloomington is another hall open 5 to 9 PM at 1114 American Blvd. Call (952) 888-1492 for reservations.

If you are looking for something other than fish, head over to Our Lady of Guadalupe in St. Paul from 11:00-6:30PM. You can also get them to-go by the dozen. On 401 Concord St.

My best suggestion is to try out a parish in your community. There is nothing better than meeting your neighbors over a great meal.

I would love to hear about your Fish Fries. Leave me a comment or find me on twitter @mplsgossipgirl.

Because food brings people together


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