I have a favorite street corner, Victoria and Grand Ave in St. Paul, MN. What this corner means to me is my first apartment right out of college, eating chocolate cake with Amy at Cafe Latte too many times, meeting my bridesmaids at Bread and Chocolate the day before my wedding for breakfast, having an amazing rehearsal dinner at Bonfire, getting massages and facials at Juut, having pumpkin spiced lattes with Jill just days before she had her baby, etc. The list could go on and on.

Below are photos from last Saturday. Good friends Kristin, Libby and I went wedding dress shopping for Kristin’s wedding that is coming up in about 10 months (I am her matron of honor, so excited!) We oohed and aahed over how gorgeous she was in each and every dress and then because shopping builds up an appetitie of course, we stopped off at Cafe Latte for lunch.

I love Cafe Latte. The soups, salads, location, the space, the nice people, the desserts…oh my god the desserts.


Chicken caesar pasta.


Spicy chicken salsa chili. I get this 9 out of 10 times I am at Cafe Latte.


Kristin’s chocolate cupcake. Yum.
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I rediscovered Palomino’s happy hour a couple weeks ago with a group of coworkers. I used to go to Palomino all the time when I first started working downtown Minneapolis. I remember drinking way too many cosmos and staying out too late on a weeknight. But hey, I was in my early 20’s and that’s the kind of stuff you can get away with at that age, right?

Fast forward a couple, er six years and I found myself back at Palomino, but this time I drank a beer and left at a reasonable hour.

The pretty drink below is a cranberry mojito (My coworker Amelia’s drink of choice) and it was only $4. We also got a pepperoni pizza (all pizzas are only $5 during happy hour) and a platter with pita bread, roasted garlic, blue cheese and tomato chutney. That was half off and I believe it was only $6-$7ish. We had great service, the food was delish and the bar area had a cool vibe.

Happy hour is all day Sunday-Thursday, Friday and Saturday 4pm-6pm and 10pm to close. Check out the menu here.


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I’ve been to Al Vento in South Minneapolis a few times now and each time the food is delicious, service is great and I am pleasantly surprised by the reasonable prices on the menu.

Emily and I met for dinner to celebrate her 30th birthday towards the end of September. We were lucky enough to get one of the last nice days of late summer and sat on Al Vento’s lovely patio.

What we ordered:

Sample of four bruschetta
Gnocchi with mushrooms
Pizza with salami toscano with tomatoes, artichoke and fresh mozzarella

I can’t remember what day of the week we were there but they also had half priced wine which was awesome. I’ve been to Al Vento each time with girlfriends but it would also be a great date night restaurant. The space is small, intimate and romatic.

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I love date night with my honey. Dates nights don’t always have to include dinner and drinks at a fancy smancy restaurant, I can hang out at home in my pj’s with a good bowl of homemade soup and a movie, but the nights out on the town are nice too! And that’s exactly what Erik and I did last Friday night at Cafe/Bar Lurcat.

If you read my blog then you know Bar Lurcat is one of my favorite restaurants. The lovely, crystal chandelieres and the to-die-for french fries with bernaise are among the many reasons it is a fave of mine.

Last week was restaurant week which meant we got an awesome deal of a 3 course meal for $30. We shared one of the 3 course meals and supplemented that with an appetizers and too many sides, we ate and ate and ate. Oh, and drank quite a bit. I got some really special news at work last week and we celebrated with champagne and martinis. I’m not sure it gets better than that.

On the menu was the following:

Oysters on the half shell
Ginger fried rice with shrimp, sausage and egg
Roasted cauliflower
French fries
Halibut with proscuitto butter and roasted cherry tomatoes
Homemade mini donuts
Lavendar martini
Cava (x 2, for me)
Dirty martini (x 2, for Erik)

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When I’m not blogging, cooking or throwing parties I can be found downtown Minneapolis working at an ad agency. Yup, that’s my day job. I consider myself pretty darn lucky to have a job over the past 5 and a half years that I actually like, a lot. Some days I’d even say I love it. It’s my ad agency gig that allows me to dine at fabulous places like 20.21 in the Walker Art Museum. I work in Media which means I get to hang out with great Media brands/content providers like the Wall Street Journal, Forbes and Fortune Magazine, BBC network, Architectural Digest, Better Homes and Gardens, social media like Facebook, Twitter, Linked In, and the list goes on and on.

These partners take me and my team at work out to dinner on a fairly regular basis. Did I mention above how much I like my job (oh yeah…I did). Fortune magazine took my team and I to 20.21 the other week and we ordered the tasting menu. Oh my god it was the most amazing array of courses, 10 courses to be exact. By the end of dinner I was experiencing physical pain from eating too much.

I won’t say much more because the photos speak for themselves. If you can swing the steep prices at 20.21, go immediately.

My bellini – champagne with passion-fruit puree. I could have drank 99 of these, they were so good, but I practiced some self control (with the drinks, not the food) and only had one.

Possibly my favorite part of the entire meal, the tuna sashimi cup. Everyone should experience this once. Chicken cashew salad. My boss, Kathy’s favorite.

Shrimp tempura.

Chicken in a lettuce cup.

The dinner entrees piled on my plate. I can’t even begin to remember everything here.

A cookie buffet for dessert. Those are homemade marshmallows on the left.

Some sort of chocolate dessert. I had a bite but at this point in the dinner I was beginning to hurt. The best part of the dessert is the chocolate spoon with the cherry, to replicate the sculpture in the garden in from of the museum.

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There is something about men and Manny’s that go together really well. My friend Libby and I decided to take our significant others on a double date to Manny’s steakhouse a couple weeks ago and the date was a smashing success. I don’t think the guys have stopped talking about the perfect rib eye or the amazing martinis since.

Now this is not the type of date we go more than a couple times a year because there is nothing affordable about Manny’s. We spent about $350 for the four of us which I realize is a ton of money, but it was worth it.

We ate a lot and everything was amazing.

On the table – Martinis. Porterhouse. Ribeyes. Oysters on the half shell. Mashed potatoes. Mushroom. Creamed spinach. Chopped salad.


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