I've noticed (I think—I realize I’m still relatively new) a tendency on this Midwest board (more so than the San Francisco board, for instance,) to categorize restaurants as either "chow-worthy" or "not chow-worthy."
However, in San Francisco, while there were one or two exceptionally rare restaurants that many considered the entire menu to be chow-worthy, it was more common for people to recommend just one dish at a particular establishment--restaurant X for the house-made tofu, and anything made with it; taco truck Y for the tacos al pastor, but not the chicken or any other tacos; little shop Z for the red bean or green tea ice cream, but no other flavors.
I think it's rare when every item on a menu is chow-worthy, and I think we might be doing chow-selves a disservice when we disregard a restaurant just because the whole menu doesn't shine. Are there dishes you recommend at Twin Cities establishments that, in your opinion, rise above all other menu items or are a surprise to you? Maybe it's even seasonal, like a Friday fish fry during Lent? After all, there's usually some reason a restauranteur goes into business, Like the Mom or Dad that everyone to whom everyone says, "Your popovers/panang curry/sauces are so good you should open a restaurant."
For instance, Alice's (I think it was, forgive me if I'm mis-attributing) fries at the Black Sea on Snelling in St. Paul, come to mind although, I wouldn't say that she considered the rest of the Black Sea un-chow-worthy, just that she thought the fries were exceptional.
Anything else you'd cross town for?
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