Restaurants & Bars 1

MSP: Spoonriver

JimGrinsfelder | Oct 26, 200909:08 PM

We had a pre-show snack and glass of wine. The mediocre, verging on good food was much better than the show.

We had a salad of green beans, tomatoes and pine nuts and grilled radicchio, an "Udon" chicken salad, and a mushroom & something else terrine.

The salads were, on the whole, pretty darn good. Very well thought out proportions and dressed lightly. The flavors of the vegetables were complemented by the dressing, not drowned out.

The two soups we tried were decent. The service was good. The wine was ok.

Here's the cons:

The udon/chicken salad didn't have noodles I recognized as udon. More like a flat egg noddle. Like double-wide fettucine. This is not bad, but I was expecting the almost square noodles without egg. The chicken part was poached breast slices. I have rarely had chicken breast that I like. It's usually on the dry side. This was no exception*.

I didn't care much for the mushroom terrine. It was kinda like a big grey block on the plate without much flavor. Cafe Brenda was sometimes too subtle for my palate.

If you're going to have an open or semi-open kitchen, scrub it thoroughly. From our vantage point at the bar, the kitchen equipment looked grease coated. Lots of bodies in the kitchen, many of them standing about in what appeared to be a semi-clueless daze. They should have been set to scrubbing.

Compared to Sea Change, I'd go to Spoon River. Any opinions on the Kindee Thai across the street?

* The one exception I remember: Marcella Hazan's lemon picatta pounded thin was pretty good.

750 S 2nd St, Minneapolis, MN 55401

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