Suburban Bites: The 7 best places to eat in Bloomington

Categories: Restaurants
Parma8200JanaFriebrand.jpg
Jana Friebrand
The lively dining room at Parma 8200

Parma 8200

D'Amico-owned Parma 8200 is easily the best Italian restaurant in Bloomington. Treat your group to a lounge experience of cocktails and mix-and-match plates of high quality salumi and imported cheeses, pleasantly sour green grape gazpacho decorated with buttery Marcona almonds, and tuna carpaccio with shaved lardo. More ravenous diners and traditionalists will be very happy with Italian regional staples like arancini, penne alla vodka, and linguine with clams and white wine. The spacious dining room accommodates larger parties well and on Sundays they offer a killer date night special: three courses plus a bottle of wine for $50 per couple. 

98 Pounds 

98 Pounds is the only Asian buffet location in the Twin Cities that gets the green light from our sushi snob friends. Right away it is clear that 98 Pounds is not treating the sushi offering as an embarrassing afterthought dropped right next to the heat-lamped egg foo yung. The rolls are frequently restocked by sushi chefs and situated prominently in the very center of the restaurant. Try to get a seat near there so you can see if the sushi chefs are making something delicious before they drop it in the serving area; the good rolls disappear moments after creation. The standard Chinese buffet in the back won't change any minds about Chinese buffets, but it doesn't disappoint either. Unless you are a crab leg enthusiast, skip dinner on the weekends -- the price point isn't worth it unless you eat a third of your body weight in seafood.

Sunrise Donuts

If you need motivation to get up and out of bed to drop someone at the airport for an early-morning flight, plan to treat yourself to a post-airport run on Sunrise Donuts, a bare-bones bakery that churns out textbook versions of donut shop greatest hits. Their old-fashioned donuts, the crunchy, charmingly misshapen, extra-rich cakey kind, are perhaps their best work, but Sunrise makes a fine raised glazed twist, cinnamon-scented apple fritters loaded with filling, and tart cherry bismarcks. We'd recommend getting coffee elsewhere, but for less than a dollar a donut, definitely plan to load up on everything else in the pastry case.


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37 comments
TaraDavis
TaraDavis

Wally's is good and is a Bloomington landmark (or at least their old location on 90th Street was), but Penn Lake Roast Beef is even better and you left it off the list.  Also, where is Golden Wok or any of the megamall restaurants like Rainbow Cafe?


And no Shantytown!?!?!?  An outrage!  And what about Zeke's? Or any of the Gyro places?


The Green Mill?  Seriously?  Have you even been to Bloomington or did you just ask a few random strangers?


At least you got it right with Mandarin Kitchen & 98 Pounds.  Both of those places rock.

missbecky2006
missbecky2006

Sorry but the Green Mill in Bloomington is GARBAGE.  I was there 2 days ago.  Standard Green Mill food, but old and stale with terrible service.  I actually do not find the fact that it is in a hotel a feature ... you walk in, and it smells like pool chlorine.  Do not love.  

Robert Abe Abraham
Robert Abe Abraham

I loved Wally's Roast Beef in Bloomington when I lived in Mn. Real roast beef instead of that nasty pink slime roast of whatever at Arby's.

EricLarsen
EricLarsen

Food Fight suggestion: Suburban Gyros.

I would like to see this Gyropolis place the other commenters are mentioning versus the Mega Gyro from Ali Baba's King of Gyros in West Saint Paul!

EricLarsen
EricLarsen

Was going to complain about Khan's being left out, then checked and realized it's technically in Richfield.  Well, when you guys get around to Richfield...

Jeff Lahr
Jeff Lahr

Shantytown needs be on this list.

Aaron Michael Scherbel
Aaron Michael Scherbel

Also, pretty sure the Mall of America is in Bloomington, is it not? I know they have a restaurant or two worth mentioning. Oops.

Nicole Duff
Nicole Duff

City Pages, where they know absolutely everything about a 10 block radius and Google the rest.

Chris Porto
Chris Porto

If mandarin kitchen didn't make the list I was going to respond with an angry comment. Still might be my favorite Chinese place in the twin cities.

Shayla Bocock
Shayla Bocock

Clearly, the author forgot Timber Lodge Steakhouse.

Nik Papazois
Nik Papazois

Seriously??? Where's Gyropolis? That is hands down the best restaurant in Bloomington! Hunan & Golden Wok and 1st Wok and David Fongs are all better than Mandarin or 98 pounds! Surabhi & Tandoor.... Oh, my City Pages, you seriously botched this one bad!

curtismsp
curtismsp

A pretty good list. But one entry doesn't make sense. They send you to Green Mill to find a fake townie bar inside a Holiday Inn, when the genuine townie bar down the street, Shantytown Grill, doesn't get mentioned. Other noticeable omissions: Kincaid's, David Fongs, Gyropolis -- all Bloomington originals.

Aaron Michael Scherbel
Aaron Michael Scherbel

This series is just making City Pages look bad. Clearly your "writer" has never even been to half the places written about; (s)he is also pulling them straight off the top of Google Search. Seriously, please stop. You are not doing any of these businesses or any of these cities any favors with your patronizing articles that mention places like Green Mill as one of the 7 best places to eat at. Not that Green Mill is bad, but they are in almost every city, so it's really just insulting. If you can't find 7 legitimately unique places for each city, write a shorter article or don't write it at all.

DP Wieland
DP Wieland

Actually, Bloomington is 11 miles from Minneapolis, and having grown up in Bloomington, I endeavor to spend my time anywhere else.

Lara Zimberoff
Lara Zimberoff

This would be clever if Bloomington were more than 10 miles from Minneapolis, but it's not. Do you never leave the city limits or something?

DP Wieland
DP Wieland

The eighth best place to eat in Bloomington involves getting in your car, LRT, bike, cab, or flying car and eating downtown instead.

Keith Morioka
Keith Morioka

What about Surhabi's? the most authentic Indian in the Twin Cities!

osukasensei
osukasensei

Maybe you should of been to more places before you wrote this. Way to shit on our city with your poorly put together BEST of article.

Lara Zimberoff
Lara Zimberoff

India Cafe, Tandoor, and Blue Point Grill (GREAT happy hour) are also critical omissions. Green Mill? Really? It's not terrible but there are plenty other non-chain options exclusive to Bloomington that are way better.

Lara Zimberoff
Lara Zimberoff

Whoa whoa whoa...How in the HELL did you leave Gyropolis off the list?

Mc'Real Dtj
Mc'Real Dtj

Ok who says these are the best places, your reporter is clearly a dumb fuck and should be fired

Mc'Real Dtj
Mc'Real Dtj

Im to poor for this shit and green mill better not be on the list, the food is horrible and nothing close to special plus very small portions

Bridget Gernander
Bridget Gernander

The Gyros Grill on Old Shakopee near Cedar is my absolute favorite in Bloomington. The chicken curry special is awesome and they make their own spicy chutney-like condiment that is out of this world. There is no contest between the food at Gyros Grill and the Green Mill.

Tim Stang
Tim Stang

lucky 13? id rather eat dog poo

OlWillyClinton
OlWillyClinton

Sunrise Donuts gets a thumbs up from me, but you left out David Fong's and Gyros Grill on Old Shakopee Road. Gyros Grill is a locally-owned restaurant with about 15 tables and one or two people working behind the counter. Imad is one of the most appreciative business owners I have ever had the pleasure of frequenting until I left my job close to his business. Go pay him a visit.

corey375
corey375

Timberlodge is a shadow of its former self. Used to be a huge fan, but went about a year ago and will never go back.

Oscar
Oscar

Settle down its very subjective. But ill follow your lear. You are completely wrong about Gyropolis. Clearly you dont know food. Seriously, everyone just settle down.

curtismsp
curtismsp

11 miles from Minneapolis, but 0 miles from the airport that gets you to Minneapolis.

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