9 Twin Cities restaurants doing 2014 food trends the right way

Categories: Top 10

Vincent Marcinelli
Locavore fare at Birchwood

In spite of its fly-over country locale, the Twin Cities does a great job at keeping up with top food trends around the world.

From Uptown to the suburbs, it's not hard to find a restaurant experimenting with different spices, culinary combinations, and cultural cuisines. With Forbes' list of what to look out for in 2014, we've compiled our own list of local restaurants that have nailed this whole "trends" thing.

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Chef demos, tastings, and garlic flavored ice cream at the Minnesota Garlic Festival

Emily Eveland
Birchwood's veggie scramble
1. The trend: Locally sourced food
The restaurant coming out on top: Birchwood Café
Farm-to-table eating is nothing new in the Twin Cities. We've got everything from Portlandia-esque poultry snobs to locavore inspired food trucks, and everything in between. But what puts Birchwood Cafe above all else is the extent of its Midwest-sourced menu, right down to the beer and coffee.
What to order: Want the most out of your local dining? Get the gravlax and beurre monte Benedict at weekend brunch, made with house-cured salmon and homemade jam on the side.

Jared Tarbell
2. The trend: I scream, you scream, we all scream for...vegetables?
The restaurant coming out on top: Ecopolitan
Whether you're trying out a juice cleanse or just want to eat cleaner, the meatless diet has been growing in popularity for some time. But Ecopolitan takes the concept up a notch by offering raw, vegan, and gluten-free menu items perfect for the adventurous healthy eater in all of us.
What to order: Ecopolitan's "rawvioli" gives the middle finger to carbs everywhere by using root vegetables in place of pasta, and pairing it with herbed cashew cheese, ginger marinara sauce, sweet marinated onions, cashew Parmesan, and bruschetta. Will you miss the noodles? Only a taste will tell.

City Pages
3. The trend: Artisan pizza
The restaurant coming out on top: Pizzeria Lola
While we, personally, can be satisfied with a frozen pizza from the grocery store, nothing improves the combination of bread, meat, and cheese like high-quality ingredients. With soft-serve ice cream available in-store as well, Pizzeria Lola is a one-stop shop for dinner and dessert.
What to order: Gone are the days of having to choose between two different food genres. Pizzeria Lola's Lady ZaZa combines the best of two culinary inspirations in one, leaving you without order regrets. It's topped with Italian red sauce, house-made kimchi, Korean sausage, serrano peppers, scallions, sesame, and soy chili glaze. You'll be sure to scream "Minnesota-style" next time someone asks what your preferred pizza is.

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