The 5 Best Fall Soups in the Twin Cities

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Junita Bognanni
Borough's parsnip soup

The true soup lover longs for fall. After a summer of haphazard cooking, meals thrown together from fresh farmers market fare, we start to crave more complex flavors. The cooler temperatures inspire us to return to the kitchen. We're ready to linger over a simmering pot. Is it the changing leaves? The cable-knit sweaters? The preponderance of pumpkin? We don't know, but as far as we're concerned it is officially soup season by mid-September.

Luckily for us soup-lovers (and non-cooks), Minneapolis/St. Paul restaurants are just as enamored with the autumn harvest. Here are some of our favorite fall flavors.

See also:
Where to Pick Apples, Pluck Pumpkins, and Get Gourds This Fall

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Try a New, But Familiar, Fall Seasonal From Steel Toe

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photo courtesy of Steel Toe Brewing

The changing of the seasons is always a time for beer fans to get excited, with new recipes hitting shelves and old standbys returning for a limited time. This week we're sipping Steel Toe's Beltline Brown Ale, which falls somewhere in the middle: This is its second go-around but the recipe has been modified from 2013.

See also:
This Rum-Aged Beer Is a Winter Warmer: Indeed's Rum King 2014

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Millers & Saints Rides the First Wave of Craft Distilleries in Minnesota

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Benjamin Carter Grimes

Minnesotans are familiar with craft beer, but the realm of craft spirits is mostly murky and uncharted. While we can handily distinguish between a Heineken and a Surly, with a new product like craft spirits, we're a little less surefooted. The criteria and marketplace is still developing.

See also:
What Happens to Twin Cities Food Trucks Over the Winter?


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Jeremy Messersmith and Others Take a Stand Against 70-30 Rule in Cute, Cheesy Video

Categories: News

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Champagne to celebrate? Video shows how much food you'd then have to order to comply with the 70-30 rule

As the November elections approach, local restaurateurs and concerned citizens are ever more vocal about a rule they'd like to see abolished.

The onerous 70-30 rule requires that restaurants in residential areas earn at least 70 percent of their revenue from food sales and no more than 30 percent from alcohol. Voters will decide for themselves in a few short weeks, by answering yes or no on ballot question 2: "Shall the Minneapolis City Charter be amended to remove mandatory food to wine and beer sales ratios?"

In addition to yard signs blazoned with the "Yes On 2" logo, Citizens for a Modern Minneapolis has recruited local musicians to help spread the word -- resulting in this adorable and slightly cheesy video starring Jeremy Messersmith, members of Rogue Valley, and John Munson. Did they write a little song to help you remember to vote "Yes On 2"? You bet they did.

See also:
Voters will decide the fate of 70/30 alcohol sales rule


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Chef Drew Ledo on His Iron Fork Grudge Match and Anthony Bourdain's Life Advice

Each week, we'll interview one of the chefs participating in our 2014 Iron Fork competition. On November 6, these six culinary masterminds will go head to head to see who can create the most appetizing and healthful dish using a secret ingredient. Tickets are on sale now.

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Sparks head chef Drew Ledo talks competition cooking and taking life advice from Anthony Bourdain

In the small, often overlooked Minneapolis neighborhood of Bryn Mawr, one petite Italian restaurant has been delighting diners with wood-oven-centric cuisine since 2012. At the helm is head chef Drew Ledo, who has spent the majority of his life immersed in the food service industry and will be taking his first leap into competitive cooking with this year's Iron Fork.

We had a chance to sit and talk with chef Ledo about his background, what it was that motivated him into a serious cooking career, and the life advice he received from celebrity chef/travel guru Anthony Bourdain, which had a lasting effect on his own culinary adventure.

See also:
Third Bird's Lucas Almendinger on Multiple Career Paths and Starburst-Glazed Foie Gras

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5 Best Bets for Restaurant Week in the Twin Cities

Categories: Events, Food

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It's restaurant week and we've put together a list to help you narrow down your choices. The Third Bird's buffalo fries, anyone?

It's that time of the year again when restaurants across the Twin Cities put together a variety of budget-friendly prix fixe menus. This time around, MSP Magazine's Restaurant Weekhas added a few newbies to the roster of RW regulars, giving you the opportunity to get out and try something new without breaking the bank.

We've scoured the list of participating restaurants and put together a pretty solid guide to places you should check out -- especially if you don't dine out much or find yourself at the same table in the same joint every date night. Restaurant Week is the perfect excuse to break the trend.

See also:
The Third Bird gives comfort food the highbrow treatment

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Hiroshima Hot Dogs: A Pop-Up of Godzilla-Sized Proportions and Japanese-Inspired Dogs

Categories: Events, Food

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Photo courtesy of Libertine
Feed your mutant-reptile-sized appetite at the Hiroshima Hot Dogs pop-up
The folks over at Libertine are hosting their first pop-up, and it could potentially be the king of all Twin Cities pop-ups. On October 24 and 25, the cheekily dubbed "Hiroshima Hot Dogs" will bring guests a selection of hot dogs dressed to the hilt in the tastiest Japanese adornments and named after classic Godzilla monsters.

See also:
Libertine brings roasted meats and great service to Uptown


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Hola Arepa Brunch Has Arrived: Rum-Spiked Horchata, Chilaquiles, and More

Categories: First Look

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Hannah Sayle
The breakfast arepa with yuca fries and aioli verde

From street eats to Eat Street, Hola Arepa has built up a loyal clientele that fiends for those signature hearty corn cakes stuffed with Latin-influenced pork, beef, chicken, cheeses, and salsas. For the first several months after opening their brick-and-mortar location, owners Birk Stefan Grudem and Christina Nguyen focused on their lunch and dinner menus, tacking on a happy hour to sate the after-work crowd, but keeping the promise of a weekend brunch menu tucked up their sleeves.

See also:
5 New(ish) Brunches to Change Your Weekend Routine

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Cheap Wine, Great Dessert, and an Offhand Comment: Date Night at the Red Stag

Categories: Dining Deals

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Courtesy of the Red Stag
Cozy up with your honey at this equal parts rustic and romantic bar.

Week 4 of our official Date Night Research brings us to Facebook, loading and refreshing the Red Stag Supperclub's page throughout the day to see if Date Night details (and pictures) have been posted. As with the Bryant-Lake Bowl, options are limited, so we cross our fingers and hold our breath for a delightful (and bean-less) adventure.

See also:
Be the Prettiest Cheap Date in Town at Ngon Bistro's Date Night


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Dumplings 101: Learn the Craft at the Dumpling House at Nash Gallery

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Courtesy of the Dumpling House

Dumplings know no borders. These soft, doughy balls of goodness pop up across almost all cuisines in various guises -- from pierogi in Poland to ravioli in Italy -- all colossally comforting no matter the form or the filling.

Maybe it's the rare thing we can agree upon: No matter how down and out we're feeling, there will always be dumplings. Eat one and everything will be okay.

See also:
Goat Meat and Cheese Get Top Billing at Ian Gray's Curious Goat Food Truck

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