I’m having another Minnesota summer. I love how my eyes relax here – it just feels so good to look at all the shades of green everywhere. I spent most of the last week in Minneapolis, meeting my brand new nephew (who could try to be cuter, I suppose, but it’s difficult to imagine how he would succeed) and seeing other family and friends. I also had a chance to check out some farmers markets in the Twin Cities – there is a real local foods scene in these parts that is all the more impressive by how trying much of the year is.
There is plenty to love about Minneapolis, especially in the summer. It is beautiful, there are lakes and rivers everywhere you look, the skyline is stunning, the Mississippi riverfront is revived, there is plenty of art and theater, the state now has two (count ‘em, two!) senators, and the city is just full of people who are drunk on the warm weather and frolicking accordingly. I’ve written here about the wonder that is Jasmine Deli before (the first day we were here Ernest asked “Mama, can we go to the Jas?”), some new delights I discovered on this latest visit:
Brasa Rotisserie. Roasted meats and sides like creamed spinach with jalapeno with a super-cas atmosphere and generous portions that make the reasonable prices seem almost criminal
Mill City Market. I went to the St. Paul Farmers Market too, but I really dug Mill City. It’s in downtown Minneapolis, between the new Guthrie Theater (worth a visit its own self) and the Mill City Museum (ditto) right on the Mississippi riverfront at St. Anthony Falls (again – go, visit, enjoy!). Tons of vendors selling a great range of stuff – including a place selling grain and home flour mills! How cool is that? Also a food truck called “Chef Shack” dishing out all kinds of deliciousness including “Indian spiced mini doughnuts” that were crave-inducing. In fact, now that I’m thinking about it I’d like some right now….
Izzy’s Ice Cream. I don’t care about their “Izzy’s Scoop” which is a mini scoop you can have them put on your cone. But I fell in love with the cake batter ice cream. It tastes just like very cold golden cake batter – it even has that almost chewy texture of raw cake batter. Brilliant.
Clancy’s Butcher in Linden Hills. Okay. I knew aboand have shopped at Clancy’s before. But I just have to give them a shout-out. Coming in from a state where a butcher (a bucher! the shame!) once told me that “bratwurst and knockwurst are the same” it is a delight to go to a fabulous neighborhood butcher and find there some amazingly perfect bratwurst in the case. Spicy, tender, perfect bratwurst. The kind that haunt a Midwesterner’s California dreams.