Restaurant Week: Longfellow Grill – Minneapolis

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Last week was Restaurant Week in the Twin Cities. Did you take advantage?

It’s a great opportunity to enjoy 3-course lunches or dinners at $15 – $30 per person. In the past, we’ve discovered Bradstreet Crafthouse, Cavé Vin, Cosmos, Rinata and Red Stag all because of Restaurant Week.

In order to narrow down our selection for Restaurant Week this time around, we decided on the following requirements:

  • Had to be a restaurant we hadn’t been to yet
  • Had to have a choice on the menu that Rob could eat
  • Had to have something on the menu that peaked our interests and that we would definitely order

Upon closer look, we were a little disappointed in the Menus for Restaurant Week this year.

In my opinion, Restaurant Week should be a time when the participating restaurants highlight some of their signature dishes on the menu. I want you to show me what you are about, what makes you different, and why I should come back.

Instead, too many of the Restaurant Week menus went something like this:

Appetizer: Caesar Salad or French Onion Soup

Entrée: Sirloin or Spaghetti & Meatballs

Dessert: Chocolate Cake or Strawberry Cheesecake

Really? That’s all you’ve got?

While these menu items certainly can be made really well, I want to taste the creativity and the character of the restaurant. When it comes to showcasing your menu, spice it up. In fact, SEASON IT ALREADY!

After weeding out the boring menus, we ruled out all of those with only poultry and fish options due to Rob’s allergies. We finally settled on one:

Longfellow Grill

The Restaurant Week Menu was intriguing. Rob planned to try the Mac N Cheese with Butternut Squash and Chorizo. I was either going to try the Greek Salad with Steak or the Scallop and Cauliflower Gratin. In addition, their selection of delightful beers on tap was right up our alley!

Knowing that Restaurants are busy during Restaurant Week, I tried making reservations online. I couldn’t find a link on their website anywhere nor on OPEN TABLE. So I tweeted them:

We decided to go later because I needed to get my workout in. By 7pm, I was a lot hungrier than I usually let myself get before going out.

Not knowing the area, it was a little tricky navigating the neighborhood streets. After driving around the block a few times, we realized that there was no parking to be had: no lot and very limited on-street parking. Rob suggested that we just go home.

But I was determined. We came this far, didn’t we? After driving around for a little while longer, we found a neighboring street with a parking spot open. Hooray! We parked on the side street and walked to the restaurant. People were pouring out into the lobby, obviously waiting for a table. Still, we went inside.

I inquired about a seat at the bar. Completely full.

Wait time? About a half hour.

Okay, so that’s not that bad, but by now we were frustrated and hungry, so we just left.

It does look like a nice cozy neighborhood restaurant. And kudos to them for being so busy during Restaurant Week! Will we be back to Longfellow Grill to really give their menu a try? Without reservations and the hassle we experienced with parking, probably not.

Stay tuned on Thursday to read where we ended up after we left Longfellow Grill…

Did you dine out during Restaurant Week? If so, where? And what were your impressions?

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