Black Forest Inn Minneapolis

The Black Forest Inn sits at 26th and Nicollet Ave in Minneapolis. aka Eat Street. Click HERE for complete the list of Eat Street restaurants.

The Black Forest Inn, if you haven’t guessed from the name, is a German restaurant. If you guessed hotel I wouldn’t hold it against you. Anyway, yes it’s a restaurant and they serve German food. I’m not really sure if they serve authentic German food, since I’ve never been to real live Germany, but it seems pretty legit.

Black Forest Inn patio
Black Forest Inn patio

Beer Beer and More Beer

Day 1

Our friends Dewey and Lori came to town and brought their friend Thomas. So you know what that means. Beer, and lots of it. Let me tell you about our weekend.

It all started on a hot and humid Saturday afternoon. Dewey called and said they were in town. I suggested that we meet at LTD Brewing’s taproom in Hopkins. The place was already getting busy for the night, but we were able to get a table for us all.

Shellie and I have been to LTD several times before, but I was still able to get in 4 new beers. LTD is always changing up their line up. I like most of their beers, but some of them are misses for me.

After LTD we went and ate Thai food. It was delicious. But…there was more drinking to do.

We went to the hotel where everyone was staying (except Shellie and I) and dropped off cars so we could take an uber to the places with the beer.

Seven taprooms on the Green Line that you have to try

Last Saturday we did the unthinkable, the unimaginable, the just plain crazy. We took the bus.

But wait there’s more.

We took the bus from our place in the burbs to downtown Minneapolis and from there we hit each of the 7 brewery taprooms along the Green Line light rail.

And we lived to talk about it.

The bus part is neither here nor there and you shouldn’t worry about that. You just need to wrap your head around starting at Fulton Brewing on a beautiful spring day with the Twins playing at home. Fulton was pretty busy, but that didn’t stop us.


Rainbow Restaurant Eat Street Minneapolis

We went to Rainbow Restaurant the other night because Shellie wanted something plainish. Something soothing and familiar. Calming in a Chinese food way. Like chow mein from your local Chinese place. Or egg foo young. Something innocuous.

And on that criteria Rainbow did not deliver.

The space is really nice. I went in thinking Rainbow would be kind of dumpy. It is not. The room is spacious and sorta fancy (for Eat Street). The seats were also really rather plush. This is not what we expected.

We had a hard time deciding what to get. There was no egg foo young or chicken chow mein to be seen on this menu. Most of the dishes weren’t unheard of, but there just wasn’t the local Chinese joint favorites here.

We wound up ordering the bacon and egg fried rice and chicken lo mein. Shellie said we ordered the two lamest items on the menu. She also said she was looking forward to going back when she felt like spending more money.

When our food arrived I got a whiff of the lo mein and I knew right away something was up. Fish? Is this fishy? Yes, yes it was. The noodles were drenched in some sort of fish sauce. Oyster maybe? I don’t know. But for me they were inedible.

I’m not a fish guy. But I really didn’t expect that to be an issue when I ordered chicken lo mein. But it was.

The “bacon” and egg fried rice was not too shabby. There were a couple of sticking points though. It was rather flavorless. Even though it was a different take on fried rice, they still could’ve thrown in some onion. Also, the bacon wasn’t actual bacon. It was thin cut, fried pork. Not bad, but not bacon.

All in all Shellie thought it was a decent meal. For me. I’ll never go back. She says I’m being extreme, judging a place on one dish. But the dish was so far off of the norm, and in a bad way. I’m sure there are dishes at Rainbow I would enjoy, but I don’t have the time or money to spend trying every dish at every restaurant in town. When one is so far off I just need to move on.

I hate giving bad reviews to places, but I just can’t do anything else. Since I plan to go to every restaurant on Eat Street, I can’t skip this one. Sorry.

Eastlake Brewery

I went into the new Eastlake Brewery last week. By new I mean they just opened. Not that they have been around and this is their new brewery. Eastlake has been open about a month at this point. They are nestled in a corner of the Midtown Global Market (which I’ll be writing about soon).

This is the place you put your foot when you bell up to the bar.
This is the place you put your foot when you belly up to the bar.

I started with their Blueliner. It’s an American pale ale, which is a style I really dig. This one was tasty and super balanced. Sometimes pale ales can be too hoppy or malty or just plain boring. This wasn’t any of those. Some of you are saying “woah woah woah, there’s no such thing as too hoppy.” And I say well kinda there can be. You know, depending on the style of beer. This beer had a distinct flavor that I can’t put my finger on. I wouldn’t be surprised to find out they use the same hops as LTD uses in their Australian IPA. Anyway, this was really good. And hit the spot with my burrito.

Next up I had a Stick Style. This is their India pale ale. It too was really good. I like their choice of malts and hops. I’m not sure which ones they use, but these go well with each other. So, it’s a good beer and I would be happy to have one right now.

That’s it. I didn’t have the time or driving ability to have any more than these 2 beers. I liked what I had and I will be back for more.

Eastlake is in the south east corner of the Midtown Global Market. They have a nice area that is a little bit sectioned off from the rest of the market. There must be about 50 seats. I wish I would’ve taken more pictures. Here’s the other picture I took.
This has to be the smallest brewing space in Minneapolis. It’s like a brewery, only little. But no matter the size of the brewery, they are putting out some really good stuff.

Also, I love their art. The coasters and glasses all have these pictures on them that are both a little creepy and kind of cute. They depict animal/human creatures doing things like sitting by a fire or carrying a hacksaw with an animal leg thrown over it’s shoulder. I don’t know whats going on and I don’t care. I think they are rad.

Surly Brewing Destination Brewery Minneapolis

Surly built their new destination brewery in Minneapolis and it just opened 2 weeks ago. Shellie and I went there last Saturday night at about 9 PM. Upon walking in we were carded and told the kitchen was closed, so beer only. Which wasn’t a problem since we just ate at Jerusalem’s. We got a couple beers and started poking around.

Of course I had read about this place, both before it opened and the recent reviews of it, so I kind of knew what to expect. But honestly, this place is bigger and better than I pictured. The Beer Hall, as they are calling it, is the main room of the building. I’m not sure how many people it seats, but there are a lot of tables in there. Most of them are bigger and shared with other groups of people, but there are a few smaller tables.  At one end of the room there are windows into the brewing area. At the other there are windows facing out to the patio (patio! this is an acre of soon-to-be-beer-garden that can seat another 500 people). These windows are actually doors and it looks like the whole wall can be slid to the sides and opened up.

Surly Brewing Beer Hall
Surly Brewing Beer Hall

My Huong Kitchen Minneapolis

Now we’re getting somewhere with these Eat Street restaurants. I came up with the idea that Shellie and I should try them all out months ago. And now we’re really doing it.
Last weekend we went to My Huong Kitchen for the first time. My Huong Kitchen is a Vietnamese place. It’s a very casual place and the prices are cheap. Like cheap cheap. The menu has some really interesting things on it and it was hard to pick what to get.