Restaurant Features: Bar, Games, Flat Screen TVs, On-Site Parking, Patio, Sports Bar
Location: Saint Louis Park, MN
Address: 5916 Excelsior Boulevard Minneapolis, MN 55416 (952) 922-9515
Hours: Mon-Thurs: 8am-1am Friday-Saturday: 8am-2am Sun: 10am-1am
Links: Bunny’s Website * Bunny’s on Facebook * Google Map
Atmosphere: Bunny’s Bar & Grill is located on Excelsior Blvd in Saint Louis Park, just west of Hwy 100. The space has been renovated since 1998 when Bunny’s first moved into this location, it is big and open for the most part, with nearly 30 TVs hung up around the restaurant and bar area. There are round tables in two sizes spread throughout.
Menu: Appetizers include Chicken Wings (cajun or buffalo), Onion Rings, French Fries Mexican Style Nachos, Artichoke Dip, Potato Skins, Catfish Fingers, Chicken Strips, Garlic Cheese Bread, Mozzarella Sticks, and Chicken Drummies.
Soups include Chicken Noodle, Tomato Basil, Chili and a Soup du Jour.
Bunny’s Salads include Taco, Grilled Chicken, Texas Steak, Cobb, Oriental Chicken, Spinach, Caesar, Chef and Dinner Salad.
Sandwiches come with fries, coleslaw, potato salad, cottage cheese, kettle fries or fresh fruit. Options include Taco Burrito Wrap, Steak Wrap, Clubhouse, BLT, Veggie Sandwich, Southwest Wrap, Chicken Caesar Wrap, French Dip, Triple Grilled Cheese, Grilled Reuben, BBQ Beef, Pork tenderloin Sandwich, Poprk Chop Sandwich, Dante’s Inferno, Tuna Melt, Jumbo Hot Dog, Original Chicken, Chicken Cordon Bleu, Hawaiian Chicken, Buffalo Chicken, Broccoli Chicken, and Cajun Chicken.
Burger options at Bunny’s Bar & Grill include Build-your-own, Rack Attack, and Grilled Garden Burger (black bean).
Pizza options include Build-your-own, Deluxe or Margherita.
Pasta selections include Spaghetti Marinara, Fettuccine Alfredo, Cheese Tortellini, and Pesto Fettuccine.
Entrees include 12oz Sirloin, Pan Fried Walleye, Jumbo Shrimp. Low Carb Entrees include Grilled Burger Platter, Grilled Chicken Breast Platter, Chicken or Tuna Salad, and Cajun Pork Chop Platter.
Desserts include Ice Cream Sundae, Ice Cream Pie, Hot Fudge Brownie Sundae, and Bunny’s Football Float.
Price guide: Appetizers $ Salads $5-10 Sandwiches $8-9 Entrees $9-16
- Monday- Meatloaf with Mashed Potatoes and Gravy, veggie and roll $8.50
- Tuesday-Roast Pork with Mashed Potatoes and Dressing $8.50
- Wednesday- Hot Turkey on sourdough with mashed potatoes and gravy $8.50
- Thursday- Lasagna with garlic toast $8.50
- Friday- Hot Roast Beef with mashed potatoes and gravy $8.50
What we ordered: We started with an order of Artichoke Dip, a creamy blend of artichokes, roasted red peppers, chiles and parmesan cheese. It was baked in a ramekin and served with garlic toast. Delicious and flavorful!
I was having difficulty deciding what to order and ended up with a French Dip. The sandwich was alright; it was piled with deli-style roast beef on a toasted french roll with a side of au jus. It was decent but not the greatest; would have been better with real shaved roast beef rather than the processed deli stuff. I’ve gotten really picky about my meats in that regard. I had the choice of side and went with the french fries.
My companion ordered the Rack Attack Burger with American cheese, bacon, sauteed mushrooms, lettuce, tomato and mayo. This burger was much better than the french dip! The burger was 1/2lb and had an impressive amount of freshly sauteed shrooms. It was served with a side of barbeque and fries as choice of side.
Service: We had no problem finding parking in the big lot or a table inside, although it was a busy Saturday afternoon. Our service was alright; it took a little longer than usual to get drinks refilled and meals were served before we had finished our appetizer.
Overall Impression: The atmosphere was lively and the Artichoke Dip was very good. Service was kind of slow.
Disclosure: I was invited out to do this review and my meal was provided by the restaurant. All opinions are my own.
Cuisine: American, Sushi, Seafood, Steaks, Pasta
Restaurant Features: Bar, Happy Hour
Locations: Mall of America, Edina (Galleria), St Louis Park (Shops at West End)
Addresses & Maps:
St Louis Park-1603 West End Blvd. St. Louis Park, MN 55416 952.933.6500
Hours: MOA- Lunch 11a-4p Dinner M-Sa 4p-10p Sun 4p-8p
Edina- Lunch 11a-4p Dinner M-Th 4-10p Fri-Sat 4-11p Sun 4-9p
St Louis Park- Lunch 11a-4p Dinner M-Th 4-10p Fri-Sat 4-11p Sun 4-9p
Atmosphere: The Mall of America location of Crave is on the 3rd floor of South Ave, across from Macy’s. The restaurant is large and spacious, with a large bar off to the left side near the entrance and a sushi bar centrally placed along the wall in the middle of the main dining room. Although the majority of seating is at tables throughout the dining room, there are also several high-backed booths that allow for more privacy. The lighting is dim and romantic, with mood lighting created by the illuminated art behind the sushi bar and the softly glowing candles at each table.
Menu: The menu changes seasonally and features natural, organic and locally grown ingredients. All beef is certified beef.
Appetizers on the new Fall Menu at Crave include Calamari, Chicken Satay, Lemon Garlic Wings, Pita & Spreads, Seared Scallops, Baked Crab & Artichoke Dip, Pesto Shrimp, Mini Burgers, Gingered Beef Eggrolls, Artisan Bread Basket, and Edamame.
Salads offered include Asian Noodle Salad, Atlantic Salmon, Steak Niçoise, Starter Crave Salad, Starter Caesar, Starter Roasted Beet & Walnut. Soups include Hearty Tomato Pesto, Roasted Chicken & Wild Rice, and Leek & Potato.
Pizzas and Flatbreads at Crave are also quite popular. Flatbread choices are the Roasted Chicken (with pesto, sun dried tomato and portobella mushrooms), Grape & Apple (with Amablu cheese and honey), Thai Chicken (a peanut sauce with cilantro, Asian cabbage and marinated cucumber), and the Napoleon (with garlic prosciutto). Pizzas include Pepperoni or Sausage, Margarita, Shaved Ribeye and the Chipotle BBQ Chicken.
Sandwiches on the dinner menu include Steak Sandwich, Ahi Tuna Steak and Crave Burger.
Pasta selections at Crave include Seas Scallop & Shrimp Fettuccine, Fettuccine & Roasted Mushrooms, Shrimp Scampi Al Fresco, Roasted Chicken and Penne, Baked Truffle Macaroni, Baked Cheese Penne, Spaghetti Pomodoro, and Ravioli Bolognese. Crave offers the option of a half-order of any of their pastas.
Crave has a nice selection of dinner entrees as well, such as the Grilled Petite Tender, Grilled Ribeye, Crab Crusted Filet Mignon, Tuscan New York Strip, Brined Pork Tenderloin, Chicken Stir-Fry, Crispy Half Chicken, Mango & Prawns, Grilled Ahi Tuna, Pistachio Crusted Salmon, Minnesota Walleye, Miso Glazed Sea Bass
The sushi selection at Crave is also pretty extensive. Nigiri and Sashimi offerings include Crispy Rice Bars with Spicy Tuna, Scallops Poppers, Amaebi (sweet raw shrimp), Hamachi (yellowtail), Hirame (flounder), Hokki-Gai (surf clam), Maguro (red tuna), Mutsu (escolar), Sake (salmon), Suzuki (striped sea bass), Ebi (cooked shrimp), Unagi (cooked eel), Masago (smelt roe), Tako (octopus), Tobiko (flying fish roe), Wasabi Tobiko, and Seaweed Salad.
Maki Sushi offerings are the Tekka (tuna), Sake (salmon), Negihama (yellowtail and scallions), Unagi (cooked eel), Kappa (cucumber), Spicy Shrimp Cones, Chipotle Ocean Roll, Keilani;s Roll (shrimp tempuraavocado, wrapped with eel), Mexican Roll (yellowfin and escolar with avocado, cilantro, jalapeños and spicy mayo), Number Nine (crunchy Spicy Tuna Roll), Dragon Wraps, Rainbow, Caterpillar, Spider, Veggie Roll, Tempura Roll, Spicy Tuna, California, Minnesota(cooked smoked walleye), Dynamite, Spicy Salmon, Crunchy Roll and Fire Roll. There are alsoa couple of sushi combos like the Sushi Sampler, Sushi Lunch Combo and Sashimi Lunch Combo.
Crave also has a delicious selection of desserts that changes seasonally. The Fall desserts at Crave include Golden Raisin Bread Pudding, Key Lime Pie, Molten Chocolate Cake, Vanilla Bean Cheesecake, German Chocolate Cake, and Coconut White Cake. The dessert menu also includes a variety of after-dinner drinks such as the Girl Scout Cookie and Buttery Bailey’s, Ports and Dessert Wines, and hot cafe drinks.
Price guide: Appetizers $8-13 Salads $8-15 Pizza/Flatbreads $12-13 Pastas $14-24 Entrees $24-37 Nigiri/Sashimi $6-10/order Sushi Rolls $7-19/order
Happy Hour Specials:
What we ordered: My companion and I started with a couple of the Crave specialty cocktails, the Cranberry Smash and the Blueberry Lemonade. The Cranberry Smash was made with vodka, ginger ale, mint leaves and cranberry juice. The Opulent vodka revved up the drink but it wasn’t overly strong. The ginger ale gave it a pleasant sweetness that I wasn’t expecting, but the cranberries were tart enough to counter the sweetness. I loved that the cranberries were frozen into ice cubes and floated at the top. The Blueberry Lemonade was also very good and slightly sweeter than the Cranberry drink. Excellent blend of flavors.
The Pesto Shrimp appetizer came highly recommended by our server so we started with that. What a great start to a great night of food! The sauteed tiger shrimps were served
on little slices of crostini toast that had been topped with oven-dried tomato, and then the shrimp toast was covered with pistachio pesto. The shrimp was perfectly cooked so it was tender and complimented the crunch of the toast. The pesto sauce was creamy and rich, a perfect sauce to go with the shrimp.
The Panko-Crusted Scallops also sounded really good so we tried an order of those as well. These scallops may have been some of the best I have ever eaten! The scallops were large and coated with a layer of panko bread crumbs before being seared to a golden brown in the pan. They were cooked so that the meat was tender enough to melt in your mouth, yet the panko and seared edges gave it a nice crunch. The scallops were served with a dressy arrangement of picatta buerre blanc and fresh field greens. The butter and capers added the perfect touch of saltiness to compliment the sweetness of the scallop meat.
Sushi Chef Tony Lam brought us a special sampler platter that included a Mexican roll, ceviche, flying fish roe with quail egg wrapped in salmon, amaebi (sweet raw shrimp), crispy rice bars, prawn heads, and three different fish mixtures atop cucumber slices.
The Mexican roll (pictured top right in photo above) is Crave’s most popular roll and became my new
favorite after just one bite. This roll is the perfect marriage of
Mexican and Sushi, two of my most favorite foods. It had both yellow fin
tuna and escolar with avocado, cilantro, a slice of fresh jalapeño
and spicy mayo wrapped in rice and seaweed. It is then topped with a soy citrus sauce (ponzu), and
chili oil with fresh lime juice squeezed on top. It was so good! I
loved the spiciness of the jalapeño, and the lime and cilantro gave it a
fresh citrus twist. The tuna and the escolar inside the Mexican roll
were very tender and not at all fishy. Bravo!
The Crispy Rice Bars were also wonderful. The rice cake was like a thick chewy rice cracker and had a lot more flavor than ordinary sticky rice. It was topped with a heaping pile of spicy tuna mix, flying fish roe, and sliced jalapeno pepper. The combination of textures went together really well and I enjoyed it quite a bit.
The ceviche was one of my favorite items that Sushi Chef Tony Lam made for us to try. A very thin slice of potato was fried with tempura batter and then topped with sliced raw fish that was marinated with a citrus soy sauce, scallions and fresh chili peppers. It was packed with flavor and the tenderness of the fish paired with the texture of the tempura potato went perfectly together.
The sushi was so good we ordered even more of Sushi Master Tony’s creations. Clockwise From Lower Left: The Mexican Roll, Fire Roll, Number Nine, Dragon Wrap (top right), Hokki and Hamachi Sashimi, and Scallop Poppers (pictured in photo after the one below)
The Number Nine was filled with pieces of shrimp
tempura, spicy mayo, kaiware and yama gobo wrapped with salmon and
avocado and topped with a sweet soy based sauce. The Fire Roll was filled with pieces of shrimp tempura, cucumber, kaiware and yama gobo wrapped with
a spicy salmon mix and topped with chili oil. This one was nice and spicy, just the way I like it. The Dragon Wraps were also good. Instead of rice, this roll is made with an egg omelet wrapped around spicy tuna,
fresh water eel, avocado, fried green onions, crunchy flakes and miso
dressing. Served in two big rolls. The Scallop Poppers were also excellent. The scallops were baked in spicy dynamite sauce then wrapped in salmon and topped with crunchy panko flakes. Loved the combination of flavors and textures.
For my entree I ordered the Crab Crusted Filet MIgnon. This was outstanding! The filet was thick and cooked medium, as I requested. It had a creamy crab and cheese mixture with just the slightest hint of buttery breadcrumbs baked on top and served on a bed of lobster cream sauce. This absolutely melted in my mouth. The crab and cheese together created a rich flavor that went slendidly with the tender and juicy beef. Herb roasted new potatoes and buttery seasoned baby carrots were also served, both were very good.
My companion had the Miso Seabass. The perfectly-cooked Korean miso sea bass was served atop a bed of steamed white rice and adorned with baby bok choy and a crimson ponzu sauce. Asian pickled cucumbers sat layered atop the fish. This dish was delicious as well! The flavorful yet mild sea bass went really well with the sweet, fruity panzu sauce.
Despite being extremely full after enjoying all of this delicious food, we also tried a sushi dessert. What an extraordinary creation this was! The middle of the the roll had homemade vanilla-bean cheesecake and a slice of fresh mango then wrapped with a thin layer of rice and topped with a thin slice of strawberry. The roll was arranged atop a drizzling of chocolate and vanilla sauce. The cheesecake and rice were such a unique combo of flavors and textures and together it was like a thick, fruity, creamy and sweet rice pudding. So different and so, so good!
Service: We had exceptional service at our first visit to Crave. The hostesses were very friendly and our server, Dawn, was very knowledgeable about the menu and had some wonderful suggestions about appetizers, entrees and cocktails too. We ordered a lot of food and took our time but never felt rushed since food was paced perfectly. The restaurant wasn’t too busy (nor was the Mall in general) on this pre-holiday-shopping-season Tuesday evening and we were able to get great customer service and attention from everyone all the way up to the manager.
Overall Impression: The culinary and sushi creations were outstanding. I tried quite a variety of foods and loved every single thing. The Mexican Roll should win an award! There is quite a variety on the menu and the Happy Hour specials are a really good deal. Great place to have a casual yet elegant dinner and worth every penny for the fine ingredients. The service was exceptional. I can’t wait to go back again soon!
Cuisine: American, Bar & Grill
Locations: Bloomington(**Site of this review), Coon Rapids, St Louis Park
Addresses & Maps:
Bloomington- 1800 W 80th St Bloomington, MN 55431 952-881-0013
Coon Rapids– 3590 River Rapids Dr. Coon Rapids, MN 55448 763-427-1888
St Louis Park– 6475 Wayzata Blvd St. Louis Park, MN 55426 952-593-5024
Links: Bennigan’s Website
Atmosphere: Just beyond the host stand in the center of the Bloomington Bennigan’s is a large bar area, with smaller dining areas scattered around the outer areas of the restaurant. The small pockets of tables and booths gives this Bennigan’s location a nice, intimate feel
Menu: Appetizers include Golden Chicken Tenders, Fajita Chicken Quesadillas, Mozzarella Cheese Sticks, Ultimate Nachos, Buffalo Wings, Boneless Buffalo Wings, Southwest Egg Rolls, and Broccoli Bites.
Sandwiches include the Monte Cristo, Turkey O’ Toole, Buffalo Chicken, Grilled Chicken Club, French Dip, Reuben, Angus Melt, Chipotle Burger, Black & Bleu Burger, and Guiness Glazed Bacon Burger.
Entrees include Guiness Glazed Chicken & Shrimp or Sirloin, Stacked Chicken, Chicken Fried Chicken, Grilled Chicken Platter, Cajun Chicken and Shrimp Pasta, Ribeye, Sirloin, Baby Back Ribs, Tempura Shrimp, Grilled Salmon, and Grilled Seafood Platter.
Bennigan’s also offers a variety of salads and soups.
Price guide: Appetizers $6-8 Sandwiches $8-10 Entrees $10-18
What I ordered: The buffalo chicken salad (layered bleu cheese crumbles, carrots, celery and pico de gallo on a bed
of greens tossed in a creamy Ranch dressing, topped with buffalo
fried chicken, and placed inside a crispy tortilla shell). This salad was LOADED! The Buffalo sauce had a nice kick to it, the veggies were fresh and crisp, and the tortilla shell was light and crispy.
One of my companions ordered a cheeseburger. The beef was juicy and fresh, the bacon smoky and crisp.
Another companion ordered the Turkey O’ Toole (Juicy turkey breast sliced thin, melted Swiss cheese and Smoky
Honey Dijon dressing. Served hot on a Bennigan’s pretzel roll.) Bennigan’s was happy to replace French fries with a bowl of their delicious Baked Potato Soup.
Service: Good and fast. Our visit was on a Saturday at noon and it didn’t seem to be too busy.
Overall Impression: Good food at a reasonable price, fast service. Tucked back in an area that doesn’t have other restaurants, kind of hard to find.
Restaurant Features: Bar, On-Site Parking
Locations: Bloomington, Burnsville, Coon Rapids, Maple Grove, Maplewood, Oakdale
Addresses & Maps:
Bloomington– 4701 American Blvd W. Bloomington, MN 55437 (952)841-4044
Burnsville– 1451 County Rd 42 Burnsville, MN 55306 (952)898-4200
Coon Rapids– 150 Coon Rapids Blvd Coon Rapids, MN 55443 (763) 786-1089
Maple Grove– 12520 Elm Creek Blvd N Maple Grove, MN 55369 (763) 420-9699
Maplewood– 1749 Beam Avenue Maplewood, MN 55109 (651) 773-0200
Oakdale– 8367 3rd Street N. Oakdale, MN 55128 (651)264-1447
Links: Olive Garden website
Atmosphere: One look at the house wines lining the walls, and there should be no doubt this is an Italian restaurant! Cozy, warm and dimly-lit are the words I would use to describe the atmosphere. Several small sections of the dining area offer privacy and romance.
How cute is this little indoor courtyard that greets you upon entry? The perfect place to have a glass of wine while waiting for your table!
Menu: Warm breadsticks and Italian house salad are brought out almost as soon as you place your meal order.
Appetizers include brushetta, stuffed mushrooms, smoked mozzerella, calamari and shrimp scampi.
Entrees include classic Italian recipes such as lasagna, fettuccini alfredo, ravioli, manicotti, spaghetti and linguini, and chicken or eggplant Parmigiana.
Not in the mood for pasta? No worries…there are a variety of Italian pork, beef and chicken dishes as well.
Price guide: Appetizers: $6-10 Classic recipes $9-12 Meat entrees: $15-20
What I ordered: Baked Manicotti with a delicious blend of cheeses…so much cheese in fact, that I needed to order a meatball to balance it out a little. Very rich.
My companions ordered the Tuscan Garlic Chicken (Pan-seared chicken breasts with roasted garlic, red peppers and spinach in a white wine and garlic cream sauce, tossed with curly fettuccine). Absolutely delicious, I will order this dish next time. The huge cloves of garlic laced throughout the dish are a garlic-lovers dream, a vampire's nightmare.
and the Stuffed Chicken Marsala (Oven-roasted chicken breast stuffed with Italian cheeses and sun-dried tomatoes, topped with mushrooms and a creamy marsala sauce. Served with garlic parmesan mashed potatoes.) Another delicious dish!
Service: Our waitress was very nice and friendly, patient throughout the ordering process. She offered suggestions and offered us samples of the house wines. She was very friendly and prompt in checking on us.
Overall Impression: The food and atmosphere at Olive garden is pretty much the same at every location you would visit.
Cuisine: American, Burgers, Steak, Chops, Fish
Restaurant Features: Bar
Locations: Roseville, Maple Grove, Eagan, St Louis Park
Addresses & Maps:
Eagan–3330 Pilot Knob Road Eagan, MN 55121 ( 651)452.4600
Maple Grove– 11909 Main Street Maple Grove, MN 55369 (763)416.0010
Roseville– 851 Rosedale Center Roseville, MN 55113 (651) 209-3500
*Located next to the AMC Movie Theater. No Mall entrance- Must enter from outside only.
St Louis Park– 5500 Excelsior Blvd. St. Louis Park, MN 55416 (952)746.9900
Granite City Food & Brewery is a brand-new trendy restaurant located just outside Rosedale mall. I think it would be safe to say that the emphasis is not only on the food, but also on their on-site brewery. Observation windows between the bar area and the brewery allow guests to see the inner workings of the brewery. This large bar area with several flat-paneled TVs is a a great place to have a drink with friends. Both the menu and atmosphere seem to cater to the an older, more-established crowd. Not the type of place to bring the kids.
Start your meal off with one of Granite City’s Craft Beers– Northern Light Lager, Brother Bnenedict’s Bock, Duke of Wellington-Indian Pale Ale, Broad Axe Stout and Two-Pull.
Appetizers include daily soups, Crab & Cheddar Cakes, Crab Wonton, Crab Chalupa, Chicken Caesar Chalupa, Spinach & Artichoke Dip, Nachos and Quesadillas.
A few of the sandwiches featured on the menu include the Reuben, Buffalo Chicken, Smothered Beef, London Broil and Chicken Salad BLT. In addition to standard burger options, Granite City offers a Buffalo Burger as well.
Signature Entrees include Meatloaf, Rosemary Filet Mignon, Boneless Pork Chops, Chicken Parmesan, Lasagna, Ravioli, Walleye, Salmon and London Broil.
**Please note that Granite City prides itself on updating the menu twice a year, so all selections above are subject to change
Sandwiches and Burgers: $7-10 (additional $2 for french fries)
Signature Entrees: $11-21 (additional $2 for soup or side salad)
What I ordered:
There were many items on the menu that are up my alley, but I wanted to try one of their specialties and the Grilled Salmon Oscar came highly recommended by the server- “Filet of north Atlantic salmon charbroiled and topped with steamed asparagus spears, crabmeat, and béarnaise sauce. Served on a bed of wild rice pilaf with sautéed vegetable medley.” I though the meal was very good- the wild rice was a perfect compliment to the salmon, as were the mild and creamy béarnaise sauce, and steamed vegetables. The salmon was sliced thick, but was slightly uncooked toward the center. Overall it was very good.
On this particular visit my companion ordered the London Broil sandwich, but was disappointed that the meat was tough. No pictures were taken :( I would instead like to share with you a picture of the Bedda Chedda Burger that was ordered by another companion on a previous visit. As you can see, Granite City is very generous with the amount of cheddar they put on this burger!
Service: Our service was excellent- the waitress was extremely patient while my companion and I took our time looking over the menu. She offered suggestions for ordering both appetizers and entrees, and also stopped back at the end of the meal to tell us about their Sunday Brunch.
Overall Impression: Although I thought Granite City was a nice place with good food, it didn’t stand out as a one-of-a-kind restaurant. It reminded me of several other trendy bar & grills that you see around the city. I think the fact that the entrance to the restaurant is outside of the mall makes it harder to access and less of a draw to shoppers.