Wednesday, August 25, 2010


A few weeks ago, I mentioned having dined at Fogo de Chao during Minneapolis Summer Restaurant Week... several people asked me how I knew Restaurant Week was even going on. Well, I'm in the know!

And... don't quote me on this, but a little birdie just told me that there will be a Fall Restaurant Week from October 3-8. Fogo de Chao is back on the list, supposedly. I'll let you know more when I know more myself!

Tuesday, August 17, 2010

Well, That Was Quick...

Brett must have read yesterday's post.

I'm gonna be real sore if he pulls more wishy-washy crap tomorrow.

I also think it's in poor taste to welcome Brett back with open arms after sending Percy Harvin a five-day letter when he has had a long history of migrane problems (not to mention, shortly after his grandmother's death--when similar situations have been troublesome to the organization in recent history), and telling the media that he has "ground to make up" for missing time during training camp. As I said yesterday--a team is a team. All for one and one for all. If Percy has to make up the time, Brett should have to as well.

Lastly, I would like to give a high five to Jared Allen for being awesome (and for reportedly being one of the players who reportedly convinced Favre to come back... but mainly for being awesome).

Monday, August 16, 2010

Four is my Lucky Number

That is a fact. It's not based on any reasoning, really. I just decided, back in the day, that my lucky number would be 4.

The Vikings seem to also think their lucky number is 4. Last year, in a shocking acquisition, they signed quarterback Brett Favre, who played most of his career with the Green Bay Packers, our sworn rivals and archenemies. His coming to the Minnesota Vikings broke the hearts of many of my friends, and I know more than one grown man who cried at the news.

Brett is an amazing athlete. He is arguably the best quarterback in NFL history. Also, his middle name is Lorenzo, which is pretty fun. And he is a spokesmodel for Wrangler Jeans. The guy has something for everybody!

However, Mr. Favre-rhymes-with-Carve is also quite the drama queen. As far back as 2002, he has announced his "retirement", only to return (prompted, no doubt, by the promise of more money) to play another season. This year is no exception.

I just want to be on the record as saying that while he is an exceptional quarterback, and clearly still has "it"--he needs to step up and be a true leader to his team. Part of being on a team is taking your lumps: going to training camp. Participating in pre-season games. Not whipping the media into a will-he-or-won't-he frenzy. If Brett Favre wants lasting respect from the few people who still believe he has integrity, it's time for him to show up at Winter Park and join the team. Mark Rosen of Channel 4 News said this on the air last Tuesday night, and I couldn't agree more.

Brett, we would love to have you back. We would love to have another 12-4 season, or even improve upon that. We would love to go to Texas next February. But please, stop being such a whiny little bitch, and be the great athlete in shitty jeans that we know you are.

Wednesday, August 4, 2010

This Chick is Toast!

Yes, I just quoted Ghostbusters.

Last night, my man and I had dinner reservations at a fancy-schmancy (OK maybe not fancy, but expensive) place, that was running quite a deal in honor of Minneapolis Restaurant Week. Since our reservation wasn't till 8pm, we decided to go for a glass of wine first.

Our neighborhood is full of cute little bars and restaurants, and we've been meaning to check this place out for quite some time. It's called Toast Wine Bar & Cafe. Some of our neighbors have recommended it, and we've walked past it several times on walks with the pup. It's somewhat out of the way, though, and didn't come to mind often--but now that we've been there, we will for sure be back frequently!

It's located halfway down the block of a non-driveable street, so you wouldn't pass it in your car. It's also partially underground in an apartment building (you have to walk down a ramp to the front door). But there is ample outdoor seating (and water bowls for dogs who stop by too!) and it's surprisingly big inside as well. It looks like an industrial space: unfinished ceiling, walls and columns painted black. The menu mainly features wine, crostini, cheeses, and most importantly dessert. Something I liked is that the individual items were just little bites and very reasonably priced--$2 per crostini is very inexpensive, and I like the idea of getting a glass of wine and a little snack for under $10!

We only had wine, so I can't vouch for the food, but the place was almost full, and I got the impression that many of the patrons were regulars. We immediately said we need to bring my parents there, they would love it. It seems like the type of place I'd go to with a few girlfriends and just sit and talk for hours, over several glasses of wine, of course. As a bonus, they strive to serve mainly wines from environmentally-conscious vineyards--so you may get to try wines that you wouldn't at other places!

Do you have any favorite neighborhood places that I should check out when I'm in your hood?

Tuesday, August 3, 2010

Mmmm, Beer.

I love beer. My favorite beers are boring, pedestrian beers like Minnesota favorite Michelob Golden Draft Light (fun fact! Michelob Golden Draft Light is only available for sale in nine states, and was introduced to the market in 1991), the hipster nectar PBR, and when I get fancy, something like Dark Horse Brewery's Raspberry Ale (love their motto: "Beer first, fruit second.")

My boyfriend also loves beer. He loves beer that I don't like (maybe that is not a coincidence?) because it's all bitter and hoppy and not at all refreshing.

My brother and most of my guy friends are "beer snobs".

Minnesota has a few really great breweries--Surly, Summit, and of course I would be remiss in not acknowledging Grain Belt Brewery, which brought us one of my favorite Minneapolis landmarks:

The Grain Belt Beer sign facing the Hennepin Avenue Bridge, between Downtown Minneapolis and Northeast!

However, curiously, Minneapolis has a long-standing ban on allowing small brewing companies to sell their beer.

Fortunately, the Minneapolis City Council is likely to update the wording of this ordinance on Friday! Brewers will be allowed to sell growlers. This is important because it cuts out the distributors, and allows the small companies to make more money early on, enabling them to grow and hopefully expand their business. Ultimately, of course, the goal would be to gain wide distribution which would necessitate working with a distributor, but having a small "cult" following is a great way to grow business as well, expanding by free word-of-mouth advertising instead of paying for exposure.