Moveable Feast: City of Lakes Loppet

by John Birge, Minnesota Public Radio
January 31, 2014

St. Paul, Minn. — For our new weekly feature, "Moveable Feast," Rachel Hutton of Minnesota Monthly joins John Birge to talk about food topics in which Classical MPR listeners may be interested. This week, John and Rachel discuss places to refuel that are located near the course of the City of Lakes Loppet.

The City of Lakes Loppet happens this weekend, and it involves a number of cross-country ski races and related events, centered on Theodore Wirth Park and the Chain of Lakes.

For places to eat along the course &#151 either after a day of skiing or watching skiing — one could begin in Bryn Mawr, home to the well-known Bryn Mawr Pizza. Also in Bryn Mawr, Rachel recommends Sparks; it's owned by John Hunt, who also owns Al Vento in South Minneapolis. Sparks, as its name suggests, is known for wood-cooked food, including roasted meats and flatbreads.

A newcomer to the Lake of the Isles area is The Kenwood; it's tucked on the small commercial node near the northwest side of the lake. A bit more upmarket, one couldn't just drop in to the Kenwood in one's skiing clothes, but Rachel says it's a fabulous place for dinner or brunch, and it has an impressive wine list.

In Uptown, one of John's favorites is the French-influenced Barbette, and Rachel mentions Amore Victoria. Rachel also suggests Lake & Irving, a new establishment that has a neighborhood pub feel; it has an extensive beer list, and its Asian-influenced menu veers from the typical pub grub offerings.

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