By Stephanie March
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Stephanie Wilbur Ash
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Minnesota's First Vermouth
First Bite: Giordano’s
By: Stephanie March | Posted: 07/25/2014
Heyday received four stars from Rick Nelson in the Strib yesterday. I love the heck out of that place, and Dara certainly agreed, calling it a “true original.” I’m grateful that we don’t have to use stars, because I think it’s confusing and I think you lose some of the context with that simple of a label. I know he wrote some beautiful contextual things about them in the review, I read it all, but did everyone stop to read after they saw the rank? In the end I think it’s a gift and a curse. Because while it’s wonderful to be included in with the elite and the best, with all the good business that brings, I think it also creates an expectation that must be met every single day, every single time. If a server is a bit cranky and off, guests can sometimes forgive that at a 3 star place, but with 4 stars, don’t they assume perfection? It’s tough, because I know that there is no such thing as absolute perfection in the restaurant biz, because restaurants are made of people. And people be crazy, and you often can’t fix crazy until crazy has already been unleashed on your guests. But when you label them with 100 percent and an A+, isn’t perfection what people expect?
Sandcastle’s bigass patio is open! And its Fried Chicken Friday starts at 5 p.m., chums. That’s three pieces of bone-in fried chix and a drop biscuit with smoked maple butter for $9.
SO MUCH BEER this weekend: All Pints North in Duluth, Sociable CiderWerks NE Brewers Block Party, Tour de Fat in Loring,
It’s RIBFEST this weekend down at Mystic Lake. Free music, ribs from all over the U.S., plus beer and barbecue a plenty. DeRusha, Jack Reibel, Sue Zelickson, and I are among the rib judges, so I’m in for a saucy good time.
If you’re a fan of Filipino foods and lament the serious lack of them in town, you should check out The SALO Project. Yana G. is traveling the country with a goal of cooking pop-up Filipino feasts in all 50 states, and she’s here on Sunday cooking a traditional five course family–style dinner for $50. Sign up to find out the location. It’s BYOB, but the potential menu includes foods wrapped in banana leafs that you eat with your hands, SPAM fried rice, perhaps pancit and maybe lumpia! (If you haven’t heard of Feastly, it’s a site where local home cooks throw dinners for people.)
If you have any sort of love for elote (mine is strong) you’ll want to get down to El Burrito Mercado this Sunday for the 35th Anniversary Party! Just try to get out of that store without a tub of salsa and a piñata tucked under each arm. There will also be a beer and margarita garden, tons of food, mariachi bands, and dancing.
Check out FLOW Northside this weekend for an arts crawl through some very interesting spaces. Get your food fix tonight at the underground dinner hosted by Dinner on the Farm or at the West Broadway Farmers' Market tomorrow where the Travailians will be selling hot dogs, then tomorrow there’s food trucks and a beer garden at the KMOJ stage at Broadway & Penn, plus Boom Island Brewing’s taproom is open all day with live music and trucks.
Don’t forget about the Little Mekong Night Market on Saturday.
Hey, who doesn’t want a 'Sotapitcher?
Stephanie March is Mpls.St.Paul Magazine’s food and dining editor. See bio
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