Let’s Get Happy! Soberfish

tempura and spicy salmon at soberfish

So many things about Soberfish would suggest a lack of focus. The Seward neighborhood restaurant has all the hallmarks of pan-Asian fusion confusion. Except, that is, for where it counts the most. The name, first announced as Drunken Sake, and then Drunken Fish, finally landed on something that not only makes no sense, but gives a diner [...]

Eat This Now! Gerhard’s Brats at Surdyk’s

gerhards brats social

Gerhard Riautschnig says that cast iron pans are the way to cook his käsewurst. I spoke to the sausage maker about what makes a good brat for Growler Issue 14, and he stressed simplicity. Just heat up his brats in some simmering water, he says, and serve with mustard and crusty bread. But the cheese [...]

Truck to Table: Minnesota food trucks are going brick-and-mortar


As the food truck boom matures, ambitious vendors are turning to brick and mortar establishments for growth and visibility. By John Garland Photos by Daniel Murphy I lounge on the patio of what will soon be Hola Arepa at the corner of 35th and Nicollet in South Minneapolis. It’s late April, with mild chill sweeping [...]

Rituals of Coffee: How Do You Take It?


Everything you need to know to make great coffee. By Emily McIntyre Coffee was first discovered—so the story goes—when an Ethiopian goatherd named Kaldi noticed his flock was jumpier than usual when they grazed in a certain patch of berries. When Kaldi tried them for himself, the foundation for one of the world’s greatest beverages [...]

28 New Food Items at The Minnesota State Fair


Summer in the cities has just begun, but that doesn’t mean it’s too early to start thinking about the must-try new food items at the “Great Minnesota Get-Together.” With nearly 500 foods available at 300 different food concessions throughout the fairgrounds, you have to go to the fair with a plan of action. Here’s a look [...]

Eat This Now! Prairie Dogs at Sawatdee Eden Prairie

Chicken Sausage at Prairie Dogs

We stopped by First Course Bistro yesterday to chat with Craig Johnson and Tobie Nidetz about their ever-evolving sausage odyssey, Prairie Dogs. Their search for a permanent storefront has been a trying process, and their current hopes envision an Uptown location if everything falls into place. In the mean time, they’ll continue to pop-up all [...]

Eat This Now! Vermicelli Salad at Lao Thai

John Garland // Growler Magazine

We’ve been riding the new rail this week, talking to business owners about the completed corridor and getting their thoughts on the future. We’ll bring you more of that next week on the site. For now, a quick reminder to get out there and support the businesses that have suffered the last few years. For [...]

Eat This Now! Octopus at Coup d’Etat

Octopus at Coup d'Etat

I have to start moving past the name. Coup d’Etat. COO DAY TAH. I can’t decide if a moniker meaning violent, radical change is a tad pretentious or, as it stands on the grave of Cowboy Slim’s, perfectly appropriate. Ultimately, my fear is that it could belie the tasty, non-radical eats within. But there’s no doubt [...]

Eat This Now! Porchetta at Terzo Vino Bar

Porchetta sandwich at Terzo Vino Bar

By John Garland The Broder family continues to expand their culinary empire on the corner of 50th and Penn, and their newest addition should make your lunchtime rotation if you work anywhere near the vicinity. They’ve carved a window into the side of Terzo Vino Bar facing the parking lot. From said window, they’re dishing [...]

Roasted Pork Loin, Sweet Corn Succotash, Soy Beans, Summer Squash, and Herbed Crème Fraiche


Also included in this Farm to Table recipe by Dinner on the Farm: Summer Tomatoes, Anchovy Aioli, Croutons, and Basil. By Jon Wipfli Photos by Daniel Murphy In my experience, the most pleasant foods to eat are those that are so fresh that you hardly have to handle them to make a great dish. These two [...]

Sneak Peek: Tiny Diner

Smoked turkey liver mousse at Tiny Diner

By John Garland “You guys want to go up to the roof and check out the bees?” Chef T.J. Rawitzer finds a ladder and brings us to the top of Tiny Diner, the new Kim Bartmann restaurant on 38th Street in Powderhorn. From that vantage, we can see a hyper-ambitious project taking shape. Two weeks [...]

Eat This Now! Lamb Tartare at Heyday

Lamb Tartare at Heyday

By John Garland A “small plates” menu is a constant tug-of-war between artistry and value. It’s a line that Heyday is walking with purpose, where a smart order of two or three items can be immensely satisfying to the stomach and wallet. Based on the La Belle Vie lineage of its key players, Heyday was expected to impress right [...]

Beer/Cheese: Sommer Vice & Toma della Rocca

Steel Toe Sommer Vice and Toma della Rocca

 By John Garland Toma della Rocca exists, most profoundly for me, in a very specific memory. It was buried under a mountain of others from the fall of 2005, until I read Michael Paterniti’s 2013 book The Telling Room, in which the author ventures to Spain in search of a legendary Castillian cheese called Páramo de Guzmán. When [...]

Eat This Now! Nettle Tortelloni at Brasserie Zentral

Nettle Tortelloni at Brasserie Zentral

By John Garland You’ll have to navigate through some scaffolding to get into Brasserie Zentral. Construction on the Soo Line Building at 5th and Marquette continues on, but once you step inside, that’s where the work-in-progress ends. Just a few weeks into service, Zentral is a den of humming efficiency and a confident contender for [...]

Eat This Now! Shiitake Cachapas at Hola Arepa

Hola-Arepa-Shiitake-Cachapas copy

By John Garland You knew about their gorgeous arepas. And you had to guess that by luring Dan Oskey away from Strip Club Meat & Fish in St. Paul, the cocktail program was going to be killer. And you’d be right on both counts. But what remained to be seen about Hola Arepa‘s new bricks-and-mortar [...]