Stopping by Al-Amir Bakery






Peer through the wide windows at Al-Amir Bakery, on the corner of Central and 26th Avenues in Northeast Minneapolis. You’ll see a handful of tables, a pastry case filled with baklava and an assortment of beverages, and huge United States and Iraqi flags displayed on opposite walls. Go inside and meet Amir, the owner and head […]




Five Tables and the Sea: The restorative simplicity of Anne Majourel






Steve Hoffman, our Minnesota Spoon columnist, has spent the last five months in the Languedoc region of southern France, and submitted this tribute to his favorite restaurant in the world for our Travel Issue. What if a restaurant existed on a steep hill just outside a French fishing port? And what if this restaurant featured […]




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Supatra’s Thai Holiday: The longest month of the year






It happens at the same time every winter, but it always feels like a shock. Supatra’s Thai Cuisine, located at 967 West 7th Street in St. Paul, locks the doors, turns off the lights, and a posts a sign in the window that strikes fear and hunger into the hearts the entire staff of The Growler: “Supatra’s Thai […]




Cold Weather Cooking with Beth Dooley: Chicken & Dumpling Soup






This time of year when the tips of our noses are drippy and cold, and we’re tired, achy, and chilled to the bone, who doesn’t crave chicken soup? It’s brothy and light, satisfyingly simple, and innocently good. It’s the global go-to for those wintery blues, and just about every cuisine has its own version. Here’s […]




A Minnesota foods timeline






Curious about the roots of Minnesota’s diverse food traditions, The Growler embarked on a trip back through time, starting with the state’s earliest inhabitants, to understand the moments in history that shaped how and what Minnesotans eat today. 9000–5000 BC: Paleoindians in this part of the world hunted large game animals, such as mammoth, mastodon, and […]




Amber waves of heritage grain: Minnesota’s historic grains and seeds are seeing a revival






Across the northern Heartland, thanks to local organic farmers, small producers, and community gardeners, a renaissance of place-based culinary traditions are redefining the way we eat and think about our food. The smallest element in this is the most important—our seeds. Of the millions of seed varieties once available to our grandparents, 97 percent have […]




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Minnesota Spoon: Sameh Wadi’s last meal






“First you pour the arak,” insists Sameh Wadi. “Then you add the water. And only then do you add the ice.” Outside the windows of Jon Wipfli’s kitchen, the first big winter snow sits thick on a pair of spruce trees. It is an unexpected setting for a round of arak—a Middle Eastern version of […]




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The Rice Table: A chef, a YouTuber, and the identity of Lao food in Minnesota






During a lunchtime feast at the Hmongtown Marketplace, I ask Christina Tia, a YouTuber with over 10,000 subscribers to her Lao cooking channel, House of X Tia, about her favorite Lao restaurant in the Twin Cities. “There isn’t one,” she says. “But, what about…” “Nope,” she says, searching among our spread for the plate of […]




The Growler presents Pha Khao: A Lao Pop-Up






Update: Due to overwhelming demand, two additional seatings have been added on Friday, Jan. 20 at 6:00pm and 8:30pm. Buy tickets here. In our January issue, we’ve been learning about Lao food with Ann Ahmed of Lemon Grass Thai Cuisine and Christina Tia of House of X Tia, and we thought our readers might enjoy a chance to do […]




2016 Kind-Of-A-Big-Deal Readers’ Choice Award Winners






Drumroll, please, for it’s time to announce the results of The Growler’s Kind-of-a-Big-Deal Readers’ Choice Awards. These are the restaurants driving a delectable food revolution throughout the state. The beers we happily raise our glasses for. The parks we escape to and explore. The music innovators and venues that make us dance, and the well-crafted […]




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Rondo’s Blues: How Golden Thyme Coffee & Café became a destination for discourse in St. Paul’s black community






Where is the heart of the black community, currently, in the Twin Cities? Where do African Americans gather to engage and deliberate, publicly, about issues pressing them today? If you had asked me 10 years ago—before my relocation to Harlem—I would’ve told you El-Amin’s on Broadway Avenue, Big E’s Soul Food on Nicollet Avenue, maybe […]




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Vote for the 2016 Kind-of-a-Big-Deal Awards






You, the readers, have casted your votes for the 2016 Kind-of-a-Big-Deal Awards. Winners will be announced in The Growler’s December 2016 issue and online in early December.




Kimchee and KFC: Young Joni’s Ann Kim and Adam Gorski on new American food traditions






So there’s Young, and there’s Joni. Two moms. One attentive and skillful Korean family cook: Young. One affectionate and bibulous North Dakota family host: Joni. Right? Okay, so there’s this restaurant: Young Joni. Coming soon. Northeast Minneapolis. Front dining room in the spirit of Young: Wood-fired ovens, open grill, shareable meals, generosity. Back bar in […]




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Cold Weather Cooking with Beth Dooley: Autumn Salads






Editor’s Note: This is the first in a monthly series of recipes in which Beth Dooley, author of “In Winter’s Kitchen”, will talk about enjoying the bounty of the Upper Midwest even in the cold, barren months ahead. Who says salad season ends with Labor Day? Come late in the season, the farmers markets are […]




Grow a Farmer Fund raising money for low-interest loans to farmers






There’s nothing better than fresh produce from a local farmers’ market. Whether it’s juicy tomatoes or perfectly globular pumpkins, farm-to-table foods are seasonal delights. But the reality is that small-scale farming is hard work and earning a living from it can be even harder. From land prices to equipment, animal housing to securing bank financing, […]