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 that opening a restaurant in Uptown calls for a measure of lighthearted ostentatiousness. Watching the neighborhood’s dining scene mature over the last ten years has been like watching a puppy grow into its paws – a high-energy, always endearing process with some curious and comical missteps along the way.
It’s good to hear that Bradstreet Craftshouse is already focused on being less snobby in preparation for their move to Uptown. And despite Coup d’Etat’s name (and maybe the giant menu looming on the focus wall above the kitchen like it’s Michelangelo’s The Last Judgement) a closer look happily reveals more substance than show.
A handful of visits in the last few weeks have been exceedingly pleasant. We have no complaints about the helpful staff, a breezy patio in prime people-watching territory, and Jesse Held’s cocktail list. Our friends in the food media (Dara, Rick, City Pages, Heavy Table) seem to be mixed about the entrees at Coup. But here at The Growler, we’re more concerned with beer munchies and can report good things about the small plates.
The bone marrow and arancini are definitely worth the trip, but the octopus ($12) is something you need to get at right away. The texture of baby octopus is a tricky needle to thread, and Coup pulls it off with aplomb. Two or three of them adorn each baguette slice, bathed in harissa and sitting atop a cool swath of herbed greek yogurt. Alongside a $4 happy hour pint (3pm-6pm, daily) it makes for a solid evening-starter. Maybe Uptown could stand a touch more radical change?
Coup d’Etat, 2923 Girard Ave. S., Minneapolis, MN, 612-354-3575.