I’m not picky when it comes to drink of choice. I love a day filled with breweries in the Northeast (HeadFlyer is my current favorite) and I love going to wine bars with live music (hello, Troubadour.) But sometimes you’re just in the mood for a properly made cocktail. Here are my favorite spots in the Twin Cities to get exactly that.
Saint Dinette (St. Paul)
Saint Dinette is elegant but approachable at the same time. I’ve had cocktails at SD on several different occasions. I’ve drunk their bloody (topped with an everything bagel) while devouring their famous cheeseburger at brunch. I’ve sipped on their La Petite Britannia while having a nice dinner with loved ones. I’ve quite literally inhaled their Dinette Old Fashioned (made with the finest ice from Minnesota Pure Clear Ice – I’ve recently become fascinated with where restaurants procure their ice… but this is a separate blog post for another time.) Saint Dinette staff can recommend the perfect cocktail based on your preference and provide you delicious, savory food to go along with it.
Tattersall is a distillery that was practically instantly famous upon opening. The owners came from different backgrounds – one comes from the financial industry, the other from several great bars across the Twin Cities (Strip Club Meat & Fish, Hola Arepa….) Together they make an awesome team that produces quality spirits (and cocktails in their cocktail room!) The space is gorgeous with high ceilings, rustic leather couches, and beautiful chandeliers. Tattersall seems to always be packed, and their patio is killer on warm days. It’s hard for me to pick a favorite drink from Tattersall, especially because favorite cocktails vary based on preferences. But I personally love their version of the Mule and their Bootleg with vodka, lemon, lime, basil, honey, and jasmine. Their Salty Dog is also delicious on a hot day. Regardless of your preferences, if you’re a cocktail lover, I can promise you will have no regrets after trying Tattersall.
Hola Arepa (South Minneapolis)
From the outside, Hola Arepa might not look like a place that has top-notch cocktails. But this couldn’t be farther from the truth. Hola Arepa knows how to have fun with their bar program, and they have several cocktails to show for it (see: Boozy Slushies.) Their cocktails are affordable (most will cost you around ~$9 each) and all of them will transport you to a poolside bar near a relaxing beach. I have a lot of favorites, but my top three are: Locked Up Abroad (coconut rum, lime, pineapple), You Can Rum But You Can’t Hide Slushie (rum, orange liqueur, grapefruit), and Maravillas Margaria (on tap.) Spend your next beautiful summer night trying Hola Arepa’s cocktails from their breezy, beachy bar.
Spoon & Stable (North Loop/Warehouse)
Obviously my list of best cocktail spots would not be complete without mentioning Spoon & Stable. Is there anything better than sitting at Spoon & Stable’s cozy bar in the dead of winter, blocking out the whipping wind and negative degree temperatures by drinking a delicious Hot Dark and Stormy? And how about in the summer, when S&S has their large, floor to ceiling window open to let the light and breeze into the bar area while you enjoy a Summer Tonic in a large glass with pieces of fresh fruit floating alongside the massive ice cubes? The point is that Spoon & Stable is always a good idea – winter or summer, day or night. The bartenders at Spoon & Stable are arguably the best in the state, and they can make you just about anything to cater to your preferences. I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again, the bar is the best place to be at Spoon & Stable. Yes, you can get the same drinks when seated in the dining room, but there’s something about interacting with the bartenders as they make your drink. Plus, the bar menu is killer (cheese curd stuffed brat with apple and fennel slaw with a Summer Tonic anyone?) If you love Spoon & Stable’s drink menu, make sure to try out Bellecour’s.