Every year Eater reaches out to friends who cover the food scene and ask what their best —and worst — meals of the past year have been. Today local media folks and serious culinary fans are weighing in on which new restaurants they found themselves returning to time and again. Today we ask, which ones delivered above and beyond exceptional dining?
What were the top restaurant newcomers of 2018?
Bradley Traynor, myTalk 107.1 host the Colleen & Bradley Show; restaurant critic Lavender Magazine
Popol Vuh and Hai Hai (even though it opened Nov. 2017)
Colleen Lindstrom, myTalk 107.1 host the Colleen & Bradley Show
In Bloom. Thomas Boemer and Nick Rancone are geniuses.
Nancy Ngo, Pioneer Press Restaurant Reporter
In Bloom, Colita, Rose Street Patisserie in St. Paul, Thai Street Market, Mi Casa Su Casa
Elizabeth Ries, co-host Twin Cities Live
Cov Edina and LAT14 in Golden Valley
Mike Marcotte, Give Me the Mike and KSTP’s Guy About Town
I need to trek over to Golden Valley and visit Lat14. Not sure why I haven’t been there yet. [books reservation]
Hai Hai opened in 2017, but it was late in the year. Who’s counting, anyway?
I love all the collaboration inside Keg & Case. In Bloom, Revival. And you have to visit the smaller businesses -- Spinning Wylde cotton candy, Sweet Science ice cream.
Stephanie Hansen, co-host Weekly Dish
Popol Vuh, Hyacinth, Martina, Surly Pizza and In Bloom
Joy Summers, Editor Eater Twin Cities
There were a lot of newcomers to love this year. I just went back to Colita and was knocked out by the stunning and delicious dishes (and drinks) there. In Bloom is becoming a habit. Lat 14 brings the yum. Grand Catch is a blast for eating with your fingers. Plus, it’s early, but Jamie Malone’s elegant takeover of Eastside is exactly right for after work meet ups with friends or coworkers. Get there now before the reservations are impossible to snag.
Jason DeRusha, WCCO host DeRusha Eats
This year was INCREDIBLE for new restaurants. It will be remembered as one of the best in recent history. In Bloom should give Thomas Boemer a James Beard Award, Popol Vuh is elevating Mexican food in a truly exciting way, Colita came out of the gate with consistent deliciousness, Meyvn brought bagel excitement to LynLake, Grand Catch’s fascinating spice blends in the St. Paul fish boils, Fhima’s gives us a reason to be excited about dining in downtown Minneapolis. Wow!