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Twin Cities Dining Experts Share the Shockers of 2019

We did not see that one coming

On a board of wood is a burger topped with cheese, thick cut bacon, lettuce on a buttery bun with fries and ketchup in a metal container on the side
The aptly named Perfect Burger at Williards
Willards/Facebook

In keeping with Eater tradition, we like to finish out the year, by looking back at the year that was along with a collection of local media experts. Already we’ve talked about restaurant standbys, newcomers, neighborhoods and attempted to sum up the year in one word. Now, we share the biggest surprises of the year. Today, we asked, “What was the biggest dining surprise of 2019?”

Jess Fleming of the Pioneer Press, “That perch is finally catching on in Minnesota!”

Sharyn Jackson of the Star Tribune, “How many great places are opening in the suburbs and beyond.”

Mike Marcotte of Twin Cities Live, “That Restoration Hardware can open up a restaurant.”

Sarah Bumble and Em Cassel of City Pages, “The Chewery’s breakfast sandwich.”

Nancy Ngo of the Pioneer Press, “Matchstick —turns out the team behind popular watering holes in the metro excel at foodie stuff too.”

James Norton, food editor of Growler Magazine, “I went back to the reopened Lucky Cricket (which I panned hard after it opened) to give it a second chance, and - lo and behold - they’ve really turned a lot of things around. The majority of the food was good, and their new spin on fried rice (black fried rice, of all things) was downright excellent.”

Joy Summers, editor Eater Twin Cities, “That rural areas are getting some chef-y attention. Willard’s is essential Minnesota dining from Erick Harcey in downtown Cambridge. JD Fratzke’s Falls Landing does what he does so well - river city kid with big city talent creating wholly comforting food that could only exist in this place. Estelle’s Eatery & Bar in Harmony. Duluth’s Lincoln Park revitalization - even my hometown of Grand Rapids has new, notable eats in a really cool brewery. I love a road trip through this gorgeous state and there have never been more destinations.”

Lucky Cricket

1607 West End Boulevard, , MN 55416 (952) 206-6830 Visit Website

Willards

133-135 Main Street South, , MN 55008 (763) 689-5600 Visit Website

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