The neighborhood of Nokomis East is a small town with everything you need, down-to-earth and culinary rich if you know where to look. A neighborhood that's quietly building its lineup of restaurants and craft beer haunts, from the delightfully uncrowded shores of Lake Nokomis and the thundering beauty of Minnehaha Falls to the well-stocked vintage shops along Minnehaha Avenue. Find great burgers, fried chicken, cupcakes, Midwestern-style pizza, and more.Read More
Where to Eat and Drink After Pond Hockey Around Lake Nokomis
Discover all the great eats on the east side of the lake
1. Fat Lorenzo's
This quintessential neighborhood Italian restaurant is where paper tablecloths come with a set of crayons. The walls are covered in homey murals. Huge slices of scratch-made lasagna are chock-full of every kind of meat you can imagine. Hoagies overflow with massive meatballs arrive dripping with piping-hot red sauce and provolone cheese. Best of all, huge portions don't come with a huge price tag so you'll leave with your belly and wallet comfortably stuffed.
2. Nokomis Beach Coffee Cafe
Minneapolis, MN 55417
One of the most consistently busy places in the neighborhood is the Nokomis Beach Cafe. You'll know you're there by the jolly canoe-planter marking its place on the corner of 50th and 28th. One word to sum up why NBC is on the list? Waffles. Two more words? All. Day. Plus there are mile-high sandwiches made to order in front of your drooling face with bread baked same-day from A Baker's Wife just down the street. Friendly baristas top it all off with a specialty 'Noko' coconut-inspired mocha or cold press brewed to perfection. With huge picture windows and only one block between you and Lake Nokomis, it's no surprise Nokomis Beach Coffee is a favorite of the neighborhood locals.
3. Northbound Smokehouse and Brewpub
Fresh fish, 18-hour porketta and craft beer are all smoked in-house to perfection. The cozy interior has huge picture windows and hop vines shading the patio. The hand-cut fries are just the right amount of crisp, and between the sizeable selection of house and guest taps, there's a beer on the menu to pair with any dish. This brewpub has friendly, fast service and outrageously flavorful food.
4. A Baker's Wife Pastry Shop
Minneapolis, MN 55406
A Baker's Wife is where you wake up early to go stand in line for warm pastries. With cake donuts that check all the boxes—warm, soft, smooth, airy, sugary, and fresh—this no-frills bakery keeps it simple and cheap. Show up early, get two warm cinnamon-sugar donuts for less than a dollar, and enjoy alongside the life-sized cow statue as they melt in your mouth.
5. Buster's On 28th
Go to Buster's for happy hour. You'll thank me later. With a tap selection over 20 craft beers deep and a happy hour that offers better-than-average pub fare—think seasonally-inspired mussels and calamari fried to perfection—Buster's is a beer lover's heaven and a neighborhood staple.
6. A Cupcake Social
This adorable shop sells a creativie, variety of cupcake flavors. Moist, rich cake and perfectly-paired frosting adorn an ever-expanding selection of taste combinations.
7. Ted Cook's 19th Hole Barbeque
Simple and to-the-point barbecue include ribs that are meaty and fall-off-the-bone tender. The sauce is the perfect balance of sweet, spicy, vinegary goodness. Only order hot if you can handle it, even the mild has a bit of a kick.
8. Tacos Lupita
Minneapolis, MN 55417
An ideal place to bring a giant appetite with a menu dominated by affordable burritos and tacos. The menudo and pozole are a good best on cold days, post hockey game or jaunt around the lake.
9. Berry Sweet Kitchen
The food at Berry Sweet Kitchen is made from scratch daily, food is fresh, colorful and flavorful. Start at the breakfast menu overflowing with fluffy-crisp waffles, rich french toast and a baby-sized burrito stuffed to the breaking point. Finish with the chef's specialty, decadent desserts lining the display case.
10. Bull's Horn Food and Drink
It’s dive bar with a heart of gold. Bull’s Horn is the work of two lifelong industry folks, Amy Greeley, with her undeniable charm and warm hospitality and her husband Doug Flicker, one of the most respected chefs in Minneapolis, long known for mind-blowing fine dining. The duo decided to ditch the high-end world, or a cozy neighborhood eatery with pickle brine fried chicken, affordable beers, free popcorn, and an awesome jukebox.
11. Sassy Spoon
Minneapolis, MN 55417
This restaurant is nothing short of an ultra-fresh umami-bomb. Creative, delicious, and surprisingly good for you—everything on Chef Tamara Brown's menu is gluten-free and locally and sustainably sourced. While it's difficult to pick just one thing from a menu that incorporates everything from American classics to Asian-inspired fare, don't skip the miso-braised pork. Just, don't.
12. Town Hall Lanes
A chill, laid back neighborhood pub with bowling lanes, Town Hall’s lineup of beer, and elevated bar food.
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This modest restaurant is serving some of the best lomein around. Dumpling began as a farmers market stand before finding this permanent location, and it’s built a reputation as a small Asian eatery is an under sung gem.
14. Parkway Pizza
This is the pizza of Southeast Minneapolis legend. The original home of Parkway Pizza, its Minnehaha location is spacious-yet-cozy. Serving up proper midwestern square slices, this self-titled 'Minneapolis Style Pizza' comes with pretty much any topping you could ever want on a pizza. Top it off with Parkway's excellent beer selection.