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Where to Eat on Christmas Eve and Day in MPLS, '13

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Ready or not, Christmas is two weeks away. Perhaps you have some figgy pudding already in the works, but if not, there are plenty of local restaurants that will be open and ready to serve on both Christmas Eve and Christmas Day, whether you desire the more traditional route of prime rib and popovers, some casual diner grub, or something a little different—lobster rolls, Tex-Mex, or Russian dumplings. Here, we've mapped a dozen options for Christmas Eve and Christmas Day dining, along with their festivity factor, reservation availability, and operating hours.

Are you headed to another restaurant on Christmas Eve or Christmas Day? Let us know in the comments.


Lucy Nieboer

· All Eater Maps [Eater MPLS]

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Note: Restaurants on this map are listed geographically.

Bar Louie

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Festivity Factor: Good for a post-family holiday wind-down, Bar Louie is best known for its long martini list and small plates selection. A cocktail and some sliders alone at the bar sound just right after a week of relatives. Reservation Availability: Does not accept reservations. Eve Hours: Closed Day Hours: 7 p.m. - 2 a.m.

Common Roots Cafe

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Festivity Factor: A sunny corner cafe, Common Roots maintains a simple and seasonal menu. They get their fair share of holiday feel-good vibes with a mostly local, mostly organic standard featuring entrees like the roasted sweet potato melt sandwich and feta mushroom pie with harissa sauce. Reservations: Does not accept reservations.m Eve Hours: 8 a.m. - 3 p.m. Day Hours: 9 a.m. - 2 p.m.
Festivity Factor: This sake brewery has the two Christmas party essentials — booze and finger food. Try miso popcorn and a sake cocktail or pork-belly bites and a beer from the local-brew-only taps for a casual Christmas happy hour. Reservations: Highly Available Eve Hours: 12 p.m. - 3 p.m. Day Hours: Closed

The Bad Waitress Diner & Coffee Shop

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Festivity Factor: The usually retro kitschy decor at the BW steps up its game with twinkle lights and snowflake accents this time of year, making for playful brunch surroundings. Seasonally flavored fritattas and pancakes paired with Spyhouse coffee make this spot a good choice for fuelling up before that last-minute, all-day wrap-a-thon. Reservations: Does not accept reservations. Eve Hours: 9 a.m. - 3 p.m. Day Hours: Closed

Little Tijuana Restaurant

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Festivity Factor: This tex-mex joint covers the holiday bases — they’ve got a full bar including four flavors of daiquiris, and huge carb-y entrees in the $10 range, making appetizers and desserts a splurge possibility. Chocolate chimichangas might be the new Christmas tradition. Reservation Availability: Does not accept reservations. Eve Hours: 11 a.m. - 2 a.m. Day Hours: 11 a.m. - 2 a.m.

Buca di Beppo

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Festivity Factor: The Disneyland of Italian-American cuisine, Buca dishes up overflowing family-style dishes of vodka penne, chicken parmigiana, and sausage with peppers among other favorites in two sizes — “serves two or more” or “serves four or more.” Go with a big group to avoid leftover-overload — Santa probably doesn’t need a side of baked ziti with his milk and cookies this year. Reservation Availability: High Availability Eve Hours: 11 a.m. - 11 p.m. Day Hours: 11 a.m. - 11 p.m.

Smack Shack

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Festivity Factor: Smack Shack isn’t rolling out any extravagant specials this year, but there’s hardly a need with New England lobster featured as one of the most prominent ingredients on the menu. Get it in guacamole, on a roll, boiled, or in a seafood stew for a coastal Christmas meal. Reservation Availability: High Availability Eve Hours: 11 a.m. - 1 a.m. Day Hours: 11 a.m. - 1 a.m.

FireLake Grill House & Cocktail Bar

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Festivity factor: Go the traditional route at this MOA adjacent spot with a four course prime rib dinner Maple popovers, a warm spinach salad, hearty prime rib with potatoes, and a chocolate toffee pudding cost $36.95 for adults and $12.95 for kids. Reservations: High Availability Eve Hours: 6 a.m. - 10 p.m. Day Hours: 6 a.m. - 10 p.m. (Holiday prix fixe menu from noon to 8 p.m. Christmas Day only)
Festivity Factor: Pagoda has tons of Malaysian, Chinese, and Korean dishes to mix and match for a family-style meal out, making this a good spot for a clan of picky eaters. For the really hungry holiday diners this year, they’re gifting a whole roast duck to any customer that spends more than $100. Reservations: Highly Available Eve Hours: 11 a.m. - 11 p.m. Day Hours: 10 a.m. - 11 p.m.

Cecil's Delicatessen & Bakery

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Festivity Factor: A good choice for those not celebrating, Cecil’s is a casual spot with a huge selection of traditional deli fare. Try a salty reuben with swiss, a huge bowl of chicken noodle matzo ball soup, or creamy cheese blintzes for a relaxed and filling winter meal. Reservation Availability: Does not accept reservations. Eve Hours: 9 a.m. - 3 p.m. Day Hours: 9 a.m. - 3 p.m.

Mickey's Diner

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Festivity Factor: This historic St. Paul spot is open 24 hours a day, 365 days a year to fulfill any midnight cravings on Christmas Eve. For a little solitude or a steaming stack of sweet blueberry pancakes on the way to the airport, it fits the bill. Reservations: Does not accept reservations. Eve Hours: 24/7 Day Hours: 24/7

Moscow on the Hill

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Festivity Factor: The rich, rib-sticking food here could make any meal seem like a holiday. There are “peasant” pork and beef dumplings smothered in cheese sauce for a new Christmas pick, or a beef tenderloin dinner with porcini sauce for a more standard meal. Any of the hearty entrees pairs well with a cocktail from the extensive vodka menu. Reservation Availability: Strongly recommended, available. Eve Hours: 11 a.m. - 11:30 p.m. (Kitchen closes at 10:30 p.m.) Day Hours: 4 p.m. - 11:30 p.m. (Kitchen closes at 10:30 p.m.)

Bar Louie

Festivity Factor: Good for a post-family holiday wind-down, Bar Louie is best known for its long martini list and small plates selection. A cocktail and some sliders alone at the bar sound just right after a week of relatives. Reservation Availability: Does not accept reservations. Eve Hours: Closed Day Hours: 7 p.m. - 2 a.m.

Common Roots Cafe

Festivity Factor: A sunny corner cafe, Common Roots maintains a simple and seasonal menu. They get their fair share of holiday feel-good vibes with a mostly local, mostly organic standard featuring entrees like the roasted sweet potato melt sandwich and feta mushroom pie with harissa sauce. Reservations: Does not accept reservations.m Eve Hours: 8 a.m. - 3 p.m. Day Hours: 9 a.m. - 2 p.m.

moto-i

Festivity Factor: This sake brewery has the two Christmas party essentials — booze and finger food. Try miso popcorn and a sake cocktail or pork-belly bites and a beer from the local-brew-only taps for a casual Christmas happy hour. Reservations: Highly Available Eve Hours: 12 p.m. - 3 p.m. Day Hours: Closed

The Bad Waitress Diner & Coffee Shop

Festivity Factor: The usually retro kitschy decor at the BW steps up its game with twinkle lights and snowflake accents this time of year, making for playful brunch surroundings. Seasonally flavored fritattas and pancakes paired with Spyhouse coffee make this spot a good choice for fuelling up before that last-minute, all-day wrap-a-thon. Reservations: Does not accept reservations. Eve Hours: 9 a.m. - 3 p.m. Day Hours: Closed

Little Tijuana Restaurant

Festivity Factor: This tex-mex joint covers the holiday bases — they’ve got a full bar including four flavors of daiquiris, and huge carb-y entrees in the $10 range, making appetizers and desserts a splurge possibility. Chocolate chimichangas might be the new Christmas tradition. Reservation Availability: Does not accept reservations. Eve Hours: 11 a.m. - 2 a.m. Day Hours: 11 a.m. - 2 a.m.

Buca di Beppo

Festivity Factor: The Disneyland of Italian-American cuisine, Buca dishes up overflowing family-style dishes of vodka penne, chicken parmigiana, and sausage with peppers among other favorites in two sizes — “serves two or more” or “serves four or more.” Go with a big group to avoid leftover-overload — Santa probably doesn’t need a side of baked ziti with his milk and cookies this year. Reservation Availability: High Availability Eve Hours: 11 a.m. - 11 p.m. Day Hours: 11 a.m. - 11 p.m.

Smack Shack

Festivity Factor: Smack Shack isn’t rolling out any extravagant specials this year, but there’s hardly a need with New England lobster featured as one of the most prominent ingredients on the menu. Get it in guacamole, on a roll, boiled, or in a seafood stew for a coastal Christmas meal. Reservation Availability: High Availability Eve Hours: 11 a.m. - 1 a.m. Day Hours: 11 a.m. - 1 a.m.

FireLake Grill House & Cocktail Bar

Festivity factor: Go the traditional route at this MOA adjacent spot with a four course prime rib dinner Maple popovers, a warm spinach salad, hearty prime rib with potatoes, and a chocolate toffee pudding cost $36.95 for adults and $12.95 for kids. Reservations: High Availability Eve Hours: 6 a.m. - 10 p.m. Day Hours: 6 a.m. - 10 p.m. (Holiday prix fixe menu from noon to 8 p.m. Christmas Day only)

Pagoda

Festivity Factor: Pagoda has tons of Malaysian, Chinese, and Korean dishes to mix and match for a family-style meal out, making this a good spot for a clan of picky eaters. For the really hungry holiday diners this year, they’re gifting a whole roast duck to any customer that spends more than $100. Reservations: Highly Available Eve Hours: 11 a.m. - 11 p.m. Day Hours: 10 a.m. - 11 p.m.

Cecil's Delicatessen & Bakery

Festivity Factor: A good choice for those not celebrating, Cecil’s is a casual spot with a huge selection of traditional deli fare. Try a salty reuben with swiss, a huge bowl of chicken noodle matzo ball soup, or creamy cheese blintzes for a relaxed and filling winter meal. Reservation Availability: Does not accept reservations. Eve Hours: 9 a.m. - 3 p.m. Day Hours: 9 a.m. - 3 p.m.

Mickey's Diner

Festivity Factor: This historic St. Paul spot is open 24 hours a day, 365 days a year to fulfill any midnight cravings on Christmas Eve. For a little solitude or a steaming stack of sweet blueberry pancakes on the way to the airport, it fits the bill. Reservations: Does not accept reservations. Eve Hours: 24/7 Day Hours: 24/7

Moscow on the Hill

Festivity Factor: The rich, rib-sticking food here could make any meal seem like a holiday. There are “peasant” pork and beef dumplings smothered in cheese sauce for a new Christmas pick, or a beef tenderloin dinner with porcini sauce for a more standard meal. Any of the hearty entrees pairs well with a cocktail from the extensive vodka menu. Reservation Availability: Strongly recommended, available. Eve Hours: 11 a.m. - 11:30 p.m. (Kitchen closes at 10:30 p.m.) Day Hours: 4 p.m. - 11:30 p.m. (Kitchen closes at 10:30 p.m.)

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