The Love of Leftovers Lost

Shelly's Woodroast
6501 Wayzata Blvd., St. Louis Park; (612) 541-9900
Hours: Sunday-Thursday 11:00 a.m.-10:00 p.m., Friday and Saturday till 11:00 p.m.; Sunday brunch 11:00 a.m.-3:00 p.m.; bar closes one hour later than kitchen

Lincoln Del
4401 W. 80th St., Bloomington; (612) 831-0780
Hours: Monday-Friday 6:45 a.m.-10:00 p.m. (Friday till midnight); Saturday 8:00 a.m.-midnight; Sunday 8:00 a.m.-10:00 p.m.

Buon Giorno
335 University Ave. E., St. Paul;
(651) 224-1816
Hours: Monday-Friday 9:00 a.m.-6:00 p.m., kitchen orders taken until 3:00 p.m. Saturday 9:00 a.m.-5:00 p.m., kitchen orders taken until 2:00 p.m.

Location Info


Shelly's Woodroast

6501 Wayzeta Blvd.
St. Louis Park, MN 55426

Category: Restaurant > American

Region: St. Louis Park

Buon Giorno Express

335 University Ave. E.
St. Paul, MN 55101

Category: Restaurant > Italian

Region: St. Paul (Downtown)

Cecils Delicatessen and Restaurant

651 Cleveland Ave. S.
St. Paul, MN 55116

Category: Restaurant > Deli

Region: Highland Park

Peter's Grill

114 S. 8th St.
Minneapolis, MN 55402

Category: Restaurant > American

Region: Minneapolis (Downtown)

651 Cleveland Ave. S., St. Paul; (651) 698-0334
Hours: Monday-Saturday 9:00 a.m.-9:30 p.m.; Sunday 8:30 a.m.-8:00 p.m.

Uptown Bar and Cafe
3018 Hennepin Ave. S., Mpls.; (612) 823-4719
Hours: Daily 8:00 a.m.-10:00 p.m., bar till 1:00 a.m.

Peter's Grill
114 Eighth St. S., Mpls.; (612) 333-1981
Hours: Monday-Friday 7:00 a.m.-8:00 p.m.; Saturday 8:00 a.m.-2:30 p.m.

Blue, blue, blue, I've been so blue lately, you can't even imagine. Or maybe you can. Picture yourself a wide-eyed child skipping around in a cornflower snowsuit, a turquoise Icee in one hand, a bouquet of bluebells in the other. The sky above is clear azure, and bluebirds flit about. Suddenly in drop the U.S. Marines, flinging bushels of ripe August blueberries before them in a hail of sweet, sweet vitamin-rich juice and healthful fiber. Shocked, you somersault into a ditch filled with a little bit of water and a whole lot of 2,000 Flushes toilet-tank inserts, and as you lie there, your Icee and the toilet-tank inserts running together in a neon haze, watching the paratroopers run by, you whimper up to the relentlessly blue sky: Why me, why me, why me?

Or something like that.

Unfortunately, there's no reason for these extreme blues. I know this for a fact, because just last week I brought my medulla oblongata down to Arkham Asylum for a quick fluff and fold and they said I had at least another 70,000 miles. No, my problem was more serious than a mere kink in the brain stem: I had Anticipatory Leftover Turkey Shortage Anxiety Disorder (ALTSAD).

See, due to the miracle of time travel (and press deadlines) I am speaking to you from the distant past, a full week before Thanksgiving, and there is not, as yet, any actual leftover shortage. But the mere concept has alarmed me from the top of my skull to the skin of my foie gras.

I'm fearful not just for myself and my own possibly inadequate sandwich supply: I'm Florence Nightingale in my selflessness, terrified for all denied adequate leftoverage. I fear for those whose girlfriends are vegetarians; those who were mere Thanksgiving guests; those who had to work on Thursday; and, of course, those whose golden retrievers snared the remains of the bird and had their way with it.

Wracked by ALTSAD, my every waking moment feverish with the rituals and tics that mark the disease (juggling eggs, stripping pipes) I knew the only way to exorcise my demons was to force these Twin Towns to yield up their best turkey sandwiches. These sandwiches--which, needless to say, had to be made from birds roasted and carved on the premises--would serve as substitutes should Thanksgiving fail to unfold according to my personal schedule: Complete Frenzy, Triumphant Holiday, Gentle Coasting Slope of Ever-Diminishing Leftovers.

My first stop on the road to treatment was the Lincoln Del, that citadel of sandwiches on 80th Street in view of I-494. It was a chill night when I stepped inside the terra cotta, beige, and burgundy confines of the gorgeously odd restaurant with the Nixon-era décor, full bar, and panoramic view of a thousand freeway lanes. "It reminds me of...what? Pulp Fiction?" I asked my dining companion. "Fargo," he said, and rolled his eyes. Of course the Del is too period-perfect and beloved to have gone uncelebrated, which is why on a Friday night bowls of matzo-ball soup--set, in that inimitable Del style, like watermelons in their saucers--were wobbling out to patrons all around me.

I ordered a Manhattan ($4.45), and it arrived with all the sting of wet gravel. The turkey club sandwich ($9.95) proved to be a beautiful thing--four inches high, made of freshly carved slices of meat, a triple layer of Del-baked bread, meaty bacon, lettuce, tomatoes, and loads of mayonnaise. The Del fries alongside were better than I remembered--salty, toasty, utterly crisp.

But then the blues took hold of me. Was that portrait of the melancholy clown staring at me? And why on earth had I agreed to pay $3.95 for a knish? For $3.95, a knish should get up, march around the table, and recite Emily Dickinson. But this one wouldn't. And it was full of chives. Chives. Like it was trying to pretend it was some kind of steak-house baked potato. I'd show it.

There was also something not quite right with my hot turkey sandwich ($9.65): Yes, the mashed potatoes were buttery and good, and yes, the thick slices of turkey were hot and moist, and the bread was sweet and fresh. But the gravy. The gravy had an acrid, artificial hint to it. Was it mocking me? Sitting there silky and beige, allied with the chive knish, plotting?

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