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Best of

the Twin Cities

BEST LOCAL DELICACY

The Juicy Lucy

Just as Geno's and Pat's stubbornly battle for the title of Best Cheesesteak in Philadelphia, so too are Matt's and the 5-8 Club locked in an eternal struggle over who created the cheeseburger that has been called "the Cheesesteak of south Minneapolis": the Juicy (or Jucy) Lucy. The sandwich exerts so great a gravitational pull on the local imagination that an entire website has sprung up to taste the Lucy in all its incarnations, with the eventual goal of naming the best in town. Matt's makes the best claim for the origin of the flavorful name. In a 1998 City Pages article, Cheryl Bristol, the daughter of bar founder and namesake Matt Bristol, told of how one day in 1954, a customer asked a cook to put two hamburger patties together and seal up some cheese in the middle. When the customer bit down on the novel concoction, he was heard to exclaim, "That's one juicy Lucy!" The purest incarnation of the Lucy features American cheese, though variations include blue, pepperjack, and Swiss, all of which are available at the 5-8, which serves USDA Choice Beef and fresh bakery baked buns, making it the gentleman's Juicy Lucy (if such a thing is possible). Wherever you get it, best to heed the warning and let it sit before you bite, lest you also be introduced to the pain of scalding hot cheese.

BEST BURGER (2006) Matt's Bar

Best Restaurant to Take Out-of-Towners (2017) Matt's Bar

BEST ASIAN GROCERY Dragon Star

BEST BAKERY A Baker's Wife

BEST BARBECUE Lee's and Dee's Barbeque Express

BEST BARISTA Andrew Kopplin, Kopplin's Coffee

BEST BARTENDER Nick Kosevich, Town Talk Diner

BEST BREAD Saint Agnes Baking Co.

BEST BREAKFAST Lucia's to Go

BEST BUBBLE TEA The Tea Garden

BEST BURGER Casper & Runyon's Nook

BEST BURRITO Taqueria Los Ocampo

BEST CANDY STORE United Noodles

BEST CHEAP EATS The Chicago Dog at the Bulldog

BEST CHEESE SELECTION Surdyk's

BEST CHEF Alex Roberts, Restaurant Alma

BEST CHICKEN WINGS Runyon's

BEST CHINESE RESTAURANT Evergreen

BEST CHOCOLATE Legacy Chocolates

BEST COCKTAILS Manhattans

BEST COFFEE BY THE POUND R. Miguel

BEST COFFEE HOUSE Uncommon Grounds Coffee House

BEST CORN CAKES Maria's Cafe

BEST DELICATESSEN Be'wiched

BEST DIM SUM Jun Bo

BEST DINER Mickey's Diner

BEST DOUGHNUTS A Baker's Wife

BEST DRUNK FOOD Downtown Pizza

BEST ECLECTIC BAR CROWD Palmer's Bar

BEST FARMERS' MARKET Mill City Farmers' Market

BEST FISH MARKET Coastal Seafoods

BEST FLAN La Sirena Gorda

BEST FREE CHIPS AND SALSA Baja Sol

BEST FRENCH RESTAURANT Meritage

BEST FRIES Red Stag Supper Club

BEST GAY BAR Jetset Bar

BEST GOURMET GROCERY Kowalski's

BEST GOURMET PIZZA Jay's Café

BEST HAPPY HOUR Lyle's Bar & Restaurant

BEST HOT DOGS The Wienery

BEST ICE CREAM PARLOR Crema Café

BEST INDIAN RESTAURANT Nala Pak

BEST IRISH PUB The Local

BEST ITALIAN RESTAURANT (CHEAP) Broders' Pasta Bar

BEST ITALIAN RESTAURANT (NOT CHEAP) I Nonni

BEST JAPANESE RESTAURANT Obento-ya

BEST KOREAN RESTAURANT Dong Yang

BEST LATTE May Day Cafe

BEST MARGARITA Salsa a la Salsa

BEST MARTINI St. Petersburg Restaurant and Vodka Bar

BEST MEXICAN RESTAURANT Masa

BEST MIDDLE EASTERN GROCERY Holy Land

BEST MIDDLE EASTERN RESTAURANT Saffron

BEST MOJITO Babalú

BEST NATURAL FOODS GROCERY Mississippi Market

BEST NEIGHBORHOOD BAR (MINNEAPOLIS) Grumpy's Bar & Grill

BEST NEIGHBORHOOD BAR (ST. PAUL) The Happy Gnome

BEST NEIGHBORHOOD CAFÉ—MINNEAPOLIS Café Levain

BEST NEIGHBORHOOD CAFÉ—ST. PAUL Tanpopo Noodle Shop

BEST NEW NEIGHBORHOOD BAR Buster's on 28th

BEST NEW RESTAURANT Heidi's

BEST OKTOBERFEST Gasthof zur Gemütlichkeit

BEST PANCAKES The Bad Waitress

BEST PIZZA Mesa

BEST RESTAURANT FOR A FIRST DATE Tea House

BEST RESTAURANT FOR APPETIZERS Café Maude

BEST RESTAURANT FOR DESSERT Cosmos

BEST RESTAURANT FOR LATE-NIGHT DINING 112 Eatery

BEST RESTAURANT FOR OUTDOOR DINING Stone's Restaurant and Lounge

BEST RESTAURANT FOR ROMANCE Barbette

BEST RESTAURANT TREND The neighborhood bistro

BEST RESTAURANT WHEN SOMEONE ELSE IS PAYING Chambers Kitchen

BEST RESTAURANT—MINNEAPOLIS La Belle Vie

BEST RESTAURANT—ST. PAUL Heartland

BEST SALAD The Craftsman Restaurant

BEST SAMOSA Hyderabad House

BEST SEAFOOD ENTRÉE Alaska Eatery and Glacier Bar

BEST SEAFOOD RESTAURANT Sea Salt

BEST SEASONAL ICE CREAM STAND Dave's Popcorn and Carmelcorn

BEST SOUL FOOD West Indies Soul

BEST STATE FAIR FOOD Walleye on a stick

BEST STEAK HOUSE Fogo de Chao

BEST STEAMED DUMPLINGS China Jen

BEST SUNDAY BRUNCH Good Day Café

BEST SUSHI Origami

BEST TACOS Dominguez Family Restaurant

BEST TAKE-HOME BEER Summit Pale Ale

BEST TAKEOUT Brasa Rotisserie

BEST THAI RESTAURANT True Thai

BEST VEGETARIAN DINER FOOD Highland Grill

BEST VEGETARIAN-FRIENDLY RESTAURANT Spoonriver

BEST VIETNAMESE RESTAURANT Ngon Vietnamese Bistro

BEST WINE LIST Toast Wine Bar & Café