BEST FRENCH RESTAURANT Minneapolis 2006 - Vincent - A Restaurant
1100 Nicollet Ave.
Minneapolis, MN 55403
If you're looking for serenity, succulence, or a side of pomme frites, va to Vincent. Your bread will arrive in a little clay flowerpot, your salade Chinoise will arrive drizzled with an electric-green soy-peanut dressing, and your waiter may have just arrived from Provence last Sunday. (Ours did.) The food is a delightful mix of the traditional français fare you'd find in a Paris bistro (croque monsieur, anyone?) and the delicious experiments you'll find only here (raspberry lambic braised boar, everyone!). And l'ambience! The high ceilings, buttercream walls, and gentle murmuring of happy diners impart the kind of calm usually guarded by someone with a Pharm. D. (One five-year-old diner was so blissed out with his experience he climbed right under the table.) For lunch, try the Mediterranean fish soup, a tangy tomato-based number finished with melty squiggles of cheese, or a piece of snow-white chicken on a velvety cremini mushroom and roasted grape risotto. For dessert, a citrus tart topped with a zesty medley of red grapefruit and blood orange. The wine list is made for those cosmopolitan sorts who know enough about wine to trust a Frenchman to advise them on the wine of his homeland—chef Vincent Francoual is a native of the Cahors region, and his wine list is wonderfully strong on the wines from his part of the world. You know, when we reflect on it, it seems that even the butter at Vincent tastes a little bit sweeter than it does elsewhere. Viva la France!