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BEST LOCAL DELICACY Minneapolis 2008 - The Juicy Lucy

The Juicy Lucy

The Juicy Lucy

3500 Cedar Ave. S.

Minneapolis, MN 55407


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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.

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Matts Fan
Matts Fan

We recently tried Matt's Jucy Lucy and the 5-8 Club's Juicy Lucy. Matt's is by far the better burger -- it was jucy and full of flavor. And the bar atmosphere totally adds to the experience. 5-8 club has no atmosphere. It's quite boring. And the Juicy Lucy there was very dry and tasteless. We'll be going back to Matt's for our Jucy Lucy's from now on!


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