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BEST FRENCH RESTAURANT Minneapolis 2010 - Meritage



410 Saint Peter St.

St. Paul, MN 55102


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Suggest a French restaurant for dinner and you run the risk of being labeled as le snob. Unless that restaurant is the accessible Meritage, the perfect French brasserie for St. Paul: The waitstaff doesn't mind if, instead of mangling words like cassoulet or bouillabaisse, you simply point to the amusements or entrées you desire—no judgment, no sneer. And don't even think about being intimidated by the hefty wine list. It may be 17 pages long and have its own table of contents, but the accessible cork-covered tome of rosés and Beaujolais has a colorful map to help you choose which area of France to indulge in. The final hurdle comes when the perfectly plated food arrives. Whether it's pan-seared sea scallops with pork belly balancing on top of one another or the medley of four squash delicacies, the food may appear too dainty and perfect to poke a fork into. Nonsense! Owner and head chef Russell Klein adds to the familiar air of the restaurant by regularly walking through the dining room, greeting patrons with a hello so casual you might be tempted to offer a fist bump in recognition of your juicy steak au poivre.

My Voice Nation Help

I've enjoyed three beautiful evenings at Meritage: one with a good friend, another at Valentine's day when my date walked through the restaurant with a fabulous bouquet of flowers (in Meritage, it could have been a movie scene)and more recently, Christmas eve with my young-adult daughters (college and high school).

What a lovely treat to have my girls experience the genuine class and delicious food at Meritage in a fabulous historic building. The wait staff, as always, was warm and inviting to the girls and again, Russel Klein stopped by with a warm smile asking how was our dinner.

What a classy, unintimidating way to introduce young women to fine dining and see middle-aged and older persons dining with us. And of course the desserts - - my college daughter has already selected the spot for her birthday dinner !

Thank you.


I just went and for anyone that's actually eaten real French food what the Meritage serves is American-ized French cuisine. Overall very hit or miss in terms of food and service (sometimes great, sometimes fair to poor). Beautiful location however.


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