Late Monday evening, nearly 150 foodies, fans, and employees of Broders' Pasta Bar and Cucina Italiana gathered at Vincent on Nicollet Mall to enjoy cured meats, fine cheeses, and champagne to toast the premiere of the latest episode of Food Network's Diners, Drive-ins, and Dives, which featured a 10-minute segment on Broders' Pasta Bar, the popular family-run Italian restaurant on 50th and Penn.
"I can't seem to figure out how we made it on this show," said Molly Broder, owner of the restaurant. "We always wanted to get to that level where the restaurant was getting national press, but I didn't think we were really a diner, drive-in, or a dive," Broder admitted, while others nodded in agreement. "I guess I have thought of the pasta bar as sort of a modern-day Italian diner, but we're definitely not a drive-in, so we decided to have the viewing party at a dive!" Broder was clearly joking about the venue, but they did give the place a drive-in theater vibe with big screens, popcorn on tables, and giant boxes of Skittles, Sno-Caps, and Raisinets.
Hors d'oeuvres were passed by Vincent's staff (Broders' was closed for the night so all employees could come enjoy the party), and DJ Jake Rudh provided the music for the evening. The audience cheered as familiar faces popped up next to Guy Fieri's frosted tips, including Molly Broder's sons, who help run the restaurant as head chef, front of house, and sommelier.
As it turned out, Diners got tipped off about Broders' from one of the show's cameramen who is a Minneapolis native and claimed that, with apologies to Brooklyn, Broders' pizza was better than anything you could find in New York. Executive chef Thomas Broder took to the kitchen and showed Fieri the ins and outs of Broders' impressive dough roller and pasta cutter, responsible for producing the "always fresh, never dried" noodles that go into every dish at the restaurant. Broder prepared the house-made bolognese sauce and the prosciutto and arugula pizza.
Look for Broders' again on Diners, Drive-ins, and Dives, which airs nightly (and sometimes marathons all day) on Food Network.