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Get a diner's "passport" and travel Europe without leaving the Twin Cities

Russell and Desta Klein don't miss a single detail when it comes to recreating the European brasserie experience.

Russell and Desta Klein don't miss a single detail when it comes to recreating the European brasserie experience.

Though a whirlwind trip through Europe is probably not gonna happen for most of us very soon, Russell and Desta Klein of Brasserie Zentral and Meritage still want you to experience Europe in the very best way: eating it. In a very cool and ambitious move, they have made it possible for you to procure a diner's passport at either Meritage or BZ, and every Thursday and/or Friday dine with them for a special three-course Tour de France or Tour de Europe dinner, ranging in price from $35 to $45 (wine and beer pairings available at an additional cost). 

The Kleins are avid and enthusiastic Francophiles and Euro enthusiasts, and in their two restaurants they've recreated the experience of European brasserie dining right down to the wainscoting, the fabric fasteners on the chairs, the plate garnish, and the glassware. 

Collect four passport stamps and get a $20 gift certificate redeemable at either restaurant. Collect eight, and receive a gift certificate for a customized three-course menu at either restaurant. 

What will the menus be like? 

At BZ, the they'll be exploring some of the more "esoteric" brasserie dishes, from classic German roasted pork knuckle to Czech pickled cheese. At Meritage, be treated to the rustic French home cooking that is the backbone of the culinary tradition. 

Visit the restaurants' websites for specific menu details. 

The schedule: 

Brasserie Zentral, served on Thursdays: 

July 9: Germany

July 16: Belgium

July 23: Poland

July 30: Romania

August 6: Russia

August 13: Czech Republic

August 20: Hungary

August 27: Switzerland

September 3: Northern Italy

Meritage, served on Fridays: 

July 10: Bordeaux

July 17: Brittany-Normandy

July 24: Languedoc

July 31: Loire Valley

August 7: Lyon

August 14: Pays Basque

August 21: Provence

August 28: Champagne

A warm and enthusiastic bon voyage to your mouth!