It’s not often you get paid to shop, but a sleigh’s worth of restaurant holiday gift card deals sweeten the pot this season by offering rewards if you spend a certain amount. Whether you keep the incentive or pay it forward is between you and your conscience.
Restaurant gift cards are an easy option for everyone from your kid’s teacher to your foodie friends to that co-worker you barely know. Because while only a select demographic will embrace the gift of a wall-climbing session or a fabulous pair of red-and-white striped elf socks complete with jingle bells, everyone eats. And some of the best places in the metro have hopped on the gift card promo bandwagon. Here is a handy list of options to guide you.
Our Favorite Deal, Hands Down
Lela is offering an unusual combination courtesy of its adjacent hotel. If you buy $100 worth of gift cards, you get a one-night stay at the Sheraton Bloomington. Certain restrictions apply on the hotel end of the deal, but this would be a great gift for someone who has been very, very good this year. Or you.
Buy $100, Get $25
6 Smith, for lakefront dining
Barrio, for the tequila
Blue Plate, because they have something for everyone (includes 3 Squares Restaurant, Edina Grill, Freehouse, Groveland Tap, Highland Grill, Longfellow Grill, Scusi, The Lowry)
Crave, for ladies who lunch
D’Amico Restaurants, for lots of choices (includes Bar Lurcat, Campiello, D’Amico & Sons, and Parma 8200
Hemisphere Restaurants, for downtown denizens (includes Atlas Grill, Diggity Grill, Good to Go, Mission American Kitchen, Tavern Grill, and Tavern on France
Jester Concepts, for the foodies (Borough & Parlour, Coup d'état, Monello & Constantine, and Maple Tavern
Lettuce Entertain You, for the mall rats (includes Big Bowl, Magic Pan, Tucci Benucch, Twin City Grill, and Wildfire)
Masu Sushi & Robata, for reliable Japanese
Murray’s, for the old-school types on your list
Parasole, for the variety (includes Burger Jones, Chino Latino, Libertine, Good Earth, Manny’s, Mozza Mia, Muffuletta, Pittsburgh Blue, and Salut)
Parella, for modern Italian
Pizza Luce, for your favorite college student
Prairie Dogs, for gourmet hot dogs
Sample Room, for your refined friends
Zen Box Izakaya, for your ramen fix
Buy $100, Get $20
Birchwood, for the savory waffle
Brasserie Zentral & Foreign Legion, for Eastern European classics
Broder’s Pasta Bar, Cucina, and Terzo, for solid Italian
Café Ena, for Latin Fusion
CoV, for a reason to go to Wayzata
Kincaid’s, for steak, what else?
La Fresca, for upscale Mexican
La Ceiba, for Caribbean inflected flavors
Meritage, for oysters
Oceanaire, for a special occasion
Origami, for the cream cheese wontons – and sushi
Pizzeria Lola, for the kimchi pizza
Porter Creek Hardwood Grill, for your south suburban friends
Rincon 38, for Spanish tapas
Saffron, for contemporary Mediterranean (they also offer a buy $50, get $10 option)
Sea Change, for seafood
Punch Pizza, for the munchies. Buy a $25 gift card, get a free Margherita pizza.
Red Cow, for the burgers, of course. Buy a $50 gift card, get a $15 card.
Morrissey Hospitality, for your St. Paul friends. Buy a $100 gift card, get five $20 promo gift cards (includes M St. Café, Kendall’s Tavern & Chophouse, Pazzaluna, the St. Paul Grill, the Saint Paul Hotel, and Tria).
Wise Acre, for the pound of bacon you get with every $50 gift card purchase. Code word oink oink.