Top 5 patio bars: Minneapolis and St. Paul
Once again it's the season when Minnesotans flock to restaurant patios and rooftops to enjoy the weather. And while food is critical in patio dining, at this time of year a refreshing drink and relaxed conversation can assume just as much importance. We took a look at the best spots in both Minneapolis and St. Paul that combined a great patio with a vibrant bar scene. The attributes that landed a restaurant on this list included the view, the vibe, and a restaurant's happy hour food and drink specials. Here's our list of the top 5 patio and rooftops bars on both sides of the river.
ST. PAUL'S TOP 5
1. W.A. Frost & Company
The restaurant's patio is breathtaking, however happy hour is only available in the main bar and the garden bar area, as the majority of the patio is considered part of its dining area. Happy hour runs Monday through Friday from 4 to 6 p.m. and 9 to 11 p.m., with discounts on featured cocktails and selected wine, beer, and appetizers.
The Irish pub has a great centralized location in downtown St. Paul with a patio bar and separate seating for the patio, which is great for groups. Happy hour drink specials run from 11 a.m. to 6 p.m. daily except on event nights, with $1.50 off all pints and house rails, $1 off bottle beers, $3 to $5 for wines by the glass and cocktails, $10 on selected bottles of wines, and selected appetizers served from 2 to 6 p.m. daily.
3. Moscow on the Hill
The restaurant's patio is small but cozy, with vine trellis plants that change colors with the seasons. The restaurant even provides blankets on chilly or rainy nights. The happy hour runs Monday through Thursday from 5 to 6 p.m. and 9 to 10 p.m. and Sunday from 4 to 6 p.m. (excluding holidays, holiday weekends, and special events) and includes selected appetizers, house wines, tap beers, and featured cocktails.
4. Salut Bar Americain
The restaurant has a large patio that gets lots of sunlight during the summer months. Their happy hour runs from 3 to 6 p.m. daily and late night from 10 p.m. to midnight on Friday and Saturday. It includes $4 tap beers, well drinks, and house wines, selected small plates, and $1.95 oysters.
1. Urban Eatery
This restaurant's patio overlooks Calhoun Lake. The restaurant prides itself on fresh and local ingredients. It offers a build-your-own bloody Mary bar on Saturday and Sunday from 11 a.m. to 2 p.m. An extensive happy hour menu is served from 4 to 6:30 p.m. every day, as well as 9:30 p.m. till close Sunday through Wednesday and 10:30 p.m. till close Thursday through Saturday. It includes specials on selected tap beers, rail drinks, house wines, signature cocktails, selected appetizers, and even creme brulee.
2. Seven Sushi and Steak Ultralounge and Skybar
This restaurant's rooftop bar provides a view of downtown Minneapolis, and the city lights are beautiful on a warm summer night. The restaurant also offers all-you-can-eat sushi for $30 a person on Sunday and Monday starting at 6 p.m. Happy hour is offered in the Steakhouse bar, main level bar, and rooftop bar. It runs from 4 to 6 p.m. and 9 p.m. till close and includes selected appetizers, sushi, featured martinis, house wines, well drinks, domestic bottle beers, and tap beers at the Steakhouse bar.
3. Stella's Fish Cafe & Prestige Oyster Bar
This seafood restaurant provides three levels of seating and a rooftop bar overlooking Uptown nightlife. The only downfall is the different happy hour menu that is available indoors versus the rooftop. The rooftop happy hour menu will not be finalized till mid-April. The indoor happy hour includes a prime-time offering on Friday and Saturday from 10:30 p.m. to 12:30 a.m., with a buy-one-get-on-for-$1 on taps, rails, calls, and house wines. Happy hours also run 9 to 11 p.m. Sunday through Thursday, 3 to 6 p.m. Monday through Friday, and noon till 6 p.m. Saturday and Sunday. It also includes $5.25 to $6 selected appetizers and $1 oysters (except on Fridays).
4. Psycho Suzi's Motor Lounge
This Hawaiian tiki-themed restaurant has a large patio overlooking the Mississippi River where guests can sip on fancy blended tiki drinks. Its happy hour runs every day from 3 to 6 p.m. with $3 tap beers and well drinks. It also features different nightly drink specials from 10 p.m. to close Sunday through Thursday. The restaurant also offers a $6.95 bloody Mary bar and mimosas on Saturday and Sunday.
5. Crave Minneapolis
This downtown addition to the Crave restaurants offers a remarkable view of downtown Minneapolis as well as music on the rooftop. The restaurant happy hour offers $4 to $6 selections from burgers to sushi, as well as drink specials that include $4 and $5 beer selections, $5 rail drinks and Opulent vodka drinks, $6 house wines, and a $6 selection of handcrafted cocktails. Happy hour runs Monday through Friday 3 to 6 p.m., Monday through Thursday 10 p.m. to 12 a.m., Friday and Saturday 10 p.m. to 1 a.m., Saturday 11 a.m. to 5 p.m., and Sunday 8 to 10 p.m.
Get the Food & Drink Newsletter
Our weekly guide to Minneapolis & St. Paul dining includes food news and reviews, as well as dining events and interviews with chefs and restaurant owners.