Wednesday, November 5, 2008

The Capital Grille - Minneapolis, MN

Gerd and I felt like livin’ large last night so we got a reservation for the Capital Grill in downtown Minneapolis. We knew this place was pretty upscale, but isn’t the kind of place that requires a jacket or anything. That being said, our friends are impressed that we ate there.

We made waaay better time than anticipated getting downtown, so after the classy valet parked my car, we sat in the bar and had a drink before dinner. I opted for their specialty drink, the Stoli Doli, after awesome bartender Dustin gave me a sample to get me hooked. Stoli vodka infused with Dole pineapple chunks for a week. It was incredible. With all of these girly drinks I plan on making in large vats, my basement is going to look suspicious to the feds, I’m sure. Gerd stuck with the Arnold Palmer (tea and lemonade).

We headed into the very elegant dining room and waited for out waiter Tim to help us out. We had questions about wine, Tim helped us out. We had questions about appetizers, Tim helped us out. We had questions about specials, Tim helped us out. We had questions about sides, Tim helped us out. We had ZERO questions about entrees, Tim was impressed.

With the help of Tim, we ordered Wagyu Beef Carpaccio for an appetizer. It is rare Japanese beef (from California) served chilled and sliced razor thin with an arugula salad on top. Seriously, there was no fat at all on these slices of beef. Top notch stuff. Gerd needed soup, so again with the help of Tim, Gerd went with the Lobster bisque. It had chunks of lobster in it and Tim poured some dry sherry on the top to bring out the flavor – I told you this place was classy. I got the mozzarella, tomato, and basil salad with 12-year aged balsamic. Seriously, this was a great salad before a huge meal. No complaints at all.

Gerd had a question about wine with her meal, so Tim recommended a simple pinot noir for her since she’s not usually a red drinker. I went big and bold and got the Marques de Casa Concha Cabernet Sauvignon from Chile. I’ve never gone South American before with my wine, and it was awesome. Tim said buy a crap ton of it now since it hasn’t caught on how good it is just yet. That’s a good idea. We’ll be hitting up Surdyk’s in the next couple of weeks for me to buy more scotch, so I’ll see if I can score a bottle of this as well.

Since we were going big anyway, Gerd and I felt the need for steak. Gerd decided on the Dry Aged Sirloin (I’m guessing about 16 oz?) and I went with the 24 oz Dry Aged Porterhouse. I told you we weren’t foolin around. I can’t say enough about how awesome these steaks were. Second only to Ruth’s Chris (and a VERY close second at that). They were truly amazing and tender and flavorful without all kinds of spices and marinades. We got some squash and au gratin potatoes at Tim’s suggestion and they were really great. The potatoes were some of the best we’ve ever had.

Yes, we were stuffed, but Gerd is a dessert person. She went back and forth on like 5 desserts. She had been talking about flourless chocolate cake for months and when she opted NOT to get it, Tim and I were floored (we were good friends at this point in our relationship). Gerd needed cheesecake, so that’s what we ordered. However, when Tim came back out with it, he threw in a slice of the flourless cake on the house. So I was forced to eat some it. Flourless cake isn’t my thing, but this was really good. Coffee/Espresso flavored and chocolate-y. Great stuff. But the cheesecake was where it’s at. The piece was served with brulee-d (is that a word?) caramelized sugar top and sitting in strawberry syrup. It was the best dessert I have ever had in my entire life, bar none. I might actually be a dessert person after eating this thing. It was extraordinary.

I can’t say enough about this place. We spent a boatload of money here, so wait until the economy gets fixed and then go to this place. You will not be disappointed!!!!

Top 5 things about the Capital Grill
1. Steaks
2. Staff
3. Desserts
4. Wine selection
5. Atmosphere

Bottom 5 things
1. There aren’t any. Even the expensive prices are worth what you get.

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