Tuesday, January 27, 2009

Café Maude – Minneapolis, MN

I had a friend from grad school contact me about visiting our neck of the woods, so we decided to do dinner. Gerd had heard about this place on Penn (Trash might have recommended it) that we needed to try – Café Maude. We checked out the menu online and found it to be to our liking. We weren’t sure how dressy the place was, but we opted for business casual just in case.

The place is really nice inside. Not swanky ritzy nice, but artsy and sophisticated nice. Cool trendy artwork on the walls and an area for a jazz combo or something in one corner. The people working are very friendly as well.

We opted for a nice bottle of Malbec (which GErd claims was the best Malbec she’s ever had – she kept screaming the words “HANDS DOWN!” on the ride home – apparently, we’ll be buying a case) and forewent the appetizers (though the small plate items looked great). Gerd got the Hangar Steak and some seasoned fries in truffle oil and fondue. I got the pork tenderloin, and RPM got some Croquets and the Mac and Cheese.

The hangar steak was REALLY good. I think Gerd won this competition. Perfectly cooked and flavorful. The fries were really good as well, though I’m not sure what truffle oil taste like or where it was at. The fondue was basically a cheesy dipping sauce in a cup, but it was still good. The tenderloin was perfect. Seared on the outside without a char taste and served on risotto. It came with oyster mushrooms, which I tried, but didn’t care for.

We got to samples RPM’s croquets which were brilliant! Bacon and other fun things were inside, and now we know we’ll be getting a bunch of these when we go back for happy hour next time. You know if a nice restaurant has Mac and Cheese on the menu, you know it’s not coming from a box. It was one of the best I’ve ever had. Great cheese flavor – makes me wish I took a bigger bite… Really good though. You should get this when you go here.

Café Maude is a great place to have a really awesome dinner and the fact that they have a happy hour (I think they call it leisure hour – which rules) means we’ll be back sooner rather than later, since 2009 is the year of the happy hour.

Top 5 things about Café Maude
1. Hangar steak
2. Malbec
3. Croquets
4. Mac and cheese
5. They have a happy hour!

Bottom 5 things
1. Should have eaten more of RPM’s food – ha ha ha
2. Small parking lot, but plenty of on-street parking
3. I guess there is always a wait, so get reservations
4. Truffle oil isn’t anything to get excited about
5. Now that I’ve tried oyster mushroom, I know I don’t like them


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