Thursday, January 3, 2008

Reetsy Reviews: The Modern Cafe

On a chilly January night, gerg and I had to drive across town to take my car to the shop. Apparently, my car seems to think I don't need heat in the winter, and that's just wrong.

The good part about taking my car to the shop is that the drive led us directly past the Modern Cafe, so on our way back to the south side, we decided to stop.

The Modern Cafe has a great reputation, and has a commitment to sustainable foods. "The talented cooks at the Modern Cafe use local organic or sustainable food when possible, such as Fischer Farms, Riverbend Organic Farms, Donnay Dairy Farms, Meyer Ranch, Garden Farms [I'm assuming they meant Axdahl's], and Creekstone Farms."

Gerg said one thing that sealed the deal, "mmmmmmm.....pot roast."

Pot roast? What's so great about pot roast? Everything is great about pot roast at the Modern Cafe.

As we were seated, a table of young foxy gals were sitting sipping wine and gabbing as they flipped their hair. I'm being totally serious when I say the server came out with 4 orders of pot roast for their table. In fact, as I glanced around the dining room, at least half of the patrons were eating pot roast.

Gerg said, "I'm having the pot roast, and you're having the squash ravioli?"
I said, "Oh really?"
Gerg said, "Yep."
With that, we ordered.

The pot roast at the Modern is served up on a pile of mashed potatoes, roasted vegetable, caramelized onion au jus, and topped off with a dollop of creamy horseradish sauce. The meat is unbelievably tender and flavorful, and as it's nestled in a bed of comfort food, it's practically the perfect cold weather dish.

The squash ravioli was savory and sweet. It's served up with sage butter, walnuts, and bread crumbs/croutons. It, too, is a great cold weather dish. The walnuts soaked in sage butter are slightly sinful, but so tasty.

Naturally, we had to order one of their side plates. We selected the grilled broccoli with anchovy butter, but the yams with peppers and orange marmalade were not easy to pass up. There's no need to turn your nose up at anchovy butter. It's more salty than fishy, and if you don't try it, you're really missing out.

The Modern offers just enough variety, splitting the menu into soups, salads, "hearty" entrees, and small plates.

Gerg tried to eat only half of his pot roast, so as to save the rest for lunch the following day. That attempt proved to be futile, as he scraped his plate clean.

Go scrape your plate clean.

The Modern Cafe
337 13th Ave NE
Minneapolis, MN 55413
(612) 378-9882


Red Pepper said...

This is such a cute review. Well said.

reetsyburger said...

Red Pepper - Thanks! That pot roast is amazing!

lab munkay said...

Your blog has made my dinner hour. Thanks for writting.

reetsyburger said...

Hey lab munkay - are you FUNKay??

Anonymous said...

hey reetsyburger-- couldn't find an email for you, but wanted to give you a head's up about a new restaurant (officially opens on Tuesday), where they will be focusing on locally-sourced meats-- The Strip Club (name refers to steakhouse nature of the place). Apparently all the beef comes from Thousand Hills. Muffaletta's chef is in on this place (other owners are the guys from Town Talk), so they've got cred as far as that goes!

I live in the neighborhood (Dayton's Bluff) - feel free to give a shout if you head out this way - turtlebella AT hotmail DOT com - if that's not too weird (we are nice! I promise!). Anyway-- the address is 378 Maria Ave. Happy eating...

reetsyburger said...

tutlebella - I've had several conversations about the Strip Joint with Tim and Aaron at Town Talk. They're all so excited about the new opportunity.

They calmed my reservations about expense reporting when they explained that "Strip Joint" won't appear on receipts. That could get a little awkward with bosses if you know what I mean.

I can hear my boss now: "Um, Martin, about this receipt for the Strip Joint..."

I was also slightly concerned about J.D. Fratzke leaving Muffaletta in the Park, simply because I've had a couple meals there that I've really enjoyed. I hope they can find an awesome replacement.

PS - My email is reetsyburger(at) I'll throw an email link on the sidebar.
Cheers and stay in touch!

Anonymous said...

I know, we quite like Muffaletta's too- although we only ever seem to go for brunch! I'm hoping things will stay the course there or at least they will find someone who is as committed to locally-sourced & grown products.

RE- The Strip Club. The name is a bit awkward, I agree. When I called for reservations, I called information for the phone number and felt odd saying, "The Strip Club"- I felt compelled to add quickly, it's a restaurant! :)