Downtown Dining

So, you’re visiting beautiful St. Paul and you’re downtown, at the Winter Carnival, say. It’s about noon, and you want a nosh. Where should you go? Here are some ideas.

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Right on Rice Park is the St. Paul Hotel, which has a couple of fabulous restaurants. The St. Paul Grill is the fancier (and more expensive) option, with a full bar, while the M Street Cafe downstairs is also very tasty, with the choice to order the buffet or off the menu. We highly recommend the scrumptious fried egg sandwich.

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Anita’s Cafe, also on Rice Park in the Landmark Center, serves breakfast and lunch, and has a daily lunch special. Their food is fresh and delicious (they’re also a catering company), and served cafeteria style so it’s quick. They’re also very reasonably priced. Yelp labels them as a Mexican restaurant, and they do serve some Mexican dishes, but their menu has a much wider range.

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Pazzaluna is a bit off Rice Park to the east, and a little expensive, but serves really good Italian food. We recommend going for happy hour if you want to enjoy the bar and sample their food offerings for a little less money. They recommend reservations.

Sakura

Sakura is a Japanese restaurant that serves excellent sushi, as well as other Japanese favorites like bento boxes (a personal favorite). It has a full bar as well as the sushi bar, and is open for lunch and dinner.

Meritage

Meritage, a fine French and seasonal restaurant, is also really close to Rice Park in the historic Hamm Building, and recommends reservations. Their food is as beautiful as it is delicious, and worth every penny. They have an outdoor terrace and an oyster bar, in addition to their lovely dining room.

Mickey's Diner

If you’re looking for something a little simpler, Mickey’s Diner has been offering diner food in an art deco dining car since 1939. It’s a St. Paul institution. Stop in for a malt or a meal and soak up the ambiance.

This is, of course, a mere sampling of the great dining options in downtown St. Paul, so you should explore on your own, but it’s a place to start.

 

 

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Published in: on February 1, 2016 at 3:27 pm  Comments (3)  
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Have a Little Jazz Age with Your Cocktail

An icon has returned to the neighborhood – the Commodore Bar & Restaurant.

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The Commodore opened in 1920 as a posh art deco residential hotel, which hosted such luminaries as F. Scott and Zelda Fitzgerald (who added their daughter, Scottie, and the novel “The Beautiful and Damned” to their family during their stays) and Sinclair Lewis, as well as gangsters Al Capone, John Dillinger, and Fred Barker. It was one of THE places to stay in St. Paul.

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Naturally, there were amenities to keep the guests in the style to which they were accustomed. These included a restaurant and an illegal speakeasy, which, on the repeal of Prohibition, became the Mirror Bar, designed by notable architect and Hollywood set designer Werner Wittkamp. Fred Barker’s mother, Ma Barker, met her son’s girlfriend there.

Commodore Fire

The building was gutted by a gas explosion/fire in February of 1978, and was remodeled into condos. Alas, there was no public eating or drinking space.

However, while the space was devastated, the bar itself somehow escaped damage; even its eponymous mirrors remained intact. After remodeling, the beautiful space could be rented for private events. In fact, one of Bill’s daughters had her wedding reception there.

Upper+Bar+7+10-05-15+(1)Lounge+5+10-05-15.

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Now, after two years of renovation characterized by careful research and meticulous attention to detail, the space has been restored to its former Jazz Age glory. Full of warm light from glass chandeliers, black and white checkerboard floors, white leather, and stunning lines, the bar and restaurant offer a comfortable and cozy atmosphere and a feast for the eyes. Both food and drink are influenced by the 1920s and ‘30s, and many of the cocktail ingredients are locally sourced. The owners want to keep the prices reasonable, with the dinner menu topping out at about $30 for an entree. There are plans for live music and dancing, and the vibe is casually dressy and a little upscale, turning an evening out into an event.

Image with the piano copyright City Pages.

Published in: on December 5, 2015 at 9:16 pm  Leave a Comment  
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A Lushly Colorful Back Yard

The lush backyard is another restful place to sit and enjoy your stay at Cathedral Hill Bed & Breakfast.

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It’s colorful with flowers and greenery, and the fire pit is welcome when the weather starts getting crisp.

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The covered seating area on the deck offers shelter in inclement weather for a smallish group.

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From the deck you have a view of the carriage house with a reminder of its former inhabitants.

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You are also shaded by the pussy willow tree, that displays its fuzzy flowers in the spring.

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The other seating area has an almost French café feel, with the intimate groupings of tables, the umbrellas, and the profusion of vines.

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Adding to the European flair is the lion-headed fountain, peeking out from the greenery, ready to fill your outside sojourn with the restful sound of burbling water.

As our guest, we urge you to use our outdoor spaces as you would our indoor rooms, to relax, recreate, and meet up with friends.

Welcome to Cathedral Hill B&B.

Published in: on August 25, 2015 at 8:08 pm  Leave a Comment  
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The Porch of our Dreams

Cathedral Hill Bed & Breakfast is as beautiful outside as it is inside, with many charming and comfortable places to relax and congregate.

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Put our grand new porch to good use as a scenic spot for a little R&R.

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Behold, our new porch furniture, that not only gracefully complements the style of house, but is also really comfortable.

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While away the afternoon chatting or reading with a glass of something cold.

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The B&B’s wifi is easily accessible.

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And the views can’t be beat. Whether it’s the historic details of the porch itself,

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encouraging you to imagine you’re back in 1897 on the original newly constructed porch surrounded by potted palms,

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or taking in the area’s Victorian architecture,

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and lush greenery. Sit and watch the neighborhood go by, seeing and being seen.

Our front porch is one of the new amenities we’re proud to offer our guests.

Hospitality

  Radical hospitality is an idea that comes to us from the Benedictine tradition. In  Radical Hospitality: Benedict’s Way of Love,   Father Daniel Homan and Lonni Gollins Pratt write:
 “When I let a stranger into my heart, I let new possibility approach me. When I reach past my own ideas, I begin to stretch myself open to the world, and this opening of my heart could change everything… It is a spiritual practice, a way of becoming more human, a way of understanding yourself.  Hospitality is both the answer to modern alienation and injustice and a path to deeper spirituality.” 

 

At Cathedral Hill Bed and Breakfast, we have the privilege of meeting new people almost every day.  At first, the business of running a B&B just seemed like a natural extension of the kinds of things we have been doing for years: cooking for, conversing with and caring for those who lived in our house.  Of course, it is still all of that.  But, in addition, we realize that those who stay within our walls, are teaching us new attitudes and new ways to be in this world.  We have become the beneficiaries of the results of radical hospitality.  What a blessing. 

Published in: on September 4, 2009 at 5:41 pm  Leave a Comment  
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