Minneapolis, MN 55410
City Pages' Description
After a career working for several of the Twin Cities' most notable restaurateurs and running some seriously ambitious kitchens at Restaurant Levain and Porter & Frye, chef Steven Brown finally has his own digs. To retain an accessible vibe, his 14-table Tilia doesn't take reservations, so you could easily wait for an hour on the weekend, but the restaurant is a pretty enough place to wait, with its wooden booths, denim-upholstered chairs, and retro light fixtures. It's a worldview filtered through the iPhone's Hipstamatic camera app, and, in a way, Tilia feels like it's been here forever. There's a lengthy and well-curated row of craft beers on tap to sample while you decide what to order from the American bistro-style menu. The foods are familiar, but with fine-dining refinement, and none costs more than $20. The potted meat is an excellent bargain, being richly spiced, creamy with fat, and positively irresistible when slathered on crusty grilled toast and garnished with a vinegar-kissed shallot. The contemporary, fusion-style shrimp and spring peas are also excellent, dressed with a sweet-hot sauce that fuses the Italian influences of wine and garlic from scampi with the Chinese flavors of ginger, Szechuan chiles, and fermented black beans-it's fresh, fiery, briny, pungent. Wild Acres ducks hang for several days in the cooler, like dry-aged beef, to concentrate their flavor and cultivate a slightly wild tang so the breasts may be served with a stew of prunes, lavender honey, and shallots. Be sure to save room for the butterscotch pot au crème, which has an unexpectedly dark flavor that's rich with undertones of brown sugar and molasses. Then go home, get some sleep, and come back tomorrow morning for hot cross buns and eggs Benedict with waffles and crab.
Tips from foursquare
Yum alert! Food and dining editor Stephanie March gives an exclusive look into the making of Steven Brown's new restaurant.
One of Andrew Zimmern's favorite restaurants in the Twin Cities. His favorite dish is the shrimp with spring peas, spicy scampi sauce and grilled scallion.
white baby-boomer haven.
We really love Tilia for late-night dining and weekend brunch. The restaurant serves its "In-Between Menu" from 10 pm to close every day, so you can always get that fish taco torta. [Eater 18 Member]
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Reviews and News
As a countdown to the Best of the Twin Cities 2014, coming April 16, the Hot Dish is serving up 100 of our favorite local dishes. Tilia's famous... More on Tilia »
Reverse Bloody Mary Tilia $8 Life, it's full of choices. Sometimes too many choices, like that time we found a Bloody Mary bar with not one or two... More on Tilia »
Where are these "dog days" of summer we've heard so much about? The temperatures have been easy on air conditioners, and a distinctive crispness... More on Tilia »