June 12, 2018
We did it everyone. We made it to summer in Minnesota. We survived weekly snowfalls into April, stuffy noses, absurd heating bills, cold feet and a Super Bowl in order to enjoy the magic of summer. For most Minneapolitans, summer is all about going to the lakes, taking road trips up north or biking down the greenway. For me, summer means two things: tacos and craft beer. Here are my top three spots and why they work from a branding perspective.
Jefe Urban Hacienda Fits Seamlessly Into Its Neighborhood
There’s no way around it: Jefe is posh. The patios lining St. Anthony’s picturesque Main Street, complete with cobblestone streets, views of the skyline and the occasional horse-drawn carriage, are usually reserved for French-American cuisine. At first thought, an “Urban Hacienda” seems like it would stick out like a sore pulgar — but it doesn’t. The sum of subtle details in atmosphere, elevated ingredients, and an eclectic tap list, with everything from Negra Modelo to Lift Bridge Mango, nestles the flavorful spot tastefully into Main Street’s romantic aesthetic. Jefe’s upscale vibe might not work for your average taqueria, but it works in the context of the neighborhood.
Nico’s Tacos y Tequila Is An Exquisitely Easygoing Experience
Nico’s is one of the most amiable eating experiences you can get in Minneapolis. Walking up to the converted three-story home feels more like visiting a friend than going out to eat. The staff are friendly, the beers are light and flavorful, and the traditional tacos are simple yet delicious. Nico’s works because every part of the experience is cohesive and friendly. They maintain a high quality of food and service without forgetting the truth about tacos: they’re a casual food.
Taco Riendo + Fair State Brewing = Magic
I know what you’re thinking, these are two very different places, but let me clue you in on the greatest taco hack in the history of Northeast Minneapolis. Head over to Fair State Brewing’s comfortable but modest taproom, approach the bar, and ask for a Taco Riendo Coupon. They’ll print one out for you to take a block south to the best tacos in the city. This is not your typically chic, design and experience-focused Minneapolis restaurant. You get in, order your food, watch it go down the assembly line, pay and get out. Don’t let the $2.50 per taco price fool you. The flavors simply cannot be matched. The best part is that once your food is ready, you can go BACK to Fair State to enjoy two of the best summer beers in existence, the Pahlay’Ahlay hazy pale ale and the Hefeweizen, with your tacos. These NE staples serve as a reminder that great brands start with great products.