A Local Ranks the Best Restaurants in Downtown Minneapolis

best restaurants downtown minneapolis

So, you’re working, staying, or even living in downtown Minneapolis. And you’re ready to eat… something delicious.

Step aside, chain restaurants. We’re taking a local’s look at all the real best restaurants in our city. (And for your convenience, all of these options are within a reasonable walking distance of downtown.)

Why should you trust us? Because we’re long time Minneapolis locals who have worked and lived in the area for years. We know our way around our totally underrated foodie city, and we’re ready to show you our favorites!

(And personally, I’ve spent more lunch breaks in downtown Minneapolis than I know what to do with!)

Map of the Best Restaurants in Downtown Minneapolis

The most popular Steakhouse: Manny’s

Of all the best steakhouses in the Twin Cities, locals rave about Manny’s more than any other. But it’s not just the locals that go nuts for this place – the pro food critics at Zagat Guide also named it one of the best steakhouses in America.

Plus, Manny’s couldn’t be any more dead-center in the heart of downtown Minneapolis. It’s located on the first floor of the iconic Foshay Tower, one of Minneapolis’s most recognizable turn-of-the-century skyscrapers. So, you can close a big business deal in the classic steakhouse atmosphere, then head up to the tower’s observation deck and toast yourself as you look over the city.

  • Address: 825 S Marquette Ave, Minneapolis, MN 55402
  • Website: Manny’s

The most historic steakhouse: Murray’s

Manny’s and Murray’s in Minneapolis. Confusing enough?

Here’s the lowdown. Murray’s is arguably the second most iconic steakhouse in Minneapolis, sporting a 75+ year history of delicious steaks. Many locals are rabid about Murray’s “silver butter knife steak” which is allegedly so tender you only need a butter knife to cut it.

Murray’s is located a few blocks north of Manny’s, in the shadow of many of the city’s tallest buildings and still very much in the heart of downtown Minneapolis.

  • Address: 26 South 6th St, Minneapolis, MN 55402
  • Website: Murray’s

The local’s favorite: The Butcher’s Tale

For years, The Butcher and the Boar was one of the most loved and highest rated restaurants in all of Minneapolis. When it closed during the pandemic and its owner bolted off to South Carolina with hardly an explanation, the Twin Cities were shocked and saddened.

Thankfully, many of the team members banded together to get the spot reopened. Today, they’ve brought back many of the restaurant’s iconic dishes, revolving around sausages, beef, and craft cocktails. It’s all taking place in the original downtown Minneapolis location, which includes a trendy beer garden.

Our favorite in Loring Park: Lotus Restaurant

Loring Park is a downtown Minneapolis neighborhood on the Southeast side of the city, roughly a 3 minute walk from downtown landmarks like the Minneapolis Convention Center or even the Giant Cherry Spoon.

This area has seen a resurgence in recent years, but our favorite spot has been going strong since before it was cool. And that spot has got to the rag-tag location to prove it – being sandwiched in a strip center parking lot, in between a sketchy gas station and a sex shop.

Lotus Restaurant (who we will forever call Lotus To Go Go, based on original signage with double the go) is some of the best Asian fusion in the entire city. Whether you’re looking for incredible Chinese Chow Fun, some of the best Pho in town, or even some rock solid Pad Thai, Lotus has it all.

For downtown drinks: Hell’s Kitchen

Hell’s Kitchen has tons of food fans, and the menu is definitely rock solid, but strangely, it’s the drinks that keep up coming back to this downtown icon.

Not only do they offer popular bottomless mimosas on weekends, but this spot is also famous for its 35-foot long bloody mary bar, complete with over 240 hot sauce options!

And no, this spot is not affiliated with Gordon Ramsey or the popular TV show. They had the name first, as Gordon points out in his funny apology video:

Best downtown buffet: Fogo de Chao

When I worked in downtown Minneapolis, I lost track of the number of special occasions the business celebrated at Fogo de Chao.

This Brazilian Steakhouse is also located one building over from Murray’s.

Yes, it’s a chain, but it’s still one of the most popular restaurants in the area. What can I say? It seems us Minnesotans are easily persuaded by a parade of never-ending meats.

  • Address: 645 Hennepin Ave, Minneapolis, MN 55403
  • Website: Fogo de Chao

For English Pub Food: Brit’s Pub

If you’re looking for downtown vibes, I’m not sure if there’s a better urban ambiance in Minneapolis than Brit’s Pub.

This legendary bar and restaurant is best known for its enormous rooftop space (by far, one of the best patios in Minneapolis) which features a full lawn-bowling field. This whole courtyard is nestled among the downtown skyscrapers, so it feels like you’re floating inside the city center.

On a sunny day, there’s no better spot to sip a drink and take it all in.

  • Address: 1110 Nicollet Mall, Minneapolis, MN 55403
  • Website: Brit’s Pub

Our favorite on the east side of downtown: Boludo

Once upon a time, downtown Minneapolis’s east side was a sleepy, often forgotten part of the city. Thanks to a few billion dollars spent on the new Viking’s stadium, that’s no longer the case!

Of the many new restaurants opening up in the area, our favorite is definitely Boludo. An Argentinian restaurant, the menu here serves not just amazing empanadas, but also some of the best and most unique pizza in the city.

Seriously, that pizza is so incredible. It’s got a unique tang and seasoning that nobody can put their finger on – you’ve just gotta try it for yourself.

  • Address: 530 S 4th St, Minneapolis, MN 55415
  • Website: Boludo

Brewpub food in Downtown East: Day Block Brewing

If you’re craving a pint and some food on the east side, Day Block brewing might be your best choice. This brewery has a lengthy menu of classic pub food, although their specialty pizzas are most popular. Yes, that includes some crazy creations, like Elote Pizza, Nacho Pizza, Banh Mi Pizza, and even Crab Rangoon pizza. Grab a beer and let’s get crazy!

Hottest new spot: Noa

Among the many pandemic closings and empty office buildings, one spot dared to bring new life into downtown Minneapolis. In 2022, Noa opened inside the IDS Center, one of the city’s most recognizable skyscrapers.

The menu mixes salads, sushi, street tacos, steaks, starters, shareables, and sweets. Enough S words for ya? But by all accounts, the mixed menu is a total home run, as is the beautiful downtown location.

  • Address: 77 S 7th St, Minneapolis, MN 55402
  • Website: Noa

Best vegan option: Coconut Whisk

Located along the Nicollet Mall, Coconut Whisk is a totally vegan shop specializing in boba teas and coffees. They also have a small cafe menu revolving around delicious mini pancakes, or if you want to get really adventurous, some waffle sticks!

As a vegan and dairy free spot, all the drinks here are made with oat milk or soy milk, and the kitchen is 100% gluten free.

  • Address: 905 Nicollet Mall, Minneapolis, MN 55402
  • Website: Coconut Whisk

Downtown breakfast brunch: Hen House Eatery

Located among the downtown skyscrapers is a breakfast spot that’s been fueling downtown workers (and weekend visitors) for years.

Hen House is a fun, sit-down breakfast spot promising farm-inspired goodness. You can find all the breakfast staples here, ranging from a healthy section of the menu focusing on oatmeal and yogurt, all the way to their most popular menu item – the incredible cinnamon rolls.

Oh, and don’t sleep on this spot just because it’s late or you’re not feeling breakfast. They also have a pretty solid set of lunch options, including salad bowls, soups, and sandwiches.

P.S. – Looking for more dining options near downtown?

Check out our guides to these other delicious neighborhoods close to downtown:

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