Along with his seriously impressive taco skills (at lunch and dinner daily), chef José Alarcon is making summer nights (Tuesday through Sunday) fun with grilled oysters, housemade duck sausage and smoked ribs glazed with a habañero-tamarind sauce. There’s also delivery service to the patio at nearby Indeed Brewing.
1414 NE. Quincy St., Mpls., 612-345-5527, popolvuhmpls.com
Dinner, yes, and it’s recommended, but don’t overlook Saturday and Sunday brunch. Dishes include pastrami-and-egg sandwiches, a collard greens-tamari-eggs bowl, house-baked biscuits smothered in sausage gravy and an imaginative Bloody Mary roster.
2528 Nicollet Av. S., Mpls., 612-276-6523, icehousempls.com
Joan’s in the Park
Enjoy a design-your-own three-course dinner — with several scrupulous, seasonally minded options in each course — for $69. Add dessert for an additional $7 to $9. Dinner only, Wednesday through Saturday.
631 Snelling Av. S., St. Paul, 651-690-3297, joansinthepark.com
Mill Valley Market
Chef/owner Mike Rakun, the talent behind Benedict’s in Wayzata and Mill Valley Kitchen in St. Louis Park, is now at the helm of this casual, health-conscious cafe, and he’s turning out imaginative sandwiches, salads, grain bowls, breakfast burritos, omelets and more, from 8 a.m. to 8 p.m. daily.
1221 Theodore Wirth Pkwy., Mpls., 763-316-4948, millvalley.market
W.A. Frost & Co.
The granddaddy of all Twin Cities patios remains as pretty as ever. The dinner-only menu includes cheese and charcuterie plates, grilled salmon, an 8-ounce New York strip, a fully loaded BLT and a chicken caprese salad. Open daily.
374 Selby Av., St. Paul, 651-224-5715, wafrost.com