In our house, we love to eat.  With the exception of Ethan, we especially love to eat out.  Dining out does not appeal to my little man.  He does not like to sit still in a booth, he does not like that he has to use table manners, and he does not really eat a full meal right now.  He would much rather graze on yogurt, fruit, and crackers throughout the day and take over the world one action figure at a time.

Since we have been here in Minnesota, we have often found ourselves looking for that perfect little “go to” restaurant. The one that you visit when you don’t feel like cooking, or when you did feel like cooking but despite the effort, the end result was not as appetizing as it sounded. Sorry, am I the only one that happens to?

Anyway, a new genre of restaurant that we have learned about since arriving here focuses on using locally grown organic foods.  Most of the produce and meats are grown using farming techniques that allow the farms to remain sustainable and eco-friendly while still producing high quality healthy foods.  This really appealed to Andrew and me.  When we moved here, one of our goals was to eat cleaner foods and create a healthier lifestyle for us and the kids.  Let’s see, where does Mc Donald’s fit into that picture?  Don’t tell Ethan, but we are phasing it out completely.  Not having one on every block has helped tremendously!

One of the best restaurants that we have found is called Wise Acre.  This little garage turned restaurant is packed every night, yet when I ask people about it, nobody has ever heard of it.  This is a small place with great atmosphere.  The bar serves beer, wine, foo foo coffees and lattes. They even make a great mug of hot chocolate.  Wise Acre is on Nicollete in Minneapolis.  It is about a twenty-five minute drive from our house, but worth the drive.

Wise Acre serves fresh creatively paired produce and quality cuts of meats.  The small menu offers something for everyone.  Meat lovers and vegetarians alike are delighted with the selection of dishes that are offered.  The menu changes often and is based on the season and availability of ingredients.  Wise Acre harvests much of the produce and meats used in their dishes from their own farm, Tangletown Gardens Farm near Plato, Minnesota.

Did I mention that Chef Beth Fisher is a creative genius when it comes to pairing foods and flavors? I recently had wild rice and ricotta fritters served with a smoked paprika and orange aioli dipping sauce!  Currently, the menu includes a dish called “Hog on Holiday (hogs gone wild).” This little treasure is made up of coconut caramel braised pork, long noodles, purple cabbage, and a roasted jalapeno cream sauce.  Then to finish it off, it is garnished with sesame, cilantro, and mint. Deliciousness in a bowl!  Keep in mind that , although I love to try new places, I am typically not all that creative in my food choices when I get there.

The kids like Wise Acre for the corn dog, slaw, and frozen custard.  Kiddos that have clean plates get a cup of Wise Acre frozen custard.  I still can’t believe that Maya loves the slaw so much.  It’s a mix wild rice, carrots, red cabbage, and a yummy dressing!

For us older kids, Wise Acre also offers several dessert options from homemade cookies and bars to sundaes and floats.

Check out the menu at http://www.wiseacreeatery.com/menu.php.

I am thinking that if I were a food critic, I would give Wise Acre a 5 carrot rating!

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