KQED Food Blog: Bay Area Bites: Feeling Minnesota: Trygonometry
Bay Area Bites: culinary rants & raves from bay area foodies and professionals
Previous Posts
Bakesale Betty
Check, Please! Bay Area
Take 5 with Karin Campion
Heaven in a Half-Bottle
Home Delivery from Besos Foods
Julia! America's Favorite Chef
Donkeys and Goats
Out the Door and In Your Kitchen
Food Memoirs & Contest
Back from the Land of the Long White Cloud
BAB Guidelines

'Bay Area Bites' is part of KQED's Blog Authors Collaborative. Blog contributors and commentators are solely responsible for their content. If you're interested in writing or contributing to a blog on kqed.org, email us with your idea.
Sunday, June 26, 2005
Feeling Minnesota: Trygonometry
I haven't lived in Minneapolis for thirteen years and I hadn't even been back for a real visit since 2003, but in that time a ton of new restaurants have sprung up. Some, like Marcus Samuelsson's Aquavit, sadly went the way of the spit-roasted dodo bird before I got a taste. Others, like Jean-Georges' newest, are yet to arrive and also yet to be christened. Luckily, in between the closings and the openings, I still have a host of new restaurants to sample every time I'm back in town.

One of the newest is Tryg's on Lake Street -- a scant few blocks from the house I grew up in. Minneapolosians will remember Nora's on Lake Street, a supper club that was popular with the senior crowd. AARP aside, it was cozy and sweet and some residents still miss it very much. Then, along comes Tryg, Nora's son. Somewhere in there, Nora's closed, was torn down, and Tryg's rose from the ashes. Now, everyone's talking about this new place with the designer martinis and better-than-beer-nuts Brussels sprouts. A walk inside the glass, stone, and steel edifice reveals an airy space with a vaulted ceiling and a huge wood-burning fireplace. It's big and beautiful and it smells like a campfire. But in a good way.

On my first night home my parents seemed to be having some plumbing issues, so my little sister and I decided to go to a place where toilets could flush. We agreed on Tryg's for drinks. Looking over the menu, I was immediately entranced by the S'Mores martini, described as being made with "house-infused toasted marshmallow vodka." Who could refuse? The golden drink came with a graham cracker rim and snow white mini marshmallows bobbing gently on top. A few sips later revealed that they might need to work on this one. All I could really taste was the Frangelico -- I didn't sense anything in the way of a toasted marshmallow flavor. Additionally, the slightly salty graham crackers seemed to exacerbate another very strong taste of vodka in the cocktail. I love the idea of a S'Mores martini, it's just that the execution needs some more refining.

The next night two of my high school friends and I tried out Tryg's for food. It's the wrong season for Brussels sprouts, so we decided to share the cod and octopus ceviche and, because I have to test it everywhere I go, the calamari.

The ceviche was pretty tasty. It was fresh, well-seasoned, and beautifully presented. I was surprised by the inclusion of green olives but they worked the saltiness in nice way. The octopus was slightly more chewy than it should have been, but otherwise really quite tasty.

The calamari that came spilling out of a paper cone were tender, not overly battered, and yummy. The peppery aioli was also lovely, and I appreciated having the option of squeezing either lemon or lime over the little fried squiddies.

For the mains, my two friends ordered the vegetarian special, which were three beautifully composed salads on a long, narrow, glass plate. The white bean salad was the blandest of the three. However, the watermelon with shards of tangy mountain cheese was curiously good, and the gently sauteed heirloom carrots were to die for.

My main was a little more disappointing. It was seared ahi tuna with spring baby artichokes, sunchokes, and a light, fresh broth. The tuna was perfectly done, easy to cut with a fork, but under seasoned and slightly fishy tasting. Good tuna shouldn't taste fishy. I was very excited to have the baby artichokes, but they were way too tough and nearly impossible to chew. On closer inspection I could see that they hadn't been fully stripped down to the mostly yellow leaves. Doing that definitely would have helped with the chewing issue. They were also undercooked. As were the thinly sliced sunchokes, which still had some hairy, rough external skin left on the edges. What really bothered me was the price -- $24 for that unsatisfying dish! I don't think a restaurant serving fishy tuna and unchewable and undercooked artichokes has any business charging that kind of money in Minneapolis. I only plunk down that kind of dosh when eating at The Slanted Door or Chez Panisse's Cafe because their food actually deserves that kind of price point. This food didn't.

For dessert, we split a chocolate cake stuffed into a sweet little flowerpot and topped with chocolate "dirt." It was a decadent, upscale rendition of a dessert I once ordered at Perkins when I was a kid. Because we were told it would have a slice of Humboldt Fog on it, I also insisted on ordering the cheese plate.

While we waited for our dessert orders to arrive, I waxed rhapsodic about Humboldt Fog to my two friends and explained every little (probably not very interesting) detail. From the rind to the ash line to the reason for the name -- they got it all. The cheese plate arrived. And that was NOT Humboldt Fog. First of all, it was not the slightly crumbly consistency of Humboldt Fog. Secondly, it did not have an ash line, it had a blue line. Yep, definitely a blue line. It was a deliciously buttery -- probably double-creme -- cow's milk cheese, but it was NOT the deliciously tangy goat's milk Humboldt Fog. I should have said something, but I didn't want to embarrass my friends so we just ate it and enjoyed it. Still, telling people the wrong cheese is pretty serious in my book.

In conclusion, Tryg's is all cash and no substance and I know I get much more value for my cash at Lucia's.

3118 W. Lake Street
Minneapolis, MN


Post a Comment

Links to this post:

Create a Link

<< Home

Locate CP Restaurants:
Check, Please! Google Map
KQED Food Sites
Check, Please! Bay Area
Jacques Pépin Celebrates!
Jacques Pépin:
Fast Food My Way
Jacques Pépin:
The Apprentice
Jacques Pépin:
The Complete Pépin
KQED Wine Club
KQED.org Cooking
Weir Cooking in the City
Tasty Food Sites
Chowhound SF
Eat Local Challenge
Edible San Francisco
Food Network
Food Talk
Group Recipes
Hungry Magazine
Leite's Culinaria
Mighty Foods
NPR: Food
Om Organics
Serious Eats
SFGate: Food
SFGate: Wine
SF Station: Restaurants
Slow Food SF
Top Chef
Wikimedia Commons: Food & Drink
Yahoo! Food
Yelp: Reviews
Tangy Food Blogs
101 Cookbooks
A Full Belly
Accidental Hedonist
An Obsession with Food
Anna's Cool Finds
Becks & Posh
Between Meals
Bunny Foot
Butter Pig
Cellar Rat
Chez Pim
Chocolate & Zucchini
Confessions of a
Restaurant Whore
Cooking For Engineers
Cooking with Amy
Cucina Testa Rossa
Culinary Muse
Denise's Kitchen
Eater SF
Feed & Supply
Food Blog S'cool
Food Musings
Food Porn Watch
I'm Mad and I Eat
In Praise of Sardines
Knife's Edge
Life Begins at 30
Love and Cooking
Mental Masala
Moveable Feast
Organic Day
Passionate Eater
San Francisco Gourmet
SF City Eats
Simply Recipes
The Amateur Gourmet
The Ethicurean
The Food Section
The Grub Report
The Petite Pig
The Wine Makers Wife
Vin Divine
Wandering Spoon
Well Fed Network
Word Eater
World on a Plate
Yummy Chow
Search BAB

Eye Candy: Food Photos
BAB on flickr.com
Join Flickr for free and share your photos with the Bay Area Bites and Beyond group pool.
Food Books
The Moosewood Cookbook
by Mollie Katzen
Baking: From My Home to Yours
by Dorie Greenspan
Grand Livre de Cuisine: Alain Ducasse's Desserts and Pastries
by Alain Ducasse, Frederic Robertmison
The Big Book of Outdoor Cooking and Entertaining
by Cheryl Alters Jamison, Bill Jamison
Tasty: Get Great Food on the Table Every Day
by Roy Finamore
Whole Grains Every Day, Every Way
by Lorna Sass
The Soul of a New Cuisine: A Discovery of the Foods and Flavors of Africa
by Marcus Samuelsson
Michael Mina: The Cookbook
by Michael Mina, Photographer: Karl Petzktle
What to Eat
by Marion Nestle
The Omnivore's Dilemma: A Natural History of Four Meals
by Michael Pollan
Essence of Chocolate: Recipes for Baking and Cooking with Fine Chocolate
by John Scharffenberger, Robert Steinberg
Romancing the Vine: Life, Love, and Transformation in the Vineyards of Barolo
by Alan Tardi
What to Drink with What You Eat: The Definitive Guide to Pairing Food with Wine, Beer, Spirits, Coffee, Tea -- Even Water -- Based on Expert Advice from America's Best Sommeliers
by Andrew Dornenburg, Karen Page, Michael Sofronski
The Lee Bros. Southern Cookbook: Stories and Recipes for Southerners and Would-be Southerners
by Matt Lee, Ted Lee
Bread Matters: The State of Modern Bread and a Definitive Guide to Baking Your Own
by Andrew Whitley
Coloring the Seasons: A Cook's Guide
by Allegra McEvedy
All-new Complete Cooking Light Cookbook
by Anne C. Cain
Modern Garde Manger
by Robert B. Garlough
The Spice and Herb Bible
by Ian Hemphill, Kate Hemphill
The Improvisational Cook
by Sally Schneider
Lunch Lessons: Changing the Way We Feed Our Children
by Ann Cooper, Lisa M. Holmes
Cradle of Flavor: Home Cooking from the Spice Islands of Indonesia, Singapore and Malaysia
by James Oseland
My Life in France
by Julia Child, Alex Prud'Homme
A Passion for Ice Cream: 95 Recipes for Fabulous Desserts
by Emily Luchett, Sheri Giblin (photographer)
Au Pied De Cochon -- The Album
by Martin Picard
Memories of Philippine Kitchens
by Amy Besa, Romy Dorotan
Simple Chinese Cooking
by Kylie Kwong
An Invitation to Indian Cooking
by Madhur Jaffrey
Hungry Planet
by Peter Menzel, Faith D'Aluisio
Sunday Suppers at Lucques : Seasonal Recipes from Market to Table
by Suzanne Goin, Teri Gelber
Simple Soirees: Seasonal Menus for Sensational Dinner Parties
by Peggy Knickerbocker, Christopher Hirsheimer (Photographer)
The Cook's Book
by Jill Norman
Molto Italiano : 327 Simple Italian Recipes to Cook at Home
by Mario Batali
Nobu Now
by Nobuyuki Matsuhisa
Cheese : A Connoisseur's Guide to the World's Best
by Max Mccalman, David Gibbons
Bones : Recipes, History, and Lore
by Jennifer McLagan
Whiskey : The Definitive World Guide
by Michael Jackson
The New American Cooking
by Joan Nathan
by Lisa Yockelson
Easy Entertaining: Everything You Need to Know About Having Parties at Home
by Darina Allen
Cooking at De Gustibus: Celebrating 25 Years of Culinary Innovation
by Arlene Feltman Sailhac
Dough: Simple Contemporary Breads
by Richard Bertinet
Chocolate Obsession: Confections and Treats to Create and Savor
by Michael Recchiuti, Fran Gage, Maren Caruso
The Food Substitutions Bible: More Than 5,000 Substitutions for Ingredients, Equipment And Techniques
by David Joachim
Recipes: A Collection for the Modern Cook
by Susan Spungen
Spices of Life: Simple and Delicious Recipes for Great Health
by Nina Simonds
Mangoes & Curry Leaves: Culinary Travels Through the Great Subcontinent
by Jeffrey Alford, Naomi Duguid
Chocolate: A Bittersweet Saga of Dark and Light
by Mort Rosenblum
Vegetable Love: A Book for Cooks
by Barbara Kafka, Christopher Styler
A History of Wine in America: From Prohibition to the Present
by Thomas Pinney
Fonda San Miguel: Thirty Years Of Food And Art
by Tom Gilliland, Miguel Ravago, Virginia B. Wood
Matzoh Ball Gumbo: Culinary Tales of the Jewish South
by Marcie Cohen Ferris
Washoku: Recipes From The Japanese Home Kitchen
by Elizabeth Andoh, Leigh Beisch
Weir Cooking in the City: More than 125 Recipes and Inspiring Ideas for Relaxed Entertaining
by Joanne Weir
Rick Stein's Complete Seafood
by Rick Stein
The Great Scandinavian Baking Book
by Beatrice A. Ojakangas
Serena, Food & Stories: Feeding Friends Every Hour of the Day
by Serena Bass
John Ash: Cooking One on One: Private Lessons in Simple, Contemporary Food from a Master Teacher
by John Ash
The New Mayo Clinic Cookbook: Eating Well for Better Health
by Donald Hensrud, M.D., Jennifer Nelson, R.D. & Mayo Clinic Staff
Foods of the Americas: Native Recipes and Traditions
by Fernando and Marlene Divina
The Provence Cookbook
by Patricia Wells
Olive Trees and Honey: A Treasury of Vegetarian Recipes from Jewish Communities Around the World
by Gil Marks
Last Chance to Eat: The Fate of Taste in a Fast Food World
by Gina Mallet
by Thomas Keller
A Blessing of Bread: The Many Rich Traditions of Jewish Bread Baking Around the World
by Maggie Glezer
All About Braising: The Art of Uncomplicated Cooking
by Molly Stevens
On Food and Cooking: The Science and Lore of the Kitchen
by Harold McGee
Entertaining: Inspired Menus For Cooking with Family and Friends
by George Dolese
The Breath of a Wok: Unlocking the Spirit of Chinese Wok Cooking Through Recipes and Lore
by Grace Young, Alan Richardson
Cooking New American: How to Cook the Food You Love to Eat
by Fine Cooking Magazine
The Japanese Kitchen: A Book of Essential Ingredients with 200 Authentic Recipes
by Kimiko Barber
Arthur Schwartz's New York City Food: An Opinionated History and More Than 100 Legendary Recipes
by Arthur Schwartz
Poet of the Appetites: The Lives and Loves of M.F.K. Fisher
by Joan Reardon
Bread: A Baker's Book of Techniques and Recipes
by Jeffrey Hamelman
Everyday Dining with Wine
by Andrea Immer
Copyright © 2005-2008 KQED. All rights reserved.