Once a working-class, largely Eastern European neighborhood, the "Nordeast" has recently seen an influx of young professionals and artists. This demographic swing, combined with neighborhood revitalization efforts, have resulted in a resurgence of both commercial space and a thriving artistic community. Northeast Minneapolis, with its plethora of "neighborhood" bars and eating establishments, is becoming a nightlife hotspot for those wishing to avoid the cost and clientele of Downtown and Uptown drinking.
While Northeast is larger than you might think, a kind of 'downtown' Northeast has formed in the Old St. Anthony area (which technically occupies about equal areas of both Northeast and Southeast) and continues to develop around the triangle of Hennepin Ave, University Ave, and Central Ave. This area houses a thriving commercial district with new and developing urban residential buildings.
Along the river on the Northeast side is St. Anthony Main, signed in neon as such and visible from the Hennepin Ave bridge. St. Anthony Main houses several good restaurants, bars, a movie theater, and businesses. It can be quite lively on warm summer nights, and often deserted during winter.
The city has designated the area bounded by Lowry Avenue, Central Avenue and Broadway as the Northeast Minneapolis Arts District. It includes most of the major studio buildings which are open during Art-a-Whirl every May: The Northrup-King Building near Central Avenue and 14th Avenue NE, the California Building south of Lowry at 23rd and California, the Thorp Building just north of the railroad tracks 1t 1620 Central Avenue, and the Grain Belt complex on the Mississippi River at Marshall Street and Broadway. There is also a small, arts-heavy commercial district on 13th Avenue NE between 2nd Street NE and 4th Street NE, including several prominent galleries, the Ritz Theater (reopened in 2006 as the home of Ballet of the Dolls), and bars and restaurants including the Modern Cafe and Erté.
From Old St Anthony, keep heading up Central Avenue. At first you will pass through a bleak industrial area, but afterwards you will find a thriving commercial strip along Central stretching from 18th Avenue onwards. A hub of Indian groceries and stores is around 19th Avenue, and another hub of Middle Eastern and Latin American restaurants and stores has emerged around Lowry Avenue and Central Avenue. Once you pass 27th Avenue, the activity drops off and the street turns mostly residential on the east side and with the Shoreham rail yards and Columbia Park (largely occupied by a golf course) on the west side. Commerce picks up again just north of the city limits of Columbia Heights at 37th Avenue.
From downtown Minneapolis, head north east across the Hennepin Ave bridge or the 3rd Ave bridge. The triangle formed by Hennepin Ave, Central Ave, and University Ave places you squarely in 'downtown' Northeast.
Northeast can be accessed from the freeway system via I-35W.
Similarly to North Minneapolis, numbered avenues run east-west. Due to the geometry of the river, these numbers are lower than the numbers of the North Minneapolis avenues opposite them. This only comes into play when you are crossing one of the bridges. Plymouth Ave is equivalent to N 13th Ave, but becomes NE 8th Ave. Lowry Ave is equivalent to N 32nd Ave, but becomes the equivalent of NE 25th Ave east of the river. N 42nd Ave crosses the Camden Bridge to become NE 37th Ave. Except for a few numbered streets near the river and a few "half-blocks", the north-south running roads are called streets and are named after U.S. presidents in chronological order heading east.
The above rules break down in the area closest to downtown. The street grid turns from the strict compass-points grid to line up with the river, and a grid with both numbered streets (parallel to University Ave) and avenues (parallel to Hennepin Ave) holds sway. In the transition zone between the two grids, a brief mini-grid uses the names of the seasons.
Finally, streets in the industrial area on the eastern side of the area are more randomly named
Bus route 10 provides frequent (every 10 minutes weekdays, 15 on Saturday, and 20 on Sunday. Service also operates only every 30 minutes after 7PM) north-south service along Central Avenue. Route 17 zig-zags a little further west, ending up at Washington and 27th Ave (service every 30 minutes from 5AM-1AM everyday). Route 11 goes through the heart of the Arts District on 2nd Street (service every 30 minutes all day except every 15 minutes during weekday rush), while Route 4 goes up Johnson Street (every 30 all week except 10-15 minutes weekday rush). East-west bus service in Northeast is practically nonexistent; service on route 32 (serving Lowry Avenue) is far less frequent; only every 30-60 on middays and every 30 during rush hour. 32 service operates from 7AM-7PM, weekdays only; no Sat, Sun or Holiday service.(The other four routes mentioned here operate 365 days a year.)
The former Grain Belt Brewery
Boom Island Park, 700 Sibley St NE. A beautiful river-side park with walking/biking paths, a picnic area and plenty of parking.
Grain Belt Brewery Complex, Marshall St NE and 13th Ave NE. Romanesque-style brewery complex that ceased operation in 1976. Now home to various private tenants.
Our Lady of Lourdes Catholic Church, 1 Lourdes Pl (between Hennepin and Bank), ☎ +1 612 379-2259 (email@example.com, fax: +1 612 379-0165), . Built in 1854, this is the oldest continuously operating church in Minneapolis.
Stone Arch Cinema
Art-A-Whirl, . Third weekend in May. The largest open-studio and gallery tour in the United States. Locations scattered around Northeast, but mostly in the Northeast Arts District (Broadway St to 26th Ave, Central Ave to the Mississippi River), Old St. Anthony, and near 29th Ave and Johnson St.
St. Anthony Main Theatre (Stone Arch Cinema), 115 Main St SE (between Central and 3rd Ave SE), ☎ +1 612 331-4723, . Cinema on St. Anthony Main.$8.50 W-M evenings after 6PM, $6 W-M matinees before 6PM and seniors 59+/children 3-11/students for all shows W-M, $5 Tu all shows.
Surdyks, 303 E Hennepin Ave (at University), ☎ +1 612 379-3232 (fax: +1 612 379-7511), . M-Th 9AM-9PM, F-Sa 9AM-10PM. Surdyks is a Northeast landmark. They are known to suburbanites for their wine and cheese, but locals know that there are a dozen liquor stores within two miles that are better for the former; and a Lund's grocery two blocks away with six times as much of the latter.
Bibelot, 300 E Hennepin Ave (at University), ☎ +1 612 379-9300 (firstname.lastname@example.org), . M-F 10AM-8PM, Sa 10AM-6PM, Su noon-5PM. Gifts, cards, and jewelry.
Dabble, 2854 Johnson St NE (at 29th Ave), ☎ +1 612 781-0995 (email@example.com), . Gifts, cards, and flowers.
Pacifier, 310 E Hennepin Ave (between University and 4th St), ☎ +1 612 623-8123 (firstname.lastname@example.org), . M 10AM-6PM, Tu-F 10AM-8PM, Sa 10AM-6PM, Su noon-4PM. Gifts for the modern urban baby.
Rewind Vintage, 2829 Johnson St NE (between 28th and 29th Aves), ☎ +1 612 788-9870, . M-Sa 11AM-7PM, Su 11AM-5PM. Best selection of mostly vintage and some contemporary clothing and accessories. This little store is packed full of treasures for women and men.
13th Avenue galleries, including Frank Stone Gallery at 2nd St and 13th Ave, 212 Pottery half a block east of 2nd St, and Rogue Buddha Gallery, half a block east of University Ave on 13th Ave.
Other notable Arts District shopping includes the PPL Shop, Dunlaoghaire, Icebox Gallery, and Mobius Antiques in the Northup King Building at 1500 Jackson St; Creative Electric Gallery at 2nd St and 22nd Ave, and Clay Squared to Infinity in the Keg House Building of the Grain Belt complex, on 13th Ave at the Mississippi River (just north of Broadway).
Old St. Anthony
Gorkha Palace, 23 4th St NE (at 1st Ave NE), ☎ +1 612 886-3451, . M-Th 11AM-2:30PM and 5PM-10PM, F-Sa 11AM-10PM, Su 5PM-9PM (lunch buffet M-F 11AM-2PM). Indian, Nepalese, and Tibetan cuisine. Labeled vegan options.Entrees $10-$15.
Keegans Irish Pub, 16 University Ave NE (between Hennepin and 1st Ave NE), ☎ +1 612 252-0880, . M-F 11AM-2AM, Sa 10AM-2AM, Su 10AM-midnight. A traditional Irish pub, constructed largely in Ireland with good food and Guinness on tap. Live music often.
Kikugawa at Riverplace, 43 Main St SE (between Hennepin and Central), ☎ +1 612 378-3006, . Su-Th 11AM-10PM, F-Sa 11AM-11PM. Upscale Japanese food. For sushi, Kikugawa probably offers Minneapolis' best combination of quality, atmosphere, price, and service, including private rooms for no extra charge.
Kramarczuk's, 215 E Hennepin Ave (between 2nd St and University), ☎ +1 612 379-3018, . M 8AM-6PM, Tu-Sa 8AM-8PM, Su 11AM-4PM. A large, authentic Eastern European deli with attached sausage counter/cheese shop. The deli offers delicious and traditional Polish and Ukrainian foods, not to mention the best sausage in town.
Pizza Nea, 306 E Hennepin Ave (at University), ☎ +1 612 331-9298, . M-Th 11AM-9:30PM, F-Sa 11AM-10:30PM, Su noon-9PM. A charming a cozy pizzeria specializing in Neapolitan-style thin crust, wood-fired pizza. They also have a good wine list and a small selection of choice beers.Pizzas run around $11-$16.
Pracna on Main, 117 Main St SE (at Central), ☎ +1 612 379-3200, . Older restaurant with traditional American food. On the expensive side, but nice for an appetizer and drink before heading next door to see a movie at the St. Anthony Main theater. They offer a stunning view of downtown and an outdoor patio.
Punch Neopolitan Pizza, 210 E Hennepin Ave (between 2nd St and University), ☎ +1 612 623-8114, . Daily 11AM-10PM. Traditional Neopolitan Pizza baked for 90 seconds in an 800 degree oven. Can be busy, but worth braving the crowd.
Red Stag Supper Club, 509 1st Ave NE (at 5th St), ☎ +1 612 767-7766, . M-F 11AM-2AM, Sa-Su 9AM-2AM. The first LEED Certified restaurant in Minneapolis is also delicious, if a bit spendy.
Further up Central Avenue
Adelita's Mexican Restaurant, 2405 Central Ave NE (at 24th Ave), ☎ +1 612 789-2526, . Daily 9AM-midnight. Family owned and operated restaurant with some of the best food anywhere in the Twin Cities area. Wide selection of beer and numerous televisions that make soccer watching easy.
Crescent Moon Bakery, 2339 Central Ave NE (at 24th Ave), ☎ +1 612 782-0169, . Su-Th 10AM-9PM, F-Sa 10AM-10PM. One tasty Afghani restaurant with reasonable prices. The Afghan pizza with its special sauce is a legend in Nordeast for good reason. What most miss due to the pull of the pizza is their equally incredible gyro meat, expertly seasoned and lightly charred for a nice texture. They also serve kebab platters.Prices run as low as $5 for a gyro and $12 for the huge Afghani pizza (could easily feed 3 normal appetites), and as high as $25-30 for one of the massive platters.
El Taco Riendo, 2416 Central Ave NE (between 24th Ave and Lowry), ☎ +1 612 781-3000, . Su-Th 10AM-10PM, F-Sa 10AM-11PM. A family-owned Mexican restaurant. The food is cheap and delicious.
Holy Land, 2513 Central Ave NE (at Lowry), ☎ +1 612 781-2627, . M-Th 9AM-9PM (until 10PM May-Sep), F-Sa 9AM-10PM (until 11PM May-Sep), Su 9AM-9PM. Renowned Middle Eastern and Mediterranean restaurant, bakery, deli, and grocery. The gyros are some of the best in the United States, and the chicken curry gyros are very original and tasty. It's hard to go wrong with their menu, which is especially friendly towards vegetarians. A buffet is offered during lunch-time 7 days a week, plus dinner-time on Friday, Saturday, and Sunday. Some of their breads and hummus appear in grocery stores across the Twin Cities, but you can get them cheaper right from the source.$6-$10 dollars per person.
Sen Yai Sen Lek, 2422 Central Ave NE (at Lowry), ☎ +1 612 781-3046, . M-Th 11AM-9PM, F-Sa 11AM-10PM. This Thai restaurant is quickly becoming a Northeast favorite. Plenty of meat options but also very accommodating to vegetarians and vegans, and the spice tray brought to your table allows you to adjust the spiciness of your dish to your liking. The restaurant aims to be as environmentally sustainable as possible by recycling or composting much of their waste.
The Anchor Fish & Chips, 302 13th Ave NE (at 3rd St), ☎ +1 612 676-1300, . Tu 4PM-11PM, W-Th 4PM-midnight, F 4PM-1AM, Sa 10AM-1AM, Su 10AM-11PM. Chip-shop run by Irish immigrants. Very well-received by both the public and critics, both the setting and the food are outstanding. They don't take reservations, so be prepared to wait for a table, especially on weekends and evenings.
Erte, 323 13th Ave NE (at University), ☎ +1 612 623-4211, . M-Th 4:30PM-9PM, Fr-Sa 4PM-11PM. Steakhouse with a modern twist and reasonable prices.
Gasthof zur Gemutlichkeit, 2300 University Ave NE (at 23rd Ave), ☎ +1 612 781-3860, . Restaurant hours: Tu-Th 5PM-10PM, F-Sa 4PM-11PM, Su 3PM-10PM; bar hours: Th 5PM-1AM, F-Sa 4PM-2AM. German restaurant and dance hall, popular with the drinking crowd for the 'boots' of beer served in the basement.
Jax Cafe, 1928 University Ave NE (at 20th Ave), ☎ +1 612 789-7297 (fax: +1 612 789–0138), . M-Th 11AM-9:30PM, F-Sa 11AM-10PM, Su 10AM-3PM and 3:30PM-9PM. A neighborhood institution serving traditional American fare, specializing in steak.
Mill City Cafe, 75 22nd Ave NE (at California), ☎ +1 612 788-6188, . Tu-F 8AM-3PM, Sa-Su 9AM-2PM. American bistro style menu, weekend brunch, full bar, live music Thurs-Sat. Cheapest tap beer in town all day.
Modern Cafe, 337 13th Ave NE (at University), ☎ +1 612 378-9882 (email@example.com), . Tu-Th 11AM-9PM, F 11AM-9:30PM, Sa 8AM-9:30PM, Su 8AM-2PM. An airy 60's-style diner with excellent comfort food and a decently sized beer/wine selection. The pot roast itself is worth the trip, however the hours are at times erratic and phoning ahead is not a bad idea.
Que Viet, 2211 Johnson St NE (between 22nd and 23rd Ave), ☎ +1 612 781-4744, . M-Th 11AM-2PM and 4PM-8PM, F-Sa 11AM-2PM and 4PM-9PM, Su 4PM-8PM. Established in 1980. Specializes in Vietnamese food.Cheap.
The Sample Room, 2124 Marshall St NE (at 22nd Ave), ☎ +1 612 789-0333, . M-Th 11AM-10PM, Sa 10AM-midnight, Su 10AM-10PM; bar open until 1AM daily. Specializes in sampler menus (multiple cheeses, multiple wines, etc. Interesting eclectic menu.
Diamonds Coffee Shoppe, 1618 Central Ave NE (at 18th Ave), ☎ +1 612 789-5282, . M-Th 6AM-10PM, F 6AM-8PM, Sa 7AM-8PM, Su 8AM-7PM. Located in a former warehouse, Diamonds has numerous small rooms to foster easier discussion, live music every Saturday in the back, great pancake breakfast on 2nd Sunday of every month. No credit cards.
Matchbox Coffee Shop, 1306 2nd St NE (at 13th Ave), ☎ +1 612 259-0069, . M-F 7AM-7PM, Sa-Su 8AM-7PM. Probably the smallest coffee shop you will ever be in, Matchbox is a unique, collectively run brew-house serving fair trade coffee exclusively. Their motto is, "Great coffee, no bosses."
Wilde Roast Cafe, 65 Main St SE (between Hennepin and Central), ☎ +1 612 331-4544, . Su-Th 7AM-11PM, F-Sa 7AM-midnight. This Oscar Wilde-themed and queer-friendly cafe and restaurant has possibly the best atmosphere of any coffeeshop in town. Its nouveau-Victorian decor - complete with a giant portrait of Oscar Wilde - make for a great relaxation or date destination. Plush surroundings with leather couches as well as tables and chairs. The drinks and expertly crafted desserts are of high-quality, but a tad pricey. Free WiFi.
Nye's Polonaise Room
331 Club, 331 13th Ave NE (at University), ☎ +1 612 331-1746, . M-F 3PM-2AM, Sa 1PM-2AM, Su 11AM-2AM. Live music almost every night, and they never charge a cover. Le Cirque Rouge burlesque show happens here on Saturdays.
Keegan's Irish Pub & Restaurant, 16 University Ave NE (between Hennepin and 1st Ave NE), ☎ +1 612 252-0880, . M-F 11AM-2AM, Sa 10AM-2AM, Su 10AM-Midnight. A traditional Irish pub with good food and Guinness on tap. Live music often.
Mayslack's, 1428 4th St NE (at 15th Ave), ☎ +1 612 789-9862, . M-F 11AM-2AM, Sa-Su 10AM-2AM. This neighborhood joint has live music and killer roast beef sandwiches.
Nye's Polonaise Room, 112 E Hennepin Ave (between Lourdes and 2nd St), ☎ +1 612 379-2021, . 11AM-2AM daily. A Minneapolis institution, Nye's is an eccentric, multi-roomed bar on Hennepin Avenue just over the river from Downtown. Nye's features cheap drinks and Polish cuisine. The main draw however is the polka lounge, which in combination with copious amounts of alcohol promises a lovely time.
Psycho Suzi's Motor Lounge, 1900 Marshall St NE (between 18th and 22nd Aves), ☎ +1 612 788-9069, . 11AM-2AM daily (theme bars open F-Sa 5PM-midnight). A hip tiki bar with strong drinks and great 3/4-circle booths near the jukebox. Features a huge riverfront patio.
Spring Street Tavern, 355 Monroe St NE (at Spring), ☎ +1 612 627-9123, . M-F 8AM-2AM, Sa-Su 9AM-2AM. Home to Club Underground, a live music venue in the basement of the Spring Street Tavern.
Terminal Bar, 409 E Hennepin Ave (at 4th St), ☎ +1 612 623-4545, . Live music.
Whitey's, 400 E Hennepin Ave (at 4th St), ☎ +1 612 623-9478. M-F 11AM-2AM, Sa-Su 10AM-2AM. Good beer and strong drinks. If you order without ice they make it a double rather than just watering it down more like most bars do. The basement is the seediest in town and the perfect place to take over if you have a few friends who want to shoot pool and not be bothered by anyone but the occasional staffperson coming through to change a keg.
Nicollet Island Inn, 95 Merriam St, ☎ +1 612 331-1800 (fax: +1 612 331-6528), . While the downtown hotels are hardly far away from Northeast, the Nicollet Island Inn splits the difference. Located on Nicollet Island, in the middle of the Mississippi River between downtown and Northeast, the Inn provides luxury small hotel accommodations, as well as an excellent restaurant.$139+.
LeBlanc House, 302 University Ave NE (at 3rd Ave NE), ☎ +1 612 379-2570, . checkin: 4PM-6PM; checkout: 11AM. Old St. Anthony bed and breakfast in a house built in 1896. Free wi-fi, off-street parking available. No pets.$60-128.
Hennepin County Library - Northeast Branch, 2200 Central Ave NE (at 22nd Ave), ☎ +1 612 543-6775, . Tu,Th noon-8PM, W,F-Sa 10AM-6PM.
Hennepin County Library - Pierre Bottineau Branch, 55 Broadway St NE (at Marshall), ☎ +1 612 543-6850, . Tu,Th noon-8PM, W,F-Sa 10AM-6PM.
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