For the Chill Couple
"My husband and I are people who prefer lounging to almost any other activity. We are big time schedulers, but we also intentionally leave some space to do things when we feel the time is right. I decided one night in July that I really wanted pie, so we walked half a mile to get dessert. Sometimes Mike will really want a doughnut when we wake up with the sun on the weekends because we’re sort of elderly, and we’ll wander with our coffee in hand to a doughnut shop (or a grocery store because let’s be honest, the doughnuts at Cub are pretty good). We stay home and cook together almost every night of the week, and watch whatever shows are on the queue (right now it’s Malcome in the Middle and Grey's Anatomy). May this inspire you to keep things chill and low key because we all need a little less stress, amiright?"
"I often times think couples think that if they find themselves staying at home more often than going out that they are 'boring' or 'in a rut". It's quite the opposite actually. Being able to connect with your partner doing everyday activities, to me, helps build a deeper connection. OK enough with the mushy stuff. Even though I am the single lady contributor to this post I will say that I really do enjoy having chill dates when I am attached (did I just say attached? woof!) . Nothing beats making homemade pizza and opening a bottle of wine while dancing around in the kitchen to a bomb A Apple playlist. I also adore going for a walk-to-pick-up-a-coffee date as well (usually needed after the pizza and wine dance party!). Everyone needs a chill date night every once in awhile. So tell me, red or white wine?"
//Dinner at Home and a Movie//
Below are two recipes that should be in rotation often for a chill night at home: a charcuterie board and shakshuka. Rent a movie if the options on all your streaming services don’t float your boat, or go dig up that box of old DVD’s and choose one from your college days. Slip on your silky robe, or boxers & tee, or maybe your swimsuit, (I don’t know your life) and make some good food and snuggle up.
Cheese trifecta: hard cheese, soft cheese, adventurous cheese
Meats (2-5 oz. per person): cured meats (e.g. proscuitto, coppa) and cured sausages/salami
Accoutrement: olives, pickled veggies, nuts, a jam or spread
Carbs: baguette or toasted ciabatta, crackers
Final touches: herbs (thyme, rosemary), drizzle olive oil over everything, black pepper
*Slice meats, and arrange with cheese and carbs on a large platter or cutting board. Pile the extras in little bowls and lay herbs all around the board. Drizzle with olive oil and sprinkle pepper all over.
2 c. tomato sauce but tbh I (Melissa) just dump whatever can or jar in and call it a day
1 tbsp. red pepper flakes
Prosciutto (8ish slices) rolled up
1 tbsp. olive oil
2 tsp. oregano (and/or thyme), smoked paprika if you want an extra flavor
Salt and pepper to taste
Bread for dipping
*Dump tomato sauce in a large saucepan and add red pepper flakes. Make it boil and stir every so often, then make four divots and crack an egg in each divot. Sprinkle salt and pepper on the eggs, then cover so you don’t get scalded with boiling tomato sauce. When eggs start to turn white, add rolled prosciutto all around. Continue to cook eggs until they are set (no jiggly yolks). Drizzle on the olive oil, sprinkle herbs, and serve with bread for dipping (crusty bread, biscuits, toast, hot dog buns you drag out of the freezer, whatever).
Many coffee shops around the cities are open early enough for a morning date, or late enough to stop in after an evening walk. Chatting over coffee is a top notch way to connect with your date. Here are some of our favorites.
Bachelor Farmer Cafe (200 N 1st St.)
Black Coffee and Waffle Bar (1500 Como Ave. SE, 2180 Marshall Ave.)
Empire Coffee (451 NE Stinson Blvd.)
Groundswell (1340 Thomas Ave. W)
Lynhall (Lyndale & W 27th)
Moose & Sadie’s (212 3rd Ave. N)
Northern Coffeeworks (1027 S Washington Ave.)
Quixotic Coffee (769 Cleveland Ave. S)
Penny’s Coffee (100 S Washington Ave.)
Spyhouse (Hennepin & W 24th, Nicollet & W 25th, 907 N Washington, 945 Broadway St. NE)
Urban Bean (Lyndale & W 24th, 822 W Lake St.)
For the Couple that Loves the City
"I grew up with a neighbor who was a farmer, so I wasn’t originally as familiar with city life. Then I went to college in Moorhead, which was basically like living in a large suburb. Then I jetted of to NYC, where I learned what it meant to really live in a city: rats and all. Now I’m settled into sweet Minneapolis, and I love living here. I take the bus to work, walk to get groceries and walk to restaurants and bars. There are innumerable options for things to do at any time in our Twin Cities, and they are all such a short distance away. Honestly between super chill dates at home and walking to things in the city, my husband and I are happy as clams."
"For those who know me well it is no surprise when I say that I love that city life. While I did not have a farmer as my neighbor (kind of actually real jealous about that, mel), I grew up just outside the city limits in a suburb. I moved to the cities shortly after I graduated college and have yet to leave. It's no secret that our cities are filled with perfect date spots! One of my favorites is going to Young Joni to get pizza because obviously, and then going around the corner to their speak-easy bar in the alley for a cocktail. *Semi-pro tip: you can order their cheese, pepperoni, or sausage pizza in the adjoining bar.* I am also always about jumping on a Nice Ride and biking around to a few breweries (with a stop at Pizza Nea of course). Wait, did I just talk about pizza twice?"
//Lynx + Drinks//
Go to a WNBA game at the Xcel and take your date for drinks in downtown St. Paul.
Cossettas - check out the rooftop! (open until 9 pm Sun-Th, until 10 pm F-Sat)
Amsterdam Bar & Hall (open until 2 am)
Gray Duck Tavern (open until 12 am)
With all the construction happening, here’s our number one place in each neighborhood because it would be better to wait out rush hour with a drink in hand anyway, amiright?
Cedar Riverside: Republic
Dinkytown: Library Bar
Downtown Mpls: Eastside
Linden Hills: Red Cow - 50th
Longfellow: Blue Door Pub
Loring Park: 4 Bells
Lowry Hill: Liquor Lyle’s
Northeast: Masu Sushi & Robata
North Loop: Clubhouse Jager
Powderhorn: Tiny Diner
Tangletown: George and the Dragon
Downtown StP: Kincaid’s
Highland Park: Highland Grill
Lowertown: Ox Cart Ale House
Macalester: Groveland Tap
Midway: The Happy Gnome
Saint Anthony Park: Station 280
The Twin Cities is overflowing with museums large and small. Check out some of our favorites, and check the last link for other gems.
//Ice Cream + a Walk Around the Water//
We are so dang lucky to live in a city with so many lakes, so grab some ice cream and take a walk while the sun sets. How romantic!
Izzy’s Ice Cream (Mill District)
//Lake of the Isles
Sebastian Joe’s (Franklin & Hennepin)
Milkjam Creamery (Lyndale & W 27th St.)
//Bde Maka Ska
Sonny’s Ice Cream Cafe (Lyndale & W 34th St.)
La La Homemade Ice Cream (Hennepin & W 32nd St.)
Sebastian Joe’s (4321 S Upton Ave.)
Grand Ole Creamery (4737 Cedar Ave S)
Pumphouse Creamery (4754 Chicago Ave)
Conny’s Creamy Cone (1197 Dale St. N)
For the Couple Who Craves Indian Food
"One thing about the Twin Cities that I love and appreciate is the diverse food scene we have here. Thank goodness that I do not live within walking distance of the Global Food Market otherwise I think I'd be about 9,000 lbs from all the delicious food. When it comes to Indian food, Ghorka Palace in Northeast is on the top of my list. It's the perfect spot for a cozy date on a blustery winter evening. Might I suggest the mixed vegetable curry, the Naan bread, and of course the Mo:Mo's?"
"When I lived in New York, I ordered dinner often (too often), so I got to know which kinds of restaurants I really liked. I found myself ordering Indian food about half the time I ordered dinner. At that time I was also vegetarian, so it was easy to order something from an Indian restaurant, and it would keep me full and also give me leftovers. Since moving to the Twin Cities four years ago, I’ve loved trying new Indian places, and introducing my husband to the tasty world of Indian cuisine. We have done our best to make some Indian dishes at home, which have been mostly successful, but there’s nothing like ordering tikka masala at a restaurant that serves it to you in a small, ornate metal dish with a lid. Get after all the great places that are likely a short distance from where you are at this very moment!"
//Places to Stuff Faces//
Tired of the same old salad and chicken duo? Take your sweetie out to one of our many favorite spots below! It'll be sure to get your taste buds poppin'.
Ghorka Palace (23 4th St. NE, Minneapolis)
Namaste Cafe (2512 Hennepin Ave, Minneapolis)
Tandoor (8062 Morgan Circle S, Bloomington)
India House (758 Grand Avenue, Saint Paul)
Everest on Grand (1278 Grand Ave, Saint Paul)
Himalayan Restaurant (2910 E Lake Street, Minneapolis)
For the Outdoors & Adventurous Couple
"We would not be doing MSP justice if we did not add dates for our outdoorsy folks! Don't worry guys, I got you. Personally, I love summer date nights walking around the lakes and people watching. I find that activity based dates are great for first or second dates since it's less stagnant and more fun! Some of my favorites include kayaking the lakes, mini golf and whiskey slushies at Can Can Wonderland, or a spontaneous Tuesday night out at St. Genevieve for a glass of champagne!"
"You know those memes: “I’m full glam or a hot mess - there is no in between”? That’s how I am with my activity level. I’m either “hibernate as if ‘Winter is Coming’ and will never leave so might as well make myself a nest on the couch with access to an outlet to keep my phone charged” or “let’s go on a hike and then go to brunch and go to a museum and then fall asleep at like 4 p.m.”. I’m working on being a bit more reasonable and keeping it to one activity a day, but the nice weather makes it easier to go from one thing to the next. If you are an adventurous human, show off your knowledge of cool things to do in our Twin Cities to show how trendy and hip you are!"
Don't be a bore, grab your love and head outdoors!
Chain of Lakes (Click on the hyperlink for deets)
Hiawatha Golf Course (Work on your swing or short game, after all a couple that golfs together...)
Show off your excellent putt putt skills or buy your cutie some french fries at the Minnesota State Fair!
Salt Caves (4811 Nicollet Ave S, Minneapolis)
Rock Climbing at Vertical Endeavors (Saint Paul and Minneapolis Locations)
Wine Tasting Classes (See website for multiple times and locations)
Can Can Wonderland (755 Prior Ave North, Saint Paul)
Minnesota State Fair (Fairgrounds, Saint Paul)
St. Genevieve for Champagne (It's going up on a Tuesday ya'll) (5000 Bryant Ave South, Minneapolis)