Fans of chicken Parmesan (or eggplant, meatball, pork chop and other variations, prepared in several permutations) have a home at this cozy retro throwback. Expect big portions, moderate prices, a few red sauce plates (lasagna, spaghetti) and nice people. The bar taps a handful of wines and shakes up $10 craft cocktails. Lunch and dinner daily, and late-night (to 2 a.m.) Friday and Saturday.
12 SE. 4th St., Mpls., 612-236-4335, genosmpls.com
Under the watchful eye of J.D. Fratzke — he’s the talented chef behind the (closing on July 1) Strip Club Meat & Fish — the tight quarters of the former Ristorante Luci have gone from Italian to French. The tavern-style vibe extends to the prices (nothing exceeds $17), hurrah, as well as the (full) bar. Dinner Tuesday through Sunday.
470 S. Cleveland Av., St. Paul, barbrigade.com
It’s a Twin Cities rarity, a plant-based (translation: vegan) restaurant. Rice bowls, burgers (made with Herbivorous Butcher meat-free “beef” patties), tacos, nachos, quesadillas, biscuits and gravy and other mainstream fare, minus animal products (and with occasional nods to those following gluten-free diets), at prices that rarely top $10. Dessert includes carrot cake with nondairy cream cheese icing, and a soy-based facsimile of soft-serve. A kids’ menu features six $6 options. Lunch weekdays, brunch weekends, dinner daily.
169 N. Victoria St., St. Paul, 651-222-3263, jselbys.com
St. Paul Bagelry
Co-owners Peggy Teed and Dodie Green have expanded their boil-and-bake artistry to south Minneapolis, serving bagels with schmears, a long list of bagel sandwiches (eggs in the morning, deli meats in the afternoon) and their signature “Bagizza” bagel-pizza mashup. Breakfast and lunch daily.
5426 Nicollet Av. S., Mpls., 612-353-4203, stpaulbagelry.com