On The Town

On The Town

Give your out-of-town clients another vantage point on the Twin Cities with a memorable evening on an outdoor patio.

Downtown Minneapolis

For clients who appreciate the smell of the greasepaint, Skybar offers a unique perspective on the Hennepin Theatre District, land that used to be an American Indian footpath between St. Anthony Falls and Spirit Lake, Iowa. Situated on the rooftop of Seven, this stylish outdoor bar provides a bird’s-eye view of the glittering Pantages marquee and the lights of the city beyond. Settle into the orange cabana-style sofas and order a round of Manhattans, cigars from the on-site humidor, and a procession of hamachi kama, tuna tataki, and other sparkling-fresh sushi. 700 Hennepin Ave., Mpls., 612-238-7770, 7mpls.net


While out-of-town clients may be intrigued to hear that Uptown was once a busy hub on the streetcar route out to Lake Minnetonka, they’ll be more impressed by the boatload of fresh seafood on offer at Stella’s, a cherrystone’s throw from the Minneapolis chain of lakes. As the reigning queen of local rooftop dining, Stella’s Fish Café and Prestige Oyster Bar is an amusing place to sip frosty Caribbean mojitos, slurp raw oysters, and peel (and eat) a pound of steamed shrimp while admiring 360-degree views of Uptown and downtown Minneapolis. 1400 W. Lake St., Mpls., 612-824-8862, stellasfishcafe.com


On a beautiful July afternoon, make the strategic decision to end your meetings early and head over to Stillwater. Often called the birthplace of Minnesota, this former lumber town is as old as St. Paul and older than Minneapolis. Take a table on the patio at Dock Café, where you can look across to Wisconsin, upriver to the Stillwater Lift Bridge and downriver to Lake St. Croix. For a refreshing summer meal, order a bottle of crisp Whitehaven sauvignon blanc, crab cakes with cilantro lime aioli, pan-seared halibut with grilled pineapple basil salad, and Key lime pie. 425 Nelson St. E., Stillwater; 651-430-3770, dockcafe.com

Along the Mississippi River

Clients with a well-developed sense of irony will get a kick out of Psycho Suzi’s Motor Lounge, one of the Twin Cities’ only restaurants with views of the mighty Mississippi, the lifeblood of early Minnesota commerce. Relax on the patio under a palapa-style umbrella, surrounded by flowering hibiscus, and order a round of mai tais, made with rum, fresh lime, mint and more rum. As you feast on Polynesian wings, potluck pickle rollups, Grain Belt-battered onion rings and cheese curds, pay no mind to the Easter Island-ish sculptures gazing hungrily at your food. 1900 Marshall St. NE, Mpls., 612-788-9069, psychosuzis.com

St. Paul

When in St. Paul, do as the locals do and stop at the Liffey. Named for the river that flows through the center of Dublin, the Liffey is also a Minnesota Nice-style nod to the Mississippi. Join the crowd on the second-floor patio and order a round of negronis and Irish dip sandwiches layered with house-made corned beef, melted Swiss and aioli. Toast to liffey (the Irish word for life) as you point out the Minnesota State Capitol, designed by Cass Gilbert (and modeled after St. Peter’s Basilica in Rome) and the Cathedral of St. Paul, designed by Emmanuel Masqueray. 175 W. Seventh St., St. Paul, 651-556-1420, theliffey.com

Lake Minnetonka

The distant Midwestern cousin of the Hamptons, Wayzata in July is always a good idea. In authentic East Hampton style, don’t bother trying to find a parking place. Instead, hand your keys to the valet at Cōv and use the time saved to score a coveted table on the patio overlooking the azure waters of Wayzata Bay. Surrounded by beauties and power brokers, and Cōv’s signature ’70s soundtrack, order a bottle of Veuve. Feast on lobster guacamole, Skuna Bay salmon with Minnesota-grown wild rice, and a slice of decadent Sammi cake, and wave as the train thunders past on railroad tracks once owned by James J. Hill’s Great Northern Railroad. 700 Lake St. E., Wayzata, 952-473-5253, covwayzata.com