The Best Twin Cities Venues To Bring Clients For Music

The Best Twin Cities Venues To Bring Clients For Music

When the evening calls for good food and a great soundtrack, here’s where to find live jazz, blues and other soulful tunes.

Dakota Jazz Club & Restaurant
For jazz aficionados, the Dakota is our own Twin Cities music hall of fame, having hosted Ramsey Lewis, Dave Brubeck, Bobby Watson and other greats. From lunch through late night, music and food are served with equal gusto, so book tickets for dinner and a show, or join the crowd in the bar, sip a Your Cheatin’ Heart made with Evan Williams bourbon, and feast on jazz and other music until 2 a.m. 1010 Nicollet Mall, Mpls., 612-332-1010,

After a day in glass-and steel-skyways, a spin around the cobblestone streets of St. Anthony Main is a picturesque way to begin the evening. Take in the views of the majestic grain elevators and the imposing Stone Arch Bridge before scoring a table at Aster. Order a bottle of malbec El Ganador and a charcuterie platter with sausages from nearby Kramarczuk’s, and savor the sounds of jazz artists, blues musicians, folk singers, and aspiring pop stars. 125 S.E. Main St., Mpls., 612-379-3138,

Barbette Restaurant + Amusements
More Montparnasse than Champs-Élysées, Barbette is parfait for clients who speak French with a bohemian accent. Situated on the left bank of Uptown, this café/salon serves up French bistro classics, a quirky art collection, and live jazz, world music and R&B on weekday evenings. Slide into a red banquette, order a glass of absinthe and pommes frites with extra saffron aioli, and channel the spirit of Jean Cocteau and his crew. 1600 W. Lake St., Mpls., 612-827-5710,

Hell’s Kitchen
Irreverent clients will enjoy a descent into hell, Minnesota-style. Situated in the dark heart of downtown, Hell’s Kitchen features lusty food and soulful live jazz, folk, Americana and pop music with brunch, dinner and late-night shows. Order a round of Surly or Summit, a plate of Tater Tots and State Fair cheese curds, followed by a couple of Juicy Lucifers, Minnesota’s burger claim to fame, served with a lick of spicy red pepper jelly. For dessert, angel-food cake bites will transport you back to the light side. 80 S. Ninth St., Mpls., 612-332-4700,

For a memorable, only-in-Minneapolis experience, take your clients to Icehouse, where the daily music menu swings from live jazz to Cuban, gospel, soul and the blues. Order a round of handcrafted cocktails and while you’re at it, buy the kitchen a six-pack for five dollars. Over a platter of legendary chicken wings, regale your clients with stories about the days when thousands of pounds of ice, “the only crop in Minnesota that doesn’t fail,” were sawed from nearby lakes and delivered by horse-drawn cart to the loading docks of this very building. 2528 Nicollet Ave. S., Mpls., 612-276-6523,

Mancini’s Char House & Lounge
Clients with an old-school sensibility will be charmed by Mancini’s, from the vintage signage to the cozy, rosy ambiance. After a supper club-style repast of antipasti, lobster tail and steak grilled over an open charcoal pit, settle in the lounge for an ice-cold martini, live jazz and the songs you love to sing along to, from Frank Sinatra to Neil Diamond, and a little Lady Gaga to boot. 531 W. Seventh St., St. Paul, 651-224-7345,

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