Would we go back:
9th and Nicollet
• Crab Dip $11.95 (shared)
• Spinach Salad $5.20 (shared)
• Crab Cake Dinner $22.50
Another seafood restaurant worth going to in the Twin Cities. While I do not like the atmosphere nearly as much as Oceanaire, the food was comparable and a bit cheaper, especially when you consider that the sides are included. For most, this may enough to decide that it is better than Oceanaire, but I think I have some inexplicable attachment to Oceanaire, so it still reigns as my favorite.
I actually had been there before for drinks, which I was very impressed with, they serve drinks with their own sour mix and they are reasonable and they have good appetizers at the bar for only a bit of change.
So as we were seated I ordered a Whisky Sour and again great drink $5.50. The Crab dip was excellent. It had tons of crab in it and had great flavoring. The salad was spinach with strawberries and a basil vinaigrette, very good, just enough different to be good.
My crab cake dinner was very good as well, served with asparagus and wonderful potatoes. We didn't have room for dessert, although their dessert tray looked very good as well.
• Cashew Encrusted Mahi Mahi $18.40
We have a fondness for OceanAire, as you could tell by our reviews of OceanAire and the number of times we've returned. Nevertheless, McCormick and Schmick's will give them a good run for the money.
One local reviewer has commented that for the portion sizes and prices, OceanAire compares favorably to McCormick and Schmick's. That did not include the $1.95 specials at happy hour, which may be the best happy hour appetizer values in Downtown Minneapolis. We had a very good meal and could not complain about the price.
We started with the crab dip with crostini. The crab dip alone was excellent, though the crostini was too salty for my taste. The dip was better on their plain bread.
The spinach salad with brie, strawberries, and basil dijon dressing was something new for me. All the flavors blended well, though it was really the dressing that brought it together. I was impressed with the salad and its reasonable price.
The cashew-encrusted mahi-mahi was also excellent. The fish was flaky, moist, and delicious. The cashew crust was acceptable, though the accompanying sauce was too sweet for my taste.
I was happy with the price and overall experience. However, we did not have dessert or coffee, which kept the price lower. I can't say that I liked this better than OceanAire, though I can't say exactly why. Maybe it's just the fondness we have for OceanAire.
July 14, 2000