Burch Restaurant, Minneapolis, MN

4forks

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1942 Hennepin Ave
Minneapolis, MN 55403
(612) 843-1515
burchrestaurant.com

Neighborhood: uptown Minneapolis, MN
Cuisine: Steak House, Pizza
$$$ = $50 and less – Higher priced
Four Forks = Defines excellence in local dining. Worth the investment

Hours:
Monday through Thursday 5:00PM – 12:00AM
Friday and Saturday 5:00PM – 1:00AM
Sunday 9:00AM – 10:00PM

SPECIAL FEATURES:
Handicap accessible: Yes
Parking: Valet
Vegetarian options: Yes
Kid friendly: No
Liquor served: Full bar
Wine List: Decent options, slightly expensive
Outdoor seating: No
Reservations: Yes

Unique:  The design and the ambiance in the upstairs space are absolutely gorgeous.  It was close seating, but luxurious for the midwest.  Streamlined and industrial.  There is a unique wall of mirrors making the space look even larger than it is.  We joined some friends earlier this month to see what all the hype is about!

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The Executive Chef/Owner is Chef Isaac Becker, who also owns Bar La Grassa – one of our favorites as well as 112 Eatery, which we enjoy.  I’ve heard that the Pizza and Brunch are awesome, but we were there for steak dinner.  We were seated right next to the open kitchen, which is a bonus because I enjoy watching the chefs do their magic.  It was a bit warm and the tables were close, but the volume wasn’t too bad.

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Our server was Amy, who was knowledgeable and prompt.

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Complementary: Beautiful bread basket!  There is a nice variety of fresh bread, including little croissants, which are amazing.

They use quality ingredients, with unique sides.  The dishes are predominantly ala-carte, which can be a downfall as each selection adds to the tab.  Our group of four opted to share items, which gave us each about one bite samples of some sides.  This worked well for us, but may not be enough for some.  The portions don’t compare to the well-known Capital Grille; the prices were about the same and I don’t think the ambiance was as classy.

Shared plates: Wagyu carpaccio, prosciutto, truffles, dalettes, $18

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Carpaccio is an Italian hors d’oeuvre consisting of thin slices of raw beef or fish served with a sauce.  It’s the bite front and center at the bottom of this plate.  This was absolutely delicious and it was impressive to see large slices of truffle.  I don’t know what a “dalette” is, but this was probably the favorite of all of the group for starters.

Hamachi, mayo, Fresno, ginger, jalapeno, $12

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Hamachi is the Japanese name for Pacific yellowtail, especially when used in sushi and sashimi.  This was the least successful starter.  It even almost had a tinge of a fishy taste.  I suspect that came from the raw roe, and I’m a lover of all sushi and sashimi.  Thumbs down.

Ahi tuna, black walnuts, celery, $14

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It is the top image, center of the plate and was served with perfect thin crisps.  I was in love with this dish and was pleasantly surprised when Bill, who doesn’t typically eat sushi enjoyed it as well! it was a decent sized, light and refreshing starter.  It was plated beautifully and was full of clean and distinct flavors and it was unique with the celery mixed in.

Cheese dumpling, lamb stroganoff, $11

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These were delicious!  But you can see in the top image, they are literally one to two bites at most.  The lamb stroganoff was good on the cheese dumpling, but the lamb was a bit bland and less than overwhelming so it was unmemorable.

Escargot, chanterelle mushrooms, sorrel butter, $12

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My friend Carrie and I were  very happy!  Escargot is a cooked land snail, after all, so there was no way I was getting Bill to taste one.  James did though and he said it was alright, but with all of that garlicky flavor from the chanterelle mushroom and sorrel butter – topped with crispy parmesan cheese, how could it be bad?  Bill did like the cheese!

I always like a salad and there were a lot of interesting options, but I was splitting with Bill so I kept it simple and went with the

Bibb lettuce, ranch, grilled onions, $8 (I noticed it’s now $10)

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The portion was nice, but honestly, it is passable and Bill didn’t even finish his as it was way over-dressed.  The onions were warm, which contributed to the sogginess as this lettuce just can’t hold up to all of that.

We all agreed to share the Tomahawk steak, $140

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I no longer see this on their menu.  The visual was impressive indeed while we all had plenty to eat, but honestly, the steak was just mediocre.  A disappointment because there are so many raving reviews on other excellent steaks.  Perhaps this was a fluke and we should have said something, but I would expect that steak of this caliber is cooked to perfection.  It wasn’t.  It was a bit underseasoned and undercooked.  We ordered medium rare, but it was really quite rare and it bit tough as well. Not what I was expecting and this is where I would choose the Grille.  the steaks are served with homemade steak sauce, béarnaise and marinated little shrooms that were flavorful.

We all shared sides of Roasted cauliflower, anchovies, burrata, $10

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This was a good dish.  I’m not sure it was a great dish, but maybe we were just getting too full by this time.  It was a bit salty.

And everyone enjoyed the Roasted carrots, thyme, chevre, $10

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These were ridiculously good.  Everyone enjoyed the sweetness against the tart goat cheese.  We heard that they are candied with “a lot” of brown sugar and the added thyme flavor was terrific.

The wine list if affordable which makes up for the steak prices, but perhaps people should inquire about a corking fee if they don’t want to invest in the restaurant prices for wine.  We had heard they had a notable wine cellar and we started with a bottle of Adelsheim, $40.  While we were not impressed with the quality of the wine glasses, later, when we ordered the Chateau Musar, $112 our server delivered beautiful glasses at our request.

I’m not saying that we won’t be back, but it won’t be on my favorites list when there are so many other top notch steakhouses in this city!  Maybe we’ll try the pizza because that too has great reviews.

Bon appetit!
~Chris

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