A five-minute drive from downtown, Uptown’s public spaces entice visitors with bike paths, sculpture gardens, and locals blasting impressions of Björk's pet swan over a megaphone. Nearby, rented canoes crisscross Lake Calhoun’s calm waters, and restaurants serve eclectic cuisines from fresh seafood to Japanese cuisine on outdoor patios. Visitors to Uptown can feast on American fare at restaurants such as Primebar, which serves up sandwiches, steak, and seafood with largely local brews; The Herkimer Pub & Brewery in Lyn-Lake, known for its small batches of craft beer; and the Uptown Cafeteria, offering trendy contemporary meals. Evenings out at Bar Louie tempt guests with martinis, margaritas, and other cocktails accompanied by pub food, and Chino Latino delights palettes with dishes small and large, spicy and explosive. Wayward mermaids dining at Stella's Fish Cafe & Prestige Oyster Bar can enjoy a feast fit for the sea with raw, grilled, and baked items, or step on shore and visit moto-i in Lyn-Lake to sample the food you’d find on Japanese streets.
A staff of sommeliers, beer experts, and cheesemongers helps customers to navigate Sunfish Cellars Wine Bar's impressive spread of wine, beer, and gourmet cheeses from throughout the globe. Cordoned off by region, the staggering wine selection includes classic vinos and rare varietals that instructors highlight during regular tasting classes. Cheeses plucked from an onsite shop pair with fine wines during tastings, as sommeliers draw on their extensive expertise to discuss restaurant wine lists, evaluate cost versus value, and explain why wine doesn’t come in an electric-blue variety. Beer-tasting classes are also available, as are congratulatory gift baskets and a personal wine-shopper service, which sources wine selections for fancy dinners and business meetings.
Ken Davenport, the producer of Altar Boyz, crafted My First Time from a collection of more than 40,000 first-hand stories of people's first sexual experiences. The stories were all submitted anonymously to a website in 1998 and were drawn from the fossilized depths of the pre-socially networked Internet, where MIDI files swooped over vast primordial lakes of raw HTML. The range of pathos for such an assemblage is easy to envision, with tales vacillating from the sweet and silly to the absurd and existentially horrifying. Four fully clothed actors weave the anecdotes together from fine, lacy yarns of minimally graphic language while sitting monologue-style atop stools on center stage. Over the course of 90 minutes and without intermission, the play cheekily reveals true stories from real people and the five W's of their first adult trials. The result is a play infinitely more compelling than alternative premises such as My Initial Sandwich or New Shoes: The Blister Stories.
A non-profit organization, the Irish Fair of Minnesota vibrantly shares cultural heritage by providing a summery celebration of all things Irish. Today's deal grants Emerald Isle lauders access to a plethora of concessions, whiskey and beer tastings, and pub fare to sate bellies as they explore the expo. The Liffey and Cooper Pub tempts tasters with a Irish stew ($6), but those whose carnivorous hankerings are inclined toward other meats can tuck into corned beef and cabbage rolls ($5) at Claddagh Irish Pub. Kieran's Irish Pub warms up shamrockers with fish and chips ($7), while Maggie's Irish Cookies' baked oatmeal and chocolate chip confections ($1 each, $10 baker's dozen) sweeten meals quicker than a lick from a gummy bear.
As the only on-site brew-it-yourself brewery in the Midwest, Vine Park provides almost all necessary equipment (wine, corks, helpful services) for a fun batch-brewing session for up to three people per kettle. Like a finely aged bag of chocolate cheese-puff mix, blended fruit wines take only 30 minutes to prepare but can be enjoyed after six weeks of aging. Savor flavors such as peach apricot chardonnay, wildberry Shiraz, or pomegranate zinfandel after completing the brewing supervised by a friendly brew coach’s expert eye (his left eye). After a half-hour wine-blending session, wine batches will ferment for six weeks before being bottled into 28 to 30 bottles. Bottles are not included with this Groupon (they cost $1.40 each, and a batch big enough for this session costs $42), but you are welcome to bring your own clean bottles and Vine Park will help you sanitize them onsite. This Groupon can also be used to upgrade to a regular wine brewing.