In honor of Canada Day, I (SP) want to celebrate Canada’s greatest gift to the world: Fries with a bunch of awesome stuff on them.
Being one of Canada’s closest neighbors, Minnesota has more than a few places that offer above-average poutine. My absolute favorite is a foreign twist on the classic fries + gravy and It can be found at The Rabbit Hole/Left-Handed Cook at the Midtown Global Market in Minneapolis.
They call it the Harold & Kumar Poutine, infusing the “Harold” (Korean) elements of a bibimbap style bowl of goodies with kimchi as well as the “Kumar” (Indian) elements of curry. I was elated to find out that they are planning to bring it to the Minnesota State Fair this coming year, so I can have a scrumptious poutine snack as I walk around. However, it seems they are dropping the Harold & Kumar name for the fair. If you go, keep an eye out for the kimchi and curry poutine.
It is an absolutely crazy combination of flavors that completely works. You get the perfect amount of curry, almost like a vindaloo, without skimping on the veggies and other Korean elements. The BEST part is a slightly poached egg sitting on top, so you can get delicious egg goo all over the place.
As a runner up, if you still have any room, Forepaugh’s in St. Paul has a truffle foie gras poutine that will remind you why duck fat is so good. With excellent ingredients, it is well worth the price of admission. This isn’t going to be your typical bar food poutine — it’s going to be a whole other dimension of crazy good.
One of the best parts of dining at Forepaugh’s is that it’s an old house remodeled into a restaurant. There aren’t too many places like it in St. Paul, which really gives it the blue ribbon when it comes to atmosphere. Minneapolis usually draws the bulk of top notch restaurateurs wanting to open up an impressive eatery, but Forepaugh’s helps St. Paul close the gap.
I would be remiss if I didn’t mention a poutine from a burger place. It might not be the case in Canada, but at least around these parts you’ll find great poutine in a place that has great burgers to match. The one to go to, especially if you want a range of options, is The Red Cow at either of their locations in south Minneapolis or St. Paul. The Red Cow’s fries are a force to be reckoned with. They are pristine, high-level fries. So when they offer poutine, you know it’ll be some of the best you’ve ever had.
The best part is you get to pick whether you want 1) braised beef and Summit beer cheese, or 2) apples, bacon, and bleu cheese. Hell, why not order both? AND your burger will come with extra fries to mop up the good stuff. Why drive six hours north to try and find McDonald’s-level poutine? You might as well stick around and get some of the best poutine the Twin Cities has to offer.
Can’t get enough of poutine? Another Twin Cities area blogger did a poutine crawl. Check it out.