Chris and I found ourselves in the Twin Cities over Labor Day weekend for our good friends’ lovely wedding. It was a fabulous time from beginning to end. As soon as we checked into our hotel, we were delighted to see, in our gift box, a list of restaurant recommendations planned out by the bride herself. As I surveyed the list, my eye immediately went to Loring Pasta Bar and I, the pasta junkie, was hooked. We were going there for lunch.
We drove from our hotel in St. Paul over to this promising place and realized very fast that this must be a local campus spot. The directions took us through the University of Minnesota and we were mesmerized by crowds of returning students and incoming freshman moving in. Feeling a little nostalgic, we slowed down to take in the football stadium and detoured through the campus a bit.
By the time we parked and started walking, it was probably around 2:00pm. I was instantly taken back to downtown Blacksburg, with its local restaurants and coffee shops, students dressed in school colors or plaid shirts, and bikes meandering along their way. I couldn’t wait for Loring! I felt like a hippie college kid. We finally arrived at the destination, and I snapped a fun picture with excitement.
We decided to return for dinner instead, and ate lunch at my personal go-to college spot: Jimmy John’s. We then ended up spending a very long time wandering around the University of Minnesota’s beautiful campus. The vine-covered buildings were absolutely lovely.
Back for dinner, and Loring Pasta Bar did not disappoint. We sat out on the wall-side border patio, conversing with each other and all of the bending trees. My mother says I can be so uncreative in my Italian restaurant orders–and mothers are always right! I was very boring, ordering the Spaghetti with Meatballs… but it hit the spot.
Chris chose the Portabella Mushroom Ravioli in a beurre blanc sauce with Canadian Bacon, tomato, and corn salsa.
We thoroughly enjoyed the rest of our visit, from the Minnesota State Fair on Saturday to the wedding itself at the Minnesota History Museum. Sure, we probably went during the ideal weather season, but I will certainly be a fan of the Twin Cities from now on!