Load up on doughnuts, local beers, and totchos before taking off
With lots of holiday travelers back in the skies this year, Minneapolis St. Paul International Airport (MSP) flyers can ease the stress of long lines and the chance of weather delays with a reliable cocktail and bite before a flight.
In addition to some well-loved chains, a strong showing of homegrown favorites offer travelers a taste of the Twin Cities. There’s options for fresh ramen, lobster rolls, cheese-stuffed burgers, buckets of local beer, and more. Unfortunately, a lot of restaurants remain dark as the airline industry works to “rebuild and recover” from the pandemic, an MSP rep tells Eater. MSP concessions
crossed out below are either on hiatus or permanently closed.
Travelers who’d rather bypass restaurant crowds can take advantage of the airport’s new online ordering platform MSP ASAP and get takeout or delivery straight to their gate in a matter of 15 to 20 minutes. All airports in the U.S. remain under a federal mask requirement until at least January 18, 2022.
A breakfast savior at the airport, open at 5 a.m. daily for grab-and-go sweets and breakfast treats. You know what makes every flight better? Doughnuts. Plan accordingly. [Terminal 1, Concourse E]
An airport outpost built to mirror the classic diner car in Minneapolis’ Longfellow neighborhood. An excellent stop for decadent breakfast classics served all day or a good ol’ burger. Even if the seats are all taken, there are a few places available to lean and order a pre-flight drink. [Terminal 1, Concourse F]
Located off the beaten path, as in a few moving walkways and tram ride away, this drinking gem showcases the rising distillery movement across the Twin Cities. Exclusive MSP cocktails and liqueurs from Tattersall are served alongside light apps and snacks. [Concourse A, Gate A10]
Enjoy a local brew under the indoor pergola and bask in eternal summer. An eclectic pub menu offers something for everyone, whether it’s wings, totchos, or the full-blown “Juicy Blucy” burger experience it’s known for. [Concourse A, Gate A1]
This golf-themed bar and restaurant on the mezzanine level is packed with plenty of TVs and lounge seating, inviting customers to kick back with a draft beer and soak up the hustle and bustle below. [MSP Mall, North Mezzanine Level]
Located in the old French Meadow space on the north end of the airport mall, People’s Organic offers next-generation nutritious fare from organic restaurant pioneer Lynn Gordon. The sprawling space includes a baked goods counter, cozy cocktail lounge, and cafe serving sprouted wraps, sandwiches, and Earthbound salads. [MSP Mall]
This sprawling bar at the south end of the airport mall celebrates the local craft beer scene with a rotating tap list filled exclusively with members of MN Brewer’s Guild. A list of flavorful eats includes fresh fish, juicy burgers, and wild rice. [MSP Mall]
Decent ramen, quick service, and streamlined ordering via tablets. Always popular and not always easy to grab a seat. Look for a spot and plug in quickly. [Concourse G]
*Indicates Eater recommendation
People’s Organic – delicious and hearty organic fare
Ike Clubhouse – bar bites, burgers, sandwiches on the mezzanine
Stone Arch, MSP Mall – Local beer, bar food
*Black Sheep, MSP Mall – Coal fire pizza, full service, bar [permanently closed] Farmers Market, Baggage Claim, grab and go [permanently closed]
*Smack Shack, MSP Mall – Lobster rolls and other dishes made all the better by lobster, full-service, bar
Starbucks, MSP Mall
Dunkin’ Donuts, MSP Mall
Auntie Anne’s, MSP Mall – pretzels known by mall goers everywhere
Moe’s Southwest Grill, MSP Mall – Mexican chain [temporarily closed]
Firehouse Subs, MSP Mall – Sub sandwiches
Chili’s, MSP Mall
*PinKU, MSP Mall – Based on a popular Minneapolis restaurant with crispy dumplings and Japanese street food. [temporarily closed] *Shake Shack, MSP Mall – Beloved national burger chain [temporarily closed] Lake Wine Kitchen + Bar, MSP Mall, Level 2 – Bruschetta and the like, wine [temporarily closed]
*Shoyu MSP Mall, Level 2 – Ramen, sushi, dumplings, full service and full bar
Leeann Chin MSP Mall, Fast food, Chinese [temporarily closed] The Cook & the Ox, MSP Mall – Full service. A new full-service restaurant from a notable Minneapolis chef. [Terminal 1, MSP Mall]
*Blue Door Pub, Gate A1 – Local burger chain specializing in cheese-stuffed burgers
The Cocktail Room at 18th and Central, Gate A10 – Tattersall cocktails on tap plus sophisticated snacks
City Point Bar – A slim bar stand at the end of the concourse. [temporarily closed, though customers can have food delivered via the airport’s app]
Joe & the Juice, Gate C1 – Freshly squeezed juices and smoothies
Buffalo Wild Wings, Gate C2
Bottle Rocket, Gate C5 – A fast-casual Twin Cities favorite with sandwiches, salads, and full bar
Chick-fil-A, Gate C13 – Fast food, chicken in a biscuit from a controversial company
Smashburger, Gate C12 – Fast food burgers
Starbucks, Gate C12
Twins Grill, Gate C11 – Full-service sports bar
Vino Volo, Gate C6 – Full-service wine bar
McDonald’s, Gate D1 – Fast food
*Republic, Gate D6 – Full service, beer-centric, bar food with live music. There’s a small grab and go section, too.
Holy Land Deli, Gate E5 – Stand serving local Middle Eastern snacks, known for tasty hummus
*Red Cow, Gate E5 – Known for beefy burgers and cocktails.
*Angel Food Bakery, Gate E5 – Grab and go sweet treats, known for great doughnuts
Qdoba, Gate E7 – Fast food, Mexican
LoLo American Kitchen, Gate E11 – While the local favorite is open, its American menu is currently limited to grab-and-go wraps, salads, and cocktails.
Caribou Coffee, Gate F1
Camden Food Co., Gate F2 – Paninis, baked goods, and sandwiches
Zona Cocina, Gate F8 – Scratch-made Mexican fare with a lively bar
Panda Express, Gate F5 – Fast food, Chinese
Wendy’s, Gate F5 – Fast food, square burgers, frosties
People’s Organic, Gate F7 – Grab and go
Chick-fil-A, Gate F7 – Fast food, fried chicken
*Hi-Lo Diner, Gate F11 – Locally based diner with decadent breakfast options. Even when crowded, there are a few spots for leaning and sipping cocktails.
Caribou Coffee, Gate F1
*Vero, Gate G15 – Pizza from James Beard Award winning chef Ann Kim.
Mimosa, Gate G3, Level 2 – French brasserie-styled full service restaurant and bar
Volante, Gate G12 – Full service Italian restaurant with pasta and paninis
Mill City Tavern, Gate G21 – Supposedly Minnesota fare, Swedish pancakes inexplicably have pumpkin seeds on them, but there’s a full bar and $27 meatloaf.
Cibo Express, Gate G12, Gate G18, Gate G9, Gate G22
FlyBar, Gate G9, Level 2 – Bar for drinking before flying
Twinburger, Gate G18 – Full service, Get a Minnesota-invented juicy lucy burger with the cheese stuffed on the inside. Tagliare, Gate G18 – Quick service, pizza slices World Bean, Gate G18 – Coffee Minnibar, Gate G22 – Global sandwiches and a full bar
Where to eat when flying out of the smaller, Humphrey terminal
Caribou – coffee
Cocina Del Barrio – full service, upscale Mexican, tequila
Minnesota Wild Bar and Restaurant – full service, sports bar
MSP MKT – grab and go sandwiches
Subway – fast food, sandwiches
Starbucks – Coffee
Surdyk’s Flights – grab and go and full service, quality sandwiches, cheese selection, wine