Bellissimo!!!. My wife and I just got back from a perfect meal here. We spent the afternoon walking around the shops at Excelsior and Grand, and decided to have a little dinner al fresco given the day's perfect weather. Although we sat outside, the restaurant's interior is beautiful and would be a great spot for a romantic dinner or get together with friends if the weather wasn't conducive to being out on the patio. The only complaints about the patio are the frequent noisy flyovers from MSP and the view (a gas station and a liquor store). Otherwise, everything was perfect. Our waiter, Damon, was very polished, knowledgable about the menu and wines, and had perfect timing. We started out with the cheese plate, which at $5.99 was a bargain. It changes regularly but ours was a wonderful dollop of Brie surrounded by a berry reduction, thinky sliced smoked ham, and some garlic toast rounds. Just the right size to get things started. There is a very nice selection of 11 wnes by the glass (none of which were common boring labels offered at most places). We had a wonderful Sauvignon Blanc that was perfect with the cheese. My wife was looking for something light, so she had a Ceasar salad that she liked very much. I had a bigger appetite and chose the Pesce alla Orzo. Wow! The seafood was cooked perfectly, and there was plenty of it. The tomato safron sauce was among the best I've had; perfectly spiced, not too thin. I mopped every bit up with the exceptional bread provided throughout the meal. It was great to have such a perfect meal on a spur of the moment choice. We'll definitely be back.
Awesome Patio, awesome wine!. I went to Brix the other day with a few of my girlfriends on a busy Saturday, we came at a great time. When we arrived the patio was full and we really wanted to be outside because it was such beautiful weather. We were bummed thinking that we wouldn't get a table, but we were put on the waitlist and sat at the bar until our table was ready. We got some drinks, I had what was called a peach bellinitini, I think that's what it was called. It was like a bellini, but not frozen. It was so perfect. We relaxed with our cocktails until our table was ready, only about 25 minutes, then went outside. We got a nice little table on the patio and we had a wonderful waitress right away. She helped us pick out a white wine, I can't remember the name of it, but it was a sauv blanc off of the $20 list, but she told us about the Caymus Cunundrum white, I do remember that name, so I can't wait to go back and try it. I couldn't even believe the service they provide even on the patio, bread with olive oil and pepper, water for everyone, and they still gave us time in between our courses to really enjoy our dinners and relax without feeling rushed. We had goat cheese and brushetta for appetizers and I had the penne primavera for my dinner. Yum! My girlfriends had a salmon special to share and a bread salad. Everything was awesome! We can't wait to go again. The only suggestions I have for them is more patio tables and maybe some candles or lights to make it more romantic like WA Frost or something. Or maybe some live music if the residents didn't mind. If that were the case I would go all the time!!! Great job Brix!
Glad we went!!!.
After reading other reviews, we were glad we kept in mind that everyone has a different opinion. So here's our's.
We were instantly relaxed and relieved when we walked in. The place looked great. Warm and inviting with a nice fire cracling in the entrance. The Host staff was very friendly and fun. There was a short wait, but we were told that the big booths in the bar were open seating. We were lucky to grab one.
Everything was wonderful, from our friendly and fun server to our outstanding meal. Scallops that melt in your mouth will always be a favorite of mine. The Lobster Striccheti was wonderful and filling. The Osso Buco was nice and firm until it fell away from the bone with a fork. Outstanding with the rissoto. I like a good martini and had no problem with any of their drinks. The wine list was a blast. We were going t ostart with a bottle of wine for $20 until we were told about the carafes as well. We wanted to get a nice little italian wine with dinner, and a crafe of chardonnay was just what we wanted to start with. The server was helpful with all of our questions and we really enjoyed our experience. You can really tell when a restaurant is using fresh pasta made on site.
The restaurant wasn't too loud, just what we would have expected from a busy bustling restaurant.
The service was friendly but not overbearing. We were allowed to enjoy our meal and each other. I always feel that when the service is trying to entertain us, they're trying to compensate for something. Nothing but a fun, pleasant experience from start to finish. We can't wait to go back.
Horrible food, expensive drinks, arrogant service.
Maybe their wine is good... and maybe we should have just had wine... but we had mixed drinks and were ripped off on the price.
Half the food was awful and when we discussed it with the server the server just acted as if something was wrong with us.
Plus the place was loud with pop music from 5 years ago piped through poor quality speakers.
Do NOT recommend Brix.
Brix is now on my worst Italian food in Minneapolis list. The mussels were horrible, small, gritty and over-priced. The sauce was a little better. The Chicken Parmigiana was VERY bland, and the sauce tasted canned, or pre-packaged.. the chicken tough. The gnocchi was the only thing edible, and it was merely mediocre. It gave me the impression they do not use fresh ingredients. The service wasn't much better. The host looked and acted like a dense 17 year old valley girl. And our lazy server seemed very uninterested in whether or not we enjoyed our meals, as we were left there for 20 minutes after our entrees arrived. My wine glass sat empty for the entire meal as he never asked if I would like another (not that I cared as I did not enjoy it. Their wine list looked like the list at the Timberlodge).
The decor is equally uninspiring....very boring, with all neutral colors. It looked like a hotel lobby.
Needless to say I will NOT be back. I would not recommend Brix to anyone.
For REALLY good Italian, check out Amore Victoria in Uptown, or Al Vento in South Mpls. You won't be disappointed!!
Again I say WOW!. I have to admit that I was not sure what to expect from this restaurant. The reviews in the papers have been outstanding, but the citysearch reviews seemed a little off. My wife and I tried to go in with an open mind and WOW were we glad. I love the changes they did with the space, mostly that they "warmed" it up and made it more inviting. It is an Italian bistro and wine bar and the decor fits in with that description with "Tuscan" colors and wine bottles everywhere. We couldn't get a table right away on a Friday night, so we went to the bar and the bartender was very helpful (she actually suggested a bottle from their $20 selection instead of going right for the expensive bottles). We got a seat before our quoted time and the server was there almost immediately. He told us about the specials and pointed out their wine list and some of his favorite items on the menu. We started with the scallops and the goat cheese truffles. The scallops were perfectly cooked with a side of butternut squash puree and the nut encrusted goat cheese with rosemary honey was a great light start to the meal, even though my wife said that it would be just as good for dessert. We decided to get a bottle of wine with dinner, but I was having meat and my wife was having fish so the server suggested a lighter bottle of red (the Antinori Sangiovese). For dinner I had the pork tenderloin with mashed potatoes in a fig demi that was tender and just the right blend of sweet and salty. My wife had one of the daily fish specials, the sea bass. Again, I say WOW. This was one of the best pieces of fish I have ever tasted. It was served over thinly sliced potatoes in a thin tomato sauce with some stewed vegetables over the top. It melted in my mouth. Through the whole meal, the server was pleasant and informative and went out of his way to make us feel welcome. I will not hesitate to go back often and tell all of my friends. Do yourself a favor and go to brix.
Romantics and foodies love this Excelsior and Grand restaurant for its rich Italian meals and wide-ranging wine list..
This hip spot has the warm amber glow of a rustic bistro yet the funky lighting and dressed-to-impress patrons of an upscale eatery. Couples holed-up in candle-lit booths share decadent house-made pastas like gnocci with gorgonzola cream sauce. Girlfriends and co-workers are content to share antipasto dishes like saffron cream mussels and goat cheese truffles in the lively bar area. Al fresco dining on the patio is a big draw during summer.
The best part of my meal was the bread basket...... Our evening started out that we were very excited to have dinner at Brix because we never had the opportunity to eat at the restaurant in the previous location (Mojitos). Anyhow, the second we were seated the waiter almost immediately started staring at me in front of my boyfriend. The dinner continued with receiving my wine late, a mediocre caesar salad, and a lobster strighetti with no flavor. I have to admit the most flavorful part of the meal was the bread. Even my wine was not up to par (Piesporter or Riesling in English). My boyfriend had the calamari, which he said was the worst he ever had and the chicken parmagiana which he stated I could have made at home. Overall, I would not recommend going to this establishment the wait staff was not professional, the food is mediocre to bad and over-priced. Please do not give this venue any more business, hopefully it will disappear just as Mojitos did.
Exciting wine list. I had heard great things about this restaraunt since it opened and I was very excited to finally try it. My husband and I went for dinner on a Monday. I was impressed by the decor and ambiance, but was frustrated by the air vents that made it chilly, wherever you were sat. I have to say, I wanted SO MUCH to fall in love with this restaraunt, but I feel it fell short on my expectations. We were told to have the calamari, because it's the best around, and it was good, just not amazing. Not something I'd look forward to ordering again. We also we told to order the beef carpaccio appetizer. I liked the incorporation of figs in the dish and the balsamic reduction drizzled on the plate, however, the large sized crostini it was accomanied by was difficult and messy to try to eat. I'd try other appetizers next time to see if there's anything else that would WOW me. My husband had the lobster and crab black and white ribbon pasta dish in a pink cream vodka sauce, which we both agreed was delicious. I had the butternut squash pasta, which I felt fell WAY short on flavor. The butter sage sauce it was accompanied with was too butter heavy. It was as if they melted a stick right there on my plate! No flavor! One positive is that the portions are NOT humongous, which was very refreshing to see. They're actually portions a human can consume without over stuffing themselves and feeling gluttonous. I wish to see more of that food downsizing trend in restaraunts. One last rant about the food...I have to complain about the bread basket! As trivial as it may sound, it's always a nice side dish at Italian restaraunts. It'd be nice if they offered a couple different varieties. With such a nice presentation of olive oil to dip the bread in, a soft herbed foccacia would be nice, instead of the hard baguette they now serve. We had a fabulous waiter, Greg, who made the evening very enjoyable. I would return to the restaraunt to drink some good, affordable wine.
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