Tonight Lisa and I decided to check out the latest arrival to the Burnsville restaurant scene: Morgan’s New World Tavern just off Nicollet and County Road 42. It is the renovated space that was once the Dakota County Steakhouse attached to the old Holiday Inn, now being renovated floor, by floor to the tune of $3M+ and calling itself the Nicollet Inn. The hotel has sat vacant for the last few years so the renovation is a welcome addition to the business scene along the busy strip. Sitting up on the hillside between the 35 split, the hotel has a commanding southern view that takes in all the hub-bub of Burnsville and peers toward Buck Hill.
Morgan’s is being touted as a “gastropub” – a British pub that sells higher priced food. The menu itself is clearly pitted to compete with Porter Creek Hardwood Grill just across 35W and west about 1/2 mile. Lisa went for the double thick Jameson pork chop and I tried the rigatoni with 3-meat bolognese sauce. We started with a plate of calamari, a glass of Argentine merlot and a full mug of Morgan’s micro-brew. I decided to opt for the pasta and save a steak for a future visit. We will be back. Our server, Richard, was terrific.
Richard explained the menu, the history and the plans to expand menu selections and try different options as the word spreads and they get feedback. Having a weekend or Sunday brunch is definitely in mind. They don’t have a license yet for outdoor seating, but there is space to extend out the front door on either side.
The visit to Morgan’s was a Crowd-Cut coupon treat to ourselves as Lisa and I are taking our “stay-cation”, like other Americans we’re staying home for a week. We’re mixing some work and some fun into our week off as we climb toward Memorial Day and the official start of the Minnesota summer. Today we washed all the winter grime off the windows in the house. Except I took a small nap about half way through the project. My excuse is the new blood pressure medication I’m on. Just a side note: be sure to monitor your BP regularly. I have hypertension, so last Friday I screened my BP to make sure my medication was working and sure enough, I was bordering on stroke material. I registered 172/111. Not good. Normal is 120/80. I’ll spare you the details of the cardiac unit at the local Park Nicollet Urgent Care clinic, but I will say that they were very, very good over there. But the new medicine I’m on is making me feel tired. I apologized to Lisa for needing to lie down in the middle of our project.
One thing to be thankful about: the new med’s don’t prohibit sampling the hearty Morgan’s microbrew with dinner!!
By the way, we think you’ll enjoy the renovated interior of the restaurant. The booths have the new car smell. The bar is open with a mix of booths, high tops, and bar seating. The remainder of the restaurant has a mix of nice window seating, booths and relaxed tables including some surrounding a 3 sided fireplace.
Let us know if you’ve had a chance to visit Morgan’s and what you think. We’re looking forward to going back and seeing how they continue to expand on what appears to be a great start. Even though they don’t have the extensive outdoor seating potential as the competition, if the food quality stays high, we think it will pay-off for south of the river residents in terms of choices and keeping prices in check.
By the way, we asked if we could sample a couple of soups. Richard accommodated us and brought us two! A sample of their french onion and their beer cheese with popcorn. The french onion was really good. It had a very silky taste, the broth was just right without overpowering your palette. The beer cheese soup was that perfect balance of salty cheesy-ness that took me back to the batches my mom would make. If you have a chance to sample something, please let us know.
We hope you enjoy your visit. We arrived about 6pm and by 7 there were about 6 other tables seated. Other than the Crowd-cut coupon, they haven’t really done any advertising. The hotel isn’t open yet, but as soon as it does, we expect that the tables will fill up fast. By the way, the Nicollet Inn will be one of the Best Western Premier class, so the restaurant should complement it quite well as it caters to the hotel’s food needs.
Our bill was $60+, it included appetizer, two drinks, salad and entree. Our Crowd-Cut coupon was $40 value for $20. So the final bill with the coupon was $20. So we ended up with a 30% savings. Not a bad deal at all.