Kihndo (Uptown)

I like Kihndo so much, I used it as a setting for a scene in my first mystery novel.  Nice atmosphere in Uptown, kind of collegiate.  Simple interior.  Yellow wallpaper.  Long. Tunes.  And some impossibly good pho.

I love pho.  I’ll write more about other places I’ve had pho, too, but let’s start with this one because it’s such a cozy, inexpensive pleasure.  Rich broth, loaded with meat.  I prefer mine with either sirloin or brisket.  And then the fun part: make it incredibly hot.  Pour in the hot sauce.  Go big.  Make your eyes water.  It’s a cure for the common cold and tastes better than Ny Quil (but will put you to sleep all the same).

I go for the pho.  I stay for the simplicity.  The first time I walked in, it felt like my local joint.  I’m sure everyone who walks in feels that way.  Mine.  All mine.

Betty’s Pies (Two Harbors, MN)

The first time I tried to eat at Betty’s Pies, I didn’t.  I gave up.  There were too many people waiting outside.  And this was in the Fall, not the busy summer tourist season.

But I tried again the next time I was up around those parts, and I wasn’t disappointed.  The thing feels like a greasy diner from an old episode of Peter Gunn.  I had a burger and fries.  Good burger, good fries.

And then I had a piece of pie that should’ve been illegal.  Not because it was bad, but actually because it was kind of like a good drug.  Addictive.  Too rich.  Why oh why?  I loved it.  It was THE BUTTERFINGER PIE. And it made me want to have sex.

The first time I went to Betty’s Pies, it was nice outside and close to lunch.  Thus, a crowd.  But when I got in the next time, it was rainy, cold, and in the middle of the afternoon.  I liked the joint best like that.  Nearly abandoned, frozen in time.  Smelled like grease and chocolate and a cold a/c.

I didn’t have my camera with me, but here are a couple of pics off their website:

I sat in one of those blue booths on the right.

I want more of Betty’s Pies.  I’ll be back.  I’ll wait until it rains.

What I do…

I don’t want to tell you my real name.  I don’t want to tell you what I do for a living.  I am trying to sell a series of mystery novels, but that’s not why I’m here.  I like to eat, and I think Minnesota is a fine place to eat a lot.

So I’ll tell you about what I eat, where I eat it, and if you should give it a shot. Or not.