What are the tastes that will always stick with you?
As we approached the end of 2012, we asked ourselves that question. Our answers are all over the map, justified a hundred different ways, but all those little brushstrokes add up to create a massive, teeming canvas of savory meats, vibrant vegetables, and delectable sweets. Plus booze.
Family Meal at Piccolo, Minneapolis
Here’s a little taste of what the staff sits down to eat before dinner service at Piccolo: North Carolina–style pulled pork in a tangy barbecue sauce, slow-cooked red beans with ham hocks, and cornbread baked in a cast-iron skillet and slathered with maple-bacon butter. It is hearty, soulful, and the polar opposite of the tiny, painstakingly composed plates Doug Flicker serves up every night. It was also easily among the best meals I ate in 2012. Chances are good that you’re not on staff at Piccolo, so why should you care? Two reasons: You can find the recipes in Come In, We’re Closed and Flicker is going to be serving that barbecued pork at Sandcastle, the new refectory at Lake Nokomis this summer. (And can we hope for the maple-bacon butter? Please?)