Heavy Table Hot Five: April 20-26

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Each Friday, this list will track five of the best things Heavy Table’s writers, editors, and photographers have recently bitten or sipped. Have a suggestion for the Hot Five? Email editor@heavytable.com.

shepherd-song-banner-ad-horiz-3The Hot Five is a weekly feature created by the Heavy Table and supported by Shepherd Song Farm.

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James Norton / Heavy Table

1-new - one - hot fiveSmorgasbord Plate at The Bungalow Club
We’ve been looking forward to the Craftsman’s successor — a classy but accessible Italian-inspired place called The Bungalow Club — ever since we heard about it a few months ago. It was well worth the wait. The crown jewel of our first visit was a Smorgasbord Plate that did justice to the tremendous charcuterie plates Craftsman chef Mike Phillips used to put out back in the day. The pate was light and airy, the deviled egg spread devilishly delicious (and equally light on the palate), and the pickled veg all profound without being acrid or aggressive.
[Debuting on the Hot Five | Submitted from an Instagram post by James Norton]

James Norton / Heavy Table

2-new - two - hot fiveBrisket Rice Bowl at Sweet Chow
After our initial review of Sweet Chow but before going on MPR to talk about their food, we decided another visit was in order. We’re glad we went. The food was equally (or more) delicious than on visit number one. The highlight was the Brisket Rice Bowl, which boasted about 10 different condiments (pickled this, that, and the other, kimchi, poached egg, flying fish roe, etc.) and perfectly cooked, beautifully barked slices of brisket. Every bite was different, nourishing, and tasty.
[Debuting on the Hot Five | Submitted from an Instagram post by James Norton]

James Norton / Heavy Table

3-new - three hot fiveCroque Monsieur at Modern Times
What makes a good croque monsieur? They’re not all alike, but let’s examine the version offered at Modern Times: substantial ham, copious (but not excessive!) cheese, soulful bread; and a good balance of saltiness, meaty savory flavor, and the carbo-richness of the bread. A perfectly dressed and perfectly simple side salad was an unexpected bonus.
[Last Week on the Hot Five: #1 | Submitted from an Instagram post by James Norton]

Paige Latham Didora / Heavy Table

4-new four hot fiveSummit Lazy Sipper
Summit Lazy Sipper — which was part of our great State Fair roundup — is now available in cans. At first taste, the blond-colored beer has the crispness of a Pilsner with the aromatics of a pale ale, but after a few sips, a complex graham cracker malt builds in the back of the mouth. It’s an all-around winner with a crowd-pleasing profile, and it’s only 4.8 percent ABV. Try it with nachos.
[Debuting on the Hot Five | Submitted by Paige Latham Didora]

James Norton / Heavy Table

5-new -fiveJapanese Set Breakfast at JK’s Table
When our copy editor Jane Rosemarin reviewed the breakfast at JK’s Table in Edina, I felt compelled to check her work — not from doubting her palate, but from a years-long curiosity about Japanese breakfasts and an inability to find one anywhere else in the metro. As presented at JK’s, the meal is a remarkably simple but classy way to start the day: grilled fish, rice, two tiny rolled herbed omelets, sesame avocado, and pickled veg. It’s a drive, but I’ll be back.
[Last Week on the Hot Five: #2 | Submitted from an Instagram post by James Norton]

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James Norton

James Norton is editor and co-founder of the Heavy Table. He is also the co-author of Lake Superior Flavors, the co-author of a book about Wisconsin’s master cheesemakers, and a regular on-air contributor to Minnesota Public Radio.

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