One of my favorite things about all the lakes in Minnesota is the wild rice that come out of them! In fact, I love it so much that my husband and I gave bags of it as favors at our Pennsylvania wedding. Hey, you can't get it out East, and we were supporting local business!
I love wild rice plain, in casseroles, but especially in chicken wild rice soup. I'm on a quest to find the best chicken wild rice soup in the state of Minnesota:
1. Black Bear Lodge & Saloon, Brainerd, MN: This restaurant described its chicken wild rice soup as "legendary" and I was prepared to put it to the test! It surpassed all my expectations, and sits at the top of my list. My husband agrees - it's amazing. Great flavor, a perfect balance between thick and thin, all around fabulous! http://www.blackbearlodgemn.com/index.html
2. Dakota Harvest Bakers, Grand Forks, ND: Okay, so the restaurant is in North Dakota, and the soup is actually turkey wild rice, but on both counts close enough because this soup is fantastic! http://dakotaharvest.com/Indulge_Your_Passion/Home.html
3. The Great American Bar & Grill, Duluth, MN: This restaurant describes their chicken wild rice soup as "award winning" and it certainly receives the bronze medal on my list! Added bonus - you can buy this soup frozen at your local grocery store! http://www.grandmasrestaurants.com/greatamerican/
4. Bixby's Cafe, Grand Rapids, MN: I love their homemade soup - it's very thick and has a great flavor. It's so good, I've eaten it for breakfast!
5. Schroeder's Fine Food & Spirits, St. Paul, MN: My husband and I agree that this soup is excellent!
6. The Timberwolf Inn, Marcell, MN: A hearty and delicious soup that is perfect after a day of snowshoeing. Sometimes they put corn in the soup though - not my style. http://www.timberwolfinn.com/
7. Panera, Minneapolis, MN: My Panera in Pennsylvania never had chicken wild rice soup, but thankfully the chain caters to regional tastes!
8. Brewed Awakenings, Grand Rapids, MN: A thinner soup with a mild flavor and locally grown rice! http://www.brewedawakenings.biz/
9. Forest Lake Restaurant, Grand Rapids, MN: This soup is mediocre, and there is corn in it - not a fan! http://www.forestlakerestaurant.com/
10. Grizzlies Grill N Saloon, Duluth, MN: Another mediocre, corn-filled soup. http://www.grizzlysgrill.com/