5607 Chicago Ave S
Minneapolis, MN 55417Neighborhood:
Contemporary AmericanPrice: $30 and under
- Dining Style: Casual Dining
- Website: http://firstcoursebistro.com/
- Phone: (612) 825-6900
- Hours of Operation:
Dinner: Sunday - Thursday: 5:00pm - 9:00pm, Friday & Saturday: 5:00pm - 10:00pm
- Payment Options: AMEX,Discover,MasterCard,Visa
- Cuisine: Contemporary American
- Executive Chef: Travis Metzger
- Dress Code: Casual Dress
- Accepts Walk-Ins: Yes
- Additional Details: Bar Dining, Beer, Entertainment, Fireplace, Non-Smoking Restaurant, Patio/Outdoor Dining, Personal wines welcome (corkage fee applies), Takeout, Wheelchair Access, Wine, Wine Bar
- Entertainment: First Course offers live music on Friday evenings between 7:30 and 10:00 pm, featuring flamenco guitar, jazz sax, folk and classical stylings.
A word from First Course
First Course bistro is a little bit of Soho, "oh so close to home", with it's casual yet chic decor and its sophisticated yet comforting style of contemporary American cuisine. First Course is perfect for a creative start to your evening or for a multi-course evening of its own. Guests may relax on the comfy sofas, warm up by the fireplace or belly-up to the bar before enjoying one of the seasonally handcrafted meat, fish, pasta or tapas dishes.Continued
Foodspotting photosSee all photos
Awards voted by OpenTable diners
- Diners' Choice WinnerNeigborhood Gem
First Course - Best Restaurants in South Minneapolis ›
First Course reviews from OpenTable diners
67 reviews since July 31, 2014
- Ambiance3.9Noise LevelModerate
neighborhood gem (52)fit for foodies (33)romantic (28)special occasion (19)notable wine list (10)good for groups (9)great for brunch (8)great for outdoor dining (6)hot spot (4)great for lunch (3)late-night find (2)kid-friendly (2)Show More
- Great brunch!!OpenTable Diner Since 2014Dined on 11/23/2014Met two friends for Sunday brunch, beautiful place, great service and great food. The mimosas are fantastic!Special Features:I would recommend this to a friend.
- Disappointed in the new menulammarchrVIPDined on 11/8/2014My husband and I have gone to First Course many times. It's a romantic ambiance with great service in a great location. We also really loved the food (such as the Butternut Squash Ravioli, the cheese with boozy cherries, and the chicken dish). However, we were disappointed at this visit to learn that not only do they have a new chef but a totally new menu. Most of the small plates are gone and the food, while good, is not great like it used to be. We do still love the live music on Fridays and Saturdays and the service is still great, but I'm not sure if we'll continue to frequent First Course with the new menu.Special Features:
- Horrible experience!FoodieVIPDined on 11/7/2014Horrible service and management! Food options were limited and over priced. No wonder the place was not busy on a Friday night! We brought a bottle wine and bought a bottle. When I asked the manager to waive the $20 corking fee he agreed. Then as we were paying our bill and getting ready to leave the manager came back to the table in accused us of stealing from him. I asked him why did he agree to credit us the corking fee if he was going to come back to the table and yelled us that we were steeling from him. He caused such a scene that everyone, although it was only a couple tables in tables of patrons, turned and stared at us. We were astounded and embarrassed. We walked out and and will never come back again.
- new favesbirthdaygirlVIPDined on 11/4/2014my new favorite dishes at First Course- seasonal wild rice soup & the chicken liver terrine. special treat try the venison! it is fun to savor the flavors on Lloyd's menu!Special Features:I would recommend this to a friend.
- Excellent Foodjso1Dined on 11/2/2014The dinners (4) were all excellent. The daily specials were great choices. We have eaten here twice and had positive meals both times.Special Features:I would recommend this to a friend.
- CharmedBrodieDined on 11/1/2014The food was fabulous - tangy cheeses, crisp frites, succulent lamb, surprising succotash, delectable salmon, scallops seared to perfection, oh, and fantastic desserts - just have them all, we did. The service was attentive and knowledgeable, invisible when we did not need help, prompt when we did. The suggested wines were a perfect match to the range of food we had. For a small, local restaurant, it was busy without being boisterous. The decor is interesting and chic - a talking point in a good way.Special Features:
- Special occasionOpenTable Diner Since 2010Dined on 10/21/2014First time here. Unusual menu, pricey small portions but good quality. I/2 price wine on Tuesdays so quite a few tables taken. For the prices, need more comfortable seating and art work on the wall to make it more classy.Special Features:
- Out with friendsOpenTable Diner Since 2010Dined on 10/17/2014Great food, service, and ambiance! The chef did an excellent job of accommodating my dairy allergy!Special Features:I would recommend this to a friend.
- Great experience!OpenTable Diner Since 2006Dined on 10/15/2014First Course is definitely back on our favorites list!!Special Features:I would recommend this to a friend.
- Great food & half-price wine!OpenTable Diner Since 2008Dined on 10/14/2014Took a business group here on a Tuesday night. Everyone enjoyed their meals. Two of our "wine" buffs were impressed with the wine choices available at such a reasonable price. Great experience.Special Features:
- Great little neighborhood placeOpenTable Diner Since 2011Dined on 10/11/2014This was our first time there and the food was terrific. Very interesting preparations and the service was freindly accommodating and quite attentive for a little bistroSpecial Features:
- Great find!KMNDDined on 10/11/2014My husband and I had a 25$ voucher to First Course. We had never been here before and it is in the other side of the Metro from where we live. The ambience is romantic, the menu a bit limited, but it was fantastic food! The service was terrific! Even though the location is not close to us, we will definitely be back! I strongly recommend First Course!Special Features:
- Great Experience, as usual!OpenTable Diner Since 2006Dined on 10/6/2014This is our third time to First Course, and it was better than ever! Between 4 of us, we tried the tiger shrimp appetizer, pork chop, pizza, roasted chicken and the special of the day....tilefish with lentils. Fish was amazing! Service provided by Dylan was great..he's waited on us before. We went on a weeknight, and it was pretty quiet, so easy to have good conversations. We will definitely go back, and our friends loved it as well.Special Features:
- Relaxed ElegancepersephoneDined on 10/5/2014I have loved this restaurant for a long time, but haven't gone much lately because I can't eat gluten, and my life has changed. I hadn't known that they had a brunch, and it is really enjoyable and fresh. They have partnered with local farms to provide seasonal offerings. The food combinations were creative and tasty. There were plenty of offerings for me, and they were affordable. They also have 4 flavors of mimosa and some creative sounding cocktails. The decorating is low-key and doesn't interfere with relaxation. I have already referred a friend.Special Features:I would recommend this to a friend.
- 14 years, and counting!!!TravisandTimrockDined on 10/4/2014We've been enjoying the great food and service at First Course ever since they opened 14 years ago. It's STILL one of the Twin Cities best kept secrets, and that's one of the main reasons we love it! We know that we can always get a seat there, and we always have great food, wine and service.Special Features:I would recommend this to a friend.
- Great Date Night Spot3RGuyDined on 10/3/2014My pregnant wife and I went there for a date night. Great spot for that and it's in quiet neighborhood. Food was very good and the tap options, for me, were awesome. It's good to see local breweries. Our server was a pleasant man and was patient with my wife. We would recommend First Course to our friends.Special Features:
- Excellent, but unassumingCavorterDined on 9/21/2014I ended up late on a Saturday afternoon trying to find somewhere that could seat a party of 11 at 1pm on the next day and ended up getting really lucky at finding an available reservation at this place. The exterior is, as the review title indicates, not a whole lot to look at and could easily be missed if you weren't expecting a nice sit down restaurant but hidden inside was a cozy room with great staff and a well put together brunch menu with options for everyone between the ages of 8 and 80. Despite being a fairly large group our food came out pretty close to simultaneously with no errors and ended up with everyone well satisfied for quality and portion size.Special Features:I would recommend this to a friend.
- Worth the 2 detoursKLTF12Dined on 9/20/2014We had a great experience. No hideous music to scream over. Cozy and intomate. The scallops were divine and the burger "the best" according to my husband. The tres leches cake was also divine with "notes" of lime. The only turn off is that the chef should have had his hair pulled back instead of hanging over the cooking.Special Features:
- DisapointedkwarmaDined on 9/19/2014We have been regularly going to this restaurant for over 10 years. The menu has completely changed, and the food is not as good. We were with a party of 6. Monkfish was way too salty. Pizza - nothing special, crust was like cardboard - for $12. Scallops were ok but not great. Ceasar salad - the restaurant changed the dressing. FC used to have the best ceasar salad dressing in town. We don't know if we will be back and are very sad to see these changes at what was once one of our favorite restaurants.Special Features:
- Always a pleasureFinerDinerDined on 9/13/2014First Course is a wonderful option for my neighborhood and surrounding areas. The food, service and ambiance has always been top notch. I recommend this for a date night, or when you want to catch up with a friend because the restaurant is relaxed and friendly. I always feel appreciated when dining there. Look forward to trying the brunch.Special Features:I would recommend this to a friend.
- Great platesuptownerDined on 9/6/2014Small plates+large plates=great plates. We had a wonderful dinner here and definitely will return. Shrimp and calamari (small plates) and ahi tuna (large plate) were some of the best I have eaten anywhere.Special Features:
- A South Minneapolis GemLeGrisDined on 9/5/2014First Course is inserted into a funky strip mall with Neo-fifties décor and hipster waiters to match. It's a fun atmosphere with outstanding plates in the classic style. Mussels to Mahi-mahi are fresh and creatively presented. A small but well selected wine list nicely complements the entrees. Moderate pricing makes this a most attractive neighborhood bistro.Special Features:
- New menu!DawnygirlVIPDined on 8/30/2014The menu and chef are new. Some of the old favorites are on the menu, but it's been pared down. The wine list is still pretty good. There are some new faces amongst the wait staff, too.Special Features:
- menuOpenTable Diner Since 2014Dined on 8/30/2014Update your internet site. I didn't know you downsized the menu. Food still great though.Special Features:I would recommend this to a friend.
- Fantastic New MenuJmplsDined on 8/26/2014Love the new menu that will be changing every four months. A must dine at locale. Scallops & tenderloin were incredible.Special Features:I would recommend this to a friend.
- disappointing serviceminneapolisfoodiesDined on 8/22/2014We live in the neighborhood and were excited to try First Course - finally! We tried to order several items, however, they were out of multiple menu items we ordered. Our server seemed very nervous, didn't know the menu, and continued to apologize throughout our meal. He was very nice, however, he did not know the menu, had to check multiple times with his manager, and hadn't tried the items we asked about. Overall the food was good, however, the service was one of the worst we've had in recent memory. Our server needs training, confidence, direction, and the opportunity to try the food before he serves another table.
- Excellent foodGardnchildDined on 8/18/2014We were immediately greeted by the friendly staff. The food was very good...best tilapia I've had. The lamb ragou was amazing.Special Features:
- Love First Course as alwaysOpenTable Diner Since 2005Dined on 8/7/2014We love coming here! Always great food, relaxing, and fantastic atmosphere. We love the area and make it a point to visit every month or so!!Special Features:
- OpenTable Diner Since 2007Dined on 8/2/2014My husband and I had dinner here for 'date night' on Saturday. We had never been there before and it didn't look like much from the outside but once inside the ambiance was great - kind if funky and eclectic. A great local neighborhood place. We had appetizers, drinks, entrees and dessert. We both ordered the tenderloin which was one of the best I've had and we eat a lot of steak. This was cooked to perfection! Perfect charring in the outside and medium rare inside. The wine and beer selection was also nice. Not am overwhelming list but well thought out. Oder the floorless chocolate cake! We'll be back!Special Features:I would recommend this to a friend.
- CharlieDined on 8/2/2014Great 10 craft beer selection on tap. Delicious food from a creative menu.Special Features:I would recommend this to a friend.
- DisappointedOpenTable Diner Since 2014Dined on 8/1/2014The service was solid to start and the bread and appetizers were good, but everything went downhill from there. My fiance needed to give two choices because they were potentially out of her first choice. Our entrees arrived 45 minutes after the appetizers and my fiancee's second choice came without any communication. The dessert was warmed up in the microwave for too long and the chef and waiters were arguing. It was a very disappointing experience, especially for the price, so it will take hearing a lot of good things before we give it a second chance.
- The following 612 reviews are from the First Course reviews archive.
- Always a pleasure.SusanCDined on 7/26/2014You can't go wrong on Sat or Sun brunch. Yum! The choices of mimosa flavors was wonderful.Special Features:I would recommend this to a friend.
- DeliciousThumperVIPDined on 7/25/2014We hadn't been to First Course in a while and decided to go on the spur of the moment. We had the fish special and it made it well worth the decision! It was wonderful and perfectly cooked. We will be back. However we wish they would get some more comfortable chairs. My DH has problems sitting for a full dinner in their chairs.Special Features:
- Excellent foodcaseatDined on 7/24/2014The lamb ragout pasta was extremely flavorful and worth the hours of simmering the sauce. The duck breast was perfectly done with a wonderful sweet potato mash that had a bit of zing to it! We went on a Thursday night and the house wine was only $4! We definitely plan to return.Special Features:
- not bad, but not great eitherOpenTable Diner Since 2012Dined on 7/19/2014Server was not very enthusiastic about food or when providing service. Food was ok: 1) rib tapa had good flavor, but meat wasn't very tender, 2) bistro salad was nothing special, 3) risotto (special with okra and mushrooms) was delicious- very cheesy and well prepared 3) gnocchi (special with shrimp) was good, but lacked something... maybe some spice? Overall a decent place, but I would not go there again. Good deal since I had the restaurant.com coupon, but otherwise I would expect more for the price.
- MaggieRoseVIPDined on 7/15/2014Food and service are always reliably very good. Specials interesting. Pizza special was delicious.Special Features:
- Hidden in plain sightadventurer4foodVIPDined on 7/15/2014In a strip mall with a tattoo palor and a flooring store on either side stands a great little restaurant with good absence and great food. You wouldn't even see it unless you were advised where to look. Try it. My husband and I have been back many times. It is really a different feel once you cross the threshold. The outside sitting looks spacious and inviting but we always seem to eat inside.Special Features:
- As tasty as usualPortiaDined on 7/15/2014This unassuming neighborhood bistro can be counted on to deliver tasty creative meals. It doesn't have an extensive menu, but everything I've had here has been delicious. There are daily specials where the chef puts to creative use in-season finds. I lived in Italy for 3 years, so I'm pretty critical of Italian (and so-called "Italian") food cooked in the US, but First Course has not yet disappointed!Special Features:I would recommend this to a friend.
- Just Goodchicago14Dined on 7/13/2014The food was very good and everyone enjoyed their meal. The chicken, gnocchi and risotta were outstanding. The bread was amazing. Skip the appetizers and dessert, they were all OK, but the tres leche was the only one we would order again. Everything came out of the kitchen in a timely manner, a few items were forgotten and had to be requested again. While our server was very nice, she was clearly tired (which she expressed to us) and just going through the motions without being very enthusiastic about her job or her customers. The manager was very accommodating & also was prompt in answering an email I sent to him. The cook did a fantastic job of preparation.Special Features:
- Birthday DinnerOpenTable Diner Since 2014Dined on 7/8/2014We have come here before and we live very close so it is convenient. They have excellent food and a very good beer and wine selection. They have a patio for nice weather. They have live music on the weekends. I had a perfectly done medium-rare steak with asparagus and their take on a spicy barbeque sauce. It was all superb. My wife had roast duck that was off the bone and perfectly done. Deserts to die for. We have never been disappointed when we come here.Special Features:I would recommend this to a friend.