Bayside Grille closed in 2016.
I didn't realize this until I checked today's date, but it's been almost two weeks since my last post. Lately I've been wrapped up in a couple of Coursera online courses ("Useful Genetics" and "Archaeology's Dirty Little Secrets"). Since I finished my genetics final this morning and will be wrapping up archaeology in the upcoming week, I'm looking forward to getting back into blogging. I have a nice little queue of posts lined up, and have decided to work backwards--as I sit on my patio on a gorgeous Sunday evening, it seems like a perfect opportunity to write about the meal that Mike and I had on a likewise gorgeous evening last Friday.
Mike just got a new job, so a celebration was in order. I told him to pick anywhere he wanted to go, even a steakhouse (this mostly-vegetarian was willing to take one for the team). He mulled it over for a few days, and decided that he was in the mood for a meal outdoors on Lake Minnetonka (apparently that's a recurring theme of celebrations around here) at the Bayside Grille in Excelsior. The deck at the Bayside Grille is pretty awesome: you're right up against the water. They don't accept reservations for the deck, but if you call 20 minutes before you arrive they'll add you to the waiting list.
Be forewarned that the vegetarian options are limited: there are a few appetizers you could order as a meal (nachos, a quesadilla, and fondue), a Caesar salad, and a margherita flatbread. Since I have been eating a lot of flatbreads lately (they seem to have become the default vegetarian menu option) and the other possibilities didn't excite me, I went for none of the above and ordered the Hawaiian citrus salad without chicken. The salad was gorgeous: huge chunks of ripe pineapple, lots of strawberries and mandarin oranges, and a sprinkling of candied almonds. It came with a creamy coconut dressing on the side. I was a bit concerned that the fruit, candied almonds, and dressing may make the salad overwhelming sweet, but the bitterness of the mixed greens balanced out the other elements.
Mike ordered the buffalo chicken breast salad, which was quite substantial. He gave it high marks for tastiness and value.
Overall, our food was simple but well-executed, the setting was incredible, and the service was fabulous. I would highly recommend the Bayside Grille for all of your celebration-by-Lake-Minnetonka needs (and if you don't have anything specific to celebrate, go there anyway).
687 Excelsior Boulevard
Excelsior, MN 55331
The Bayside Grille is a short walk from Adele's Frozen Custard (800 Excelsior Boulevard, 952-470-0035), which is my second favorite ice cream shop in the Cities. Mike got a hot fudge sundae made with one of the flavors of the day, mint Oreo, which was amazing: a brisk mint with proper chunks of cookie; I got a scoop of chocolate, which was fabulously creamy.