If I didn’t know about this restaurant, I would have thought it was a neighborhood printing company based on its sign that boldly displayed the name, “ie.” While I didn’t like the sign, I loved everything else about the newest addition of Italian fare in Minneapolis, Italian Eatery called “ie”.
The rustic decor was both elegant and inviting. It’s hard to believe that Carbone’s once occupied the space. We were seated at a round table for our party of six right next to a clever wall made of old wine corks. While it served well aesthetically, I assume the intention was to absorb some of the noise. I’m not sure how well it worked as it was still pretty loud–not quite Butcher and the Boar loud, but pretty still pretty loud.
The service was top-notch. From the host stand to the bar to our server, everyone was friendly, prompt, and polite. I’ve eaten at a lot of restaurants, but the staff here is among the best in town.
Now for the food. I spent at least twenty minutes staring at the menu contemplating my choices. Everything sounded so good. We started with the charred octopus, yams, and veal meatballs. The charred octopus was definitely the star for first courses. It was so tender and complemented the fregola (little balls of pasta) it was served over very well. I was really anxious to try the short rib served with porcini mushrooms, but they were sold out. Chris and I ended up sharing the wild boar meatballs and pappardelle for our entrees. I was amazed that the pappardelle had very little sauce on it yet was packed with so much flavor. The opposite was true for the wild boar meatballs. While the meatballs were tender and perfectly seasoned, it was served over penne pasta in a pool of tomato sauce and smothered with a bit too much cheese. Regardless, I was still happy with it, even though I would have much preferred the short rib. I got to nibble on my friends’ entrees including the chicken, gnocchi, and crispy potatoes. It is important to note that they had a very stylish spoon of salt on the table, but its instability was super annoying. I kept knocking the damn thing over.
We were all too stuffed to even consider dessert. I’m sure I’ll be back very soon and I will definitely save room for dessert next time.
I highly recommend this restaurant to anyone who is craving authentic Italian cuisine. They are not on Open Table, but they do take reservations via their website.