5 Saint Paul Top Hole-in-the-Wall Restaurants
We’ve explored five remarkable establishments that truly deserve the title of “Saint Paul top hole-in-the-wall restaurants.” From the mouthwatering Tamales at El Burrito Mercado to the nostalgic Gourmet Grilled Cheese Sandwich at Nelson’s Cheese & Deli, each of these eateries has left an indelible mark on the city’s food scene.
Checkerboard Pizza, with its cozy atmosphere and family-operated charm, offers a slice of heaven with its Classic Margherita Pizza. Los Ocampo, on the other hand, tempts us with the rich flavors of Mexican cuisine, particularly the Tacos Al Pastor—a journey to Mexico in every bite. Meanwhile, The Little Oven, with its signature Swedish Meatballs, serves up a warm and comforting taste of home.
But let’s not forget that these five Saint Paul top hole-in-the-wall restaurants are just the tip of the iceberg when it comes to the Saint Paul dining scene. The city is a treasure trove of culinary delights, and there are plenty more Saint Paul top hole-in-the-wall restaurants awaiting your discovery. Each one has its own unique character, offering diverse cuisines and culinary experiences that are sure to tantalize your taste buds. This is why these are some of the Saint Paul top hole-in-the-wall restaurants that are waiting for you to discover them. This list is in no particular order.
A lot of great options are in these posts!
5 Top Hole-in-the-Wall Saint Paul Restaurants
1) Checkerboard Pizza
Address: 511 Snelling Ave.
Checkerboard Pizza is a hidden gem nestled in the heart of Saint Paul, Minnesota, and is undoubtedly one of the Saint Paul top hole-in-the-wall restaurants. This charming eatery offers a warm and welcoming atmosphere that makes you feel like you’ve stepped into a friend’s cozy kitchen. What sets Checkerboard Pizza apart is not only its delectable menu but also the fact that it is a family-owned and operated establishment, which adds a personal touch to every dining experience.
Checkerboard Pizza is renowned for its mouthwatering signature dish, the “Classic Margherita Pizza.” This delightful creation features a thin, crispy crust topped with a perfect blend of ripe tomatoes, fresh mozzarella cheese, fragrant basil leaves, and a drizzle of high-quality olive oil. Each bite bursts with the flavors of Italy, making it a must-try for pizza enthusiasts.
Main Menu Items:
1. Pepperoni Supreme Pizza: If you’re a fan of pepperoni, you won’t be able to resist Checkerboard Pizza’s Pepperoni Supreme. This pizza boasts a generous layer of pepperoni slices, combined with sautéed mushrooms, green peppers, and onions. The harmonious blend of savory and spicy flavors will leave your taste buds dancing with joy.
2. Italian Sausage Sub: For those craving a hearty sandwich, the Italian Sausage Sub is a standout choice. A freshly baked sub roll is piled high with succulent Italian sausage, grilled onions and peppers, and smothered in marinara sauce. It’s a satisfying combination of textures and tastes that will leave you craving more.
3. Garlic Parmesan Chicken Wings: Checkerboard Pizza’s Garlic Parmesan Chicken Wings are a popular appetizer choice. These crispy wings are tossed in a mouthwatering garlic parmesan sauce, creating a perfect balance of savory and cheesy flavors. They are a delicious starter that’s hard to resist.
“Checkerboard Pizza is a hidden treasure in Saint Paul. The atmosphere is cozy, and the staff is friendly. I ordered the Pepperoni Supreme Pizza, and it was the best I’ve had in years. The pepperoni had a great kick, and the veggies added a nice crunch. Will definitely be back!”
“I stumbled upon Checkerboard Pizza on a whim, and I’m so glad I did. The Italian Sausage Sub was a revelation. The sausage was juicy, and the marinara sauce was so flavorful. It felt like a homemade meal. I can’t wait to explore more of their menu.”
“The Garlic Parmesan Chicken Wings at Checkerboard Pizza are simply addictive. Crispy on the outside, tender on the inside, and that garlic parmesan sauce is divine. I’ve recommended this place to all my friends, and they’ve all become regulars. A true hidden gem!”
Checkerboard Pizza is undeniably one of the Saint Paul top hole-in-the-wall restaurants. With its warm and inviting ambiance, family-owned charm, and a menu featuring delectable items like the Classic Margherita Pizza and Garlic Parmesan Chicken Wings, it’s a must-visit for food enthusiasts seeking an authentic and satisfying dining experience in Saint Paul.
They are one of the Saint Paul top hole-in-the-wall restaurants. Don’t miss the chance to savor the flavors that make Checkerboard Pizza a popular local gem. They rank high among the Saint Paul top hole-in-the-wall restaurants for good reasons.
2) Los Ocampo
Address: 1751 Suburban Ave.
Nestled in the heart of Saint Paul, Los Ocampo is a hidden gem and undoubtedly one of the Saint Paul top hole-in-the-wall restaurants. This family-owned and operated establishment offers an authentic taste of Mexican cuisine in a cozy and unassuming setting. With its rich history and commitment to tradition, Los Ocampo has become a popular culinary destination for locals and visitors alike.
Los Ocampo is renowned for its mouthwatering signature dish, the “Tacos Al Pastor.” These delectable tacos feature thinly sliced marinated pork that’s been slow-cooked on a vertical spit. The succulent meat is complemented by a pineapple topping, fresh cilantro, and diced onions, all wrapped in soft corn tortillas. The combination of sweet and savory flavors creates a taco experience like no other.
Main Menu Items:
1. Burrito Supreme: Los Ocampo’s Burrito Supreme is a hearty and flavorful option. It’s a generously sized burrito filled with your choice of meat, rice, beans, cheese, sour cream, and salsa. Each bite is a burst of satisfying Mexican flavors, and it’s perfect for those with a big appetite.
2. Enchiladas Verdes: The Enchiladas Verdes at Los Ocampo are a delightful choice for anyone who loves the vibrant flavors of green salsa. These enchiladas are filled with tender, shredded chicken and topped with a tangy and slightly spicy green tomatillo sauce, sour cream, and cheese. They’re a true comfort food that warms the soul.
3. Tortas Ahogadas: If you’re in the mood for something unique, don’t miss the Tortas Ahogadas. These “drowned sandwiches” consist of tender pork carnitas stuffed into a crusty Mexican bolillo roll and smothered in a spicy tomato-based sauce. The result is a bold and satisfying sandwich that packs a punch of flavor.
“Los Ocampo is a hidden treasure in Saint Paul. The Tacos Al Pastor are out of this world. The marinated pork is so juicy and flavorful, and the pineapple topping adds the perfect balance of sweetness. I could eat these every day!”
“I’ve been coming to Los Ocampo for years, and the Enchiladas Verdes never disappoint. The green salsa is so addictive, and the chicken inside is always tender. It’s comfort food at its finest. This place feels like home.”
“The Tortas Ahogadas at Los Ocampo are a must-try. The combination of tender pork and that spicy tomato sauce is a flavor explosion. It’s a bit messy to eat, but it’s so worth it. This place is a gem in Saint Paul.”
Los Ocampo is unquestionably one of the Saint Paul top hole-in-the-wall restaurants, offering a true taste of Mexico in a family-owned and operated setting. Whether you’re savoring their iconic Tacos Al Pastor, indulging in a hearty Burrito Supreme, or exploring other menu delights like the Enchiladas Verdes and Tortas Ahogadas, you’re in for an authentic culinary journey.
They are absolutely one of the Saint Paul top hole-in-the-wall restaurants. With its commitment to tradition and a dedicated local following, Los Ocampo is a popular establishment that continues to charm and satisfy patrons seeking genuine Mexican flavors in Saint Paul. They stand out among the Saint Paul top hole-in-the-wall restaurants.
3) The Little Oven
Address: 1786 Minnehaha Ave. E
Tucked away in the heart of Saint Paul, The Little Oven is a hidden treasure and unquestionably one of the Saint Paul top hole-in-the-wall restaurants. This charming eatery is a family-owned and operated establishment that exudes warmth and nostalgia. With its cozy ambiance and dedication to serving hearty comfort food, The Little Oven has become a popular destination for both locals and visitors.
The Little Oven is celebrated for its signature dish, the “Swedish Meatballs with Lingonberry Sauce.” These tender meatballs are crafted from a secret family recipe, resulting in a comforting blend of ground beef and spices. They are served alongside creamy mashed potatoes and a generous dollop of lingonberry sauce, creating a symphony of savory and sweet flavors that’s nothing short of delightful.
Main Menu Items:
1. Hot Turkey Sandwich: The Hot Turkey Sandwich at The Little Oven is a classic comfort food option. Slices of succulent turkey are piled high on bread, smothered in rich gravy, and served with a side of creamy mashed potatoes. It’s like Thanksgiving dinner on a plate, perfect for those seeking a taste of home.
2. Norwegian Club Sandwich: For a unique twist, try the Norwegian Club Sandwich. This creation features smoked salmon, crisp bacon, lettuce, tomato, and dill mayonnaise stacked between slices of fresh bread. It’s a refreshing and indulgent choice for those who appreciate the flavors of Scandinavia.
3. Chicken Wild Rice Soup: The Chicken Wild Rice Soup at The Little Oven is a local favorite. This hearty soup combines tender pieces of chicken, wild rice, and a medley of vegetables in a creamy broth. It’s the perfect option for a comforting, heartwarming meal.
“The Little Oven is a hidden gem in Saint Paul. I can’t get enough of their Swedish Meatballs. They’re incredibly tender, and that lingonberry sauce adds the perfect touch of sweetness. It’s like a warm hug in every bite!”
“I’ve been a regular at The Little Oven for years, and their Hot Turkey Sandwich is my go-to comfort food. The turkey is always juicy, and the mashed potatoes and gravy are divine. It’s the ultimate comfort meal.”
“The Norwegian Club Sandwich at The Little Oven is a unique treat. I love the combination of smoked salmon and bacon, and that dill mayo just brings it all together. It’s a refreshing change from the usual club sandwich.”
The Little Oven is undeniably one of the Saint Paul top hole-in-the-wall restaurants, offering a comforting and nostalgic dining experience. As a family-owned and operated establishment, it has carved a special place in the hearts of its patrons. Whether you’re savoring their renowned Swedish Meatballs with Lingonberry Sauce or exploring other menu delights like the Hot Turkey Sandwich, Norwegian Club Sandwich, or Chicken Wild Rice Soup, you’re in for a taste of home-cooked goodness.
They are another of the Saint Paul top hole-in-the-wall restaurants. The Little Oven continues to charm visitors and locals alike with its dedication to hearty, comforting food in a cozy setting. They deserve to be ranked high among the Saint Paul top hole-in-the-wall restaurants.
4) El Burrito Mercado
Address: 175 Cesar Chavez St.
Nestled in the heart of Saint Paul, El Burrito Mercado is a hidden gem and undoubtedly one of the Saint Paul top hole-in-the-wall restaurants. This family-owned and operated establishment is a popular pillar of the local community, known for its rich Mexican heritage and dedication to serving authentic cuisine in a welcoming atmosphere.
El Burrito Mercado is celebrated for its signature dish, the “Tamales.” These handmade tamales are crafted with care using a secret family recipe passed down through generations. They offer a tantalizing array of fillings, from savory pork to tender chicken, all encased in a delicate corn masa dough and wrapped in corn husks. Topped with a drizzle of homemade salsa, these tamales are a true taste of Mexico and a must-try for anyone visiting the restaurant.
Main Menu Items:
1. Carne Asada Tacos: El Burrito Mercado’s Carne Asada Tacos are a crowd favorite. Grilled to perfection, the thinly sliced marinated beef is tucked into soft corn tortillas and garnished with fresh cilantro, onions, and a squeeze of lime. Each bite bursts with smoky, savory flavors that transport your taste buds south of the border.
2. Chiles Rellenos: The Chiles Rellenos at El Burrito Mercado are a delicious representation of traditional Mexican cuisine. Roasted poblano peppers are stuffed with a savory blend of cheese or seasoned ground beef, then battered and fried to a golden crisp. They are served with a rich tomato sauce, creating a harmonious balance of flavors and textures.
3. Mole Poblano Enchiladas: For a taste of Mexican culinary artistry, try the Mole Poblano Enchiladas. Tender chicken enchiladas are generously smothered in a complex and velvety mole poblano sauce. This sauce, made with a blend of chiles, chocolate, and spices, offers a unique fusion of sweet and savory notes that is both comforting and indulgent.
“El Burrito Mercado is a hidden gem in Saint Paul. The Tamales are to die for! The masa is so tender, and the fillings are incredibly flavorful. I could eat these every day. Truly authentic Mexican cuisine.”
“I’ve been coming to El Burrito Mercado for years, and their Carne Asada Tacos are my go-to. The beef is always perfectly grilled, and the fresh cilantro and lime add that zing of freshness. It’s like a fiesta in my mouth.”
“The Chiles Rellenos at El Burrito Mercado are pure comfort food. The crispy outer layer and the cheesy filling are a match made in heaven. And that tomato sauce ties it all together. This place is a Saint Paul treasure.”
El Burrito Mercado is unquestionably one of the Saint Paul top hole-in-the-wall restaurants, offering a true taste of Mexican authenticity in a family-owned and operated setting. Whether you’re savoring their renowned Tamales, indulging in Carne Asada Tacos, Chiles Rellenos, or exploring other menu delights like Mole Poblano Enchiladas, you’re in for a flavorful journey south of the border.
They are obviously one of the Saint Paul top hole-in-the-wall restaurants. With its commitment to tradition and a dedicated local following, El Burrito Mercado is a popular establishment that continues to impress patrons seeking genuine Mexican flavors in Saint Paul. They have earned the rank of being one of the Saint Paul top hole-in-the-wall restaurants.
5) Nelson’s Cheese & Deli
Address: 1562 Como Ave.
Located in the heart of Saint Paul, Nelson’s Cheese & Deli is a hidden gem and unquestionably one of the Saint Paul top hole-in-the-wall restaurants. This family-owned and operated establishment has been a popular fixture in the community for years, known for its dedication to delivering top-quality cheeses, deli meats, and sandwiches in a welcoming and cozy setting.
ese & Deli is celebrated for its signature dish, the “Gourmet Grilled Cheese Sandwich.” This mouthwatering creation takes the humble grilled cheese to a whole new level. It features a medley of premium cheeses, carefully selected for their rich flavors and melt-in-your-mouth texture, grilled to perfection between slices of artisanal bread. The result is a gooey, indulgent masterpiece that keeps patrons coming back for more.
Main Menu Items:
1. The Italian Sub: Nelson’s Cheese & Deli’s Italian Sub is a true classic. It boasts a generous stack of savory deli meats, including ham, salami, and pepperoni, topped with fresh lettuce, tomatoes, onions, and a drizzle of zesty Italian dressing. Served on a fresh baguette, it’s a flavorful explosion that satisfies even the heartiest appetites.
2. Caprese Salad Sandwich: For a lighter option, try the Caprese Salad Sandwich. This delightful creation combines fresh mozzarella cheese, ripe tomatoes, basil leaves, and a drizzle of balsamic glaze, all nestled between slices of crusty bread. It’s a refreshing and herbaceous choice for those seeking a taste of Italy.
3. Turkey Cranberry Panini: The Turkey Cranberry Panini at Nelson’s Cheese & Deli is a seasonal favorite. Tender slices of turkey are paired with cranberry sauce, cream cheese, and fresh spinach, then pressed to perfection on a panini grill. The result is a sweet and savory delight that captures the essence of Thanksgiving in every bite.
“Nelson’s Cheese & Deli is a true hidden gem in Saint Paul. Their Gourmet Grilled Cheese is an absolute must-try. The blend of cheeses they use is heavenly, and it’s grilled to that perfect crispy-gooey perfection. I dream about it.”
“I’ve been a loyal customer of Nelson’s Cheese & Deli for years. Their Italian Sub is my go-to lunch choice. The meats are always fresh, and that Italian dressing ties it all together. It’s a deli sandwich done right.”
“The Turkey Cranberry Panini at Nelson’s Cheese & Deli is a taste of the holidays year-round. The combination of turkey and cranberry sauce is a match made in heaven. It’s like Thanksgiving in a sandwich. This place is a Saint Paul treasure.”
Nelson’s Cheese & Deli is undoubtedly one of the Saint Paul top hole-in-the-wall restaurants, offering a haven for cheese and deli enthusiasts in a family-owned and operated setting. Whether you’re indulging in their iconic Gourmet Grilled Cheese Sandwich, savoring classic options like The Italian Sub, or exploring seasonal delights like the Turkey Cranberry Panini, you’re in for a treat.
They are considered one of the Saint Paul top hole-in-the-wall restaurants.
With its commitment to quality and a dedicated local following, Nelson’s Cheese & Deli continues to be a popular establishment that satisfies patrons seeking delicious deli fare in Saint Paul. They deserve to be ranked among the Saint Paul top hole-in-the-wall restaurants.
Now you know why these are some of the Saint Paul top hole-in-the-wall restaurants just waiting for you to discover them. However, it’s important to let you know that this is not an exhaustive list of the Saint Paul top hole-in-the-wall restaurants and that this list is in no particular order.
So, whether you’re a local on the hunt for a new hidden gem or a visitor eager to explore the culinary secrets of Saint Paul, be prepared for a delightful journey through the city’s culinary landscape. As you navigate its streets, keep an eye out for those unassuming facades and cozy interiors that house some of the most delectable dishes you’ll ever encounter. Saint Paul’s top hole-in-the-wall restaurants are waiting to be uncovered, one mouthwatering bite at a time. Dive in and savor the flavors, because there’s always more to explore in this gastronomic paradise.
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