Best Of

Heartland Restaurant and Farm Direct Market

In the grand tradition of emigrés who appreciate their adopted land more than the natives do, Jersey-native, French-kitchen-trained Lenny Russo is the Minnesota chef most dedicated to exploring the possibilities of a native Midwestern cuisine. The excellent wine list and respectful, peaceful service make the fine-dining room at Heartland the best fancy meal in St. Paul. Heartland is intellectually stimulating, heart-soothing, welcoming to newcomers, and feeding off the rich native soil. The restaurant's new digs, in the 1902 Market House in Lowertown, offer a gorgeous view of the St. Paul Farmers' Market, plus private banquet and meeting rooms, a cutaway floor that offers glimpses into the lower-level commissary kitchen, an airy lounge (the restaurant now has a full liquor license), several kitchen-side tables, and the Farm Direct Market, where diners can take home the same raw ingredients (meats, produce, etc.) used at the restaurant, as well as house-made, value-added products such as stocks, soups, preserves, charcuterie, baked goods, and grab-and-go prepared fare.