Food & Drink

If you grew up in Japan, you might have eaten daily from what today is trending stateside: the bento.

It’s been a long road for Vincent Negret, owner of the newly opened Negret Wine Co. in downtown Hudson.

River lovers know the St. Croix Valley shines in all seasons, but maybe never as much as when the leaves turn in autumn. Crisscross the river with us as we suggest eclectic local spots to eat and drink —and a few community gems, events and adventures to add even more color to your wanderings.

Many on both sides of the river share this Sunday “Mess” tradition, an opportunity to crash on the couch or in the man cave from noon until (in some cases) 10 p.m. each week. Certainly, sustenance is a necessity (along with perhaps a few good brews).

All-natural. Non-GMO. Fair trade. Free-range. Keeping track of all the labels that accompany our food choices and what they mean can be enough to make you throw your hands up and just get a pizza delivered.

Fall—October in particular—is the season in which you can don sandals while bundling up in sweaters, admire the colorful leaves, and eat and drink to your heart’s content. This year, put down the pumpkin-infused latte, and spice things up with a pumpkin spiced martini.

Though the Postmark Grille opened in Hudson in 2012, its roots extend back to World War II, when Angelo Terranova emigrated from Sicily to Grand Rapids, Mich.

The Lake Elmo Inn sits at an inconspicuous intersection of town, next to the railroad tracks that brought visitors by the boxcar-load to its doors decades ago. The trains still pass by occasionally, but the customers now arrive in the comfort of their own vehicles.

In Ireland, a pub, or “public house,” is more than just a bar. A good pub is the center of community life, a place where neighbors, friends and newcomers alike gather to share news, celebrate milestones and, momentarily at least, forget life’s sorrows with hearty food and a few pints.

During the day, Tin Bins in Stillwater might seem like your typical locally owned coffee shop.