Meet Your Winners for Best of St. Croix Valley 2023

by | Jun 2023

Best of St. Croix Valley 2023
Celebrate your Best of St. Croix Valley 2023 Readers’ Choice Poll winners and finalists!

St. Croix Valley Magazine readers, welcome, to your annual Readers’ Choice Poll. You showed up online this January at and wrote in your top picks in a host of categories—now we have your results.

You may notice a couple of new additions to this year’s poll, including entirely new overarching categories dedicated to self-care, pet care, services and leisure. We’ve also expanded beyond the Valley, so you’ll meet a few winners from neighboring communities in our Best of the East Metro categories. And finally, we’re encouraging you to travel beyond our community into the great state of Minnesota with our Discover Minnesota + Wisconsin categories. Without further ado, let’s meet your winners and finalists!


Best Bakery

Buddy’s Bakery

Runners Up: Sweet Beet Bakery, St. Croix Baking Company

Best Bar, Brewery or Distillery

Pitchfork Brewing

Runners Up: Lift Bridge Brewery, Tattersall Distilling

Best Breakfast or Brunch

Oasis Cafe

Runners Up: San Pedro Cafe, Keys Cafe & Bakery

Best Desserts or Ice Cream

Knoke’s Chocolates and Nuts

Runners Up: Nelson’s Ice Cream, St. Croix Baking Company

Best International Cuisine

San Pedro Cafe

Runners Up: Miko Thai Kitchen, Sapporo Japanese Restaurant

Best Locally Owned Coffee Shop

The Daily Grind Espresso Cafe

Runners Up: Ember and Bean Roasting Co, Joe to Go

Best Outdoor Dining Space

Pier 500

Runners Up: San Pedro Cafe, The Dock Stillwater

Best Plant-Based or Vegan Menu

Urban Olive & Vine

Runners Up: The Wild Hare, ProteinHouse

Best Restaurant

LoLo American Kitchen and Craft Bar

Runners Up: San Pedro Cafe, Pier 500

Best Restaurant for a Power Lunch


Runners Up: Urban Olive & Vine, LoLo American Kitchen and Craft Bar

Best Takeout or Curbside Service

Agave Kitchen

Runners Up: Dragon Pearl, Miko Thai Kitchen

Best Burger

Barker’s Bar & Grill

Runners Up: Milwaukee Burger Company, Agave Kitchen

Best Chicken Sandwich

Barker’s Bar & Grill

Runners Up: Pier 500, Agave Kitchen

Best Pizza

Bricks Neapolitan Pizza

Runners Up: EJ’s Pizzeria, Carbone’s Pizzeria


Best Builder

Hartman Builders

Runners Up: Derrick Building Solutions, Divine Custom Homes

Best Carpet and Flooring Store

Carpeting by Mike

Runners Up: H&F Home Furnishings, Larry’s Flooring

Best Garden Center

Rose Floral and Greenhouse

Runners Up: Farrill’s Sunrise Nursery and Garden Center, Abrahamson Nurseries

Best Home Cleaning Service

Dunn Right Cleaning Services

Runners Up: Cleaning with Meaning, Clean Beans LLC

Best Home Décor and Furniture Store

Smith + Trade Mercantile

Runners Up: Reclaiming Beautiful, The 715, Brick + Linen

Best Interior Design Firm

Kelli Kaufer Design

Runners Up: Draper House Design Co., Bell Interiors

Best Landscape Design Service

Willow River Company

Runners Up: P&K Lawn Care, Stone & Leaf Landscaping

Best Lawn Service

Willow River Company

Runners Up: Fitzgerald Lawn Care, P&K Lawn Care

Best Locally Owned Hardware Store

Stillwater Ace Hardware

Runners Up: River Falls Ace Hardware, Doyle’s Farm & Home Ace

Best Remodeler

The Fortress Project, W3 Construction (tie)

Runners Up: Leading Edge Contracting, LLC, Petta Building & Design, St. Croix Carpentry

Best Senior Living Residence

Boutwells Landing

Runners Up: The Deerfield, Croixdale


Best Barbershop

Prohibition Barbers

Runners Up: The Hudson Barber Shop, The Hair Tailor

Best Boutique Fitness or Yoga Studio

Light House Yoga + Fitness

Runners Up: Inspiring Actions, Solo Yoga + Bxng

Best Med Spa

St Croix Skincare

Runners Up: Northern Allure Aesthetics, Willow MedSpa & Fitness

Best Place for a Manicure and Pedicure

INails & Spa

Runners Up: 21 Nails, Turbo Nails Oak Park Heights

Best Salon Spa

Just for Me “The Spa”

Runners Up: Tangled Salon & Spa, The Hair Tailor


Best Allergy Practice

River Point Family Acupuncture

Runners Up: Allergy and Asthma Center of Minnesota, HealthPartners Clinic – Stillwater, Midwest Ear Nose & Throat Specialists, Wellnessgal Nutrition Consulting

Best Chiropractic Practice

Croixview Family Chiropractic, Vitality Chiropractic (tie)

Runner Up: MoveWell Chiropractic and Sports Therapy

Best Cosmetic Dentistry Practice

Ashley Dental

Runners Up: Carlson Dental Group, Lift Dental, Oakwood Dental, Orchin + Orchin Specialists in Orthodontics

Best Cosmetic Surgery Practice

Advanced Dermatology Care, Northern Allure Aesthetics (tie)

Best Dental Practice

St. Croix Kidds Pediatric Dentistry

Runners Up: Oakwood Dental, Smiles in Motion Pediatric Dentistry

Best Dermatology Practice

Advanced Dermatology Care

Runners Up: Forefront Dermatology, Dermatology Consultants

Best Eye Care Practice

Associated Eye Care

Runners Up: Christenson Vision Care, Shopko Optical

Best Family Medicine Practice

Hudson Physicians

Runners Up: HealthPartners Clinic – Stillwater, M Health Fairview Clinic – Stillwater

Best Holistic Wellness Practice

Autumn Enloe Nutrition

Runners Up: Fit PT, River Point Family Acupuncture

Best OB-GYN Practice

Hudson Physicians

Runners Up: Evensong Women’s Health and Midwifery, Minnesota Women’s Care

Best Orthodontic Practice

Brettin Orthodontics, Sletten Orthodontics (tie)

Runners Up: Orchin + Orchin Specialists in Orthodontics, Valley Orthodontics

Best Orthopedic Practice

Twin Cities Orthopedics

Runners Up: TRIA Orthopedics, Summit Orthopedics, Westfields Hospital & Clinic

Best Pediatric Practice

St. Croix Kidds Pediatric Dentistry

Runners Up: Hudson Physicians, Smiles in Motion Pediatric Dentistry


Best Dance Studio

The Dancing House

Runners Up: Helmer Dance Studio, Dance Explosion

Best Learning or Tutoring Center

Trinity Academy

Runners Up: Huntington Learning Center, Mathnasium

Best Preschool Program

Bethel Highlands Preschool

Runners Up: Sunny Hill Preschool, Trinity Academy

Best Swim School or Lessons

Goldfish Swim School – Oakdale

Runners Up: Foss Swim School – Vadnais Heights, River Valley Athletic Club

Pet Care

Best Dog-Friendly Establishment

Urban Olive & Vine

Runners Up: Hop and Barrel Brewing, Made Coffee, River Siren Brewing

Best Dog Park

Hudson Dog Park

Runners Up: River Falls Dog Park, New Richmond Off Leash Dog Park

Best Pet Boarding or Daycare Service

Paws and Claws Pet Resort

Runners Up: K9-Playtime, Goldwood Kennels

Best Pet Grooming Service

Angel’s Pet World

Runners Up: Paws and Claws Pet Resort, Diggity Dawg Grooming

Best Veterinarian Practice

Croix Valley Veterinary Hospital

Runners Up: Hillcrest Animal Hospital, Animal Care Center


Best Accounting

Ahola, Mack & Associates, Ltd

Runners Up: MidAmerica Financial, Forward Accounting, Guinn, Vinopal & Zahradka, LLP

Best Family Photographer

NP Design & Photography

Runners Up: Lisa Buth Photography, Hello Dolly Photography, Markfortography

Best Home Inspector

Acer Home Inspections

Runners Up: Block By Block Home Inspections, Inc., Brian Wert Inspection Agency

Best Law Practice

Eckberg Lammers P.C.

Runners Up: Galowitz Olson Law Firm, Nicolet Law

Best Mortgage Company

Royal Credit Union

Runners Up: WESTconsin Credit Union, CrossCountry Mortgage


Best Apparel Boutique

La Rue Marche

Runners Up: Mainstream Boutique, Whatnot Boutique

Best Florist

Hudson Flower Shop

Runners Up: Rose Floral & Greenhouse, Bo Jons Flowers & Gifts

Best Gift Shop

The Bees Knees

Runners Up: Darn Knit Anyway, The Purple Tree

Best Jewelry Store

Beth’s Jewelry Shop

Runners Up: Stokes Jewelry Services, The 715

Best Specialty Kitchen or Foods Store

Grand Fête

Runners Up: Candyland, Alfresco Casual Living, River Market Market Community Co-Op


Best Park, Open Space or Beach

Lakefront Park

Runners Up: Perch Lake, Pioneer Park

Best Place for a Date Night

LoLo American Kitchen and Craft Bar

Runners Up: Pier 500, MatchStick Restaurant & Spirits

Best Place for Family Activities

Hudson GNG

Runners Up: Willow River State Park, Hudson YMCA

Best Place for an Outdoor Adventure

Willow River State Park

Runners Up: William O’Brien State Park, St. Croix Boom Site, Kinnickinnic State Park

Best Place to Watch Fourth of July Fireworks

Lakefront Park

Runners Up: Lowell Park, Pioneer Park

Best of the East Metro

Best Golf Course

Troy Burne Golf Club

Runners Up: White Eagle Golf Club, New Richmond Golf Club

Best Music School

Brickhouse Music

Runner Up: Hovland Conservatory

Best Private School

Trinity Academy

Runners Up: Hill-Murray School, St. Croix Catholic School, Saint Patrick Catholic School

Best Outdoor Skating or Hockey Rink

St. Croix Valley Recreation Center

Runners Up: Perro Park, Burton Field

Best Speciality Athletic Store

Dick’s Sporting Goods

Runners Up: St. Croix Shoes, Run N Fun

Best Staycation Hotel

Hotel Crosby

Runners Up: Lora, Lowell Inn

Best Summer Camp

YMCA Camp St. Croix

Runners Up: Hidden Pines Ranch, The Dancing House

Best Theater Program

The Phipps Center for the Arts

Runners Up: The Zephyr Theater, Stillwater Area High School Theatre

Best Winery

Rustic Roots

Runners Up: 7 Vines Vineyard, Belle Ame Vineyard & Events

Discover Minnesota + Wisconsin

Best Campground

Willow River State Park

Runners Up: William O’Brien State Park, Lake Elmo Park Reserve

Best Entertainment Venue

JX Event Center

Runners Up: Xcel Energy Center, Ziggy’s

Best Hiking or Biking Trail

Willow River State Park

Runners Up: Brown’s Creek State Trail, Gateway State Trail

Best Live Theater

The Phipps Center for the Arts

Runners Up: The Zephyr Theater, Ordway Center for the Performing Arts

Best Museum

Octagon House Museum

Runners Up: Science Museum of Minnesota, Minneapolis Institute of Art

Best Music Venue

First Avenue

Runners Up: Ziggy’s, The Armory

Best Nordic Ski Trail or Alpine Hill

Afton Alps

Runners Up: Lake Elmo Park Reserve, Trollhaugen Outdoor Recreation Area

Best Resort or Lodge

Bluefin Bay on Lake Superior

Runners Up: Grand View Lodge, The Outing Lodge

Best Wedding Photographer or Videographer


Runners Up: Skyler Seviola, Rachel Ritter Photography

Best Wedding Venue

JX Event Center

Runners Up: The Loft at Studio J, 7 Vines Vineyard


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