This year’s Best Restaurant in Mankato winner is Number 4 American Bar and Kitchen and it’s no surprise why: with its multicultural menu options and attractively dim ambiance, Number 4 serves high-quality, seasonally fresh cuisine at a scale that affectionately accommodates Mankato’s culinary desires and raises the local dining standards to impressive degrees.
Number 4’s diverse menu includes such entrees as the crispy “Duck Cassoulet,” which is a casserole slow-cooked in a bath of white beans and pork belly, and the spicy “Thai Coconut Curry Barramundi,” an Asian sea bass that is pan-seared and served with thin potato strips, rice, and greens. Another intriguing entrée is the “Korean Braised Short Rib” with noodles, hard-boiled egg, and bok choy. Despite their mouth-watering extravagancy, however, these exotic entrees are by no means the only options at Number 4.
In fact, the Best Restaurant winner thrives just as much with its pub-style menu options as it does with the exotic. Take, for instance, the delicious vegetarian staple “Short Pants,” a baguette sandwich equipped with a gambit of veggies and balsamic vinaigrette, or the household “Burger 4” with ground chuck, tomato jam, caramelized onion, and tangy taleggio cheese. Other sandwiches and burgers are available, along with an extensive appetizer, soup, and salad collection that, much like everything else on the menu, has you at ‘hello.’
Considering their success with the other restaurants they manage, including Dino’s Pizzeria, Neighbors Italian Bistro, Tav on the Ave, and the newly opened third Street Tavern in St. Peter, the owners of Number 4 certainly have their culinary heads on straight and winning Best Restaurant will undoubtedly promote that success. If you haven’t eaten at Number 4 yet, you’ll certainly want to, as you are likely to return for more.