By Coco Mault
Like much of St. Paul, the area across from Landmark Center in the heart of St. Paul area has maintained many of its historical elements. There is definitely an older, charming feel to the city, which can be quite unlike Minneapolis. As a result, the city of St. Paul outwardly seems more connected to its history.
However, even though many building facades remain true to their pasts, sometimes the insides of them are quite different. This is the case for Kincaid’s, a steak and seafood restaurant on St. Peter Street. They offer a comfortable setting that one associates with a classic steakhouse: low lighting, dark wood accents, and comfortable booths. But it is definitely an updated version of a past aesthetic.
They still have an old-school flair for service, however; servers are attentive and accommodating, and sometimes even the manager will stop by to say hello and ask if everything is swell.
There is a large dining room, but for those who prefer a more casual spot to eat, Kincaid’s has a large bar area. Even more importantly, they have an impressive happy hour, and on Sundays it lasts all day. Granted, they don’t open until 3pm on Sundays, the timing does give people plenty of time to work up an appetite. Kincaids’ happy hour menu has plenty of scrumptious options, and they don’t skimp on serving sizes, either.
Seafood lovers will adore the menu; included are fresh smoked salmon ($7), steamed Manila clams ($8), Mediterranean mussels in cioppino ($7), seasonal oysters, baked oysters Rockefeller ($7.5), and buttermilk fried calamari ($7). The oven roasted Dungeness crab and artichoke dip ($8.5) is a tasty option as well. The dip is creamy and flavorful. For anyone who loves the taste of crab, this hot dip is bursting with flavor. There are bits of crab in the dip, too, but they may be hard to find among the larger chunks of artichoke. The bowl of dip arrives surrounded by small slices of bread on a large plate.
Not keen on seafood? Also included on the menu are buffalo chicken wings ($7), warm brie with macadamia nut crust ($7), char-grilled teriyaki tenderloins ($7) and French dip sliders ($7). When decisions are hard to come by, Kincaid’s tasting sampler ($17) is also an option.
Fresh baked Santa Fe corn bread ($6) is available, too, and it’s definitely a restaurant favorite. Its presentation is simple — a golden mini loaf of bread will arrive on a white plate with a side of honey butter. It’s an irresistible combination. Be sure to taste the butter on its own, too. It’s sort of amazing. This cornbread has a little bit more to offer, as well: baked inside are tiny bits of jalapeno.
But on to the alcohol! Kincaid’s happy hour includes three cocktails on their $4 drink specials menu: green apple drop, cranberry mojito, and pomegranate margarita. Surprisingly, the non-traditional fruity flavors in the mojito and margarita are subtle rather than overly sweet. Both drinks, as a result, are a solid shade of pink. This is especially pleasing when looking at the mojito — the green sprigs of fresh mint really add a pop of color in the glass. But who wants to just look at a cocktail? Even though cranberry is not a usual ingredient in this classic cocktail, the folks at Kincaid’s integrated it nicely. The drink still retains its refreshing reputation, even though some folks, after drinking it, may not. It’s a large pour, for sure.
The pomegranate margarita is served in a lowball glass, and even with the addition of pomegranate which turns the cocktail pink, it still, for the most part, tastes like a traditional margarita. The taste definitely shifts to the sweet side and away from the usual tartness associated with margaritas made just with lime juice, but the salt on the rim of the glass still compliments the flavor quite nicely. Kincaid’s happy hour drink special also applies to Cabernet Sauvignon and Chardonnay wine options, as well as to all of their draft beers.
Lunch: Mon – Fri, 11 a.m.- 3 p.m.
Dinner: Mon – Thu, 3 p.m.- 10 p.m., Fri, Sat 3 p.m.- 11 p.m., Sun, 3 p.m.- 9 p.m.
Bar: Mon – Thurs, 11 a.m.- 11 p.m., Fri, 11 a.m.- 12 a.m., Sat 3 p.m.- 12 a.m., Sun 3 p.m.- 9 p.m.
Happy Hour in our Bar only: Mon-Sat 4-6 p.m. & 9 p.m.-close, All Day Sunday