North Loop & Warehouse District
“Best,” “favorite,” “cool,” “hippest” – Be a part of the delightful transformation of the North Loop.
Venture on the north-western outskirts of downtown Minneapolis and you’ll stumble upon “North Loop” or “the Warehouse District.” The two terms are used interchangeably in reference to pretty much everything north and west of 1st Avenue North.
This melting pot of buzzy shops and innovative restaurants has transformed warehouses from the late 19th and early 20th centuries to create a vibrant neighborhood that is continually growing.
It’s an area with a bustling nightlife, where you’ll find a lively crowd after a concert or a game looking to extend the night just a little bit longer. The number of dynamic places to eat, shop, and spend your evening will make your head spin.
Things to Do
Two major sporting venues have settled in the North Loop and Warehouse District. Target Field is where the Minnesota Twins can be found running the bases on beautiful hot summer days. There isn’t a bad seat in the house and the food vendors are from the most popular local restaurants in the area, making a visit to the ballpark a true local experience.
Target Center is where both the Minnesota Timberwolves and Lynx call home. Watch some of the best athletes in basketball performing at their highest level in this recently renovated space. While you're in the area walk down towards the light rail station and take a couple selfies near the Bob Dylan Mural created by artist Eduardo Kobra.
Local Tip: Both Target Field and Target Center are known to bring some big act concerts and shows as well. For national headliners, check out the Fillmore, the area's new 36,000 square foot venue that opened in 2020.
If you're looking for smaller-than-a-stadium entertainment, North Loop delivers. Enjoy some music and dancing at popular spots Gay 90s and The Fine Line Music Cafe. Need a laugh? The Acme Comedy Company is an intimate standup club that provides a stage for local and up-and-coming comedians in Minneapolis. Another option for discovering talent is The Lab Theater. Depending on the time of year, they host live theater, music, dance, cabaret, fashion and burlesque.
You can even enjoy a micro brewery crawl in the neighborhood! Grab a flight at Modist Brewing, or sign up for a weekend tour with Fulton Brewing and Inbound Brew Co to get a close up look at the beer-making process. You can also diversify your tasting portfolio with a stop at North Loop’s first urban winery, AxeBridge Wine Company.
Where to Shop
The North Loop and Warehouse District neighborhood is filled with plenty of local shops and designer boutiques to go on a spending spree for yourself (or find that continually elusive unique gift for a loved one).
For women’s clothing, D. NOLO (“Destination: North Loop”) is a boutique shop selling fashion-forward styles, home goods and accessories. PARC and Grethen House stock a delightful variety of upscale clothing and accessories, with a sharp eye on trends of the season. Statement Boutique has both designer and local brands and carries clothing, accessories and jewelry—and is dog-friendly, too. Requisite offers classic, contemporary women’s apparel, accessories, and apothecary goods, and Madewell is a go-to for great denim.
For menswear, MartinPatrick3 features high-end apparel, fine home furnishings, and personalized service to help you (and your home) look your best. Atmosphere is a go-to destination for grooms and groomsmen wedding attire. Lululemon has athletic menswear and womenswear.
Pacifier offers kids clothes, gear, and toys, and James & Mary Laurie Booksellers have accumulated a staggering 120,000 books (many of them hard to find or out of print) and 30,000 vintage classical and jazz records.
Where to Eat & Drink
Spoon and Stable, overseen by James Beard Award winning chef Gavin Kaysen, is a top recommendation for anyone who wants a taste of truly inventive Midwestern cuisine. (These are coveted tables most weekends so it’s best to reserve well in advance.)
Locals will also often mention Bar La Grassa as a neighborhood favorite for a wide variety of pastas and other crowd-pleasing Italian staples. Smack Shack is best known for their lobster rolls and lobster boils, and they also excel at oysters, crab, scallops, calamari, walleye, and other varieties of seafood.
The much-awarded Borough is a popular Minneapolis dining destination. Their downstairs bar, Parlour, is one of the city’s top cocktail labs. No matter which floor you’re on, know that “The Burger” (ground chuck, ribeye, and brisket, white American cheese,and an egg bun) has caused virtually every local food critic to use uncharacteristic superlatives.
True Tokyo style and flavor can be found at Kado No Mise, where every meal is carefully hand-crafted from a select choice of fresh, local Japanese ingredients.
With Target Field and Target Center in such close proximity, this part of downtown is frequently visited by sports fans. Accordingly, the area is filled with plenty of bars and clubs to extend the merriment before and after a game. Just a few of the options in the area include Gluek’s Restaurant and Bar (German beer, pub food), Brothers Bar and Grill (sports bar), and Lyon’s Pub (English pub, bar food).
Dating back to 1906, the Monte Carlo is a classic supper-club with an old-school coppertop bar. The awe-inspiring wall of alcohol behind it is hypnotic and the patio is considered one of the best in the neighborhood.
Getting to and Around the North Loop
(Starting point of Minneapolis Visitor Information on Nicollet)
Parking in North Loop is a mixed bag, depending on what day/time you go and whether or not there’s a game at Target Field. It’s mostly on-street, metered parking but persistent people may score a free spot a block or two off Washington Ave, the neighborhood’s main thoroughfare.
Depending on where you start your journey, much of North Loop is within walking distance of central downtown. Both the Route 7 and Route 14 buses head into the neighborhood.