For this week’s edition of Hays Take On we venture into some slightly new territory with the take with the brand new restaurant from superstar Andrew Zimmern. His brand new Chinese + Tiki Bar experience, Lucky Cricket, has opened up just down the road in the West End shops in St. Louis Park, and we knew this would be a spot we needed to try!
Conveniently located in the rising West End shops in St. Louis Park, Lucky Cricket is in a good position to be part of plenty of great evenings of fun that include plenty of shopping options, a movie theatre, and bowling and other games at Punch Bowl Social just around the corner. With a uniquely decorated outside of the building you’ll have a hard time missing it as you drive through the shopping area. On the inside, you’re immediately transported to a tiki island, with an awesomely designed floor, tons of awesome tiki lights, and tables with tons of island references. There’s even an awesome tiki bar as well as a Lucky Cricket mobile that features a tiny table for two! While all three dining spaces, the bar, surrounding bar area, and dining area are all a little dim, the atmosphere is still buzzing and makes you feel like you’re out on the island for a late dinner. While the dining room seems to be booked out well in advance most nights, you can always stop in and grab a table at the tiki bar or the high tops surrounding.
Our first take in Chinese food starts with a bang with Lucky Cricket, as Andrew Zimmern has really picked some great dishes for the menu. Plenty of options for Dim Sum, including a great plate of Sheng Jian Bao, which are crispy pork dumplings served with a vinegar/soy/ginger dipping sauce as well as some great fried sticky rice inside of a lotus leaf. We also got to try some of their Stony’s Flyhead Lettuce Wraps, which we were told could potentially include fried crickets in the near future! For more of a main course option, we went after the “3 Cup” Caramel Chicken, which was fall of the bone tender with incredible sweet spice flavors that were balanced by the soy and rice wine. The best strategy here is to debone it all when you get it and let the inside of the meat soak up all of the sauce on the plate. There are also tons of other great options on the menu that we saw rolling out, including the Crispy Glazed 18 Hour Ribs, and their shrimp dishes. Now to tackle the tiki bar drink options, there are plenty of choices, most of which are centered around tropical flavored rums. One of the most popular choices is the Tiki Reviver, which seems like a pretty standard tiki drink, with rum, pineapple, and lime, but is topped off with a coffee liqueur to give you a little kickstart to carry you through the night. Another popular option that’s not rum based is the Saturn, which combines gin, passionfruit, almond, and lemon, to create a taste that’s fruity but still balanced by the gin. They also feature some frozen drink options, kids tiki drinks, as well as some great beer, including one of our favorites, Tiger. Each of their specialty drinks comes in some unique glasses, from tikis to other funky shapes, you’re going to get a nice picture holding something cool.
Most days are fully booked out at Lucky Cricket for a reason. It’s is in a great location, with flavorful food and drinks, and a fun atmosphere. It’ll make a great spot for small get togethers for drinks while enjoying some great Chinese Cuisine!
For more on Lucky Cricket, check them out here: https://luckycricket.net/
Or try for yourself at: 1607 West End Blvd, St Louis Park MN 55416