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DeRusha Eats: Saint Dinette

MINNEAPOLIS (WCCO) – In the hottest neighborhood in St. Paul, the hottest new restaurant has tapped into the hottest trend.

Saint Dinette's cheeseburger has quickly become legendary.

"At the end of the day it is just a cheeseburger. That is it," Chef Adam Eaton said.

Eaton is almost certainly underselling the Saint Dinette cheeseburger.

Created by the team of Tim Niver, J.D. Fratzke along with Eaton and general manager Laurel Elm, the burger took three months of research and development.

Eaton said he hopes his burger will become as loved as his favorite, the burger at Chicago restaurant Au Cheval.

"I did a lot of traveling and I found a burger that we wanted to replicate. That's the baseline for the burger we have in our restaurant now," Eaton said.

Burgers have become the hottest trend at new Twin Cities restaurants. Aficionados argue over if the burgers at Nighthawks or Revival or Saint Dinette are the best, and how those burgers compare to the burger at Parlour Bar in Minneapolis.

"It's just not even fair how good it is," Elm said. "If you're gonna do a burger, you can't go half way."

The burger is a blend of dry-aged chuck, sirloin and brisket. This mix provides a combination of fat content and earthy burger flavor Eaton was seeking.

"We do a double patty smash burger, house made "American" cheese and a bun, and that is it," Eaton said.

"He perfected it since we thought it was perfect, and it's gotten even better. It's craveable; people talk about it even when they're not here," Elm said.

Eaton trained at the Twin Cities' finest restaurant, La Belle Vie. You see that in delicate dishes like the flavorful summer squash and ricotta dumplings. Or the whimsy of adding lobster roe on top of a killer Elote-style sweet corn.

"You're a brilliant chef and I'm here talking about your burger," DeRusha said.

"No it's fine. I hope if you come try the burger you're able to try the rest of the menu as well," Eaton said.

Elm said that it does irritate Eaton that the burger is getting the most attention.

"I think that's an artist's world. You do this beautiful thing and everybody loves it but you want them to see your other beautiful things. It's a good problem and he can stay annoyed as long as he wants," she said.

It's obvious Eaton and Elm understand each other quite well. They first met working together in a restaurant, started dating, have continued working together and are now engaged.

"If we didn't work together it would be weird for me. It's hard sometimes, but it's inspiring," Eaton said about Elm. "She's brilliant. She pushes everyone around here, especially me."

Saint Dinette is located at 261 E. 5th Street, St. Paul.

They are open for dinner Tuesday through Sunday from 5 – 10 or 11 p.m., and brunch Saturday and Sunday beginning at 9 a.m.


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