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WCCO Viewers' Choice For MN's Best Romantic Restaurant

MINNEAPOLIS (WCCO) -- Valentine's Day is almost here and if you're still trying to figure out what to do, we've got you covered.

I went in search of Minnesota's Best Romantic Restaurant, and your votes sent me west of the cities to Alexandria for Bella's on Broadway.

From the sidewalk, Bella's might not look like Minnesota's most romantic restaurant. But step inside, and Grant and Carrie Thompson's vision becomes clear.

"We lived in New Orleans for a little while," Carrie said, "and we found some really fabulous places to eat, and one of the things that all of them had in common was private seating. So, we decided when we moved up here and wanted a restaurant, that would be incorporated for sure."

To be clear, there's not just a couple of tucked-away booths. The whole restaurant offers a sense of privacy.

"We get a lot of summer people from the Minneapolis-St. Paul area, and they're just shocked when they come in here because it's beautiful and the food is wonderful, too.

The menu is filled with classic Italian dishes. And, of course, there's plenty of wine.

"The wine helps," Carrie said. "After four or five glasses, everybody is romantic."

And if all that isn't enough to put you in the mood, there's Frankie to serenade you.

"People love Frankie, she's well known. Her dad was an opera singer and Frankie's voice is beautiful," Carrie said.

It all adds to the atmosphere, creating a relaxed dining experience where you can take your time, enjoy good food and good company.

"The best compliment that I can get is that it feels like home," Carrie said. "It feels like I can sit down and be at home."

Most entrees at Bella's are under $20, so you can have that romantic dinner, and still afford a nice gift for your valentine as well.


Next week, we're going gear up and head out in search of the Best Snowmobiling in Minnesota. If you have suggestions, tweet me your pick at @Matt_Brickman or send an email to

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