There are a ton of talented chefs in the Cities, at the helm of restaurants that are creative and socially aware and important and just plain fun. But what sets Owamni apart is its sense of place, how deeply it’s tied not just to the state, to the city, but to the land it sits on. This new endeavor from Sean Sherman and Dana Thompson overlooks St. Anthony Falls, a site sacred to the Dakota, and celebrates contemporary Native American fare. Guests are cued in as soon as they reach the entryway, where a red neon sign announces, “You are on Native land.”
The restaurant’s lifeblood is Indigenous ingredients, those that were around before colonization. Instead of beef, pork, or chicken, you’ll find bison, trout, and turkey. And while there’s also no wheat flour, refined sugar, or dairy, it would be ridiculous to call the menu “lacking,” especially considering the skill and love with which Sherman and Thompson treat each dish. Heads up that the team will be taking a short break in early January to refresh.