Local Food Guide

As many of you know, Ash + Aspen is based in Alexandria, MN. Alex is known for their chain of lakes and often referred to as the Lakes Area! While it is a beautiful place to live, it is also a beautiful place to vacation year round! We’ve done the “hard work” testing out our local restaurants to create a local food guide for your next visit! 

The Garden Bar on Sixth:

The Garden Bar on Sixth, Alexandria, MN. Brick wall, wood table, gallery wall, bench seating

The Garden Bar provides fresh & healthy dining options! It’s conveniently located in downtown Alexandria & they often have live music events. We love the Garden Bar because it’s cute and sophisticated while feeling friendly at the same time! The Garden Bar is the perfect place to meet your gal pals for lunch but also a quaint intimate place for a date with your S/O. Make sure to checkout their website here to see their events calendar.

Morgan’s Pick: How can I choose just one thing? For starters, I love their beef tips - Smoked creamy gouda, caramelized onions & button mushrooms.. I’m drooling thinking about it. One thing I like about the Garden Bar is that their lunch menu and dinner menu differ slightly. My favorite lunch is the Chicken Gyro. The lemon pepper aioli is so refreshing! I pair it with their Bread & Butter Cabernet. 

Amber’s Pick: At the Garden Bar, I don’t usually get the same thing every time because I love trying new things there!  I usually opt for the Garden Bar when I want something nicer than just a burger and their menu definitely makes it hard to pick what to have! I try something new every time I go because it all sounds THAT good. Last time I went for dinner, I tried the citrus and herb pheasant. It came with smoked gouda mashed potatoes & asparagus and was topped with mushroom cream sauce…. Do I need to say more?! If you get the chance to try this restaurant, make sure to try a lavender lemon drop as well!

DJ’s Tap House & Grill:

DJ's Tap House & Grill Alexandria, MN Loaded bloody mary. Burger, cheese curds, bacon, shrimp, wonton, cheese, pickle, beef stick,

DJ’s Tap House provides a creative menu that is unique to the Alexandria area. They are an easy hangout place with a comfortable outdoor area during the warmer months! DJ’s is a great place to watch the game, especially on Sunday’s with their loaded bloody mary’s! 

Amber’s Pick: Starting with the most important part- the drink. DJ’s has the BEST huckleberry moscow mule. It is the perfect amount of sweet and goes down so easy! My food pick is the BBQ roasted shoulder bacon. It is always cooked perfectly and the caramelized flavor is insane! It’s such a great flavor combo that I think many people would enjoy. 

Morgan’s Pick: I will have to second drink choice. The huckleberry Moscow mule is to die for.  We love them so much we’ve tried to make them at home but they never turn out as good. My favorite food at DJ’s the Bahn Mi Chicken in a wrap (specify wrap, this is originally a sandwich!) and I usually get it with tater tots. The Bahn Mi Chicken wrap is a Thai peanut inspired wrap with grilled chicken, lettuce, cucumbers, carrots, jalapeno and cilantro topped with a spicy Thai peanut sauce! I’ve gotten many friends hooked on this one too!

Traveler’s Inn Cafe: 

Traveler's Inn Alexandria MN Menu and Coffee Cup

Another downtown favorite of ours! Traveler’s has been open since 1926 and it’s pretty clear why! They serve home cooked breakfast & lunch and have been owned by the same family for 50 years. Traveler’s Inn was voted the Best in Lakes Area by the Echo Press in 2020. If you plan on stopping here, this place is almost always packed, especially on Sunday mornings. But let us tell you -this place is WORTH THE WAIT. They are famously known for their delicious caramel & cinnamon rolls!

Morgan’s Pick: If you know me, you know I am not a huge breakfast person. Their breakfast is so good that is all I get here! My first choice is the garden omelette. I love my veggies! If you are looking to switch it up and try something unique, my other go-to is the breakfast quesadilla. Such a fun take on breakfast! I also love that Traveler’s was recently updated but it’s still a trip down memory lane with their 1950’s cafe counter seating. 

Amber’s Pick: This is a prime Sunday morning breakfast spot for many people in Alexandria. Andy and I usually go after church on Sundays and even though there is usually a wait time, it’s so worth it! I always get the classic country breakfast which is two eggs, bacon or sausage, hashbrowns or skillet potatoes, and toast. It’s so much food and their prices are unbeatable! Their staff is always fast and super friendly (even on crazy busy Sunday’s) and it’s such a cozy nostalgic feeling restaurant. I always recommend it to people who are looking for good home cooked meals!

There are too many positives and recommendations to list them all, but rest assured you will not be disappointed! Drop a comment below to share if you have tried any of these restaurants before and if you haven’t, which one would you try? We love all of our local restaurants! Want us to do a local roundup part 2? Let us know! We’d love to hear your feedback, comment below (include your email as well) and we will reach out with a little something just for you!  


  • Wendy Wills

    All sounds amazing! Great food & surroundings.

  • Bethany Wills

    Okay I need to visit Alexandria ASAP! All this food sounds amazing and I need to try the huckleberry Moscow mule!

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