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New dining options served up

Zorbaz of Alexandria is located on North Nokomis Street. (Photo by Amy Chaffins)1 / 3
Lakes Country Buffet is open in the building on North Nokomis that used to house Tio's Mexican Grill. (Photo by Amy Chaffins)2 / 3
Fresh Corner is located inside Viking Plaza. (Photo by Amy Chaffins)3 / 3

Over the winter, the Alexandria lakes area sprouted three new dining destinations - Lakes Country Buffet, Zorbaz and Fresh Corner.

The owners of all three restaurants say "so far so good" for business and they're looking forward to the summer crowd stopping by to dig in, too.


Lakes Country Buffet opened on North Nokomis Street about six weeks ago.

The American food buffet features 60 items, including a salad bar. They offer delicious options like ribs, chicken, shrimp, fish, pizza, pork roast, roast beef, dozens of side items and more.

Co-owners Rick Green and Lee Horstmann have operated restaurants in the Perham and Detroit Lakes area prior to the Alexandria restaurant purchase. When asked what brought them to Alexandria, Green said, "Well, our Coca-Cola distributor told us [Alexandria] was the place to be. The area is growing like crazy and we decided to come here."

Green said business has been great.

The buffet is open Monday through Saturday from 11 a.m. to 8 p.m. and Sunday from 10 a.m. to 9 p.m.

Lakes Country Buffet is located at 217 North Nokomis Street, Alexandria and they can be contacted at (320) 759-3011.


Zorbaz on the Lake is a popular lakes area destination with several restaurants across the state.

Zorbaz of Alexandria opened February 4 across the street from Lake L'Homme Dieu.

Zorbaz offers casual dining with a fun atmosphere for everybody. They're a great spot for families during the day and offer a relaxed adult night life, too.

Manager Shane Baril said, "Business is going really good. We're working on our outside patio bar and we're excited to get it open."

The Zorbaz menu features a variety of appetizers, salads and spaghetti, homemade pizza and Mexican dinners, plus 30 beers on tap.

Kevin Hanson is the operating partner at the Alexandria location and said, "We had plans to open the patio for Cinco de Mayo, but that's obviously not going to happen. We do have plans to open the 5,000 square foot patio as soon as we can. We'll have a full-service bar out there and it will allow us to double our capacity."

The first Zorbaz opened in 1969 in Detroit Lakes and now has 11 locations, including Alexandria.

Zorbaz is located at 2710 North Nokomis Street, on the southwest side of Lake L'Homme Dieu. Zorbaz is open 11 a.m. to 2 a.m. every day and can be contacted at (320) 219-7813. Check out their website at for events, specials and menu.


Fresh Corner is located inside Viking Plaza in Alexandria and opened March 13.

Fresh Corner features a menu full of quick breakfast, lunch and snack choices. They offer wraps, sandwiches, salads, soups, beverages, ice cream, quesadillas and also feature cookies, pretzels, muffins, chicken wings, breakfast sandwiches, egg rolls and more.

Owner Mike Richardson said, "Everything is made fresh, right in front of you."

His favorite menu item is the chicken cordon bleu wrap. It's a wrap containing chicken, ham, cheese and mushrooms.

Fresh Corner is located in the mall's center court and open Mondays through Thursdays from 10 a.m. to 7:30 p.m., Fridays from 10 a.m. to 9 p.m., Saturdays from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. and Sundays 11 a.m. to 5 p.m. The restaurant also features a call-ahead option for pick-up by calling (320) 846-0046.

Amy Chaffins

Amy Chaffins is a journalist working for the Echo Press newspaper in Alexandria, Minnesota.

(320) 763-3133