I lived in Hungary for awhile and my wife lived in Germany for awhile. This place seemed perfect for us, and we were excited about it. But there are too many good places in South Minneapolis, so we never made it.
There is always the Black Forest on Nicollet and 26th for German Food. I really like their patio when it is in season. Prices are a bit easier on the pocket book also.
After spending time in Germany too, I can easily say that we have ZERO German restaurants in the metro (that I know of) that come anywhere close to the amazing food I've had there! To me, Black Forest is like a Taco Bell's version of good Mexican, and Gasthaus is no better! Bleh. I wish we had better German restaurants! Maybe there's another one I'm not aware of - I hope someone can prove me wrong. I had hoped to try Glockenspiel in St. Paul - but it closed a few weeks ago.
Let's take a step back and ask what "German" food means, as there are significant differences from different parts of the country. Not that I'm an expert, but Black Forest and the Bavarian Hunter are both very much Bavarian food. To me, the quality at the Black Forest is not what it once was, but it's reasonably authentic. The Bavarian Hunter used to be a lot better that the Black Forest in my book, but I've only been there once in recent years and left thinking it wasn't as good as I remembered. Maybe I've grown more discerning.
It's been a very long time since I tried to eat at Gasthaus, but way back then (maybe 20 years??), it was not a good idea. Same for Glockenpiel in a similar time frame. (In other words, come to me for reviews of how restaurants were in the '90s)
[Brasserie Zentral] seemed forced and not very 'common' German/European fare.
I don't think it was going for German, was it? More Austrian/pan European? I mean, I'm with you in that it did not have the things I'd be looking for in a Bavarian restaurant (lots of pork, spaetzl and potato salad), so I never rushed out to try it other than grabbing a beer at the bar a few times. But I read the menu as aiming a bit higher on the culinary scale than that. In other words, it was supposed to be a fancy restaurant, not beer hall.
Of course when the signs first went up I was hoping for Belgian beer, moules marinière and frites on the irrational association of "Zentral" with a Belgian place of that name in London, so I know what you mean about the disconnect with expectations.