This post is near and dear to me, because I don’t think anyone likes breakfast food more than this kid (I’m exaggerating a bit). I’ve spent the last couple years, and hard earned paychecks to bring you my list of favorite brunch places in the Twin Cities. Obviously I can’t talk about them all, but I’ll highlight my “to-eat list.”
Hands down they have the best breakfast in both cities. With three great locations in both Minneapolis and St. Paul you have no excuse not to try one (or all) of them. I’ve already written about my obsession with their “flapper” pancakes. They also have amazing omelets which are served with their homemade bread. You can also get a breakfast sandwich on that bread, or opt for a breakfast sandwich on a flaky biscuit. I’m also a huge fan of both their savory and sweet scones, but make sure you come with a date and share one of their massive cinnamon rolls for just $3.50!! I think they get the name from the size of the cinnamon rolls. I really can’t say enough great things about this place.
Wise Acre Eatery
Looking for somewhere to take your best friend from out of town that doesn’t shy away from non-traditional brunch food? This is it. They really take using sustainable foods, seriously. All the delicious bacon is from a local farm, as are the vegetables. The restaurant is filled with plants inside, and it makes you feel like you’re in a garden that the chef is going to come and harvest your dish from. I highly recommend the CSA Hash which contains potatoes, scrambled fresh eggs, seasonal veggies and a huge hunk of bacon with a delicious aoili on the side. If you’re feeling like a definite food coma, get the french toast. It’s the best I’ve ever had, but it’s not traditional french toast. It’s definitey soaked in custard overnight and then either fried or cooked in mass amounts of butter because IT. IS. CRISPY. Not to be missed. If you need a snack for the road, grab a few donut muffins coated in cinnamon sugar.
I would describe their brunch as diner food without the 20 lbs of unnecessary grease. The food isn’t anything that you wouldn’t find in a normal breakfast place, but they do everything very well. It’s the basics done up a notch. They do very good egg dishes, but try their jalapeño hash. It’s a simple dish with hash browns perfectly crisped in butter and the jalapeños give it a nice kick. I mentioned it before in my pancakes post, but THE PANCAKES ARE AMAZING. Traditional buttermilk done right, which is surprisingly hard to find in the twin cities.
This place can do no wrong when it comes to any meal of the day, even snack (blueberry bacon muffin). They have perfected the little things at Copper Hen. First off, get there early because this place fills up fast, for a reason. When you do finally snag a table in the incredibly well decorated space, make sure you order the “farmer’s brunch,” which comes with fennel sausage or creamed kale, french toast, eggs and root vegetable hash. This place is fairly new to the Minneapolis food scene but they’re already doing outstanding things.
Cook St. Paul
From the outside it looks like the tiniest old diner, but the inside is more like the tiniest new diner. The place really is small, but that’s fine because the food comes out quick and then you’re gone. In fact, apparently the food took too long when I was there, so the waitress gave me a free meal. Very kind gesture, but definitely was not necessary since I’m used to waiting patiently for my food. Besides having great customer service; they also have great food. You can’t go wrong with the traditional eggs and pancakes and bacon but they also do a great Korean pancake made with fermented beans. On top of that dish, you can get the “frenchcake stack” which includes almost every item on the menu AND a pancake with hash browns cooked into it. They have other delicious options like gingerbread pancakes and breakfast nachos. Everything just works in this little place in St. Paul.
I’m realizing that most of these restaurants are on Eat St. so now you can conveniently get to all of them on one Sunday morning 😉 Blackbird is much like the other spots on the list but I keep going back for the wide array of pancake options. On any given weekend, they offer sourdough flapjacks, whole grain pancakes and thin swedish pancakes with fruit compote. All are bomb but I especially enjoyed the bready-taste of the sourdough ones. They also do a great biscuits and gravy with sweet potato biscuits. Also, splurge on the mimosa. They’re super refreshing!
Now that I’ve drooled my whole way through writing this post, I’m gonna head out and get some pancakes 🙂