Last week we took a tour of the best breakfasts in St. Paul
, and after all the comments claiming that we "missed" restaurants that are actually in Minneapolis (ahem), we decided that yes, we needed to make things right with the world. So this week we're hopping across the river to give St. Paul's sister city the same morning meal treatment. It should be noted that we only selected places that serve daily breakfast and not just weekend brunch. That's another top 10 list entirely.
And now that we've cleared up all the details, let's get down to the nitty gritty. Here are our 10 favorite breakfast restaurants in Minneapolis.
You'll find nothing but breakfast basics at Milda's in the Near North area of Minneapolis. But everything is done with the pancake-flipping confidence of a place that's been around for decades. Grits are creamy, French toast is lacy at the edges and custardy in the center, and Kielbasa is one of the side sausage options, which really should be available at more restaurants. You might walk in thinking you're the first to discover Milda's, but regulars keep lining up for the affordable prices, enormous, fluffy-soft caramel and iced cinnamon rolls, and general lack of pretense. If you don't fill up on eggs and hash browns at breakfast, come back at dinner for simple, well-seasoned broasted chicken and Milda's famous Iron Range-style pasties.
Is Al's still worth the wait and the cramped conditions? Devotees will tell you it's all part of the charm. There are times when the environment is a hindrance, but we do tend to agree that when you're hankering for an Al's pancake (get the blueberry or blackberry ones when they're available), there is truly no substitute. To maximize your chances of having an ideal Al's experience, come early on a weekday, with an empty bladder (no bathroom), cash in hand, and know what you're going to order as soon as a seat frees up. If it sounds like a lot of work, just repeat this mantra to yourself: bacon waffle bacon waffle bacon waffle bacon waffle...
Going out for breakfast with a mixed bag of dietary needs? Make a beeline for Modern Times Cafe in Powderhorn. This grungy but great breakfast and lunch spot accommodates the needs of carnivores, omnivores, locavores, and the gluten-averse with a whole host of delicious dishes like the Mexican migas with textured vegetable protein chorizo and poblano sour cream; an earthy hash of roasted beets, goat cheese, eggs, and bacon called the Beet Up; and a couple of hearty, savory fried brown rice bowls, loaded with veggies, eggs, herbs, and all kinds of satisfying textures. Lest you think this is only a place for the virtuous to dine, there is the Croque John Paul, essentially a Frankenstein's monster of eggs Benedict and a Croque Monsieur sandwich.
|Kate N.G. Somers|
We've said it before and we'll probably say it again: God bless Victor's for making the concept of breakfast happy hour
socially acceptable. If you can snag a spot outside on the lovely patio and manage to decide between the mango pancakes or the weird-sounding but totally delicious Cuban hash with olives, raisins, capers, and sweet plantains, you'll be feeling about as tropical as one can in the middle of Minneapolis. On the more Gringo side of the menu, the pressed breakfast sandwich and wild rice porridge are also top-notch.