Legendary | Worth driving from anywhere
Review by: Michael Stern
Hell’s Kitchen serves three meals a day, each of which is terrific, but if you must come only once, make it breakfast. It is hard to choose among the likes of lemon ricotta hotcakes, cornmeal waffles, and huevos rancheros that is a huge plate of food that includes rosti potatoes along with spicy beans, eggs, cheeses, sour cream, and fresh salsa on a crisp flour tortilla. With a toasted baguette or sausage bread, you’ll love the spectacular fruit preserves and toasty peanut butter. On the side, there’s great pit ham or thick bacon or discs of bison sausage that is sweet and gamey unlike any ordinary breakfast meat.
The roesti potatoes are available as a dish unto themselves, and they are less like the Swiss spuds that are their namesake than they are glorified hash browns, the shreds of potato mixed with bacon, sweet onions, chives, and scallions and grilled in sweet cream butter. No matter what else you get, someone at the table must order the magnificent quarter-pound caramel pecan roll featuring extra-crunchy pieces of nut and a refined glaze that is a sweet tooth’s dream.
Probably the most unusual and perhaps the most delicious dish on the breakfast menu is Mahnomin Porridge, a recipe that the late Chef Mitch Omer came up with from reading accounts of native Cree Indian meals that featured wild rice. His version includes nuts and berries and is sopped with a warm slurry of maple syrup and heavy cream.
Lunch choices include a walleye BLT made with cornmeal-dusted filets and lemon tartar sauce instead of the homemade mayo the kitchen uses on its regular BLT. Bauhaus appetites will enjoy an item known simply as the Bread Bucket, which is all the chewy, freshly-made baguette you can eat served along with fantastic homemade marmalade, ginger-berry preserves, and that amazing peanut butter.
Rather than rave on, let us simply say that if you are in Minneapolis and want to wow your taste buds, go to Hell’s Kitchen. It is inspired and inspiring.
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