Best Foodie Brunch in the Twin Cities

Brunch in the Twin Cities is heating up, with all kinds of fascinating new players, including top-name chefs.

Like who? Glad you asked!

Tim McKee, for one, is now consulting at Cafeteria. I hear his shrimp and grits on the regular menu is astoundingly good, but how is the brunch?

Tea House, the first of the new Szechuan restaurants, is doing weekend brunch at its Plymouth location every Saturday and Sunday from 10:30 a.m. to 2 p.m., for $12.95 per person, and the University location is doing an a la carte Chinese breakfast—rice soup and preserved vegetables with a Shanghai spinach veggie bun with your morning paper? Yes!

If you’ve never had the chef-driven brunch at Victory 44, it’s fantastic (drop a shot of espresso in your Surly for the true rock n’ roll brunch experience). And of course, the most romantic, luxurious, no one-will-refuse-it-ever brunches in the Twin Cities have to be the ones, respectively, at Cosmos (crab-cake Benedict) and the St. Paul Grill (Steak and eggs with filet mignon or roast beef hash)—mornings are so hard.

And yet, the brunch I’m most excited about is the one chef Landon Schoenefeld is going to be serving at Haute Dish.

“I’ve wanted to do brunch since the beginning,” Schoenefeld told me. “I like eggs, I was a breakfast cook for a long time.” Some dishes? “Chicken and waffles, an over-the-top hash, maybe a play on French toast. I kind of want to do the Reuben Benedict we did at Porter and Frye. I asked [former chef at Porter and Frye, and chef at soon-to-open Tilia] Steven Brown if I could, and he said go for it.” What about a bloody Mary, I asked, somewhat breathlessly. “Definitely,” said Schoenefeld. “I kind of want to make the base in the kitchen, but [the bartenders] want to make it, too, so it’s turning into a kind of pissing match. I was thinking a chicken-wing garnish. Poach them [sous vide], put a fry daddy behind the bar—if that doesn’t make you smile, there’s something wrong with you.”

Hallelujah. It’s putting a smile on my face!

Brunch at Haute Dish starts March 27. I’m glad it’s not starting this weekend, because I’ll be enjoying myself at the Minnesota Monthly Food & Wine Experience, and you should too! Come on down, say hi, and try 350 wines, 75 beers, or some reasonable percentage. I’ll also be at the Champion’s Club Wine Dinner, and I’d love to see you! And remember, it’s all to benefit a good cause: MPR.