On a painfully arctic day in the Minnesota tundra, I ventured to breakfast. While most people cuddled at home in their CuddlDuds, I layered my CuddlDuds with jeans and a sweater and booked it to an 8:45 reservation in Hell. Though I wasn’t wishing for a hellish experience, I was hoping the restaurant embodied some of the hellish stereotypes, namely the flames of hell over which to warm my hands.
When I stepped into Hell’s Kitchen, I stepped out of a 2014 Sunday funday and into a 1950s murder mystery. From the chandelier of knives to the framed art of human heads attempting escapes from paintings, the ambience hit me at the door. As we were escorted to our table, we moved from room to room, exploring a spacious and seemingly endless restaurant. Our prompt and casually cool but kind waiter brought me coffee in a trendy glass mug as I (pretended) to peruse the menu that I had already thoroughly read online.
Our food (my Mahnomin Porridge – $7.75, my friend’s Nearly-Classic Egg Benedict – $11.30, and our shared whole wheat toast – $2.35) came nearly instantaneously, before I could even finish two full mugs of coffee (and that’s saying a lot). After the proper foodie photos, I dove into my creamy, mapely porridge filled with wild rice, hazelnuts, and dried blueberries and cranberries. Mmm. And I don’t mean that “Mmm” in like a, “oh, yum” kind of way, I mean it in a literal “MMM” groan that I made when I first put a spoonful of that delectable dish into my mouth. My friend’s response to her benedict was remarkably similar, and she noted that her bacon herb hash browns were also fantastically overwhelming.
As if the divine porridge wasn’t enough, the whole wheat toast seemed to have fallen off a heavenly cloud as well. Though plainly buttered and delicious on its own, topped with Hell’s Kitchen’s housemade peanut butter, the toast was insanely fantastic. Like, so, so good. As we ate, every few seconds we took turns closing our eyes and groaning, “This is SO good.” We also exclaimed our fair shares of “I love it here, I just love it here,” and “10s all around.”
After I completely devoured my entire meal and sat there eating housemade peanut butter with a spoon right out the of the jar, I said to myself, “This peanut butter is getting its own separate blog post.” Because I’m sure a major peanut butter rush was involved in that proposition, I’ll settle for giving the peanut butter its own paragraph. Get the peanut butter. Eat the peanut butter. Eat more of the peanut butter. Ask for a refill of your now empty jar of the peanut butter. And then buy your own jar of it on your way out. (Which you can actually do, by the way, that’s not just my clever hyperbolic wit speaking.) Any entree that includes toast comes with a trio of the housemade peanut butter, blackberry ginger jam (which is also really wonderful, but will seem less so because of this peanut butter paragraph), and bloody orange marmalade. If you don’t get an entree that comes with toast, get a side of toast with which you can eat peanut butter. You can thank me later.
As their menu admits, Hell’s Kitchen isn’t a cheap Denny’s breakfast, but “you get what you pay for.” The prices are steep, but the food is entirely worth it. Not only do they have self-proclaimed (and me-proclaimed) damn good food, but you also get to enjoy the entire Hell’s Kitchen experience. As I licked my fiftieth and final knifeful of housemade peanut butter and slurped my last sip of damn good coffee, I admitted, out loud, that I’d simply like to stay there at Hell’s Kitchen until breakfast tomorrow. My breakfast experience at the kitchen of hell was, to put it simply, heavenly.
Coffee Quality: 10
Food Quality: 10
Quality of Service: 10
Menu Variety: 10
Overall Satisfaction: 10
Parking: Street and ramp parking
Average Score: 9.3
Have you been to Hell’s Kitchen? Share your experience with me below!
OR…want to experience Hell’s Kitchen for yourself (the answer is “YES!”)?
Check out their website or pop their address into your smartphone:
80 S 9th St
Minneapolis, MN 55402