This week has been a glorious week of summer. Though we’ve experienced some rain (and flooding), we’ve also experienced sun and warmth and summer happiness. So, to top off this week of beauty, we headed to Hazel’s Northeast, a venue that I’d been really excited to try.
On a late Friday morning, we drove the short, trafficless trek to Hazel’s. This adorable little venue is tucked away in a little Northeast neighborhood on Johnson Street. It shares a street with a couple of other precious little coffee shops and hometown bakeries (both of which didn’t look promising for the gluten-free, dairy-free crowd). We popped into the tiny little restaurant and were escorted to a roomy wooden booth, fit for a group of six. This is one of the benefits of a Friday morning breakfast in which you share the venue with one boisterous college couple and an independent elderly woman.
Our waitress, who quickly brought us coffees, had one of those naturally beautiful faces. You know the type: she doesn’t wear hardly any makeup, just throws her hair into a loose, messy top-of-the-head bun, and looks like she just walked out of a hipster-style Banana Republic ad. And, on top of all of that, she diligently and consistently filled my always empty coffee cup and smiled like a princess.
After briefly working through my jealousy of our perfect waitress, I sipped an average-tasting cup of coffee from the world’s smallest coffee cup (thank goodness our princess waitress was a diligent filler-upper) and perused the menu. The breakfast menu is relatively small, but includes a variety of classics and some fun twists on your favorites. If I weren’t gluten-free and dairy-free I would have ordered the Hippie Cakes: granola-infused pancakes topped with mixed berry compote and real whipped cream. If you go here per my recommendation (or per anything, really), I DEMAND you order this and then inform me how heavenly they are. But the real me selected the Sunrise Omelette ($9) instead. My breakfast companion chose the Drunken Banana French Toast ($9), the other dish that I would have seriously considered indulging in if I weren’t me.
We continued to enjoy our tiny cups of coffee while we awaited the arrival of our breakfasts. Only a few minutes passed and we were presented with our delicious meals. I looked at my friend’s plate and almost died. More on that in a second. My plate looked tasty enough, the slices of gluten-free toast looking particularly delicious. My omelette was literally packed with spinach and sun-dried tomatoes (also supposed to include chevre, but that was eliminated by dairy-free me) and came with a side of hash browns and toast (gluten-free for $1.50). The omelette was thin and crispy, a different texture then I’d experienced before. The spinach was literally just stacked and stuffed into the omelette casing, with a few tomatoes sprinkled throughout. Though I’m the queen of vegetables, it was a bit too spinach-heavy for me and could have used either a thicker omelette or a wider variety of veggies. The GF toast was average (to me on this particular morning it was the best thing in the world because I haven’t had bread in 4 months), but the hash browns were perfect: a delicious balance of creamy and crispy, with the lovely addition of chopped onions for flavor.
My friend’s breakfast hurt me a little bit to even look at. It was a decedent dessert disguised as breakfast. Her meal included huge slabs of cinnamon swirled french toast topped with warm bananas and rum soaked raisins and drizzled with caramel and toasted pecans. Did your whole mouth just fill with saliva? Me too. My friend explained that the dish was sweet but not overpowering. The actual toast was soft like French toast usually is but it wasn’t soggy or slimy (or dry for that matter). The combination of the bananas and the caramel sauce was perfectly delicious. She said she could have literally eaten a bowl of just the toppings (and who wouldn’t?). Though extremely filling, each and every bite of sweetness was worth it.
All in all, Hazel’s was a fun and tasty morning. If you’re looking for great food and beautiful, impeccable service in a trendy restaurant with hometown charm, Hazel’s Northeast is the ticket.
Coffee Quality: 8
Food Quality: 8
Quality of Service: 10
Menu Variety: 7
Overall Satisfaction: 9
Parking: street parking
Average Score: 8.3
Have you been to Hazel’s Northeast? Share your experience with me below!
OR…want to experience Hazel’s Northeast for yourself?
Check out their website or pop their address into your smartphone:
2859 Johnson St. NE
Minneapolis, MN 55418