On this windy and humid Sunday morning, I jumped out of bed in anticipation of breakfast at Mill Valley Kitchen. I’d heard positive things about this trendy little venue on Excelsior and I was excited to indulge in a gluten-free treat (more on that soon). We ventured across town a little later this morning (10 a.m.), ready to eat.
We walked into the venue and were immediately relaxed. The dining area was spread out and spacious and each table was paired with plush green chairs or booths. It looked like a spa restaurant – a place to be at peace and enjoy your life. A hostess glided in front of us, seating us at a giant booth that was overloaded with sunlight. We sat and basked in silence for a moment. Ah. Weekend. Breakfast. Joy.
Our waitress quickly brought me a cup of some of the best coffee I’ve had in weeks. I was overjoyed to get soy milk to sweeten my cup and was also so glad that my cup came perched on its own little white plate. It looked majestic. I gulped my coffee as I reviewed my breakfast options. The brunch menu, though rather small, offers a good diversity. There are options for every taste bud and the menu includes detailed nutrition information (calories, protein, carbs, etc.), which is something I always welcome. After no deliberation whatsoever, I selected the Quinoa Waffle ($13) while my breakfast companion chose the Mill Valley Benedict ($14). We also decided to split a side of Roasted Yukon Potatoes ($5) because, why not?
We sat in our booth, in the sun, and proceeded to sweat far more than is appropriate. Luckily, we didn’t have to wait long for our breakfasts to arrive as a welcome distraction. If you know me at all, you know I have a lot of weird allergies and dietary restrictions. As I’m going through the (painful) process of trying to heal myself, I’ve had to temporarily cut out all grains completely (even those that are gluten-free). But on Saturday I got an exciting recommendation from my doctor: to eat a GF grain each and every day. So, naturally, I was excited out of my mind to eat this quiona waffle. Now, I’m not sure if my lack of grain-eating until this point played a part in my opinion of this waffle, but, either way, I will tell you that my breakfast was heavenly. My waffle was soft and evenly dense. It had a full flavor with a hint of cinnamon. And it was bready. Oh, man was it bready. It was topped with fresh berries (for other people it comes with whipped cream and blueberry compote) that added the perfect touch of sweetness. Yum, you guys. Yum.
My friend’s meal was also delicious. Her benedict came with asparagus and prosciutto in place of the Canadian bacon, a nice twist on the original dish. The meal still had that nice meaty flavor, but you also got to knock out a few of your veggie servings for the day. There were also roasted cherry tomatoes atop the benedict, which looked really delicious even to my friend, who despises tomatoes. The traditional hollandaise that’s on most benedicts was replaced by a corn-based version that was lighter but still had a similar taste. Overall, it was a lighter, more vibrant, and fresher tasting version of a classic benedict. Ps. She also got a mixed green salad on the side that she didn’t really eat because the benedict was so satisfying. Pps. We also both loved the roasted potatoes – not overly cooked or dry and flavorfully seasoned. Deelish.
I give Mill Valley a big thumbs up. Though it’s a tad pricey, they have fantastic food, fantastic coffee, and a relaxing morning atmosphere. Top all of that off with a gluten-free and vegan-friendly menu and, if you’re willing to pay for it, you’ve got a real winner.
Coffee Quality: 10
Food Quality: 9
Quality of Service: 9
Menu Variety: 8
Overall Satisfaction: 9
Parking: street parking
Average Score: 8.5
Have you been to Mill Valley Kitchen?
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OR…want to experience Mill Valley Kitchen for yourself?
Check out their website or pop their address into your smartphone:
Mill Valley Kitchen
3906 Excelsior Blvd
Minneapolis, MN 55416